EastEnders actress Louise Jameson has revealed that — prior to her exit from the soap — she wasn’t too happy with plans to make her character Rosa di Marco a racist.
The character featured in the BBC serial drama for over two years — frequenting Walford between 1998 and 2000 — and appeared in over 200 episodes before she and the rest of the di Marco clan were axed as part of what was then a major overhaul.
Speaking about her sudden EastEnders departure, Louise told The Mirror: ‘I was really annoyed about the way my exit was announced. I was told the night before it appeared in the papers under the headline, ‘Di Marcos Axed’.
‘I thought they could have run it by me a bit beforehand so I could tell my family. It just wasn’t respectful’
Louise also spoke about a storyline that was discussed that she wasn’t happy with, saying: ‘Shortly before that announcement they’d wanted to run a particular story that I wasn’t happy with and I wonder if that was the beginning of my demise. They were going to make Rosa racist.’
“It’s not that I wouldn’t play a racist if the overall feel was anti-racism. But when you’re in a soap, people identify you so strongly with the character you’re playing so I didn’t want to appear racist.’
EastEnders had no comment to make.
Two years after Rosa’s departure, it was revealed that the character had died following a heart-attack — a revelation which proved to be the catalyst in Beppe’s (Michael Greco) departure.
EastEnders continues Friday 28 February at 8:30pm on BBC One.
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