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Axle Whitehead lands US "Shameless"


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Axle Whitehead lands US Shameless, as Sarah Snook pilot gets lifeline

July 18, 2014

Michael Idato Entertainment Editor-at-Large, Los Angeles


Home and Away ... Axle Whitehead starring opposite Ray Meagher.

Former Home and Away star Axle Whitehead has landed a role in the critically acclaimed US drama Shameless.

The series, which is going into its fifth season next year, is based on the hit British drama of the same name.

Whitehead will play a potential suitor to Fiona Gallagher, played by Emmy Rossum. He is one of three potential suitors who are joining the series; the others are played by actor Dermot Mulroney and Tony Award-winner Steve Kazee.


Sarah Snook at the AACTA Awards last year. Photo: Dallas Kilponen

Whitehead's credits in Australia include roles in The Secret Life of Us and as host of The World's Strictest Parents.

He is best known, however, as Liam Murphy in the long-running Seven drama Home and Away. Home and Away has a long tradition of pumping out actors who have cracked Hollywood; they include Luke Mitchell, Chris Hemsworth, Ryan Kwanten, Isla Fisher, Julian McMahon, Heath Ledger and Melissa George.

The US remake is set in Chicago's Canaryville neighbourhood and filmed in Los Angeles.


Axle Whitehead.

Shameless recently won two Emmy Award nominations, outstanding lead actor in a comedy for William H Macy and outstanding guest actress in a comedy for Joan Cusack. Despite changing categories from drama to comedy, the series did not secure a nomination in the outstanding comedy series category.

Meanwhile a US television pilot, which was set to star Australian actress Sarah Snook but appeared to have been dropped by the ABC network, has been thrown a lifeline.

Snook was due to star in Clementine as a psychic whose life shifts unexpectedly when she "decides to stop running from her past". Snook, 26, is best known in Australia as one of the stars of Sisters of War.

Clementine was to be produced by Sony Pictures Television for ABC but was abandoned when the network did not include in its new season lineup, announced in May.

The network, however, has confirmed it has extended the options on the cast - meaning they are being contractually held to the project, rather than released to find work elsewhere.

ABC is now considering Clementine as a "summer series", following a trend established by rival CBS which has launched two hit summer series in the last two years, last year's Under The Dome and this year's Extant.

Though summer programming has been historically focused on the reality genre, CBS's experiment with Under The Dome proved there was a big audience for scripted genre programs which have been previously used as autumn ("fall season") premieres.

Shameless will return to US screens in 2015, which will air in Australia on Foxtel.

Source: Sydney Morning Herald

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Good for him. I've always felt that he was highly underrated while he was on H&A, and judged by his earlier actions outside the screen. And also treated differently by the writers and the viewers because he wasn't a typical beach person...

He did such a great job with the drug relapse storyline. The best portrayal of an drug addict (regular character) in H&A's history. But after his return he was treated like garbage and given hopeless storylines. It was like he was just a filler... And Axle Whitehead deserved better than that.

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