High Drama But Lots Of Laughs

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Article by Jean Ritchie
In front of the cameras it is all high drama - but back-stage the cast of Crossroads find a lot to laugh about.  Like the time when Tony Adams, who plays Adam Chance, was acting a scene with Jane Rossington (Jill Harvey) in which he had to produce his wallet.
Ronnie said:  "He was wearing a dressing-gown.  While the cameras were rolling he let it fall open - and there he was in suspenser belt, frilly panties and black stockings!  Everyone broke up.  Tony is the resident practical joker - he'll do anything for a laugh."
When Ronnie's first wife in the series, played by Janet Hargreaves, had to shoot him, the rest of the cast could hardly keep a straight face.  "Janet always carried a handbag," Ronnie said.  "It made it very difficult for her - she got the hand with the gun in it stuck through the handle of the bag.  And then when she eventually aimed it at me there should have been a moment of tense drama.  But the gun jammed."
Because Crossroads actors provide their own clothes, there is always a risk of their outfits clashing with each other.  On one occasion Ronnie, Roger Tonge and David Fennel (who played Brian Jarvis) had all been out the night before.
"I can't remember what we were celebrating, but we drank far too much," said Ronnie.  "I went into the studios wearing a bright yellow jumper - I thought it might perk me up.  The other two had the same idea, and they both wore yellow too.  We looked like three sick canaries."
With four episodes to be filmed every week there is no time for mistakes.  "Paul Henry, who plays Benny, described me as the only actor who can walk into a piece of furniture and not move from the waist upwards," said Ronnie.
"I'm used to carrying on with the scene whatever happens.  Once someone put a chair leg on my foot and sat on it - and I carried on without changing my expression."