TV

EXCLUSIVE: Former Neighbours star Olympia Valance on exciting new role

She's back!

By Kietley Isrin

She left Erinsborough earlier this year. And in news that will no doubt send Neighbours fans into a meltdown, Olympic Valance is set to return to our screens in Channel Ten's new drama, Playing For Keeps.

Chatting to TV WEEK, the 25-year-old says she can't wait to start filming the new series about the powerful women behind Aussie Rules.

"It is incredibly exciting," Olympia says of landing the role. "I feel very honoured to be part of a show that I know is going to be something special."

Olympia will play Tahlia, a socialite who is engaged to the football club's captain.

"When I read the script, I just knew that I had to play Tahlia," Olympia laughs. "I was determined this character would be mine."

Olympia is set to star in Channel Ten's exciting new drama *Playing For Keeps.*
Olympia is set to star in Channel Ten's exciting new drama Playing For Keeps.

The cast also includes fellow Neighbours alumni Madeleine West and The Wrong Girl's Cecilia Peters.

"What an incredibly strong ensemble of talented Australian actors," Olympia enthuses.

"It's very humbling to know that I will be working with some of our country's best. I worked with Madeleine a little on Neighbours but I'm really thrilled that we will get to work together more closely this time around. I think we're going to have a lot of fun."

But there's one person in particular Olympia is excited to reunite with – good friend, former Home And Away star, Jackson Gallagher.

"Jackson is a beautiful human," Olympia enthuses. "The relationship between our characters is going to be a lot of fun to explore."

Olympia played Paige Smith from 2014 to 2018.
Olympia played Paige Smith from 2014 to 2018.

As we wait with bated breath for Olympia to light up our screens once more, just what has she been doing since we last saw her?

"I've been based in LA for the past few months," the brunette beauty reveals.

"I have been auditioning and spending time with my friends. It's been a really fantastic start to 2018."

So is there a particular Hollywood star Olympia is hoping to land a role alongside in the future?

"Kerry Washington," she declares. "She is fierce and a very powerful player in Hollywood who is ridiculously talented but also incredibly smart. I also think Reese Witherspoon is also breaking a lot of moulds at the moment."

Meanwhile, with the TV WEEK Logie Awards just around the corner, Olympia admits she can't wait for TV's night of nights.

"I have such fond memories of my nights at the Logies," she laughs. "My friends, my mum and I always made it a bit of a special day – we book a hotel room for the weekend, room service and a little champagne while getting ready. It's a great excuse to get dressed up and celebrate Aussie TV – I've always loved it!"

Olympia attends the 2017 TV WEEK Logie Awards.
Olympia attends the 2017 TV WEEK Logie Awards.

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