Chelsea Fox will be played by a new actress, former Coronation Street star Zaraah Abrahams, when she returns to EastEnders for the first time since 2010.
EastEnders fans will remember Chelsea had a busy love life back in the day, when she was played by Tiana Benjamin for five years from 2006-2010, but departed in haste when her demented father, Lucas Johnson, was arrested for killing ex Trina and Denise Fox‘s ex-husband Owen.
It’s just been announced that Don Gilet will also be returning to EastEnders as Lucas later this year.
Chelsea had a fling with Grant Mitchell before falling for bad boy Sean Slater and then moving onto Jack Branning, the same Jack Branning her mother Denise is in a relationship now.
Abrahams said: “I am so excited to be joining such an iconic show and I am really looking forward to taking on the role of Chelsea Fox.”
If you feel like you’ve seen the 33-year-old actress before, you undoubtedly have. Abrahams first made a name for herself as Underworld machinist Joanne Jackson in Coronation Street from 2005-2007, before moving on to play bad girl-turned-school star Michaela White in the BBC One high school drama Waterloo Road. She also appeared in Holby City and Scott and Bailey.
Abrahams relocated to the US for a period and appeared in HBO series The Knick and Spike Lee’s movie Da Sweet Blood of Jesus.
She told The Voice newspaper in 2015 that she was shaking when she auditioned for Spike Lee, who emailed her out of the blue after seeing her in a short film. She landed the part of the agonised girlfriend of a troubled drug addict in the movie, then starred in medical drama The Knick for one season.
But she is a pragmatic character and said she’ll go where the work is, hence her role in the BBC One soap.
“It’s just my dream to work on great projects,” she said. “I just want to go where the work is and where the opportunities are really.”
EastEnders’ executive producer Jon Sen said: “When Chelsea was around, trouble was never far away and that is as true as ever when she returns to Walford later this year. We are excited that fans are going to see Chelsea back on their screens and thrilled that the wonderful Zaraah is going to play her.”
It’s not known exactly when Chelsea will arrive in Albert Square.