Michelle Keegan thought she had "no chance" of getting a job on "Coronation Street".
The 30-year-old actress became a household name when she landed the role of Tina McIntyre in 2007 but, as it was only her second ever audition, she was convinced the part would go to a more experienced star she'd recognised in the waiting room.
She said: "I grew up watching the show. When I got the final callback, I remember sitting outside and a girl I knew from another show was in there before me, so I thought, "There's no chance now." "
In her final audition, Michelle had to act out a scene with Jack P. Shepherd, who plays David Platt, and it brought back to her how star-struck she'd been when she previously served him as an airport check-in assistant.
She recalled: "I was trying to be dead cool with the passport, going "Oh my God, it's David Platt" to my colleagues."
Asked if she told him during the audition, she admitted: "I did - straight away. He found it hilarious."
The brunette beauty initially only planned to stay on the show for four years but found it too hard to leave.
She admitted: "Every year, when I signed again, it was always in the back of my mind - should I leave yet? I didn't want to get typecast."
Michelle eventually departed the cobbles in 2014 when her alter-ego was killed off in a whodunit.
Though she initially panicked when producers told her they'd be shutting the door on any potential return, her former co-star, Julie Hesmondhalgh, told her it was the best thing that could happen as it would help drive her forward to pursue the next stage of her career.
Michelle added to Cosmopolitan magazine: "She was right. I've never looked back and regretted the decision."