DANNY Dyer has revealed he left EastEnders because of the soap’s dwindling viewing figures and because the show’s writer’s “lost their way” with his character, Mick Carter.
The 45-year-old actor departed his role as the Queen Vic landlord in dramatic scenes which showed him diving into the Chanel to save his beloved ex-wife Linda, played by Kellie Bright, with him not re-emerging from the water.
Danny Dyer has revealed why he left EastEnders and the role of Mick Carter
Danny left the soap in explosive scenes at Christmas
When Danny joined the BBC One show in 2013, EastEnders was regularly getting up to eight million viewers a night, but in the past year those figures have dwindled to 2.5 million an episode.
Danny got sick of being told by people that they didn’t bother tuning in.
He said: “All I got for the past couple of years was, ‘You still in that EastEnders? I don’t watch it anymore.’ Constantly, that was the thing.
“When I first came in there was like seven or eight million people watching it, of course because of streaming services and all that stuff a lot less people do watch it. It was more that people didn’t watch it anymore, ‘you still in that?’ it was all that sort of dialogue.
“It was a lot of people, a lot of young people, young people don’t watch it.”
Danny also admits that he had become disillusioned with his character, because he felt Mick had “lost his way” after divorcing Linda and marrying Janine Butcher, played by Charlie Brooks, and being involved in more and more far-fetched storylines.
He added: “I didn’t quite know who I was playing anymore, it was an odd thing.”
Although Mick is presumed dead his body was not found, and Danny is not closing the door on a return to EastEnders in the future, and admits he could walk back in the Queen Vic much to the shock of the Albert Square residents in the same way Harold Bishop returned to Neighbours after he was believed to have drowned.
He said: “I had a good reaction from all that. I was very surprised by the amount of love I got from it, really. I didn’t quite know how that was going to go down.
“I do remember Harold Bishop, a few people have mentioned that to me because he died and then he came back, he washed up funnily enough, lost his memory. Who knows? They’ve kept it open, I could turn up in three years smothered in seaweed. I went to Canvey, I thought I’d go and get a caravan on Canvey Island.
“I’m very grateful for that job though. It was a good gig but now it’s time to move on.”
Danny is up for a return to films and he’s interested in making a sequel to his cult classic gangster movie The Business, or rave flick Human Traffic.
He said: “I want to get out again and make some low budget films. Who knows what the future holds. There’s talk of The Business 2, of Human Traffic 2 as well, all this stuff interests me. I do want to direct stuff, I’m very open to what this year brings. People are asking me to come on board and produce s**t but I can’t be b*****sed. I’m an actor, I want to learn my dialogue, turn up, say my lines, and f**k off home, that’s my game.”
EastEnders airs on BBC One and is available on BBC iPlayer.