London – FremantleMedia, the producer of the legendary daily drama Neighbours, has confirmed a new multi-year deal with Channel 5 in the UK which will see the network remain as the home of the hugely popular Australian series. The soap will also extend its number of annual episodes from its current 240 run to 258, meaning that for the first time ever, viewers will be able to catch up with the residents of Ramsay Street all year round. The new agreement also includes the creation of a number of Neighbours specials to launch in 2018 in primetime slots.
Cécile Frot-Coutaz, CEO, FremantleMedia Group, said: “From small beginnings over 30 years ago, Neighbours has grown to become one of the most iconic shows on television, a mainstay of the FremantleMedia drama catalogue and, with the possible exception of Kylie herself, Australia’s number one export. I’m delighted that our new deal with Channel 5 will ensure that the millions of passionate Neighbours fans in the UK will continue to enjoy our brilliant cast, writers and many storylines for years to come.”
Katie Keenan, VP Acquisitions, Channel 5 & VIMN UK said: “I’m delighted Neighbours will continue to air across the Channel 5 portfolio. Neighbours is an important part of our schedule and is held in great affection by British viewers. For more than three decades, Neighbours has been an unmissable daily drama and although Ramsay Street is on the other side of the world, the stories we tell have struck a chord in the hearts of the UK audience.”
Neighbours first joined the Channel 5 network in 2008 and has been a stalwart of the daytime schedule ever since. Airing weekdays at 1.45pm and 5.30pm, the drama has reached over 15.2m viewers since the start of 2017 and is consistently Channel 5’s number one daytime show regularly garnering over one million views daily.
The brainchild of pioneering TV producer Reg Grundy, Neighbours has launched the careers of some of the biggest names in show-business, including Kylie Minogue, Guy Pearce, Jason Donovan, Margot Robbie, Jesse Spencer, Delta Goodrem and Holly Valance. Today, it continues to produce such spectacular young talent as Olympia Valance, Scott McGregor, Lilly van der Meer and Mavournee Hazel, while the Ramsay Street regulars – Stefan Dennis, Jackie Woodburne, Alan Fletcher and Ryan Moloney – continue to captivate generations of viewers, young and old.
The series attracts and entertains a legion of fans and ranks superstar singer Adele amongst its biggest supporters. It is viewed by millions daily across a number of countries worldwide including Canada, Norway, Belgium, Ireland and Iceland, making Neighbours the most successful Australian television export in history.