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James Bye had 'enormous shoes' to fill on EastEnders

ShowbizBy Sunday World
James Bye had 'enormous shoes' to fill on EastEnders

'EastEnders' actor James Bye admits he had "enormous shoes" to fill when he joined the soap.

The actor, who took over the role of Martin Fowler in the BBC One soap earlier this year, has confessed it was daunting replacing James Alexandrou - who starred as Martin from 1996 until 2007 - as he's so well known by fans.

Asked if it was difficult to play a character made famous by another actor, he said: "It can be, they're enormous shoes.

"James Alexandrou, who played the part previously, did such a great job and obviously was on it for quite a long time so I'm sure the fans who've watched 'EastEnders', they're going to see him and say, 'Oh, that's Martin Fowler', and I completely understand that."

James admitted even he watches back his own scenes and finds it weird that someone else is playing Martin - who returned along with his on-screen wife Sonia (Natalie Cassidy) and daughter Rebecca (Jasmine Armfield).

He told ITV's 'This Morning': "I still see that as Martin Fowler, yeah. I watch me and think, who's this guy?

"All I can ask you is just give me a chance, give me a couple of months."

Meanwhile, James has spoken about the upcoming storyline in which it will be revealed Martin has been keeping a huge secret.

He added: "It definitely affects the Sonia, Martin, Rebecca situation - It's to do with that so yeah it's quite a big secret."