It’s not been a great weekend of news for EastEnders.
First it was announced that the soap’s producer Sean O’Connor had quit after just a year at the helm.
Conflicting reports suggested he had actually been given the push by head honchos at the beeb, as ratings continued to nose-dive.
There were also allegations of name-calling on set and some cast members being reduced to tears.
Then a story broke claiming Danny Dyer had been kicked out of home by his wife Joanne Mas after she apparently found text messages on his phone.
They were said to be from some wrong’uns that Danny was supposed to be no longer hanging around with, as he tries to stay on the straight and narrow after that well-publicised bit of bovver earlier this year.
THEN The Sun ran a story claiming Danny had a fling with singer Sarah Harding when they worked together on flop film Run For Your Life back in 2012.
So the show could really use a little positive publicity right now…
Could this be it? It’s emerged today that producers have hired a shiny new cast member… and it’s a big name.
Well… while his name will mean little to most, he is a BIG name on the West End circuit.
In fact George Maguire – yes, that’s him! – scooped an Olivier Award for his role as The Kinks’ guitarist Dave Davies in smash musical Sunny Afternoon.
Although he has already started shooting scenes, it’s not known how long he will be on the show, but on set rumours are that the cast are excited about the new member joining the family.
“George will join the soap for a few episodes early in July,” a show source has confirmed.
“Everyone at EastEnders is very excited about George joining the cast.
“He is hugely talented and well-respected in the West End so it’s a real coup to have signed him.
“They are hoping that his character is a real hit with fans.”
And we bet they are following the show’s ratings taking a turn for the worse.
The show has dipped as low as 4.5m from the 6.2m peak it had last September.