Bodkin Actor Chris Walley’s Alleged Girlfriend Claire Is Also Irish: Are They Dating?


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Chris Walley on the red carpet for IFTA awards

Chris Walley, who portrays Sean in the series Bodkin, is allegedly in a relationship with his Irish girlfriend, Claire O’Leary. The two have been sharing pictures on social media since 2019, which fueled their dating rumors.

It was not until 2024 that Claire publicly addressed Walley as her boyfriend in an interview. With the Irish dark comedy mystery series grabbing massive attention, curious eyes also roam around Chris’ personal life.

Want more details on ‘The Young Offenders’ actor’s dating life and relationship? Read the full article for a thorough insight into his love life.

  • After sharing cozy pictures, the Bodkin actor Chris Walley sparked dating rumors with theater actress Claire O’Leary.
  • Claire has appeared frequently in Walley’s Instagram posts since 2019.
  • O’Leary addressed Chris as her boyfriend in an interview with Echo Live.
  • Chris Walley’s girlfriend, Claire, is also from Ireland and learned acting in Cork, where the actor attended the Cork School of Music.

Bodkin Actor Chris Walley’s Girlfriend Speculation: Is He Dating Claire?

The Ireland-born actor Chris may not have addressed his dating life directly, but his Instagram post has more to speak than just visuals.

Over the years, Walley has frequently shared pictures with theater actress Claire O’Leary (aka Claire Noelle), which has led to speculation that they are a couple. Well, yes, they are dating.

Chris Walley and his girlfriend Claire O'Leary
Chris Walley and his girlfriend Claire Posing In front of The Mirror (Source: Instagram)

However, it took years for them to confirm their relationship. Amid ongoing rumors about Claire being his girlfriend, some fans made misconceptions, and surprisingly, the arrow in the dark hit the right spot.

One such instance of misunderstanding was when the Bloodlands actor stated that he was living with his “best pal” in London during an interview with the Irish Examiner in October 2023. Moreover, he opened up that his pal from also from Ireland.

Restless fans quickly discovered that O’Leary, born in Ireland, was also based in London. As a result, an allegation arose that they were living together.

However, in the interview, Walley was referring to his Irish actor and filmmaker friend, Éanna Hardwicke.

Nevertheless- maybe it was fate- Claire confirmed her relationship with the Bodkin actor while talking with Echo Live in May 2024. When asked about her go-to spots in Cork, she mentioned her boyfriend Chris and their favorite places to eat.

Claire O’Leary’s brother confirmed the couple’s relationship in an article from RSVP Live.

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When And Where Did Chris Walley Meet His Girlfriend Claire?

Even if Chris Walley and Claire may not have spilled out their courtship, fans believe they met in Ireland and reconnected in London.

The Young Offenders actor studied at the Cork School of Music before he moved to London to attend the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA).

As for Claire, she used to take after-school drama and singing lessons in Cork. Later, she moved to London to pursue a three-year BA Hons, Musical Theatre degree at ArtsEd.

Chris Walley and Claire are allegedly dating since 2019
Chris Walley with his girlfriend, Claire, and their friend, Alex Murphy (Source: Instagram)

The duo has yet to confirm when they began dating, but Walley first shared a picture with Claire in March 2019. Since then, the Irish actor has often featured his sweetheart in his Instagram posts. Judging from their Instagram post, they seem to be enjoying their company.

Claire O’Leary is active on social media profiles like Instagram (@claireolearyzx) and X (@ClaireOLearyx). She has numerous posts mentioning her beau, Chris, in her X (formerly Twitter) account.

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What Does Claire O’Leary Do?

Having trained at NYMT (National Youth Music Theatre), Claire works as a musical theatre actress in London.

She’s appeared in musicals since 2014, among which her notable works include Sweet Charity, Spring Awakening, Curtains, Les Misérables, and The Wizard of Oz.

Dating Rumor With ‘Bodkin’ Co-Star Robyn Cara

Rumors went flying in early 2024 that Walley could be dating his Bodkin co-star Robyn Cara, who portrays Emmy Sizergh in the series. Fans shipped their potential off-screen romance since Cara doesn’t have a disclosed boyfriend.

They were pictured together at the Dunhill & BSBP pre-BAFTA filmmakers’ dinner and party in February 2024.

However, it seems the two co-actors are good friends.

Walley's Bodkin co-star Robyn Cara
Walley’s Bodkin co-star Robyn Cara (Source: Instagram)

It’s not the first time viewers alleged Chris’ romance with his co-star.

In the TV series, The Young Offenders, his character, Jock, was the on-screen love interest of Jennifer Barry (who played Siobhan Walsh). It led to relationship rumors of the two, but such claims vanished in thin air.

Where Is Chris Walley From? Parents And Early Life

Born on June 21, 1995, in County Cork, Ireland, the 28 Years old actor is an Irish by nationality. Raised in Glanmire, Walley is the youngest of two sons of Martin and Jaqui Walley.

From a very young age, he was focused on acting and music. His supportive parents helped him join the Cork School of Music and the Gaiety School of Acting, where he was part of the Youth Theatre group.

To progress further, he auditioned for the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London after his secondary education but was rejected initially. So, he continued pursuing a BA in Drama and Theatre studies at Cork School of Music.

A year later, he re-auditioned at RADA and got one of their coveted 28 places.

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How’s The Career of Chris Walley?

The actor Chris Walley portrayed Jock O’Keeffe in the film The Young Offenders. This role ascertained him an ITFA Award. Directed by Peter Fott, the film became the quickest Irish film to break the $1 million barrier at the Irish box office in 2016.

His role earned him an IFTA (Irish Film & Television Academy) in 2017.

Bodkin Actor Chris Walley During The Young Offenders season 4
Bodkin Actor Chris Walley During The Young Offenders Season 4 (Source: Instagram)

With its popularity, the six-episode TV program with the same title was released on May 9, 2017, where he reprises his role as Jock in the main cast.

It continues to run successfully. Its fourth series was aired on BBC One and BBC iPlayer on May 10, 2024.

His performance in “The Lieutenant of Inishmore” earned him a Laurence Olivier Award in 2018. TimeOut magazine London wrote an exceptional review praising Walley’s performance.

‘Chris Walley effortlessly conveys the illogical logic and perverse mundanity of the dialogue’

Actor Chris Walley During the Bodkin Screening on Netflix
Actor Chris Walley During the Bodkin Screening on Netflix (Source: Instagram)

In 2024, Chris landed another prominent role as Seamus Gallagher in the dark comedy thriller Bodkin (2024).

IMDB rated the show 8.0. It co-stars Will Forte (as Gilbert Power), Siobhán Cullen (as Dove Maloney), and Robyn Cara (as Emmy Sizergh).

Speaking of his experience in the TV series, Walley told The Irish Sun:

Bodkin was amazing. We had a lot of fun. We shot it two summers ago so I’m really excited for it to come out now and people to be able to get to see it.

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How Rich Is Chris Walley? Insights On His Lifestyle

Walley’s way of life aligns with his commitment to his acting career. He emphasizes personal and professional development and maintains a healthy balance.

He describes himself as restless. While not filming any characters, he enjoys growing his hair curly.

Although Walley’s personal life specifics are not publicly known, he concentrates on his work. Due to hectic schedules on set and travel for filming, he has barely had time to relax. But during his holidays, he stated that he loved coming to Ireland.

You get off the train and you smell that fresh air. It’s totally different to the London air. There’s a different tempo back home as well. I just love Ireland – I love seeing my pals and my family and going to the beach, getting into the sea. Lovely home cooking as well – my mam is a very, very good cook.” 

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