Ross Kemp joked that it was “either that or pantomime” when he said he would “never say never” to returning to EastEnders.
Between 1990 and 1999, the 57-year-old actor first rose to fame as the gruff Grant Mitchell on EastEnders.
When he first appeared in Albert Square, he was a major character. Since then, he has returned several times, most recently for 12 episodes in 2016, which featured the funeral of his character’s mother Peggy Mitchell, who was originally portrayed by the late Dame Barbara Windsor.
Shortly after Phil Mitchell (Steve McFadden) makes a startling discovery, he is now scheduled to make another appearance in a special flashback episode that will reveal all about the Mitchell family’s troubled past.
When asked if he “would ever go back to the square,” Ross teased, “You never say never.” When asked if he would return to EastEnders for more than just a special appearance.
It’s either that or pantomime, or maybe both, he joked, addressing AJ Odudu and Mo Gilligan, hosts of The Big Breakfast.
You’re paddling quite quickly, it wasn’t dealing with really really heavy stuff or working in a coal mine, but you’re there for long days, Ross continued, adding in jest that he doesn’t “really” have “fond memories” of his time working on the popular series.
As he thought back on the “ten years” of his life he had spent there, he continued, “It was fun honestly, and it was a great time to be in the soap.”
This follows a major hint Ross gave about playing Grant again late last year, when he confessed to “missing acting.”
I miss acting sometimes, he admitted when speaking to the Hot TV column of the Daily Star newspaper. I miss the humor and the teamwork.
It would be remiss of me to say that I would never return to EastEnders because you can never say you’ll never do something again.
I’m not in a position where I can say no to work of any kind, he continued. And variety—especially at my age—is the essence of life.