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Stephen Mangan attends the Champagne Taittinger reception at the 2024 BAFTA Television Awards with P&O Cruises at The Royal Festival Hall on May 12, 2024© Dave Benett/BAFTA,Getty

Celebrity Gogglebox's Stephan Mangan opens up about tragic family loss

The Split actor appears on Celebrity Gogglebox with his sister

Francesca Shillcock
Senior Features Writer
July 5, 2024
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Stephen Mangan is adored for his numerous acting roles in comedy shows like Episodes and Green Wing but he's also known for his more serious role in BBC legal drama, The Split.

But each Friday night, he's been appearing alongside his lookalike sister Anita on Celebrity Gogglebox and the brother-sister duo never fails to make us laugh with their television critique.

Anita and Stephen clearly get on well and have an extremely close bond, but the siblings have been through tragic loss and family, with the Mangans losing both their parents at young ages.

Stephen Mangan attends the Nominees' Party for the BAFTA Television Awards with P&O Cruises and the BAFTA Television Craft Awards at the Victoria and Albert Museum on April 24, 2024 in London, England© Kate Green/BAFTA
Stephen Mangan attends the Nominees' Party for the BAFTA Television Awards with P&O Cruises

Stephen Mangan talks about heartbreaking family loss

Stephen and his sisters, Lisa and Anita, suffered tragedy when their mother died of colon cancer six months after a diagnosis. At the time, the actor was just 22 years old.

Stephen previously spoke with The Independent about how he and his family looked for humour despite going through a bleak time. 

"When I was going through the most traumatic and difficult times of my life when I was watching my parents die, there were moments where things were funny.

"Now you could stand at the side and go, 'Oh you find it funny that your mum's dying? You find it funny that your dad's dying?' No. But as a human being, that ability to find humour in the darkest moments can save you. In the bleakest, darkest moments, comedy can throw a light."

He added: "I think the Brits, especially, understand dark humour and understand that it's got its place. Now of course, what one person finds appropriate and funny may appal someone else, and that's OK."

Fourteen years after the loss of his mother, his father died from a brain tumour. Stephen previously told The Times how when close friend and fellow actor Paul Ritter died from similar circumstances in 2021, it brought back tough memories.

"What was so hard about seeing Paul get ill," he said, "was that it was so much like when my father got ill."

Stephen Mangan attends the press night after party for "The Unfriend" at Luci on January 9, 2024 in London, England© Dave Benett
Stephen Mangan attends the press night after party for "The Unfriend" at Luci on January 9, 2024 in London, England

Stephen Mangan's rare comments on fatherhood

Away from his career, Stephen is a proud husband to Louise Delamere and their three children: Harry, 16, Frank, 13, and Jack, eight.

In a hilariously self-deprecating column in the Times recently, Stephen revealed what his three sons think of their father being famous.

Stephen Mangan and Louise Delamere attend the press night after party for "The Hills Of California" at Sophie's Soho on February 07, 2024 in London© Dave Benett
Stephen Mangan with his wife, Louise Delamere

"Our two teenagers won’t get out of bed without some heavy artillery but our youngest is up at the crack of dawn. 

"He will already have been downstairs for two hours watching old episodes of American sitcoms, but definitely not anything I’ve been in. No one in this house is remotely interested in anything I’ve done. Even my wife."

He later added: "I'm savouring the fact that my youngest still wants to hold my hand on the walk to school — that little hot hand fills me with joy. Because I do such a range of things, I think my sons are confused about what I do for a living. But then, so am I."

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