Emmerdale actors lived on three hours sleep during gruelling overnight shoot that lasted two weeks as they filmed Maya Stepney attack, says Roxy Shahidi

EMMERDALE actors lived on three hours' sleep during a gruelling overnight shoot that lasted two weeks as they filmed Maya Stepney's attack.

Roxy Shahidi – who plays Leyla Harding – revealed the length stars went to to film the Big Night Out scenes that have been praised by viewers.

"It was two weeks of night shoots," Roxy told ITV's Lorraine this morning.

"I'd tell anyone who would listen that I'd been up all night and had to get back home and then I'd been up all day.

"But it was such a good group of us who all really do get on, so even at 3am and it was freezing and we were wearing thermal wetsuits because it was so cold – we still laughed.

"Because the storyline was so important, you still had to bring it, even if you'd only had three hours sleep.

"It's already like a war story. We all say 'do you remember when we did the night shoot?' but we did really enjoy it and we bonded a lot."

The special flashback episodes this week focused on Leyla, Priya, David, Tracy, Maya, Kerry, Rhona, Victoria, Ellis, Aaron, Robert and Bernice heading off to a nightclub in nearby town Hotten.

Emmerdale will be on telly for seven days in a row to show Maya's dark secret being exposed.

ITV bosses have always promised that justice will be served for the paedo teacher – but it looks like there could still be some uncomfortable turns along the way as it has been revealed that she and victim Jacob will go on the run together.

Jacob's father David Metcalfe will only get wind of the plan when he gets a call from his son’s school, telling him the teenager hasn’t turned up for one of his GCSEs.

However, Jacob and Maya are already gone.

Before long, Emmerdale's paedo teacher shows her nasty side to Jacob when she discovers he’s agreed to meet with his dad David before they leave.

Furious, she orders him to smash his phone to prove he’s serious about them being together and never speak to his father again.

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