Jill Halfpenny plays a grieving mother in the new Channel 5 drama The Drowning and knows firsthand what it feels like to lose someone close after the sudden death of her longtime partner.
The actress portrays the destroyed mother Jodie, whose son Daniel is missing – presumably drowned.
And she admits that she channeled her own grief into the role.
Everything you need to know is here.
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Jill Halfpenny Partner: How He Died
Jill Halfpenny’s partner tragically died in 2017 after having a heart attack.
Her longtime friend Matt Janes tragically fell ill in the gym.
He died at the age of 43.
Jill Halfpenny Partner: What Did She Say?
The actress talks about her role in The Drowning and has dealt with channeling her feelings of loss into her role.
She told Love Sunday Magazine, “I haven’t experienced the same loss, but loss is loss, and I believe that losing a relationship can make people as hard to grieve as they do the loss of a person.
“And when I stir up feelings for the role, I think that inevitably some of my own will show up too.”
She added, “But some are not useful to the character and I need to figure out which are mine and which are Jodies.”
Jill did not comment on her grief two years after the tragic death of her partner Matt.
She said, “It seems pretty obvious to me that everything is connected. When my partner died, I just made the decision to be with him, to invite him over and let him crush me.
“Because pain doesn’t kill you. But I think denying pain can potentially take you to darker places than just facing the pain. “
Jill has described how her partner’s death felt like a “double loss” as it reflected the circumstances surrounding her father’s death in 1979 when she was only four years old.
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Does she have children?
Jill Halfpenny has one child from her marriage to Craig Conway.
She married her fellow actor Craig in 2007, but he divorced in 2010.
In 2005 they appeared together in The Bodies.
They share a son named Harvey Reece, who was born in 2008.
Harvey is now 12.
After their divorce, Jill Halfpenny’s partner Matt became like a second father to Harvey.
What else did Jill Halfpenny star in?
Jill began her acting career at the age of 14 when she played Nicola Dobson in the BBC One children’s drama Byker Grove.
She played in Peak Practice, Dalziel and Pascoe, Heartbeat and Coronation Street.
Jill is probably best known for her role as Kate Mitchell in EastEnders.
She took part in Strictly Come Dancing in 2004 and won the competition with professional Darren Bennett.
Jill played acting instructor Izzie Redpath on Waterloo Road, Emma in Mount Pleasant and Davina in Babylon.
In 2019, she portrayed mother Sam in Dark Money, who is horrified to find that her son has been sexually molested.
She also portrays Jennifer Robertson in Liar.
Jill has also played many roles on stage, including Roxie Hart in the West End musical Chicago.
Why did Jill leave EastEnders?
Jill portrayed Kate Mitchell in EastEnders from 2002 to 2005.
The character was introduced as a police officer sent to spy on Phil Mitchell.
After her cover was inflated, she left the police, married Phil, and opened a nail salon.
Her final scenes aired in January 2005 after her character was deleted.
A BBC spokeswoman said: “Jill’s contract has expired, but that doesn’t reflect that as an actress. The producers just felt like the character had nowhere to go.
“She will not be killed and the door will be left open for her to return.”
How old is Jill Halfpenny?
Jill was born on July 15, 1975.
She is currently 45 years old.
The actress was born in Gateshead, Tyne and Wear.
Is she related to Chelsea Halfpenny?
Jill’s niece is the actress Chelsea Halfpenny.
Accident star Chelsea is the daughter of Newcastle DJ Paula Halfpenny, who is Jill’s sister!
Who does Jill Halfpenny play in The Drowning?
Jill portrays Jodie in the identity thriller The Drowning.
Jodie has rebuilt her life since she lost her son nine years ago.
But when she sees the student Daniel, the life that she has carefully put back together threatens to improve.
She is convinced that he is her missing son.
Jill says, “Jodie is getting a little unpredictable, but her intent is getting clearer.
“She’s so sure of what she’s doing and why she’s doing it, and that Daniel is her son.
“I imagine that losing a child has to be the worst loss one can suffer, it seems very obvious to me. I think losing a child in circumstances where you don’t really know what happened is another layer of torture. “
What is drowning about?
The Drowning has an all-star cast – perfect to cheer up a bleak February lockdown.
The plot follows mother Jodie, whose son has been missing for eight years.
When she sees the teenager Daniel, she is convinced that he is her missing child.
But is he really who she thinks he is?
Jodie goes on a dangerous journey that pushes her to the edge of reason.
How far will she go to find a missing child?
The Drowning will air on Channel 5 Monday, February 1, 2021 through Thursday, February 4, 2021 at 9 p.m.
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