Updated: Seven boss has thrown Neighbours a lifeline in its hour of need -37 years after it first debuted on the network.
Neighbours has been thrown a lifeline, heading back to Channel Seven, 37 years after it first premiered on the network.
Seven has swooped in the legendary soap to start a new chapter for the Ramsay Street serial in a remarkable new agreement.
The series first aired on Seven in 1985, before being picked up by 10 in 1986, but it will now air on 7Plus as part of a bold streaming commitment in local drama.
“Everyone needs good Neighbours,” said CEO James Warburton, “and 7Plus is the perfect friend for the much-loved drama.”
“We’re thrilled to be bringing the show back to the network where it all started.”
“In the coming months, fans will continue to watch Toadie, Dr. Karl & Susan, Paul Robinson, and everyone in Erinsborough’s loves and lives. Seven now has a 70-year history of iconic Australian drama, thanks to Home & Away.”
Seven’s audacious approach comes after Channel 5 said that the show will be canceled and Channel 10 said it couldn’t continue without a British partner.
James Warburton has secured a deal with Fremantle to completely fund the series by absorbing costs as part of Home & Away’s production output – but it will bring about some unexpected changes across the soapie universe.
Erinsborough will join the fictional ‘Yabbie Creek’ as a new surfside village to Summer Bay, according to Seven’s Chief Content Officer of Entertainment Angus Ross, opening up both to crossover storylines.
He hinted, “It’ll be soapie nirvana for drama junkies.”
“I can’t give too much away, but expect to see Harold Bishop (Ian Smith) on screen for the first time with Alf Stewart (Ray Meagher), Irene (Lynne McGranger) working at Lassiters, and Toadie (Ryan Moloney) in the Summer Bay surf shop.”
“There’s no end to the tales, relationships, and TV weddings that can be created.”
“I can also announce that Dannii Minogue, who starred in Home & Away, will make her Neighbours debut as a long-lost Robinson relative, carrying on the soapie royalty tradition.”
Seven’s business plan includes a premium 7Plus “Perfect Blend” streaming membership for British fans. Fans will need to memorize the lyrics to Especially For You and have a River Boys “Blood & Sand” tattoo splashed over their breast to get through the geo-blocking.
7Plus is set to debut the new Neighbours era on August 1st -exactly 4 months after April 1st.
“It’s going to be bigger than Bouncer’s dream!” Ross added.
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