Hollyoaks’ Emma Rigby has reportedly made a dramatic return to her role as Hannah Ashworth in the E4 soap after 13 years.
The actress, 34, played the character for five years before departing in 2010 and going on to bag a string of roles in Hollywood.
In snaps obtained by The Sun Emma can be seen on set reuniting with former co-star Kieron Richardson, who plays Ste Hay.
With the character decked out in designer clobber including pricey Balmain heels and a Prada bag.
During her original stint on the show actress Emma received praise for her perfomance including a harrowing eating disorder storyline which saw her win Best Actress at the British Soap Awards in 2008.
Back for more: Hollyoaks ‘ Emma Rigby, 34, has reportedly made a dramatic return to her role as Hannah Ashworth in the Channel 4 soap after 13 years (pictured in 2019)
Soap star: The actress, 34, played the character for five years before departing in 2010 and going on to bag roles in Hollywood (pictured on the show with former co-sar Andrew Moss)
MailOnline have contacted Hollyoaks’ for comment.
After heading to the states Emma appeared in 2013’s The Counselor gnula.cam alongside Brad Pitt and Cameron Diaz as well as Endless Love with Alex Pettyfer in 2014.
She also took on the role of The Red Queen in ABC’s Once Upon a Time in Wonderland as well as Prisoners’ Wives, Ripper Street, Death In Paradise and Fresh Meat.
It comes after Channel 4 pulled the plug on the soap being aired on its main channel, in a new digital strategy to freshen up viewing experiences with the state-owned broadcaster.
The broadcaster announced that the new schedule pattern and promises viewers ‘a massive stunt week of spectacular and standout storylines’ with ‘scenes shot in sensational new locations’.
The soap, which started in 1995, was moved to its sister channel E4 in a bid to shake-up the schedule in September.
Fans of the show based in a drama-filled Chester village will still be able to catch the weekly omnibus which will continue to be broadcast on Channel 4.
Episodes will also be uploaded onto Youtube to suit younger audiences, and will be made available to watch on YouTube the week after streaming and broadcast on E4.
Across the pond: After heading to the states Emma took on the role of The Red Queen in ABC’s Once Upon a Time in Wonderland (pictured)
Big break: She appeared in 2013’s The Counselor alongside Brad Pitt and Cameron Diaz (L-R) Brad Pitt and Michael Fassbender pictured in the movie
Home soil: Back in the UK she acted in Prisoners’ Wives (pictured) Ripper Street, Death In Paradise and Fresh Meat
Channel 4 has been the home to Hollyoaks for nearly three decades, and this latest change suggests an effort to keep up with a digital age, and reflects the increasing appetite for on-demand entertainment.
64 per cent of viewers watched the soap by streaming episodes or E4 this year which meant that 556 million minutes of the show being streamed in the first half of the year – signalling a shift in viewer habits.
The broadcaster has dubbed Hollyoaks as the ‘UK’s first streaming-led soap’, by making episodes available to stream the day before they are broadcast on E4.
Channel 4’s Chief Content Officer, Ian Katz said: ‘Hollyoaks has always been the youngest and most innovative soap so it’s fitting that it should be the first to embrace the changes in the behaviour of younger viewers and switch to a genuinely digital-led release pattern.
Talent: During her original stint on the show actress Emma received praise for her perfomance including a harrowing eating disorder storyline which saw her win Best Actress at the British Soap Awards in 2008 (pictured 2006)
‘It was the first UK soap to move to a stream-first model last year and this is the next phase of that evolution.
‘We hope making Hollyoaks available on YouTube, as well as our own platforms, will introduce a whole new generation to the show.’
The soap’s young fan base has propelled the broadcaster to put its demographic at the heart of its new streaming decisions, after it was discovered the number of people streaming episodes before they were aired on TV went up by 53 per cent on the equivalent period last year.
Channel 4 move towards a more digitally-led experience comes as the broadcaster received record viewing via streaming after releasing programmes, such as Married at First Sight UK and Married at First Sight Australia, aimed at a younger audience.
Channel 4Brad PittYouTubeCameron Diaz