Neighbours producer gives fresh hope the soap WILL return to screens in future – as he reveals whether Kylie Minogue has agreed to appear in the grand finale
It was announced on Thursday that Neighbours would be coming to an end after 37 years on air.
But the show’s executive producer Jason Herbison has given fresh hope that the iconic Aussie soap could one day return to screens, emphasising that the soap is ‘rested’ rather than fully cancelled.
Speaking to TV Tonight, Herbison said: ‘Neighbours remains a beloved brand and the response from the viewers has only affirmed that.
End of an era: Australia’s long-running soap Neighbours has officially been axed after 37 years on-air. But on Friday, the show’s executive producer gave fresh hope that the iconic show could one day return to screens, emphasising that the show is ‘rested’ rather than cancelled
‘We’re open to all possibilities for the future which is why we are considering the show rested. But for the immediate future, the show is ending in June and cast will be free to move on to other projects.’
He said he has an ‘idea’ of how the long-running series will end, but said he would never do something drastic like ‘blow up’ Ramsay Street for the big finale.
He also hopes to bring in some of the soap’s most iconic guests to send it off in style – including Kylie Minogue.
‘I’m doing everything you’d expect me to be doing!’ he said, when asked if he’d spoken to Kylie’s people in recent days.
The pop star – who played Charlene Robinson in the soap – is now living in Melbourne following a lengthy stint in the UK, which would make the guest appearance seamless.
Iconic: Kyle Minogue’s character Charlene’s romance with Scott Robinson, played by Jason Donovan, captured the hearts of millions. Fans have high hopes she will return for the finale
Anything’s possible! Kylie – who played Charlene Robinson in the soap – is now living in Melbourne following a lengthy stint in the UK, which would make the guest appearance a much more simple one to put into play
Network 10 and Fremantle, the show’s producer, confirmed the news that Neighbours was cancelled on Thursday, and said the final episode will be filmed in June.
In a statement issued to MailOnline, they confirmed: ‘It is with sadness that after nearly 37 years and almost 9000 episodes broadcast, we are confirming that Neighbours will cease production in the summer.
‘Following the loss of a key broadcast partner in the UK, and despite a search for alternative funding, we currently have no option but to rest the show.
‘Everyone at Neighbours has been overwhelmed by the love and support from the audience since the news came out. The show has brought a sunny slice of Australia into the homes of millions of viewers around the world launching the careers of dozens of household names along the way.
‘But as this chapter of Ramsay Street comes to a close, we promise to do everything we can to give the show the send-off it deserves.’
The show will be taken off-air indefinitely after an ‘extensive search for alternative funding’ ended in failure.
Over: Network 10 and Fremantle, the show’s producer, confirmed the news that the show was cancelled on Thursday, and said the final episode of the iconic soap will be filmed in June. Pictured: The 2021 cast
News of its abrupt departure from UK’s Channel 5 sent the show into a tailspin, with network bosses in Australia scrambling to find a new international broadcasting deal to cover production costs or face the closure of Ramsay Street for good.
Network 10 addressed the end of the series in a statement to Australian media on Thursday, admitting it had been a ‘difficult decision’.
‘This difficult decision came after the search for an alternative UK broadcast partner proved unsuccessful.’
They added that the series would ‘not air on 10 Peach beyond September 2022’, marking the end of its decades-long run.
‘A much-loved stalwart of our program schedule for over 35 years it has been a staple of Australian television drama, and Australian cultural exports,’ they added.
‘Ramsay Street, Erinsborough, is a cul-de-sac recognised all over the world and has been home to Scott and Charlene, Des and Daphne, Dr Karl and Susan, Dee and Toadie, Aaron and David and many, many more neighbours.
Heartache: Network 10 addressed the end of the series in a statement to Australian media on Thursday, admitting it had been a ‘difficult decision’
‘Network 10 thanks the cast, crew, all the production team and Fremantle for bringing the perfect blend of soap and sunshine to audiences in Australia and around the world.’
They also praised ‘the Australian fans and audiences for their continued support of the series’.
‘Their encouragement particularly in the past few weeks has been incredible. It shows that our audience still want Australian scripted drama,’ continued the statement.
‘We have listened to them and there are exciting new local projects in the pipeline, which is great for our audience and for the local industry.
‘We are confident that the cast, crew and writers will bring their distinctive warmth, style and humour to the Neighbours set as they embark on filming the final episodes over the coming months.’
Meanwhile, British broadcaster Channel 5 confirmed the end of its 14-year deal with Neighbours in February, with a spokesperson telling MailOnline that the decision to axe the soap comes as the channel’s ‘current focus is on increasing our investment in original UK drama.’
‘We recognise that there will be disappointment about this decision, however our current focus is on increasing our investment in original UK drama, which has strong appeal for our viewers,’ they said.
Coming to an end: Meanwhile, British broadcaster Channel 5 confirmed the end of its 14-year deal with Neighbours in February, with a spokesperson telling MailOnline that the decision to axe the soap comes as the channel’s ‘current focus is on increasing our investment in original UK drama’ Pictured: The iconic Ramsay St sign
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