A lot can happen in two years. Just ask Kat Stewart.
This week, the 43-year-old actress returns to TV for another season of Ten’s hit series Offspring, which last aired in August 2014. “It’s great to be back,” she tells WHO. “I really thought the chances of us getting to series 2 were pretty slim.”
During her prolonged break from the show, Stewart and her husband, actor David Whiteley, welcomed their second child, a daughter named Gigi. The press coverage of her “secret” pregnancy still elicits a roar of laughter: “It amuses me to no end. It was never a secret! If anyone had been interested, I would have told them.”
Stewart says she is “encouraged to bring her with me every day” to Offspring’s Melbourne set; in fact, she brought her to work just weeks after she was born. She’s in good company—star Asher Keddie takes 15-month-old son Valentino along, and new cast member Dan Wyllie and wife Shannon Murphy, who directs an episode this season, have daughter Dylan, now 1.
Stewart’s mum Kitty chose Gigi’s full name—Georgia Kitty Whiteley. Sadly, she wasn’t able to be in hospital when her granddaughter arrived. “My mum died at the end of last year,” reveals Stewart, “and David’s died a couple of months before that. They both had cancer. I guess that’s why I wasn’t [visible] … because we were spending a lot of time in hospitals.”
Still, she says, “it seems quite apt she’s come along when she has. She’s a positive spin on [what happened] and I love thinking she’s 25 per cent Dave’s mum and 25 per cent my mum. I loving knowing they’re very much a part of her.”