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Celebrity Diary: Leigh Arnold

For the past few years around this time I would always have been getting ready to go into the studio to record the next series of The Clinic so it's funny not to have that on the horizon.

I have to admit I haven't had time to miss it or even think about it as I've been so busy over the past few months.

There has been plenty of talk about my lovelife recently but it's not really an area I want to get into discussing publicly any more. I think it's very dull, to be honest, and it's not something anyone wants to hear about. It's not like I'm going out with a footballer or a rich businessman, so I don't understand why it causes such fascination.

I have plenty of exciting things going on workwise, though.

My first feature film, called Charlie Casanova, is due out in the coming weeks and I'm very excited about it.

I worked with a really great team of actors. Emmet Scanlan played Charlie in it and I think this is really going to make his career. He's a fantastic talent who has flown under the radar until now.


It was probably one of the greatest acting experiences of my life, without a doubt. The journey that we went on as actors was incredible.

The director, Terry McMahon, was very much of the idea that everything should be done in one take so it was like being involved in live theatre. I was really proud of myself and I think it's going to be an incredible cult movie.

I'll be meeting with my agent today to discuss the promotion of it.

We also need to discuss a couple of other things including a TV project that everyone will hear about in the next few weeks.

Tonight I'll be heading out to the Wright Venue for my good friend Izabella Chudzicka's birthday.

She's a hostess for them so Michael Wright has very kindly given her the penthouse suite to throw a bash for all her family and friends. I won't be staying too late, though, as I have to be up early in order to teach classes at my performing arts school, Take2 Casting Agency. You have to have your wits about you when you're working with kids or animals, I always say.

Hopefully I won't be as tired as last week when I had to travel from Galway that morning for it. I was there for the last nights of my play, My First Time.

Saturday was the last night so I spent the morning in Dublin with my co-director, Pamela Hughes, teaching and then drove back to Galway that evening.

It's really mental for us at the moment as the kids are getting ready to put on performances for their parents before Easter.

The phone has been hopping constantly and the emails are coming in non-stop. I love it, I really enjoy teaching.

It's a big change after weeks on the road alongside my co-stars Alan Shortt, Alan Devine and Claire Tully. We were away for a few weeks performing everywhere from Cork Opera House to Naas to Listowel to Mullingar and Monaghan. I've seen places in the country that I had never seen before. It was a fantastic experience for me because, although I've done a lot of theatre in the past, it's always been Dublin-based or New York-based.

I never realised how close you become to your co-stars because you're eating together, sleeping together, doing everything together.

Alan Shortt is probably one of the funniest men I've ever met. He was like the daddy of the tour and he would put a smile on your face no matter how low you're feeling.

Claire was like the baby of the tour, she was looking to me for advice and tips, she's a great girl. I will definitely stay in touch with all of them.

The one problem I found is that it's very difficult to eat healthily. I had all these ideas about bringing in salads and healthy packed lunches every day but, of course, that went out the window when I was travelling. I was living out of restaurants and it's very hard to find healthy shops in the rural villages we were in -- and you need your energy before you go on stage.


This week I'm back on the diet. I've gone back to playing tennis to try and keep fit as I absolutely hate going to the gym. I always feel like a mouse in a cage going around and around when I'm on the machines.

I also bought a new bike on Monday, which has a little basket for my dog.

On Wednesday I cooked for the whole family. My mum helped me make a lovely lamb Thai dish. It did result, however, in me losing my phone when my uncle picked it up by accident and brought it home to Carlow with him. Of course, I didn't have a clue where it was gone and I was searching through the bins, all of my handbags and under the bed looking for it.

I definitely need a tracking device for my phone, it's a running joke at this stage. I've been through about three in the past few months.