Rik Makarem leaving Emmerdale
Rik Makarem is leaving 'Emmerdale' after almost four years playing factory boss Nikhil Sharma
Rik Makarem is leaving 'Emmerdale'.
The 31-year-old actor is to depart his role of straight-laced factory boss Nikhil Sharma after almost four years in the role, and while he is looking forward to the future, he will always "treasure" his time on the ITV soap.
He said: "What a privilege for four years to be a part of such a brilliant show! Along with the creative team, it's been so enjoyable crafting the many wonderful 'under-surface' colours and quirks to my character. I will treasure the experience deeply.
"When making my decision to leave, on both artistic and personal levels, I listened very closely to my heart. I'm naturally ambitious; I believe in taking risks, as that's how we truly learn about ourselves, how we grow, and with this integrity in mind, I'm completely inspired for the journey ahead."
The news comes just days after it was announced Sian Reese-Williams, who plays Nikhil's wife Gennie, is also leaving the soap, though both stars will be on screen throughout most of the summer.
Meanwhile, it has been revealed an hour-long 'Emmerdale' episode trounced 'EastEnders' in the ratings on Tuesday (14.05.13).
The ITV soap drew in 7.5 million while its BBC rival - which aired during the final 30 minutes of 'Emmerdale' - managed a peak audience of just 5.2 million viewers, its lowest figure so far this year.
'EastEnders' insiders blamed ITV for scheduling a deliberate clash for their poor performance.
An insider told The Sun newspaper: "A lot of soap fans like watching 'EastEnders', 'Corrie' and 'Emmerdale', but if 'Emmerdale' starts at 7pm and is on for an hour it's unlikely viewers will switch over halfway through for 'EastEnders'."