Here's everything you need to know about EastEnders star Kellie Bright, who plays Linda Carter, including her Ali G connection and how she almost gave birth in a car!
She’s been bringing class and elegance – not to mention all things pink and fluffy – to the Queen Vic pub since 2013 as Walford’s Linda Carter. But there’s more to actress Kellie Bright than serving pints behind the bar of a fictional pub.
We’ve dug out 7 things you might not have known about the woman behind Linda’s big earrings and pink hair rollers…
1. She was famous very young!
Kellie was a TV star from a very young age, appearing in the hugely popular comedy The Upper Hand (1990-96) with the likes of former Bond girl Honor Blackman. She also appeared in children’s TV favourite, T Bag and the Pearls of Wisdom (below).
Much later, but also way before she joined EastEnders, Kellie was known to Ali G fans for playing the coveted role of Me Julie in 2002 smash hit movie Ali G Indahouse. In fact, the role was so sought after that Kellie even beat now fellow EastEnders co-star Tamzin Outhwaite to the job!
2. Her husband’s been in EastEnders
Kellie’s other half, Paul Stocker, who is also an actor, appeared in EastEnders back in 2016 as the police officer interviewing Bobby Beale after he confessed to killing sister Lucy. Proud wife Kellie make sure her Twitter followers knew to look out for him by tweeting: “For all u @bbceastenders fans, keep a special eye out 4 my hubby in tonight’s ep! I give you DS Howard South. Sadly Linda & Howard never meet!”
3. She’s a mum of two
Kellie and Paul have two sons, six-year-old Freddy and one-year-old Gene. When talking about her youngest son’s name, Kellie confessed to OK! Magazine: “My nan and I watched a lot of Gene Kelly when I was growing up and just adored him, so that’s where the name comes from.”
4. Kellie Bright was in the Archers for almost a decade
Before she landed her role as the matriarch of the Carter clan, actress Kellie Bright was best known for her role as earth mother Kate Aldridge in Radio 4’s rural drama The Archers. The show is promoted as the world’s longest-running radio soap and Kellie was at the helm between 1995 and 2004.
5. She’s acted with one of her EastEnders co-stars before
You might think that Walford’s Linda and Shirley Carter were introduced by Mick Carter, but the pair have actually met before… sort of! Kellie appeared in Bad Girls alongside future EastEnders mother-in-law Linda Henry back in 2002. She’s also had roles in Holby City, Casualty, Hotel Babylon, Silent Witness and The Catherine Tate show to name but a few.
6. She’s a voiceover star
As well as appearing in front of the camera, Kellie is also something of a star in the world of gaming. She has voiced characters for video games such as Fable III, in which she is the voice of The Hero of Blackwall, as well as Dragon Age II and Nintendo’s Xenoblade Chronicles. Who knew!
7. She nearly gave birth in her car!
Kellie’s second labour happened so fast that she nearly found herself giving birth while stuck in traffic! She told OK! Magazine: “I was so uncomfortable in the car and the contractions were coming quite quickly by that point. But of course it was school run time so we got stuck in traffic. When we arrived at the hospital, a midwife could see I was in established labour and took me straight to a delivery room. About 20 minutes after our arrival at 9am, my waters broke!”
EastEnders, featuring Kellie Bright as Linda Carter, continues on BBC1.
Main pic: David Fisher/REX/Shutterstock; The Archers: PA Archive/PA Images; Upperhand picture: ITV/REX/Shutterstock; T-Bag picture FremantleMedia Ltd/REX/Shutterstock.