EastEnders Zoe stars life – Bond girl audition flop, soap snub and stripping

EastEnders has dropped a major hint that Zoe Slater could be returning to Albert Square after 17 years away from Walford.

Actress Michelle Ryan made her debut back in 2000 aged 16 and played the role for five years.

She hasn't been seen in Albert Square since 2005 but her mum Kat Slater (Jessie Wallace) has been seen contemplating sending her an invite to her upcoming wedding to Phil Mitchell (Steve McFadden) but she decides against doing so.

READ MORE: EastEnders icon Barry leaves festival-goers stunned as he duets on-stage with Sam Fender

As fans wait to find out if Zoe shows up, Daily Star has taken a look into TV star Michelle's life away from the BBC One soap.

Soap snub

Since her departure in 2005, Michelle has revealed that she has no plans to return.

She previously told Bristol Evening Post: "I just got quite bored in the end, to be honest. Doing the same thing day in, day out. It's just so boring.

"I like to jump from different things. I always saw EastEnders as an apprenticeship.

"I always wanted to go on and do different things. I have some really good friends from that show but the door is closed."

However, there have been numerous rumours over the past decade that Zoe could be returning to the show.

Hollywood fame

In 2007, Michelle starred in the short-lived American television series Bionic Woman.

The series began airing in the United States on the broadcast network NBC in September 2007.

The soap star affected an American accent for the role of Jaime Sommers.

She stated the show's cancellation came about because it kept changing direction, and stated it led to her being less ambitious about her career. "

Michelle said at the time "I'm more go-with-the-flow now".

Bond girl audition flop

Michelle tried out for the role of Vesper Lynd in James Bond movie Casino Royale.

However, The TV beauty told Metro back in 2008 that she "completely blew it".

She said: "I did [audition]. Daniel Craig wasn't there, though. I was quite nervous and completely blew it.

"Whereas with Bionic Woman, I was relaxed and nailed it.

"It's always when you're not bothered – the same as when it comes to guys – that you do best. If you try too hard it doesn't work."

The role of Vesper was awarded to French actress Eva Green.

Stripping off

The actress, now 38, took pole-dancing lessons for her role in racy flick A Girl walks into a Bar.

She explained at the time: "I play a stripper and had to go to a pole-dancing class in LA to prepare.

"I have so much respect for the dancers. It is hard work.

Michelle added: "I had bruises everywhere but it was worth it."

EastEnders airs Monday to Thursday on BBC One at 7.30pm

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