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Chris Bisson Talks About Rishi's Shock Death

Was Jai disappointed his father did not make it to his wedding?

Jai was extremely disappointed his father did not come to his wedding.  Prior to the wedding they had had a significant run in but by the time the wedding went ahead Jai was hopeful his dad would attend. In the church Jai kept turning around to see if his dad was going to turn up. And at the wedding reception he kept looking at the door to see if his dad was going to walk in. The whole thing was making Jai anxious and he realised he just needed to get on and enjoy the day - as the day was about Laurel. But he was really disappointed that Rishi wasn’t there. 

He made a heartfelt speech didn’t he?

Jai’s speech at the reception was really about his dad and how he wanted things to be right - how life is too short and how we should all make the most of it and enjoy what we have.  So the next day of course he’s going to be very very upset on discovering his father. 

Not just the sadness of losing his dad but the circumstances.  Because they hadn’t had a chance to resolve things. 

Do you think there is a lot of regret there and will Jai struggle to overcome it?

I think it’s going to make things harder for him. He will ruminate on it. It’s not something that just disappears and we do come back to this regret in future scripts. We reflect on the state of their relationship at the time of his passing. 

The shock death will be a huge shock to the family?  Do you think it’s good to show these shock twists?

I do. I suppose it would be nice if somebody could watch this story and take something away from it - maybe resolve a difference that they have, before it’s too late. It would be nice to think the show could have a positive effect. Life really is too short.

How was it filming the scene when Jai finds his father dead at the bottom of the stairs?

That was two days of filming with a ‘dead Bhasker’ on top of me as I cried my eyes out. It was difficult and they were long emotional days - I felt wiped out by the end of filming.  But I tried to give it my all. We try to get inside the heads of the characters. As the audience wants to see and understand the characters' pain and that is what we as actors try to portray. 

It must have been tiring when you went home after filming these scenes? 

Yes it’s like when they say about taking your work home with you. If you have had a long emotional day of scenes when you've been upset all day you don’t just switch off when they shout cut. It takes a little bit of time to acclimatise - come back down and get your head straightened back to normality. You need a bit of headspace after a day like that. 

So Bhasker has gone and he's played your fictional dad for 12 years. Tell us about that.

It does feel very strange without him. Every time I walk past what was his dressing room I think about popping my head in to see how he’s doing. So it is strange when he isn’t there. Twelve years is a long time. And over the years we’ve had some great stories and have had a lot of fun too. Bhasker and I got on really well personally so that makes a big difference and the loss even greater - we all miss him in the building. 

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Weekday evenings