Sunday 16 June 2019

Fair City star – 'I'm disgusted at Late Late'

Jim Bartley and Jean Costello of Fair City. Photo: Garrett White/ Collins
Jim Bartley and Jean Costello of Fair City. Photo: Garrett White/ Collins

FORMER Fair City star Jean Costello was "disgusted" that she wasn't interviewed during a tribute to Jim Bartley on the Late Late Show.

Jean and Jim played Rita and Bela Doyle and starred alongside each other for more than two decades on Fair City.

On Friday night, Ryan Tubridy dedicated an entire segment of his chat show to honour actor Jim's 55 years in showbiz.

Although she was in the audience on the night, Jean was stunned when her character Rita was not referred to once.

Jean's partner Seamus Kelly said that the couple have received phone calls from family and friends who wanted to know what happened.

"She was told beforehand that she would be in the second segment but they didn't mention her once," he told the Herald. "She sat one seat away from Jim's daughter and was asked to move. We were very surprised by this."

Seamus said that they were speechless that Rita was excluded during the RTE show.

Jean's character Rita Doyle passed away from a long-term illness in the soap last year.

Seamus said that she felt "disgusted" that she was not even referred to.

"They (Jim and Jean) worked very closely together for about 10 years," Seamus said.

"It was always basically about Bela and Rita, they were the two main characters in the show. I just thought it was unprofessional.

"At one stage he (Jim) talked about the 'bereavement' – he didn't even mention Rita's name," he added. "I don't know what is going on."

A representative for RTE said that it was aware of the actress's frustration but said that it was the "nature of live television".

"Yes, we are aware of Jean Costello's disappointment regarding The Late Late Show interview with Jim Bartley," a spokesperson told the Herald.

"The segment on the show last Friday night was about Jim Bartley and his 55 years in show business.

"While some actors did supply anecdotes about their time working with Jim, others didn't get this opportunity or weren't name checked, such is the nature of live television."


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