Lisa McCune opens up about Blue Heelers, being single and living through coronavirus

Lisa McCune opens up about Blue Heelers, being single and living through coronavirus

She may be a four-time Gold Logie winner thanks to her role in the 90’s drama Blue Heelers, but Lisa McCune’s 14-year-old daughter is one harsh critic.

After watching every episode of the show due to being stuck at home during quarantine, Lisa’s daughter Remy wasn’t impressed.

"She'll just bag me," the 49-year-old actor told The Australian Women’s Weekly, laughing.

"She'll just go, 'Oh Mum, you're so bad!' She adores me, I know she does, but they like giving me a hard time as well."

Like many parents around the country, Lisa is trying to keep her kids busy as she contemplates an uncertain future.

But while her work and home life have become capsized due to COVID-19, not all the adjustments have been unwelcome.

“As a family we're talking a lot – I'm insisting everybody have dinner together," says Lisa.

"There's a lot of laughter and I think that's because we're all slowing down a little bit."

Lisa suspects this period of enforced reflection will change us all.

"I read somewhere it's like Mother Nature has sent us to our rooms to have a think about a few things," says Lisa.

"In my generation we've had bad things happen, but this could actually be the first time we are going to be living in significant hardship and seeing it around us.

"I just want [my children] to help where they can and be good to people. I really think it's going to make them a bit more humble. My daughter hasn't asked for any new sneakers in about three days."

Whether it’s lessons on humility, quarrelling with the in-laws or sibling rivalry, family dramas have always made for rich storytelling.

"It's full of drama and life," says Lisa, "and that's why we make shows about it all the time."

Which is why Lisa was drawn to the Network 10 comedy series How to Stay Married, which just launched its second season.

Created by The Project’s Gold Logie-nominated comedian, Peter Helliar, the show focuses on the story of Greg and Em Butler, a suburban couple married for 15 years.

It shows the pair trying to keep their love alive amid the day-to-day dramas of surly teens, financial woes and flagging libidos.

"I love the fact that, as much as this marriage goes through its ups and downs, it's at its core so full of love and humour," says Lisa. 

"They're both trying really hard."

And according to Lisa, Pete is a joy to work with.

"When he gets the giggles he can literally not stop," says Lisa.

"It's this internal, I'm-going-to-self-combust laugh – he loses it for up to 30 minutes."

For Lisa, assuming the mindset of everywoman Em – who tries, and often fails to balance work and parenting – isn’t a stretch.

"I totally get it – the whole thing of wanting to be a great mum but at the same time still wondering what's in life for you," she says.

"I think a lot of mums go through that."

She may be single but that doesn’t mean she’s parenting solo – “and I don't want that for my kids," she says.

She met her ex-husband Tim Disney on the set of Blue Heelers when he was a props handler, and the two tied the knot in 2000.

But despite their separation, the two have an unconventional set up for the sake of their children.

"We all live on one property so we're here for the kids – we have to because our work is so all over the place," she says.

"Tim and I are very much dual parenting. We are all over them as parents. I think it takes two people a lot of the time."

While she's open to dating "at some point", Lisa brushes off questions about her love-life, suggesting that romance is the least of her priorities at the moment.

"I don't really think about any of that," she says. "I have a really full, rich life and things will come and go as they're meant to."