EASTENDERS’ biggest stars are embroiled in a pay row with soap bosses over lucrative panto roles.
Albert Square veteran Gillian Taylforth, 67, is leading a group of unhappy cast members who are demanding changes to their contracts.
Long-standing Steve McFadden, 64, who plays Phil Mitchell, is allowed to tread the boards to top up his income.
A soap insider said: “The cast are furious they’re not allowed to appear in panto when McFadden can take on lucrative roles.
“They don’t think it’s fair.
“They are now making a stand, which could get very uncomfortable for Albert Square bosses.
“It’s a lot of money to miss out on.
“They would fit in performances around filming, so it would not affect schedules whatsoever.”
Other co-stars could try to change the rule including Lacey Turner (Stacey Slater) who is also of interest to Panto bosses.
Former EastEnders star Adam Woodyatt is believed to have had the same clause as McFadden in his contract before he quit the show in 2021.
Steve McFadden regularly plays Captain Hook in his Panto shows, most recently during a production in Dartford, Kent, in 2020