EastEnders’s executive producer Dominic Treadwell-Collins has revealed some of what lies in store for the soap’s best-loved characters in the new year.
Speaking at the launch of the show’s Christmas episodes, Treadwell-Collins announced that EastEnders is “fighting back” and that future storylines have been planned up to the 30th anniversary in February 2015.
So, here is what we can expect to see unfolding in Walford in the coming months:
“The big question with Ronnie is: ‘is she her father’s daughter?’ And what we’re going to see is how someone becomes a villain. Not a soap bitch, but a villain. I keep talking about Darth Vader.”
“A big story will hit the Beales around Easter and keep going until the 30th anniversary. It will shock, entertain and make the nation weep. And it will also give Adam Woodyatt – who is a brilliant actor and a lovely man – a chance to shine”.
“Lindsey Coulson is acting her socks off for her breast cancer story. Our angle is that it’s about the Jackson family as a whole. And we’re looking at cancer not as a story device, but forensically. Half of my audience is women – and many will either go through breast cancer scares or will know someone who has breast cancer. It’s a very important story. I’ve been sobbing in the edit suite. A lot.”
“She’s a soap icon and she hasn’t been used as much as she should have been. The arrival of her family will make us understand Shirley a lot better. We’ll see what makes her tick and why she walked out on her kids years ago.”
Mick and Linda Carter
“Mick and Linda have been in my head for about a year and a half. They’re actually influenced a little bit by my mum and did. What we needed to do was shake up the Vic and do something a bit audacious. So the arrival of the Carters will result in lots of drama flowing out of the pub and we have some massive stories for them. But it’s not going to be The Carter Show – the show works best when there’s a bomb going off at the Vic and a bomb going off at the Beales’ and a bomb going off at the Brannings’. Not literal bombs – I think if you’re stuck for a story you blow things up. I’m not saying I’m never going to blow anything up, but I think soaps should be about characters and people who move you.”
Kat and Alfie
“They needed to lose money, so that they could be brought down again. Then you can tell stories to bring them back up again.”
“My story producer Alexander Lamb and I were storylining the last time that Lacey Turner was on the Square. That was Act One – so, we know the character and we know where she’s going to go.”
“You’ll see Charlie Brooks’s exit story [over Christmas], but there will be a coda to that story. It’s not going to be the last you’ll see of Janine. That’s all I’m saying.”
Stan Carter and Aunt Babe (played by Timothy West and Annette Badland)
“We want to reinvigorate our older cast. I think we need some older people. We don’t want too many young people – when we see younger characters, I want to see them through the eyes of their parents. Not parents through the eyes of their children. So yes, Timothy West and Annette Badland are joining and there are more to come.”
See the Christmas 2013 EastEnders trailer below: