Say it ain’t so!
After almost 40 years on air, it looks like the beloved Australian soap opera Neighbours could be coming to an end soon.
News of a possible cancellation of the show comes after Channel 5 announced that after this summer, Neighbours will no longer air on British TV.
A statement given to Sky News by the channel reads: “Neighbours will no longer air on Channel 5 beyond this summer.
“It has been a much-loved part of our schedule for more than a decade, and we’d like to thank the cast, Fremantle and all of the production team for their fantastic work on this iconic series.
“We’d also of course like to thank the fans for their loyal support of Neighbours across the years.
“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.”
The decision to pull Neighbours from UK television could usher in its end altogether, as it’s understood that Channel 5 provided significant funding for the Australian soap. Moreover, the UK viewing public makes up a significant portion of the show’s audience, with a reported one million viewers tuning in each day.
Australian broadcaster Network 10 said that Neighbours could continue to be made, but a new broadcast partner would be needed to secure their currently uncertain future.
They said: “As outlined in the email to Neighbours cast and crew, it is our intention to continue our association with Neighbours if another broadcast partner comes forward.
“Network 10 has an ongoing commitment to the show, the cast and crew and is hopeful that Fremantle will find a new production partner.
“We will provide further updates as they become available.”
Neighbours first hit screens in 1985 and has since developed a devoted audience. It also helped launch the careers of numerous Australian stars, including Margot Robbie, Alan Dale, Craig McLachlan, Jesse Spencer, and, of course, Kylie Minogue.