Ian Smith, who portrayed Harold Bishop on the Australian soap opera Neighbours, has appeared in a special video to promote his comeback to the show.
The heartwarming video, which also featured other notable cast members wishing the iconic soap a Happy Birthday, was prepared to mark Neighbours 37th birthday.
However, the sight of Neighbours’ Ian has piqued fans’ interest in his forthcoming comeback to the show.
“Today is our birthday – it’s been 37 years since we first debuted on film!” read the video’s caption. There’s no better day than today for a #Neighbours LEGEND to return to Erinsborough!”
“Happy birthday, Neighbours,” Ian stated as the last person to appear in the video. “Happy 37th birthday!”
The beloved Harold was played by the soap veteran for 28 years, making him one of the show’s longest-running characters.
After a seven-year absence from the soap, he has returned for the last episodes when it was revealed that Neighbours would be cancelled after 37 years on the air.
“Neighbours will no longer air on Channel 5 beyond this summer,” Channel 5 said in February. We’d like to congratulate the cast, Fremantle, and the entire production crew for their amazing work on this landmark series, which has been a much-loved part of our schedule for more than a decade.
“Of course, we’d like to thank the fans for their unwavering support of Neighbours over the years. We understand that this decision will cause sadness; but, our present priority is on boosting our investment in original UK drama, which has a great appeal among our viewers.”
Kylie Minogue, Liam Hemsworth, Russell Crowe, Jason Donovan, Margot Robbie, and Guy Pearce are among the most well-known TV, film, and music stars to have come out of Neighbours.
Former Neighbours performers, notably Natalie Imbruglia, who won The Masked Singer UK season 3 this year and played Beth Brennan in Neighbours from 1992 to 1994, have spoken out about how disappointed they are that the popular serial is being cancelled.
She said this on Heart FM with DJs Kelly Brook and JK: “Let’s face it, who wants to live without Neighbours? At this point, I believe we just assumed it would go on indefinitely. People are signing petitions; let’s hope they succeed!”
She continued, saying: “So, there’s a character on the show who looks exactly like my son! I mean, I believe it would be disastrous. What will happen to my child?”
On Channel 5, Neighbours airs weekdays at 1.45 p.m. and 5.30 p.m.