Emmerdale’s Mark Charnock used clever mirror technique to film Marlon’s stroke

Emmerdale star Mark Charnock has revealed some fascinating behind the scenes secrets of how he and the ITV soap team filmed his character Marlon Dingle’s heartbreaking stroke scenes.

Viewers watched as fan favourite Marlon suffered a severe stroke, just moments after he was celebrating the fact he was engaged to partner Rhona Kirk (Zoe Henry).

After watching the tough but moving scenes, soap fans praised Mark for how the sensitive storyline had been dealt with and said how realistic it seemed.

Now, speaking out on how he prepared, Mark, 53, has explained how he asked Emmerdale’s crew to cover up all mirrors when he was having a prosthetic fitted to show one of the symptoms of a stroke, dropped eyes and mouth.

Mark explained in a recent interview: “I'm not a method actor at all. But I asked them to cover all the mirrors up in make-up when they put it on.”

The actor continued: “What the viewers will see is when I see it – the first time I'd seen it. It had an impact on me.”

Mark, who has starred for Marlon for more than two decades, added that this preparation resulted in a very “real” reaction.

This comes after Mark’s co-star Katherine Dow Blyton said she had been moved by watching the scenes after sadly losing her mum to a sad stroke six years ago.

Katherine, who plays former vicar and police woman Harriet Finch, took to social media after the episode aired to

She wrote on Twitter: “My beautiful Mum died after suffering a severe stroke in 2016. It’s a cruel and sudden end to a life.”

The 57 year old then raised further awareness of what to look out for and when people should call for help.

She said: “Stroke is a leading cause of death and disability in the UK. Awareness is crucial. Act FAST. FACE.ARMS.SPEECH.TIME to call 999.”

Emmerdale have worked closely with the Stroke Association throughout the storyline.

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Speaking about its impact, Emmerdale boss Laura Shaw said: “When we first started researching this storyline I was shocked by the stark statistics that the UK alone has 1.3 million stroke survivors, so we knew we wanted to do those people and their families justice by showing the raw reality of a stroke as truthfully and honestly as we could.

“Extensive research was done for the actual stroke episode so we could step outside of our usual storytelling style and show the stroke from Marlon's POV in a really impactful way because we wanted viewers to see what a stroke feels like in the moment.

"As the story unfolds, we follow the tragic and heartbreaking long-lasting repercussions it has on Marlon and his friends and family and how their love for each other shines through as they all pull together at this most difficult time.”

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