Ben Hardy explains why he had to leave EastEnders


Ben Hardy, who starred as Pete Beale on EastEnders, said he would have always regretted not leaving the soap to try his hand at Hollywood.

The 25-year-old has been one of the lucky ones, finding success as Angel in the X-Men: Apocalypse after quitting EastEnders last year.

In a new interview with Fault magazine, he said of his exit: "I just left really.

"It's one of those things you've got to just get out there to do otherwise I might find myself waking up in 10 years wondering what could have been."

He starred as Pete from June 2013 until his character left to move to New Zealand with his pregnant girlfriend Lauren Branning in February 2015.

Soon after, it was announced he'd been cast in the latest instalment of the superhero franchise.

Ben plays a younger version of Angel, originally played by Ben Foster, but he said fans can expect a different Angel from Foster's portrayal.

"As the timeline has completely warped and while I did watch X-Men: The Last Stand, I went into playing Angel as a brand new character altogether.

"I'm drawing on Angel's character as dictated by the script and my own interpretation of him, without worrying too much about past appearances."

Joining him in the film is a stellar cast including Hugh Jackman, Michael Fassbender, James McAvoy, Nicholas Hoult and Jennifer Lawrence, plus newcomers including Game of Thrones' Sophie Turner.