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Tuesday 6 December 2016

Look out Bridget, Nidge's missus is coming to town

Mark Huberman and Bernard O Shea
Mark Huberman and Bernard O Shea

aoibhinn McGinnity and Mark Huberman will guest-star as two visiting Americans in RTE's new series of Bridget & Eamon.

The duo play Mikey and Barbara, a visiting American couple who make instant best friends with well-loved TV couple Bridget and Eamon.

Aoibhinn, who played popular character Trish, wife of King Nidge, in Love/Hate, said screen comedy took some getting used to.

"I've done a bit of theatre comedy but not on screen. You have to get used to that and not get caught up in the fact that it is gas, and even if you find your character funny or far fetched you just have to root yourself in that and get on with it," she said.

She said Love/Hate hasn't tied her down to any particular type of character, but that she enjoyed practising her comedy chops on Bridget & Eamon. "It's a good thing to be associated with but I don't go for things that are all the same either, so I don't feel like it's had a negative impact. Hopefully, it hasn't tied me into any role."

Aoibhinn McGinnity and Jennifer Zamperelli at Rte Studios in Donnybrook Dublin for the launch of the new series of Bridget and Eamon
Aoibhinn McGinnity and Jennifer Zamperelli at Rte Studios in Donnybrook Dublin for the launch of the new series of Bridget and Eamon

Brash

Mark, who starred in Frank with Michael Fassbender and who is the brother of Amy Huberman, said filming alongside Jennifer Zamperelli and Bernard O'Shea was nerve-wracking.

"We were a bit worried about it. Even when you come in you're like, how big are we allowed to be… but they're just such brash characters that you're allowed to go a little bit further than normal," he said.

Co-writer and star Bernard O'Shea, who plays Eamon, said that the roles of Mikey and Barbara were written specifically with Mark and Aoibhinn in mind.

"We didn't cast, we didn't do anything, we wrote it from scratch… thankfully they said yes," he said. "They were terrifying to work with because they knew their lines."

The new series will see Bridget and Eamon run for election, open a hair salon, and visit Dublin, all while chain-smoking from their home with six to eight kids in the midlands.

The six-episode series will also see comedian Katherine Lynch starring as Eamon's mammy, while other guest stars will include Father Ted's Joe Rooney.

Speaking on the appeal of the series, Bridget actress Jennifer Zamperelli said: "Bridget is a bit of every Irish mammy. She's a bit of my mam, a bit of my sister, a bit of my neighbour three doors down."

Nostalgia

The Ifta-winning show has recently been acquired by UKTV, airing on comedy channel Gold - which was a "huge suprise", Jennifer said.

She pointed out that Ireland has completely changed since Bridget and Eamon's day.

"It brings us back and then the Trump thing happens and we wonder, have we come that far?" says Jennifer.

"The whole nostalgia of the '80s is a big character in the show, the whole smoking thing, driving without seatbelts, drink driving, they have millions of kids, it's kind of unbelievable."

Bridget & Eamon will start back on RTE2 on Monday at 9.30pm.

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