Home and Away star kicked dad out of house to shoot short film with soap co-star

Home and Away star Jacqui Purvis revealed she was forced to kick her dad out of his own house in order to create her short film.

The actress made her soap debut as Felicity Newman in 2021, but is now an established writer and producer following the release of her latest project, Voicemails Last Forever. The launch of the 16-minute film coincided with R U OK day, an Australian non-profit suicide prevention organisation.

The short movie follows two housemates Ali, played by Jacqui, and Robbie (Bradley Walsh), who come to terms with the sudden loss of their friend James, who died by suicide. James was also Ali's boyfriend and is played by Adam Rowland, who currently stars as Remi Carter on the Aussie soap.

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The project had been three years in the making and was close to Jacqui's heart as it began after her close friend opened up about his suicidal thoughts. It all started when my friend Bradley came to me and opened up about his mental health and his suicidal thoughts," the actress told TV WEEK.

She continued: "I really wanted to help in some way so I asked him, 'what can I do, obviously I want to help' and he was like 'Oh, I just wish people knew that it wasn't just the people that you suspect'. Mental health is such a taboo subject and it's still not where it needs to be.

"Everyone needs to feel comfortable with opening up about mental health. With that in mind, I went home and just started writing. But then it kind of just kept snowballing… before I knew it, I was filming it."

In order to get the film off the ground, Jacqui had no choice but to ask her dad to move out of his house. She explained: "We filmed it in my dad’s house in Melbourne.

"We kicked him out for four days and he went into a motel. We needed the whole house. He was happy to do it and he’s been really supportive." This is Jacqui's first role behind the camera and it appears it won't be the last.

"I fell in love with producing. I’m obsessed with film and been involved from choosing the location to picking the music," she said. In recent weeks, Felicity has attempted to overcome being drugged and sexually assaulted.

While she knew the storyline would be tough, the actress explained she wanted to do it justice. "I wanted to do it justice for the people that have been through it. I feel like it needs to be dealt with very lightly and delicately," she said during an interview with TV WEEK.

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