Coronation Street sensation Ciaran Griffiths has captivated audiences since his debut in Weatherfield as Damon Hay this and established himself in the acting world from an early age.
Recognisable from a string of appearances in beloved TV favourites, his career began at the tender age of 13 with a role in the children’s drama series, Children’s Ward. His talents graced numerous soaps and television productions as time progressed, including City Road, The Bill, Holby City, Waterloo Road, and EastEnders.
Yet, Ciarán’s most iconic portrayal remains that of the lovable gay gangster in the acclaimed comedy drama, Shameless. The 39-year-old actor played troublemaker Micky Maguire, a persona marked by volatility, aggression, and hostility from 2007 – 2012.
Throughout the series, Micky grapples with his concealed homosexuality. His departure from the show in its ninth series was nothing short of dramatic, culminating in a tense encounter with a drug dealer indebted to his mother. This encounter took a chilling turn, locking him in a room with the dealer’s wife as she went into labour. Tragically, despite his valiant efforts, the mother met an untimely demise, prompting Micky to embark on an unanticipated journey of bringing the newborn girl as his own.
While Ciaran achieved acclaim for his portrayal of the gay gangster, this role has proven to be a double-edged sword. In real life, Ciaran is straight, a fact that hasn’t shielded him from relentless taunts by online trolls due to playing the on-screen character Micky Maguire.
The actor has said he is regularly heckled and mocked for having previously played a gay bad boy, with boozed-up lads often trying to pick fights with him. It has even prevented him from chatting to girls on nights out, saying: “It’s usually a bunch of drunk lads.“They know I am not gay and then one lad will say, ‘I have to ask this question’ and he’ll get all his mates’ attention and say, ‘Are you gay?’ “They all fall about laughing, but I generally reply, ‘Ask your dad!’ “I did that once and ended up having to leave the club.”
He revealed that even potential girlfriends ask him whether he is gay, but says it hasn’t affected his success in that department. “I don’t mind it when girls ask the question and I do all right for girlfriends.”
Ciaran described an incident where he was tempted to retaliate but thought better: “I once had a run-in with a few builders who were working near me. “They asked if I was the guy off Shameless and when I said yes they started up, ‘The gay one, the gay one’. “They were all from Liverpool and giving me stick. I was going to go back and sort them out but thought better of it.”