EXCLUSIVE: Neighbours veteran Stefan Dennis reveals when it "well and truly sunk in" that the soap is ending

''We just want to make sure we see off the show in style.''

By Laura Masia
Paul Robinson has never been the hero of Erinsborough. Over the years, he's attempted to bulldoze Ramsay Street, planted bombs in fruit trucks, poisoned the drinking water, committed arson and even murder – to name just a few of his nefarious misdeeds.
His reputation for doing wrong, and his six marriages, established Paul, played since 1985 by Stefan Dennis, as one of Neighbours' most memorable characters.
Unless there's a tornado tearing through Erinsborough, you need someone to bring the drama. And thankfully, we've always been able to count on Paul.
Those who remember the show's first episode would know that he wasn't always a scheming businessman.
Stefan Dennis has played Paul Robinson on Neighbours since 1985. (Image: TV WEEK)
When the 21-year-old moved to Ramsay Street with his father Jim (Alan Dale) and grandmother Helen (Anne Haddy), he was a quiet academic who put aside his dreams of being an engineer to become an airline steward.
It wasn't until his scheming first wife, Terry Inglis (Maxine Klibingaitis), tried to kill him that Paul began to change. The experience left him hardened and bitter.
Recognising a ruthless streak in him, his aunt Rosemary (Joy Chambers) offered him a job running the Australian branch of her company, The Daniels Corporation.
From there, Paul's aptitude for business grew…along with his willingness to do anything necessary to come out on top.
Paul and Lyn Scully tied the knot in 2006, though their marriage didn't last. (Image: Ten)
He often engaged in activities that blurred the lines of the law. After famously leaving Erinsborough in 1993 to go to prison on fraud charges, Paul returned just as the Lassiters complex was burning to the ground with Gus Cleary (Ben Barrack) inside.
The town was grateful when Paul offered to fund its rebuilding, but what they didn't know was that he was behind the incident all along, in an effort to take control of Lassiters.
With Paul back in town, this was just the beginning. In 2005, thugs from his dirty dealings were after him. As he tried to escape, he tumbled down a cliff face. He survived, his leg eventually needing to be amputated.
Paul often engaged in activities that blurred the lines of the law. (Image: Ten)
In 2007, audiences had a glimmer of hope that Paul's evil ways were over when he was diagnosed with a brain tumour.
After its removal, he had no memory of his past misdeeds and endeavoured to do good by his family and friends. Well, for a while.
But after so many years playing TV's longest-serving villain, it's hard for Stefan to name his favourite on-screen moment.
"That's like asking 'Who's your favourite child?'" the 63-year-old tells TV WEEK. "I can't. There have been so many – it's just a treasure trove."
Stefan has found it sad to say goodbye to Neighbours, and his character.
"Even after we got the news, officially [that Neighbours would end in 2022], we were still like, 'Oh, maybe it'll get saved at the last minute.' But it's well and truly sunk in now," he shares."It was a big shock to everybody, but now, we're moving on and deciding what we're going to do post-Neighbours.
"In the meantime, we just want to make sure we see off the show in style, giving it the ending it deserves and the fans will be happy with."

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