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Two new characters join Eastenders Asian family
30th July, 2007

Eastenders is expanding its Asian family with the introduction of two new actors, who will arrive later in the year.

Actor Nitin Ganatra, most recently seen on television in Mumbai Calling and Meet the Magoons, and on the big screen in Mistress of Spices, will join the cast as Mr Masood.

He will play Nina Wadia's husband, who was recently introduced to Albert Square as businesswoman Zainab Mahmood.

Actor Himesh Patel will join the long-running soap as their son Tamwar. He will join Zahra Ahmadi who is already playing their daughter Shabnam.

Nitin Ganatra told AIM magazine that he had never acted in a soap before so it would be a new experience for him.

"I have grown up with this show and it seems to have become a part of the British fabric. But friends in America, Canada and India have all seen it or heard of it so it ain't just this island that it has an impact on."

He added: "The exececutive producer, Deiderick along with casting agent Julia have been very open and welcoming. I am nervous but excited. I have been watching the show and it is really gripping me. The quality if actors are great so I am really looking forward to working with them."

Nina Wadia told the magazine Digital Spy: "I'm absolutely thrilled Nitin has been cast he's a fantastic actor. We have both played a husband and wife before. It will be fun having him play my husband in EastEnders."

"It's great working with Nitin as we both speak Gujarati which means we can have a bit of fun on set! He is a good friend. Another good thing about Mrs Masood's great relationship with her husband is that he shows her softer side with him, you will get to see her smile!"

Both the new additions are expected to join the cast toward the end of September.

The Ferreira family, introduced to Eastenders in June 2003 as the first Asian family, was axed in Spring 2005.

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