Death in Paradises Ardal OHanlon admits to demanding work schedule amid exit

Ardel O'Hanlon talks about his demanding work schedule

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Death in Paradise star Ardal O’Hanlon left the hit BBC show and his character of DI Jack Mooney back in 2019. The Father Ted actor joined Alan Titchmarsh on his daytime talk show Alan Titchmarsh: Love Your Weekend to speak about the new book he had written during the pandemic and also touched on his love and memories for the British–French crime drama.

Kicking off their interview, Alan was curious about the time the cast and crew spent filming and asked: “How long were you out there?”

Ardal explained: “I was there for four summers, four consecutive summers, and the first summer was about three months and then six months.

“Then I finished off doing half the last series, which lasted three or four months, so it was demanding, very enjoyable but hard.”

Alan continued: “Getting Paradise in the title, but in terms of turnover, what is that like?”

Laughing as he recalled the intention schedule, Ardal began: “We would do two and a half weeks for an expo and then work 12 hours a day, six hours a week.

“But nobody, not one single person, though there was any hardship, it was very enjoyable, and I would go as far as to say life-changing.

“It was a great experience to see that different life from the one I had in Ireland, where it rained all the time.

“It is a wonderful show in many ways, but there is a comfort to it, there is no performing.”

Back in 2019, Ardal revealed that being far away from his family was a big factor in his decision to leave and told OK!: “Each successive summer, it’s harder and harder to part with your family, even though they get the opportunity to come out, something has to give.

Giving his book some promotion, he explained that it was called Brouhaha and was a razor-sharp crime novel.

“It’s about the disappearance of somebody and the attempts to find this person and figure out why they went missing,” he explained.

“It’s very dark humour, though, I mean, I grew up in the Border Region of Ireland, just south of the border, and given its position geographically, it has a long history of smuggling.”

DI Jack Mooney was a friendly, unassuming and often underestimated member of the team but often excelled when given the chance to show off his genius detective work.

Jack had a deep understanding of what pushed people over the edge and was his strongest instinct, along with his empathetic manner.

He managed to disarm everyone he met.

Suspects may have thought they had the measure of him, but Jack was always one step ahead.

At the crime scene, Jack had a tendency to go ‘off-piste’ – much to his team’s bafflement – but his seemingly erratic methods would often crack a case wide open.

After the death of his wife, Jack found it hard to adjust, but he was determined to put on a brave face for the sake of his daughter Siobhan (played by Grace Stone).

Settling into island life had its challenges at first, but with the help and support of his team, Jack soon felt truly at home and found love again with Anna (Nina Wadia), a witness he met whilst working on a case.

After enjoying their time on the island together, Anna invited Jack to go travelling with her. Jack was torn, but after some reflection decided he was ready to go home and went back to London with Siobhan.

Death in Paradise season 12 will once again star Ralf Little as DI Neville Parker, who’ll be solving more murder mysteries on the fictional island of Saint Marie.

Death In Paradise series 1-11 is available to watch on BBC iPlayer.

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