Emmerdale actress hails 'imaginative prowess' of stunts during 'Survival Week'

Emmerdale actress Rebecca Sarker has hailed a stunt on the show which was filmed on a rope bridge as a “feat of imaginative prowess” and “technical excellence”.

ITV has dubbed this week’s episodes as “survival week” as the soap’s characters embark on an outdoor challenge event.

During Monday’s episode her character Manpreet Sharma and Charles Anderson, played by Kevin Mathurin, fell from a great height from a suspended rope bridge after a canyon collapse.

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On Tuesday (Oct 19), David Metcalfe (Matthew Wolfenden) and Victoria Sugden (Isabel Hodgins) will be left clinging on to the bridge in another dramatic turn of events.

ITV has dubbed this week’s episodes as “survival week” (Pic: ITV)

They will join Manpreet and Charles as they fight for their lives in the water below.

Sarker said: “The bridge stunt was not only a feat of imaginative prowess but also of technical excellence. So complex was the set up of the bridge – it took three hours each time to reset it – that we as actors felt a certain pressure to do the shot justice.

“It was a good pressure though, one that made you want to bring your A-game to the field. We had a wonderful stunt team managing any concerns we had, so felt totally safe and secure.

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“Having said that, your heart can’t fail to miss a beat or two when you’re suspended with no safety harness on a Tarzan-like rope bridge with a 60ft drop below into a water-filled quarry.”

Mathurin said the stunt was carried out “so high up”.

“When the VFX [visual effects] are in, it will look like the rope bridge is suspended between two cliffs but in reality, one side was attached to a crane,” he added.

“It didn’t look inviting at all but the way they constructed and designed it, it looked fantastic. I looked at it and thought, this is my job, amazing! Rebecca was so comfortable walking across the bridge and I was holding on for dear life like a mug.”

Wolfenden said he is “not great with heights”.

“We were on wires so there was no way we could fall but when you’re 60ft above the water and you’re clinging on to a broken bridge, it’s absolutely terrifying,” he added.

“I was pretty nervous about the bridge but it all flipped with the water stuff as Izzy wasn’t too confident in the water and I love being in the water.

“It’s funny because our characters were so opposite to us. Victoria was supposed to be scared of heights and David is trying to help her but in reality, it was the other way round.”

He added: “I was pretending that I was a lot more confident than I was. Hopefully, I passed it off.”

Emmerdale celebrated its 49th anniversary on Saturday.