EastEnders Exec Jon Sen To Step Down, Replaced By Chris Clenshaw

Jon Sen, the exec of BBC1’s long-running soap EastEnders, is moving to oversee Casualty and two new high-end drama projects for BBC Studios, with Holby City producer Chris Clenshaw taking over EastEnders.

Sen has been helming EastEnders, which is produced by BBC Studios in Elstree, Hertfordshire, for the last three years, during which time he has overseen storylines tackling domestic violence and sexual abuse, along with the soap’s 35th anniversary. He also steered the show through the Covid-19 pandemic, helping implement stringent protocols as the show dropped from 30 to 20 minutes per ep but returned to air shortly after the UK production hiatus set in.

He will take on Casualty along with two new high-end drama projects greenlit by BBC Studios, replacing Deborah Sathe on the former, who had been exec-ing temporarily following the departure of Simon Harper.

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Th two new high-end projects are yet to be announced. The BBC is soon to cancel long-running BBC Studios’ continuing drama Holby City, replacing it with two shows coming from outside of London, one of which is former Sky drama boss Rope Ladder Fiction’s Waterloo Road reboot, co-produced with Wall to Wall Media.

Sen’s EastEnders replacement Clenshaw is currently a producer on Holby City, who previously worked on EastEnders for four years as a storyliner and script editor. He was most recently working in development at Vertigo Films and Roach’s Rope Ladder.

BBC Studios’ Head of Continuing Drama Kate Oates will oversee EastEnders until Clenshaw joins in 2022.

Oates thanked Sen for “all he has done for the show, especially in his creation of some brilliant new characters, and pioneering new ways of shooting during the pandemic.”

Of Clenshaw, she said: “His love for the programme runs deep, and I know he’s already looking forward to telling fresh and exciting stories and celebrating the very best of our iconic characters.”

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