EastEnders casts Jonny Freeman as great-nephew of Dot Branning


EastEnders spoilers follow.

Walford will welcome Jonny Freeman in the role of Reiss Colwell, EastEnders fan-favourite Dot Branning’s great-nephew and Sonia Fowler’s new love interest.

The kind-hearted, cardigan-loving character is a distant relative of Dot’s, who was played by June Brown before she passed away earlier this year. As per the extended Colwell family tree, Reiss’ grandfather’s brother was Bob Colwell, Dot’s father.

Though the family hasn’t always been close and only saw each other occasionally, Reiss feels compelled to attend Dot’s upcoming funeral after learning about her death.

jonny freeman as reiss, eastenders


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At the service, he and Sonia (Natalie Cassidy) bond over their love of Dot. There seems to be a spark between them too, but only time will tell as to whether they choose to pursue this instant connection.

Freeman, who you may recognise from Silent Witness and Top Boy, said he is “delighted” to be a part of EastEnders.

“I am delighted to be joining the cast of EastEnders, especially as part of the iconic Dot Branning’s extended family,” the actor shared in a statement.

dot branning in eastenders


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“Everybody has been so welcoming and I’m very lucky to have been working so closely with the lovely Natalie Cassidy who is not only a fantastic actress but a delightful person; she has very kindly helped me navigate my first few weeks.

“I hope I can do Reiss justice. He is kind but socially awkward and seeing how he manages, or doesn’t manage, his early exchanges with Sonia and her nearest and dearest has been quite interesting! I’m looking forward to seeing how both audiences and the residents of Walford respond to him.”

EastEnders airs on Mondays – Thursdays at 7.30pm on BBC One. The show also streams on BBC iPlayer.

Read more EastEnders spoilers on our dedicated homepage


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