Neighbors facing Channel 5’s ax after almost four decades on screen

Neighbors is reportedly about to be banned from UK television.

The bosses of the popular Australian soap opera, which first aired in the UK on BBC One in 1986, are said to be in drastic talks with Channel 5 over the show’s future.

Due to “budget issues”, the Australian show will reportedly be pulled from our screens in August this year.

Neighbors was set to celebrate its 37-year stint this year, and bosses are now hopeful that they can make the show come out strong by bringing back its most iconic actors.

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Over the years, the long-running show has featured big stars, including singers Kylie Minogue and Jason Donovan, and Hollywood actors Russell Crowe, Margot Robbie and Liam Hemsworth.

Bosses are reportedly hoping to convince Kylie Minogue to return to the show for a very special finale after nearly four decades, the Mirror reports.

Fremantle Australia is believed to have been in talks with Channel 5 for ‘weeks’ in a bid to keep the show on the air in the UK.

But a deal has reportedly not been struck yet, with fans now fearing that the much-loved show, which takes place on the fictional cul-de-sac Ramsay Street, could come to an end.

The cast of Neighbors when it first aired in 1985
The cast of Neighbors when it first aired in 1985

“The cast and crew in Melbourne have not been informed of the decision. They will be devastated. Neighbors is an institution that people grew up with,” a source told The Sun.

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There is reportedly a revenue gap of millions of pounds between what the show earns in advertising and what it costs to produce.

“Channel 5 pays Fremantle Australia many millions of pounds each year and sadly there is a shortfall of around £5m in what it raises through advertising,” a source explained.

“There is a lot of disbelief and sadness among those who know it is ending. They are currently in the process of reaching out to several former cast members, including Kylie, to make a special comeback.”

The source added: “Now it’s the end, it would really be something special to have her back on Ramsay Street one last time.”

Neighbors will be fired after almost four decades on television
Neighbors is in talks to be eliminated after almost four decades on television

This news comes after it was revealed that Britain’s Got Talent judge Amanda Holden has been busy filming scenes for the Australian soap opera.

Amanda will make her debut on the show in a guest starring role as part of a special London storyline.

Speaking of her new role, Amanda said: “Like most people in the UK who were around in the late ’80s and early ’90s, I grew up watching Neighbors every day of the week.

“I was glued to our TV for Kylie and Jason’s (Scott and Charlene) wedding while cursing Mrs. Mangle and praying that Mike and Jane would eventually get together. Not to mention all the other greats over the years.

“To now have the opportunity to be a part of such an iconic Australian show is just fabulous!

“I can’t wait to work with Jemma in London; this feels like a happy occasion for everyone.”

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Amanda Holden filmed a scene for the soap recently and was joined in her scenes by Jemma Donovan, who plays Harlow Robinson on the show, and is the real-life offspring of Ramsay Street icon Jason Donovan.

The Mirror has contacted a Channel 5 representative for comment.

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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