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Sunday 11 December 2016

TV3 gamble pays off as Red Rock gets longer run

David Hennessy (Adam Weafer) and Katie Kiely (India Mullen) in Red Rock
David Hennessy (Adam Weafer) and Katie Kiely (India Mullen) in Red Rock
Karl Bowe in Red Rock
Cathy Belton

It was a big gamble for TV3, but the station's soap Red Rock has been such a hit with viewers that bosses have committed to more episodes.

The soap was originally given a two-year run, but TV3's director of content Lynda McQuaid has said this will be extended.

"The audience have taken to it. The production values are exceptionally high," she said.

"It stands as a beacon to show we are capable of doing that level of production and turnover. We are hugely committed to it."

McQuaid said they are hoping to attract more viewers by teasing the soap during TV3's Rugby World Cup coverage.

The station will air promos showing the "grittier" aspects of Red Rock in a bid to bring in more male viewers.

Meanwhile, one of the show's stars, Cathy Belton, says she gets recognised by members of the public more often now that she's in the top soap.

Cathy plays matriarch Patricia Hennessey in the popular drama, which returned to our screens earlier this month.

"I did a show in the Galway Arts Festival over the summer when we were off and you do get a bit more recognition," she told the Herald.

lovely

"You forget that your face is out there a bit more, but people are really lovely.

"We're back filming next month so we're gearing up to it now with costume fittings and meetings and I'm really looking forward to getting back into it.

"I wouldn't call myself a 'soap star', but it's nice that people are enjoying it."

While Cathy says the scheming Patricia "is a joy to play", she admits she doesn't have much in common with her character.

"I hope not, though she'd do anything for her family - and family, friends and loyalty would be very big for me," she said.

"But I've become quite attached to her - it's a luxury to play a character for a length of time as you tend to grow and evolve with her.

"I would love her wardrobe, though."

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