Danny Dyer has spoken about his decision to quit EastEnders, teasing a "powerful" exit for his character.
It was announced this week that the actor would be stepping down from his role of Mick Carter later in 2022.
Discussing his decision, Danny said he was "very lucky" and "very grateful" for his time on the BBC One soap.
He explained: "When you're in a job like a soap your contract comes up for renewal and every time it has they've asked me to stay, and I'm very grateful for that. Because I've seen a lot of people come and go. It's very tough.
"I always debate whether I want to sign again and I've been contemplating a while now about whether it's time to roll the dice, take the leap.
"The big news is I've decided not to renew my contract. That's all. That's not because I've fallen out with anybody, I love everybody. That job has been amazing for me. It's an important part of television.
"I'm grateful for the beautiful years I've had there. I'm going to miss the people massively. It's me taking a risk."
Chatting on the Sorted with the Dyers podcast with daughter Dani Dyer, he added: "Let me tell you something - Mick's exit is going to be a very, very powerful thing.
"I would love the door to be left open, and as far as I know it is.
"So, who knows. When I go out there and I fail miserably I can come back with my tail between my legs and go: 'Will you take me back?'
"But I just want to send out some love to everyone at EastEnders. I love you all very much.
"It'll be a sad year for me, but I'm also very excited about it."
Danny's character Mick first arrived on the soap in 2013 alongside wife Linda Carter, played by Kellie Bright.
Exact details about Danny's exit including his final episode are to be announced.
For now you can catch up with the latest episodes of EastEnders via the BBC iPlayer here.
As well as his acting work Danny currently presents BBC One game show The Wall.