Hollyoaks star AXED in row over X-rated OnlyFans

The actor said she was 'taking back control' of her images after years of her steamy pictures being used to make money for the soap

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by Nathan Katnoria |

Hollyoaks bosses have confirmed that Sarah Jayne Dunn, who has played Mandy Richardson on and off since 1996, has been axed from the soap amid a row over her decision to join X-rated subscription site OnlyFans.

Last week, Sarah revealed she had decided to “take back control” of her image after years of it being “distorted” in photoshoots. “I’ve been lucky enough to travel to some pretty amazing places for photoshoots since being 17, that being said I’ve never felt in control, of the content or of the finances. I’ve done men’s mag upon men’s mag and calendar upon calendar, I’ve enjoyed every shoot but never felt like I had much say in them.

“I’ve been pitted against other girls and felt deflated if not chosen for a shoot or for a cover, I’ve been airbrushed, retouched and ‘enhanced’ without consent and without necessity and I’ve not always been given photo or copy (the wording of an interview) approval, leaving both my image and words distorted,” she wrote on Instagram.

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©Channel 4

Sarah added, “The older I get the more cathartic it is to take back control, to put healthy boundaries in place and to know my worth and my value. That’s what this is about, being in control, choosing empowerment. I feel sexy and strong and confident when I shoot images like this, I hope I give other women the confidence to own it, to work hard on themselves, to eat well and healthily and to move their bodies in whatever way makes them feel most alive and energised, to wear whatever they like without judgement and to feel proud to be a woman.

“I’ll undoubtedly be judged, some might find it shocking, but I’m simply moving my sexier, racier images to another platform. I’m not sure what’s shocking about it, most likely a few trolls will crawl out from under their rocks, but I get that when I post images on here anyway.”

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But just days after her Instagram post, a Hollyoaks spokesperson confirmed that they would be meeting with the actor to discuss her OnlyFans account. Last night, they released another statement confirming that she would be leaving the show. It read, “Hollyoaks is a youth-facing drama with many young viewers, who follow our cast very closely, both in the soap and outside of it. We take our responsibility to our young audience very seriously and therefore the show does not allow any Hollyoaks cast members to be active on certain 18+ websites.

“We had hoped we could reach a resolution with Sarah that would allow her to remain in her role as Mandy, but we respect her choice to continue to produce content on OnlyFans. In the past four years since her return to the show her legacy character has been an integral part of some our most important storylines and we will be very sad to see her go.”

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Many Hollyoaks fans have spoken out to criticise the soap in the wake of Sarah’s axing, with some even vowing to boycott the show. Others claimed that bosses were “hypocritical” as they used to release racy “babes and hunks” calendars which showed the cast – including the Mandy Richardson star – posing in their underwear.

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Sarah appeared in a number of Hollyoaks Babes calendars ©Hollyoaks

One viewer tweeted, “So #Hollyoaks have sacked Sarah Jayne Dunn for posting racy pictures on OnlyFans - yet over the years, they've released their racy "babes and hunks" calendars,” while another added, “I love @Hollyoaks but if you have sacked @sarahjaynedunn for doing OnlyFans after 26 years I will switch off as that is hypocritical when you have had the cast pose for calendars to make you money. She is gorgeous and taking control of HER body.”

A third wrote, “Embarrassing. 'Care about our young audience'. I used to get the Hollyoaks calendar every year when I was a kid. They'll quite happily profit from sexualising their cast, but when one wants bodily autonomy they axe her? Dear me.”

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