Corrie’s Bruno Langley
bruno langley on life as a soap baddie, and why he’d never do Celebrity First Dates
Coronation Street star Bruno Langley is becoming a lot smilier than usual. He’s offering up his seat on buses and trains, avoiding heated debates and generally keeping a low profile. Why? Because his alter ego, Todd Grimshaw, has turned bad… again.
After being dumped by vicar Billy for dobbing him into the bishop, an angry Todd decided he had nothing to lose and told Phelan he wanted in on his property racket.
‘He’s gone over to the dark side,’ explains Bruno, 33. ‘When Todd is horrible on screen, I overcompensate in real life. I go out of my way to be pleasant to people to prove that I’m a nice, normal guy. I disapprove of a lot of the things Todd does.
‘I’ve been called many things in the street and, because I have drama and conflict as a job, I don’t want it in my personal life. Before I got the job on Corrie, I’d have arguments with people and I was a bit of a free spirit, but I can’t be like that any more. When I’m out in public, I’m a lot quieter than usual because I don’t want to cause a scene.’
But Todd’s not an out-and-out bad guy. One minute he wants to be in cahoots with Phelan, the next he has an attack of conscience.
‘He’s a bit messed up,’ says
Bruno. ‘He’s torn – he doesn’t know what people expect of him or who he is. What I love about Todd is that he’s not just a bad guy, he has many layers. In real life, people aren’t just bad, they do things for a reason. My own opinion of what Todd does is not important – my job is to find the reasons why he does these things.
‘It doesn’t help that he’s still attached to his mum Eileen’s apron strings, but he was brought up by a single parent. I was lucky and had a mum and dad and lots of brothers and sisters, but not everyone has been as fortunate as me.’
Bruno grew up in Buxton, Derbyshire and trained as an actor at North Cheshire Theatre School. He joined Corrie in 2001 and left in 2004. The following year he played the Time Lord’s companion Adam Mitchell in Doctor Who. After a guest stint in Corrie in
2007, he appeared for one episode in 2011 and returned in 2013.
‘I consider myself lucky to be doing this job. I watched a recent documentary about Ancient Rome and, back then, the lowest people in society were actors and prostitutes. At least I live in a time when acting is sort of respected.
‘Coronation Street was my first proper job and leaving it enabled me to appreciate it. I would never want to have anyone say I was getting too big for my boots.
That won’t ever happen.’
When TV Times speaks to Bruno, he’s in France for a month-long break from the soap.
‘Time away is always a good thing. It means
I can go back with more energy. I also wanted some normality and anonymity, but the first person I saw here in France said,
“Bonsoir – aren’t you
Todd from Corrie?”’
Single dad Bruno always spends part of his holidays with
Freddie, his nine-yearold son from a past relationship.
He also catches up with his excolleague Ryan
Thomas, who played Todd’s brother Jason.
‘I speak to
Ryan all the time. We’re going to Ireland soon to have some fun. He calls me whenever he’s in
Manchester and we get together with our kids. I loved working with him, but I haven’t had a chance to miss him, because we’ve been here, there and everywhere together. We know so much about each other!’
Bruno is also close to Daniel Brocklebank, who plays Billy, the vicar who dumps Todd this week. He applauds Daniel’s recent appearance on C4’s Celebrity First Dates, but says he would never dare to appear on reality TV.
‘I’m a single dad, but I’d never go on a show like that. One of
my biggest nightmares would be to wake up in the Big Brother house. I knew Danny would come across well on First Dates because he likes people, but I’d hate to be under such close scrutiny. It’s just not my thing.’
Music, however, is very much him. Earlier this year, he released his debut EP Jump. He also wrote music for a collection of children’s verse called Poems For Cheeky Children, which is narrated by Jennie Mcalpine, aka Fiz.
‘I had some songs that were half-finished and I thought it would be a shame if they stayed on my computer and nobody ever heard them.
‘The poems will be released near Christmas. I’ve narrated some of them and I think they’ll go down well. They’ve already passed the Freddie test – I try everything out on my son. He’d tell me if he thought they were rubbish, because he always says it as it is.’
Bruno expects his life will be full on when he goes back to Corrie after his break, especially now that Todd is involved with Phelan.
‘I assume I’ll have lots of scenes coming up with him and it’s going to be a busy time. I do always make sure I put the time in as a dad, too. Kids don’t appreciate that when they’re little, but I’m sure Freddie will when he’s older – that’s if he forgives me for the time I told him I’d go to his school disco and dance in the middle of the floor. I was only joking, but he was horrified!’
After a well-earned break, Bruno’s set for more drama as Todd turns nasty I do always make sure I put the time
in as a dad
suits you, sirs: With son Freddie Vicar Billy brought out the good in Todd Evil phelan has torn apart the Grimshaws for all this week’s big soap stories, see pages 24-29