Home and Away fans have been devastated this year, after losing many core characters from the show in quick succession.
Although fan favourites like Jasmine Delaney, Bella Nixon and Ryder Jackson have left, there’s one character they don’t have to worry about leaving anytime soon: Ziggy Astoni.
Sophie Dillman, who plays Ziggy on the show, revealed to Yahoo Lifestyle that she wants to stay in Summer Bay as long as she ‘absolutely can’, saying that she’s ‘privileged’ to be able to work on the show.
“We don’t really get to choose how long we get to stay on Home and Away,” she spills.
“We’re privileged to have the opportunity to work as an actor on Home and Away, and it’s up to the writers and producers what they want from the character, and how long a character is meant to be there.”
The star has worked on the show for five and a half years, and she assures us that she isn’t ready to hang up her mechanic uniform. “I will work there as long as I absolutely can because I love everyone there, and who knows how long it will be for?” she says.
Sophie’s first day
Sophie gets visibly excited when talking about her first day on set in 2017, saying that it ‘feels like yesterday’.
“I remember being woken up by my alarm at some ungodly hour. I hadn’t been up that early for years. I was driven to set and I was freaking out, I had a full day, all the scenes,” she recalls.
The actress was so new to the industry, that she thought she had to do her own hair and makeup. “I saw all of these big trucks, and these big lights, and someone got me from the car…everyone was so nice and so patient.
“It was so much fun. One of the best days of my life,” she adds.
Her supportive network
The star can’t decide who her biggest supporters are, saying that she has so many. Sophie tells us that her granddad still cuts out articles he finds of her in magazines or newspapers, and laminates every single one.
In a sweet story, the star describes how a psychic told her pregnant mum and a family friend that Sophie was destined to be an actress in the future.
“I remember getting this job, and [the family friend] messaged me, I hadn’t seen her in years. She said, ‘I told you we knew before you were born that this was what you’re meant to do’,” she shares.
She’s quick to list all the support she’s had over the years, mentioning that friends have sent her petrol money, food money and helped her with auditions. She doesn’t take anything for granted for one second.
“I’ve been so privileged to have such a supportive network. I wouldn’t be able to do what I do without it.”
Working with her boyfriend
Sophie’s character Ziggy is in a relationship with Dean Thompson, played by her real-life partner Patrick O’Connor. The two are often referred to by fans as ‘couple goals’ and are extremely popular.
The pair worked together before they started dating, so she says that they had a ‘great professional relationship first’.
“I really admire some of his acting choices, and how he looks at his character and his storylines. I’ve learnt a lot from him, so it’s really fun,” she gushes.
While she thinks working with Patrick is ‘really great’, she does admit that kissing scenes are still strange.
“You have a camera guy like right here,” she motions close to her face. “[They’re] going, ‘Closer, to the left, to the right’, weird,” she laughs.
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