Don't mention Home and Away to Melissa George

Touchy, touchy. Australian actress Melissa George is fed up with constant questions about her career breakthrough in Aussie soap Home And Away. It seems she is a little embarrassed about her past.

The Morning Show in Australia had the temerity to mention Home And Away in a recent interview, and Melissa snapped. "I don't need credibility from my country any more," the grumpy star said. "I just need them all to be quiet. If they have nothing intelligent to say, please don't speak to me anymore."

She also made the mistake of demanding a little respect for all her hard work. "My next call will be to Home and Away to ask them to pay me," she moaned, "because nobody does more promotion for that f***ing show than me."

She has enjoyed an illustrious career in US TV and movies since leaving Australia, but seems unwilling to recall her humble apprenticeship in soaps. No need to be ashamed Melissa. After all, Hollywood has embraced Guy Pearce, who has progressed from Mike in Neighbours to become the star of several edgy and critically-acclaimed movies (as well as becoming Google’s first choice Guy). Fellow Neighbours alumni Jesse Spencer and Alan Dale also found that valuable experience in a soap series on their show-reels was no obstacle to being offered meaty roles in US TV drama series like House, Lost, The West Wing and 24. Even Kylie Minogue is doing European arthouse movies these days.

It’s possible that Melissa might just be feeling a little sensitive. The BBC espionage thriller series Hunted, in which she had a central role, was supposed to be the British answer to Homeland, but viewers found it stretched their credulity just a little too far. Over its six-week run, initial audiences of 4.5 million plummeted to under 3 million, putting paid to hopes that it could be a long-running BBC drama series.

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