Blue's Lee Ryan relieved at positive reaction to his EastEnders debut
EastEnders newcomer Lee Ryan said he was touched by the overall positive reaction to his debut in the soap, but admitted he had “no fingernails left” after nervously watching himself.
Blue star Lee made his first appearance in the BBC programme in Tuesday night’s episode as Woody Woodward, who has come to take over the running of the Queen Vic pub in the absence of landlord Mick Carter (Danny Dyer).
While he received a frosty welcome from EastEnders residents, including Shirley Carter (Linda Henry), viewers largely expressed their delight over his arrival.
Lee Ryan stars in EastEnders (BBC)
Lee told This Morning’s Ruth Langsford and Eamonn Holmes that he had watched the broadcast, adding: “I had no fingernails left, I was really nervous.
“But it was actually really lovely. I don’t normally go online and look at everything because people can have their opinions – and they’re entitled to them – so I just normally stay away from that.
“But people were sending me snaps of what people were saying online, and some articles were really, really positive.
“I couldn’t really believe that.”
Fans had praised singer and actor Lee’s stint highly, with his former Blue bandmate Simon Webbe joining in the congratulations.
Lee also spoke of filming scenes with Danny after he returned from a brief time away from the soap.
He said: “The whole cast are great, I love them, but I was really looking forward to working with Danny – we’ve got some great scenes and there was only a short time we got to act with each other. I can’t say too much.”
He added: “So when he came back, I said to him I was really excited to work with him.
“When he turned up on the day he went ‘Bosh that, bosh that, we’re gonna do this and gonna do that’.”
Of his character Woody, Lee said he is not really a bad boy, adding: “He’s more sensitive, actually. He just wants to be liked.”
'Star Wars' Celebration event kicks off with surprise guests, 'The Last Jedi' panel to come
The annual Star Wars Celebration event kicked off in Orlando today (April 13), with a panel titled “40 Years of Star Wars”, led by iconic “Star Wars” creator George Lucas.
The highly anticipated fan event led the tribute to the 40th anniversary of the franchise, with Warwick Davis hosting and Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy leading a panel of discussions with Mark Hamill (Luke Skywalker), Anthony Daniels (C-3P0), Billy Dee Williams (Lando Calrissian), Hayden Christensen (Anakin Skywalker), and surprise guest Harrison Ford (Han Solo).
The panel concluded with a remembrance of Carrie Fisher, famous for her portrayal of Princess Leia, who passed away suddenly in December 2016.
Lucas delivered an emotional tribute, where he stated: “She was brilliant and obviously we will all miss her, but she will always be the princess who took command and never backed down, never was in jeopardy. She was always helping the other guys get out of the messes she created. We’ll all love her forever and ever.”
Fisher’s daughter, Billie Lourd, also took the stage to honor her mother and introduce a video tribute, which was followed by an impromptu concert conducted by "Star Wars" composer John Williams (via The Hollywood Reporter).
The Star Wars Celebration runs from Thursday, April 13 until Sunday, April 16, with a “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” panel - to be held on Friday at 11am ET - expected to debut the first glimpse of the upcoming film in the form of a teaser trailer.