MDA: articles

Paul Bishop and Lisa McCune

Paul Bishop and Lisa McCune, together again and playing doctors

Operation romance

THE LAST time Paul Bishop kissed Lisa McCune, all hell broke loose.

The former Blue Heelers co-stars sent fans into meltdown when they shared an illicit birthday pash that threatened to ruin the long-awaited romance between Maggie (McCune) and PJ (Martin Sacks).

Six years later and the pair are creating sparks again in A Human Cost, the final story in the ABC’s medico-legal series, MDA.

Bishop plays Dr Tim Whitney, a young doctor from a privileged background whose loyalty is put to the test when his girlfriend, Dr Liz Gibson (McCune), is accused of medical negligence.

The four-part drama also stars Erik Thomson (The Alice) and Jacinta Stapleton (Stingers).

McCune, currently hosting Forensic Investigators on Seven, says it was great to work with “the gorgeous Paul Bishop” again.

“He’s a lovely strapping Queensland lad,” she says. “And I loved playing a doctor. Learning the language was just fascinating. Talking about myocardial infarcs and having to research what they are.

“It’s great as an actor when you get things where there’s lots of reading material that goes with what you’re doing, because it’s incredibly interesting and you learn a lot.”

Bishop, who left Heelers last year to concentrate on theatre work, says the MDA role was enough to lure him out of his self-imposed TV hiatus.

“I’d been busy doing the sorts of things you do when you get your life back after doing serialised television for six years and just when I thought I had it all under control, suddenly I get this fantastic offer to do MDA,” he laughs.

“My commitment has always been to pursue good stories and good people whenever those situations come up and luckily this was one of them.

“The research that goes into MDA (to create the story) is not too far removed from actual events and I just think it’s a rattling good tale.”

However, the Gladstone-born actor says he is in no hurry to return to the small screen full-time.

“Having come from the world of serial television, which was an all-consuming phase of my life, I’m very keen to keep the home fires burning and also, artistically, step out of the limelight for a while,” he says.

“I kind of feel like I’ve run the gamut of mainstream stuff. I’ve played a copper. I’ve played a doctor. I’ve played a lawyer. It’s time for me to look at other ways of being involved in the storytelling process.”

And what ways would they be?

“If there’s anything I can do to keep the arts alive and the audience inspired, then that’s kind of my job, whether it’s acting or some other form,” he says cryptically.

For now though, Bishop is happy to step back and take stock.

“I’m really enjoying just having a moment of calm after a busy year of raising kids and doing television.”

By Erica Thompson
September 01, 2005
The Courier Mail