Hollyoaks star Chris Charles on Nate Denby secret

·5-min read

Hollyoaks spoilers follow.

Hollyoaks newcomer Chris Charles has hinted at bigger plans for his character Nate Denby, revealing that there's more to him than meets the eye.

Fans of the Channel 4 soap have recently seen Nate arrive on screen as a new housemate for Grace Black (Tamara Wall). He'll also soon start working at the local market.

Show bosses have announced that Nate will strike up a romantic connection with Grace, as well as befriending Ripley Lennox (Ki Griffin). But is Nate everything he appears to be?

Speaking exclusively to Digital Spy, Chris teased: "Nate is very charming and cheeky. I would also say that he's a little secretive. There's a little something extra to Nate, that may or may not be revealed.

Photo credit: Lime Pictures
Photo credit: Lime Pictures

"He's definitely charismatic. The Hollyoaks fans can expect Nate to brighten up their screens and bring some charisma to the village. But there may be a little bit more to him than meets the eye.

"I don't think it'll be too long before people start to see that. They'll get to delve a little bit further and deeper into Nate."

On Nate's early connections in the village, Chris continued: "There's a friendly rivalry between Nate and Ripley on the market. It becomes a little bit of a love/hate relationship.

"Nate coming along leaves Ripley thinking: 'You're trying to move in on my turf. What are you doing?' Nate is revelling in that, actually!

Photo credit: Lime Pictures
Photo credit: Lime Pictures

"They may be treading on each other's toes, but it generally develops into a situation where they're looking at each other thinking: 'Do you know what? You're not too bad. You get under my skin a little bit but you're alright deep down'.

"You'll also see that Grace and Nate are attracted to each other. Everyone will have to wait and see whether something can happen between the two of them.

"We all know the type of character Grace is – how fiery she is and how she doesn't stand for any nonsense. It's a question of whether they can get something going.

"But there's definitely interest there, and I'd say Nate can definitely handle Grace. Nate is cool, calm and collected, but also very straightforward. A lot of the passion and fire that Grace could meet him with, I'd say Nate has the tools to dampen that a little bit."

Photo credit: Lime Pictures
Photo credit: Lime Pictures

Chris has previously made guest appearances on EastEnders and Doctors, but this will be his most prominent TV role to date.

Discussing the audition process for Hollyoaks, he told us: "It all happened relatively quickly. I received the breakdown from my agents, did a self-tape and then had an in-person audition.

"After that, it was straight to the screen test. It was a relatively quick process, probably done within about two or three weeks.

"When I found out that I'd got the role, at first I was a little stunned. I'm one of those actors who does an audition or a casting, but then tries to forget about it. I get rid of the emails and I put it out of my mind, so I'm not sitting there dwelling on anything.

Photo credit: Lime Pictures
Photo credit: Lime Pictures

"I tried to do the exact same thing here. It was tough at times. I was thinking: 'Will I hear anything?' But I tried to put it out of my mind as much as possible. To get the call to say it was being offered to me, I was just stunned and elated.

"Working on the show has been amazing. I'll be honest, professionally it's been the best experience of my life to date. Everyone at Hollyoaks is amazing – so friendly and welcoming. It's just such an honour to be part of.

"The producers have been relatively open about their plans for Nate. I had a nice sit-down talk regarding his background and storyline.

"The road map is definitely laid out for the end goal and the endgame. Exactly how we get there is still in development, I'm guessing. But we definitely know where we want to go with Nate."

Photo credit: Lime Pictures
Photo credit: Lime Pictures

This week Nate will also be one of the characters appearing in an hour-long special of Hollyoaks featuring an all-Black cast.

Hollyoaks has created the episode as part of Channel 4's Black to Front initiative, a day of special programming which is fronted by Black talent.

Chris said: "The moment I was informed that I'd be part of that episode, it's difficult to put into words the amount of pride that I felt. It's just such an honour to be part of that episode, which is such a historic and iconic moment.

"I can't believe that Channel 4, Lime Pictures and Hollyoaks get to put this on, with Hollyoaks being the crown jewel of this entire initiative. It's brilliant."

Photo credit: Lime Pictures
Photo credit: Lime Pictures

Chris has been acting since he was a child and credits his mother for helping him to achieve his aims.

He recalled: "I have always wanted to be an actor, probably from the age of 10. I just remember pointing to the TV screen and saying, 'Mum, I want to do that'. She was like, 'What? Acting?' I said, 'Yeah, I want to be on TV doing exactly what those guys are doing'.

"I think from then, she never looked back. Mum helped and pushed me forward. I landed my first professional job at the age of 12 or 13, so I was always acting.

"I did take a little break from it in my early twenties as I had been doing a lot. I'd been performing from an early age, up until 21 or 22. I took a little break out for a couple of years and got back into it in my mid-twenties. I've never looked back since.

"Doing guest roles on EastEnders and Doctors gave me an appetite for the soap world. I definitely wanted to get into a soap and have a regular role – something meaty that I could actually sink my teeth into properly for a nice stint.

"I'm just thankful that Hollyoaks gave me the opportunity."

Hollyoaks airs weeknights at 6.30pm on Channel 4, with first-look screenings at 7pm on E4. Selected omnibus episodes are available via Amazon Prime Video.

Read more Hollyoaks spoilers on our dedicated homepage

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