Entertainment

Emmerdale’s Bradley Johnson: Filming funeral was an emotional day

The soap’s 50th anniversary month saw the death of terminally-ill Faith, who took her own life, and Liv, who was crushed by a caravan.
The soap’s 50th anniversary month saw the death of terminally-ill Faith, who took her own life, and Liv, who was crushed by a caravan. The soap’s 50th anniversary month saw the death of terminally-ill Faith, who took her own life, and Liv, who was crushed by a caravan.

Emmerdale actor Bradley Johnson said filming the funeral of Faith and Liv Dingle was “really really emotional” because it features every adult cast member, which was a “rare sight” following the pandemic.

The death of Faith, played by Sally Dexter, and Liv, portrayed by Isobel Steele, were part of the ITV soap’s 50th anniversary month.

The programme saw terminally-ill Faith take her own life, while Liv was crushed by a caravan in gale-force winds – leaving behind her grief-stricken husband Vinny Dingle (Johnson).

Funeral
Funeral The on-screen funeral of Faith and Liv in Emmerdale (ITV)

Johnson said he was “really proud” of their time as a couple on the soap, but felt it was “cut far too short”.

He said: “Since Isobel left about three weeks ago, it just felt like she was on a really long holiday.

“But when we went to the funeral day and we saw the hearses with Liv’s name on it and the photos, especially in the coffin, it became real to me that I’m not going to be working with you again.

“I think in the short amount of time that Liv and Vinny have been together, there’s been some lovely, lovely scenes.

“We’ve been through so much together and conquered so much and in my opinion, it was cut far too short.”

The funeral episode, which will air on Friday at 7.30pm, will see two horse-drawn carriages carrying Faith and Liv’s coffins with the entire village coming to pay their respects.

Johnson said: “It was so emotional. We were doing some acting down the bottom of the village so we didn’t see everyone actually on Main Street.

“But the director came down and went right ‘Bradley, I want you to walk around the corner and as you look up you’ll see the whole cast and they’re going to throw roses as the coffin goes past.’

“So obviously my head was down and the first time I saw everyone was when the camera kind of tilted round, and obviously because of Covid and stuff like that, it’s a rare sight to see every adult cast member being there.

“Obviously having the coffins there and having the hearses with the names on, it was a really, really emotional day but it should look amazing and really heartfelt.”

Emmerdale producer Laura Shaw said: “We knew when we decided to do a joint funeral for Faith and Liv that it would need to be a very special and memorable funeral for two such hugely epic and much loved characters.

“Having a scene featuring the entire adult cast was not something we had done before and given the funeral was taking place towards the end of our October 50th birthday month, it felt very right and fitting that we had the whole cast there to say goodbye.

“It was no easy feat for the Emmerdale production team to organise and execute and nor was it easy to shoot as the Dingles said farewell to not one but two of their beloved family, some of the tears that fell that day were absolutely real.

“But behind the tears and sadness there was also a celebratory feel on set.

“A feeling of pride and honour that the October month was ending with all our villagers united on Main Street, demonstrating that love and warmth and togetherness that has kept Emmerdale on our screens for 50 years.”

The episode will air on Friday at 7.30pm on ITV.