EastEnders is having a serious shakeup! The BBC soap has confirmed that Ted Reilly, who plays Johnny Carter, is leaving the show next year. "We can confirm Ted has finished filming with EastEnders and wish him all the best for the future," the BBC announced on Tuesday. Ted, 26, joined the popular soap in 2016 when he took over the role from actor Sam Strike. His character has been at the centre of some dramatic storylines, including the moment he accidentally got shot by neighbour Ted Murray.
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Shortly after the news of his departure was announced, Sam took to Twitter to thank his fans. "Thank you for all your lovely messages regarding EE," he wrote. "It was a really tough decision to leave, but at this stage in my career it's very important to keep being challenged & experience new things! I'll miss the amazing people on the square especially my Carter clan!" [sic] It has since been revealed that the star is set to appear in a series of plays called Heretic Voices at the Arcola Theatre in London from January.
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Ted's exit comes amid departures from several other characters, including sisters Lauren and Abi Branning as well as Ben Mitchell. It has since been revealed that Tamzin Outhwaite will reprise her role as Mel Owen in the New Year and Maisie Smith will return as Tiffany Mitchell. Of her return, the 16-year-old said: "It's great to be back on the set of EastEnders. It's been lovely to see some old faces and meet new ones too. I can’t wait to show everyone how much Tiffany has changed." Last month, it was also confirmed that Masood Ahmed (Nitin Ganatra) is heading back to Albert Square. He will be joined by newcomers Auntie Mariam and Uncle Arshad in the New Year.