He has been an EastEnders’ staple since the show’s very first episode in 1985, however, it looks as though Ian Beale’s days in Albert Square are numbered as Max Branning’s bitter revenge plot takes a shocking twist this Christmas.
A source told The Sun: “Max becomes obsessed with revenge and that means wanting rid of Ian — but this time for good.
“It’s a classic old-school storyline that will leave the viewers on the edge of their seats. Ian has been top of Max’s list since he came out of prison
“In the run up to Christmas Max is a man on the edge and takes matters in his own hands when he tries to kill Ian. How Max will try to finish him off is not clear yet, but the episodes are set to be gripping.
It is not yet known whether the BBC One soap will actually kill off their longest serving cast member, but Jake recently teased that he is in the middle of filming “intense” episodes for the show.
Speaking to OK! Magazine, the actor shared: “We’re building up for the Christmas episodes so we’re really busy.
“I’ve been back a year since my break. I love working there. There are exciting things happening and Max is a big part of them.
“It is hard work filming them because it’s full-on for us, but I think it’ll be worthwhile.”
In September it was revealed that Lorna Fitzgerald and Jacqueline Jossa, who play Max’s daughters Abi and Lauren Branning in the show, are set to leave at the end of the year, making the Christmas period even busier for Max.
Discussing their upcoming departures, Jake continued: “I don’t know exactly when they’ll be going, but Max will be in and around that.
“Obviously them leaving will affect Max in a massive way. The Branning family are shrinking so I am waiting to hear about Max – there are no guarantees.”