Rory Cowan was out of action for six week after painful surgery - he's not worried about Fair City cuts

 The former Mrs Brown's Boys star feels lucky to be able to retire this year after making money on the show - he will also continue to appear on Fair City after signing a new contract

Actor Rory Cowan with his Partner Jillian Bromwich during Dancing with the Stars week two (Image: Kyran O Brien)

Fair City is being cut from four episodes a week to three this month and production will halt during the summer as part of RTÉ's €10 million cost cutting measures.

Rory Cowan, who plays John Bosco Walsh, has been on the show for five years and he says that everyone is still getting the same contracts this year.

He tells RSVP Magazine: "Everybody is fine with it as far as I know. I have been written out of Fair City for three months; January, February and March. I said to Brigie [De Courcey, executive producer] that a fortnight would be enough when they said they would release me [laughs].

"It’s a lovely show to work on, I adore it and I love working on a drama. I thought I might last a couple of months on it, and now it has been nearly five years.

"The audience loved me on Mrs. Brown’s Boys, but all I did was come in the door and say ‘How are ya, Mammy?’ and then I’d shriek and run back out the door. That was it.

"People loved the character of Rory, but Fair City is totally different and I’m working with some brilliant actors and actresses.

"They’re very helpful and a great bunch of people to be around. If I didn’t like it, I’d be gone. I want to stay on the show for as long as possible. We’re still filming the same amount of content, they’re just gathering back episodes. Everyone is still getting the same contracts."

Regardless of the production schedule on the soap, Rory has been guaranteed a chunk of work this year.

He says: "I have a contract for 10 weeks next year and that suits me down to the ground. I’ll be 65 years of age with 10 weeks of work. I had the same contract last year. Whether they do four episodes a week or one episode a week, I’m still employed. It’s all good."

Rory feels lucky to be able to retire, and he says it comes down to the money he made during his 25 years working with Brendan O'Carroll on Mrs. Brown's Boys: "It should be a choice at the end of the day. If people turn 65 and they want to retire I think they should.

"But if they want to carry on, they should. For me, I was paid so well on Mrs. Brown’s Boys, Brendan O’Carroll was a very generous employer, so I’m able to retire. I’m retiring from television and interviews, but I still want to write a screenplay for a TV series.

Rory underwent "painful" back surgery last year that left him out of action for six weeks and now he's being blighted by another sore health issue.

He says: "I had to do about two hours stretching before I was able to stand up in the morning. A disc was hitting off two nerves.

"I had to rest for six weeks and I couldn’t drive. When I was in a car or taxi they had to roll back the passenger seat and I had to lie with cushions under the small of my back.

"I also have plantar fasciitis [inflammation tissue in the foot used during walking and foot movement] since October. I found that I was getting a sharp pain up my leg when I was walking. I agreed to do Dancing with the Stars and then I realised I couldn't walk.

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