BBC to make EastEnders spin-off

Soap fans are set to get an extra helping of EastEnders with a 13-part online spin-off of the show – written by young competition winners.

EastEnders: E20 will see four new characters move into the Square with guest appearances from some of the soap’s old favourites.

Show boss Diederick Santer told media magazine Broadcast: “There are always other people milling round the market and houses that we never go into.”

“It will be nice to see well-known characters through strangers’ eyes. Ian Beale may show up and he is just a strange, irritating man. Or they might ask: ‘Who is that moody girl in the market?’ And it will be Stacey Slater.”

The spin off – which will be shown as webisodes three times a week on the EastEnders website – will follow a group of sixth form students and will be aimed at a younger audience.

Madeline Duggan (pictured) plays Lauren Branning, one of the soap’s existing young characters.

The writers are 13 competition winners from London aged 17 to 22 and the idea has been called the “naughty little brother or sister to the main show” by the BBC.

The webisodes will be launched in January to celebrate the soap’s 25th anniversary.

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