‘Jane’s back, but not for Ian,’ says EastEnders’ Laurie Brett

Jane Beale comes running back to Walford when Bobby goes missing – and there’s more drama to come after he’s found, EastEnders’ Laurie Brett reveals to Soaplife…

After attempting a clean break in Birmingham, Jane Beale is back in Walford looking for runaway son Bobby. When the lad finally turns up, he says he wants to stay in Albert Square and, after some persuasion, Jane agrees to up sticks once again and moves in with Ian. “She’s not sleeping in his bed, though,” says Laurie to Soaplife.

Who finds Bobby?
“Masood [Nitin Ganatra] finds him, but Jane’s relief is short-lived as she discovers Bobby has collected a lot of press cuttings about Lucy’s murder. Jane sees that as her fault, as she took Bobby away when Lucy’s funeral was taking place and, when he tried to talk to her about Lucy’s death, she wasn’t ready.”

What are Jane’s feelings for Ian?
“I don’t think they ever stopped loving one another, but there’s too much water under the bridge for the relationship to be fixed.”

So who convinces Jane to stay in Walford?
“Funnily enough, Phil [Steve McFadden] does. Jane goes round to talk to Sharon [Letitia Dean], but she’s not there and Phil is. As much as they have had their ups and downs, Phil and Jane have always understood each other. Phil tells Jane not to be a hypocrite and says, ‘I have two words for you: My brother!’ He asks her why she’s in Walford if she doesn’t care and she decides there and then to stay.”

What do you think about Jane being the bookies’ favourite as Lucy’s killer?
“I was quite excited when my mum texted me to tell me that. Even though Jane is motiveless, something could have gone wrong. If it is Jane, I can’t wait to find out how that happened. Personally, I’ve stopped trying to work out who the killer is; Adam [Woodyatt, who plays Ian], on the other hand, has not!”

Does Jane feel bad about sleeping with Ian while he was with Denise?
Diane [Parish, who plays Denise] and I have spoken about this and it’s not just Jane who’s done something wrong, because Denise started seeing Jane’s husband. Is that right in the friendship stakes? I’m not quite sure. If Denise finds out then I am sure they’ll be able to resolve it over a few bottles of pinot grigio.”

Is there anything between Jane and Masood now?
“Jane does confide in Masood and he tells her she can stay with him. He’s quite playful about it and Jane responds with a, ‘No, naughty!’. There will always be something sweet and attractive about them, but I’d love to see it as the Butterflies story, where they’re just two people who sit in the park and talk.”

Will you be around for next year’s 30th anniversary live episode?
“I don’t think I’ll be going anywhere in the next year or two and I know there’s a lot coming up for Jane. The live episode terrified me. In the last one, I only had a tiny bit. But sometimes that’s worse because you’re waiting for it and thinking, ‘What if I screw it up?’. If I have a bit more this time it will still be terrifying, but also really exciting.”

EastEnders, BBC1. Click here for dates and times.


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