Reports claim that Coronation Street actor Ben Thompson – who plays Ryan Connor – has become the latest victim of new producer Phil Collinson’s axe. It was rumoured earlier this week that Collinson was preparing to axe some of the younger cast of the Granada soap as he felt too many storylines featured them. Updated at 12.05pm
According to The Sun actor Ben Thompson, who plays Ryan Connor, has been axed from Coronation Street. The actor has played Ryan, the son of barmaid Michelle (Kym Marsh), for four years but will be written out of the Granada soap by October. It was widely reported earlier this week that new producer Phil Collinson was preparing to axe some of Corrie’s younger cast as he felt that storylines featured them too frequently – and that the soap was in danger of become too much like Holloyoaks.
“Phil has made no secret of the fact he thinks Coronation Street has too many teenagers. He reckons it needs more ‘real’ characters like Eileen Grimshaw and is worried it’s too much like Hollyoaks.” – A “SOURCE” quoted in The Sun
It hasn’t been an uneventful few years on the cobbles of Weatherfield for Ryan Connor with the deaths of his uncles Paul (Sean Gallagher) and Liam (Rob James-Collier) affecting the Connor family. However, his most important storyline was the revelation that he was not in fact Michelle’s child after all but had been swapped at birth with another boy – this plot has since more or less been totally forgotten! Earlier this week actress Vicky Entwistle announced she was quitting her role of Janice Battersby after 15 years in the role while Bill Tarmey who plays Jack Duckworth has announced his retirement from Corrie. It’s been widely rumoured in the press that the character of Jack will be killed off in the planned Tram crash later this year – to mark the soaps 50th anniversary. Since taking over as producer Phil Collinson has axed Ashley (Steven Arnold) and Claire Peacock (Julia Howarth) and Molly Dobbs (Vicky Binns) who was involved in an unpopular affair with Kevin Webster.
UPDATED: A spokersperson for ITV have stated via ITV.com that the character of Ryan Connor will still be featured in the soap during University holiday times ala Amber Kalirai (Nikki Patel), Dev’s daughter who went to University but was meant to return for occasional appearances during holiday times. Despite producers stating at the time that Amber would return to Weatherfield for occasional visits to her father the characters last appearance was in October 2009. The character was not seen or mentioned during the Christmas, New Year, Easter or Summer holidays when the Universities were off.