EastEnders spoilers: Star reveals character was played by TWO actors – but who was it?

EastEnders viewers can expect to see Mary “the Punk” Smith (played by Linda Davidson) return to Albert Square next week.

But Mary will also be bringing her daughter with her, Annie, who BBC soap viewers last saw when she was just a tot.

However, Marilyn O’Brien has taken over the role of adult Annie for the comeback.

Mary star Linda has now revealed that the younger Annie was played by not one, but two child actresses.

“It’s not the same person who played her, Samantha Crown – although I have seen Samantha,” the actress told TV Times.

“I volunteer for a charity that works with disadvantaged families, and I was doing some research with an organisation about four years ago, and lo and behold, she works there! She’s in her 30s now and has a baby.

“There were two Annies – Samantha was the main one – and I also found out that they were at the University of Leeds in the same year, doing the same course!” Linda continued.

The soap has recently released snaps of Mary, Annie and Lofty (Tom Watt) reunited with other classic characters.

Spoiler photos show the returning icons in the Queen Vic with Dot Branning (June Brown) and Sharon Mitchell (Letitia Dean).

They turn up in order to attend the funeral of much-loved medic Dr Harold Legg (Leonard Fenton).

The group reminisce about the doctor and share old memories together.

Although, Lofty and Mary are only back in Walford for a short stint.

Speaking about their return, John Yorke said: “As soon as Leonard Fenton agreed to return as Dr Legg, it seemed just the best possible tribute we could pay both his character and the show,” he said.

“Mary and Lofty are huge, iconic characters, and a central part of the show’s DNA.

“Though both have moved on to hugely successful careers elsewhere, we are both thrilled and touched to have them back for one very special episode.”

Some characters have undergone more regeneration than others, as when Ben Mitchell returns to the soap this year he will be played by a new actor.

Max Bowden will be the sixth actor to tackle the role of the mechanic.

Max said of joining the soap: “I’m so excited to be joining the cast of EastEnders and taking on the role of Ben Mitchell.

“I’ve always been a fan of the show so to be joining one of the most iconic families in soap is beyond exciting. I can’t wait to get started and see what’s in store for Ben.”

EastEnders continues tonight at 7.30pm on BBC One.

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