Neighbours pulls homesick actor home

After several successful years working in the US, actor Tim Phillipps is happy to be back on Ramsay Street in the role of Scott and Charlene's son.

A bout of homesickness inadvertently steered Animal Kingdom actor Tim Phillipps into the role of the onscreen son of Kylie Minogue and Jason Donovan on Neighbours.

Daniel Robinson, who plays the son of the soapie's former sweethearts Scott and Charlene (Donovan and Minogue), has not appeared on the Network Ten series for many years.

However, he returns to Erinsborough on Network Ten's channel Eleven on Tuesday, April 29.

Phillipps was cast on the long-running soapie after returning from a three-and-a-half-year stint working in the US, where had some success.

The Adelaide actor scored his first lead role in the independent film Liars All, and was a recurring character in the TV drama series The Secret Circle and Once Upon A Time. He was also the lead in the motion-capture video game Devil May Cry.

But now he's back on this side of the world.

"I felt I needed to be around friends and family who I have been away from for so long," Phillipps tells AAP from Wanganui, New Zealand, where he is holidaying.

"I felt I had reached my max point from being away from those people and I guess I got a bit homesick and this came up, which was a real blessing.

"It definitely is a chance to come back and soak up Australia again."

Phillipps will be no stranger to ardent Neighbours fans.

He appeared in about half a dozen episodes of the series in 2007 as Fox, a character who was the figment of Paul Robinson's imagination.

Phillipps scored that role after auditioning at a shopping plaza in Adelaide as part of a Neighbours casting competition held by teen magazine Dolly.

Phillipps says he was reluctant to enter the contest but had to, because it was part of a weekly private drama course that he was undertaking outside of school hours.

"I was a bit intimidated because one of the audition rounds was live on stage at Westfield and I was scared of doing that public audition," Phillipps says.

"I made it to the top five for the boy role and didn't get it... A few months later I got a call and was offered the guest role of Fox."

Phillipps has locked himself into Neighbours for at least 12 months, but hopes to moonlight on other projects - time permitting.

Neighbours has a heavy workload and actors commonly shoot six episodes in a week.

It's that sort of intensity that Phillipps says can only improve his acting and condition him for a second stint overseas.

"It's a great job and you work hard and really hone in on your craft," he says.

"Whatever the next chapter is after Neighbours - whether that's the States, going to the UK or staying here and doing more in Australia - it's just perfect timing."

* Neighbours screens weeknights on Network Ten's channel Eleven at 6.30pm.

Source: AAP

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