‘This job takes over your life’
Coronation Street star Sam Robertson, who plays Adam Barlow, has revealed that he came close to quitting the soap because he struggled with the exposure and recognition.
The 33 year old says that an extended break from the show at the start of the year gave him the opportunity to work out whether a future on the cobbles was what he really wanted.
Explains Robertson: “I was in a strange head space before my break. This job overtakes your life. You can’t leave it at the door on a Friday night, and that was getting to me.
“I wasn’t enjoying that aspect, or the intrusion. I needed the head space to decide if I wanted that long term.”
Robertson – who reprised the role of Adam Barlow in 2016 after an initial stint between 2004 and 2007 – was temporarily written out when his character left the cobbles to go travelling. In real life, Sam had been granted leave to take a holiday in Sydney, Australia, where a friend was getting married.
Initially, he was due to take six weeks off, but for storyline reasons, this was extended to ten weeks. Since returning, his character has become involved in a steamy romance with Sarah Platt.
He adds: “My best mate’s in Sydney. Whenever I’ve been down in the dumps, I look at the pictures on Instagram and I’m like ‘I’m going to ditch this and move to Sydney on Monday!’
“But whenever I stay with him, reality bites. It’s not all about sitting on the beach, sipping cocktails; it’s ‘get a job, get a visa.’ And when I was over there this year, I realised: ‘Stop being silly! I’ve got a great job in Britain, and my life isn’t too bad at all if I could just deal with the intrusion.’”
The actor has credited co-star and good friend Mikey North, who plays Gary Windass, with helping him to deal with the attention that being in Coronation Street inevitably brings.
“Mikey deals with it really well,” says Robertson. “He’s so cool with everyone.
“I’m more temperamental. If I’m in a good mood, I’ve got all the time in the world, but if I’m in a bad mood, then I don’t want to speak to anyone.
“What I’ve realised over time, and by hanging out with other actors, is that it’s part of the job. If you’re going to go out to certain places – not so much in London but in Manchester and where my family are from in Scotland – I’m just going to have to accept it.
“I’m never going to have a night out without someone coming to ask for a selfie. Maybe six months ago, all I wanted was a night out without someone sticking a camera in my face. Now, I’m thinking it’s no big deal.”
Coronation Street continues on ITV