‘Big Mo’ Harris brings the drama as actress Laila Morse returns to EastEnders

Laila Morse will return permanently to her role as EastEnders character “Big Mo” Harris.

The 78-year-old actress is known for portraying the dodgy and fiery matriarch of the Slater family in the BBC One soap since 2000 before she departed Albert Square in 2021.

She has returned to Walford for a few stints over the last few years and originally left to go on a cruise ship with her love interest Fat Elvis (Shenton Dixon).

This time, “Big Mo” is back alongside her great-grandson Freddie Slater (Bobby Brazier), who is the son of Graham Foster (Alex McSweeney) and Maureen “Little Mo” Slater (Kacey Ainsworth), after he briefly left the square last year.

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Bobby Brazier will return to EastEnders with Laila Morse (Jordan Pettitt/PA)

Morse said: “I’m delighted to be coming home to Walford to bring Mo back to life.

“EastEnders holds such a special place in my heart, and I can’t wait to be reunited with my on-screen family, who are like my family, as well as old and new faces.”

She last appeared on screen in 2022 when she attended Phil Mitchell (Steve McFadden) and Kat Slater’s (Jessie Wallace) attempted first wedding.

A renowned schemer, her previous storylines involve her long-standing feud with Pat Butcher (Pam St Clement), helping Sonia Fowler (Natalie Cassidy) give birth to Rebecca “Bex” Fowler on Dot Branning’s (June Brown) sofa, and – in one of her many efforts to make money through questionable means – pretending that Kat had died.

Chris Clenshaw, EastEnders executive producer, said the show was “absolutely delighted” to have Morse back.

“Although her time away from the Square has been short-lived, the Slater family has endured a huge amount of drama since she last appeared on screen and Mo’s return will be no different,” he added.

TV Choice Awards 2017 – London
Laila Morse has returned to Walford for a few stints over the last few years (Ian West/PA)

“We’re delighted to welcome Laila back permanently as she is thrust into the heart of the drama alongside great-grandson Freddie.”

There is no indication of why the characters are returning but the soap teased “where Mo goes, trouble inevitably follows”.

A first-look will air on the EastEnders TikTok channel of “Big Mo” and Freddie in her caravan, where she has been living since leaving Walford.

Brazier joined EastEnders in 2022 and took a break from the soap while he competed on Strictly Come Dancing last year.

Morse is also known for competing on I’m A Celebrity … Get Me Out of Here! and as an actress in the film Nil By Mouth, directed and written by her brother Gary Oldman, an Oscar-winning actor.

Filming is under way and she will be shown on screen in spring this year.