Actor Brian Capron – aka Coronation Street killer Richard Hillman – is let loose in the kitchen as the culinary contest Celebrity MasterChef returns to BBC1 (Wednesday)..
What made you want to take part in Celebrity MasterChef?
“My wife had said my meals had got a bit boring, which was upsetting, but of course she was right. I was terrified, but I wanted to take up the challenge.”
You appear in heat three – was the competition easier or harder than you imagined?
“The competition was much harder than I ever imagined. I’m terribly panicky and ended up making a lot of mess, my workstation was in absolute chaos. I was trying to stay cool and calm, but I kept knocking things over. It was a nightmare!”
How did you feel about being judged by Gregg Wallace and John Torode?
“You do feel very vulnerable when someone says to your face: ‘That’s rubbish’ or ‘What do you call this?’ They did say some terrible things about my food, but when they say something nice it’s just terrific.”
I know that for you first challenge – the Mystery Box – you had to cook a goat…
“Ha, ha, yes I did. When I first saw it I thought what on EARTH am I going to do with that!? But somehow I did produce something. You know you’ve got to do something better than you’d normally do – this programme inspires you to push yourself.”
Our readers know you best for being Corrie killer Richard Hillman… did you notice your rivals recoil slightly when you picked up a rolling pin?
“Ha, ha, ha. Well, I did have a couple of comments, particularly from John Torode, about ‘slashing into my pastry’. But people soon stopped seeing me as Richard Hillman and just knew me as nutty, panicky Brian.”
Do people still approach you in the street about the character?
“All the time. They’ll say: ‘Oh, you’re that horrible man’ or whatever. While I was on screen, I literally couldn’t go anywhere and the funny thing was I had developed a stoop not meeting people’s eyes as I walked down the street. But I can’t complain, that role gave me a lot of profile, which has given me a nice career since.”
Do you think you have what it takes to win Celebrity MasterChef?
“Well, I did Strictly Come Dancing in 2007 and the humiliation of being voted off in the first week was awful. I thought if I at least made it through my heat on MasterChef, I’d have achieved something. It’s one of the hardest things I’ve done, but I’m so glad I did it. It’s like a rollercoaster, it’s addictive, and once you’re on it you don’t want to get off.”