Jake Wood announces he is leaving EastEnders after 15 years as Max Branning
16 September 2020, 12:42 | Updated: 16 September 2020, 12:47
Jake Wood will be leaving his role on the hit BBC soap later this year, with an "explosive storyline".
Jake Wood, 48, has announced he is leaving his role as Max Branning on EastEnders after 15 years.
According to reports, Max's exit from Walford will be "explosive", but the show will be keeping the door open for the actor to return in the future.
In an announcement, the actor said: "I’ve had 15 wonderful years at EastEnders and have made some truly great friends.
"I’ll of course miss everyone there but I’m grateful they have left the door open for Max and I’m excited to see what the next chapter holds."
Jon Sen, executive producer of EastEnders, added in a statement: "Jake is a truly wonderful actor and EastEnders have been extremely lucky to have him for so long.
"We have a big storyline for Max that starts in the coming weeks and we are all very excited to see that play out."
According to The Sun, EastEnders bosses are staying "tight-lipped" about plans for Max's exit.
A source told the publication: "Bosses are staying tight lipped about what they have planned for Max but considering he has played a major part in the show for over fifteen years they are clearly planning something big and he will not be departing Walford quietly.
They added: "Everyone will be sad to see Jake go as he is not only a great person to have on set but he’s also a fantastic actor."
Jake first joined the EastEnders cast in 2006, and took a break from the role in 2015 when his character, Max Branning, was in prison.