EastEnders: Jean Slater actress Gillian Wright says “au revoir” to Walford

After eight years with the soap Wright says she wants other challenges, but hopes “this is not goodbye”


Actress Gillian Wright has confirmed that she is leaving Eastenders – and is said to be finishing filming this week.


Wright has played the character of Jean Slater for eight years in the BBC1 soap, having her fair share of dramatic storylines along the way.

Remember when she slapped Ian Beale? This lady has style. 

The star said, “I will miss Eastenders enormously, but it is time for me to step back and enjoy other acting challenges,” adding, “I treasure the viewer’s care and love for the character not only through her hard times but through all the laughter, too.”

But Wright is hopeful this isn’t the end of Jean Slater’s story.

“I would love Jean to return to The Square one day, so let’s hope this is not goodbye, but au revoir.”


While this marks the loss of one familiar face, Eastenders is soon to see the return of another in the form of Samantha Womack, who will be back as Ronnie Mitchell later this year.