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Shameless star Jody Latham opens up about decision to leave show

Channel 4 have brought the comedy back to screens

shameless reunion
Francesca Shillcock
Senior Features Writer
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Fans were thrilled last week when Channel 4 brought cult-comedy Shameless back to screens for viewers to enjoy all over again. The series, which ran from 2004 until 2013, told the story of the dysfunctional yet lovable Gallagher family, and starred David Threlfall, Anne-Marie Duff and many more.

MORE: Fans are saying the same thing about Shameless's return to Channel 4

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Another star of the show, Jody Latham, appeared in the series from the very beginning up until series five, before reprising his role for the finale in 2013. To celebrate the show returning to screens, the actor spoke to HELLO! about his time on Shameless, and his "upsetting" decision to leave the comedy five years after he first appeared as Phillip 'Lip' Gallagher.

MORE: Shameless star teases cast reunion

jody latham© Photo: Getty Images

Jody Latham played Lip in the comedy

"To be fair it was a really sad time," he began, adding: "Because as much as I'd done some great stuff on Shameless and I was keen to get off and go try other things [and] I was looking to do other work, I spent four or five years on it before I decided to leave. So you become like a family, and everyone, literally you're like a family. So, to leave everyone after such a long time was quite upsetting."

shameless1© Photo: Rex

Jody left the show after five series

"I'd always been optimistic about coming back and I said to the producers, 'If the time's right, then I'd love to come back at some point' and then series 11 I got a random call from Paul asking if I wanted to come back." He went on: "Afterwards, I kind of put it to the back of my mind. Then for series 11 I got a random call of Paul [Abbott] saying 'Would you be interested in coming back for the finale?' Which was quite nice. It was great to see everyone again. I kind of grew up on that show, I think I just turned 21 when I started Shameless, so it was a massive part of my life so to walk away from it was huge."

Meanwhile, fans were loving watching the comedy all over again. Taking to Twitter, one person wrote: "Forgot how fantastically wrong but hysterical Shameless was!!! @Channel4." A second person commented: "I forgot how good the original #Shameless was #Channel4. By the time it ended it was a bit too far-fetched and trying too hard. But the original couple of series' was cracking."

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