‘Neighbours: Erinsborough High’ cast Lachlan Miller, Benny Turland, Darius Amarfio-Jefferson, Grace Sullivan, Olivia Junkeer and Georgie Stone.
Fremantle has produced a Neighbours spin-off of five, 22-minute episodes which focus on a group of students as they prepare for their final exams.
Developed by Neighbours executive producer Jason Herbison, directed by Jonathon Dutton and produced by Natalie Lynch, the miniseries features a mix of regular cast and newcomers.
Among them is Georgie Stone, who has a guest role in the serial as Mackenzie Hargreaves, its first ever transgender character, a girl with a troubled past. The producers cast the 19-year-old transgender youth rights activist after she approached them.
Neighbours: Erinsborough High will premiere on 10 Play on November 11 and on UK broadcaster Channel 5’s streaming platform My5.
Herbison tells IF he has been talking to Channel 5 and 10 for several years about creating additional content. The UK broadcaster sparked to the idea of the high school setting and commissioned the spin-off with 10’s support.
“As the show approaches its 35th anniversary it is exciting to have broadcasters wanting more content,” he said. “It’s long been my ambition to delve deeper into some of our workplaces and the characters who populate them. Who knows what we might do next?”
According to the synopsis: “Hormones are racing, friendships are tested – but when a popular student goes missing, the turmoil escalates. It will explore issues universally troubling teens today – bullying, mental illness, sexuality, cultural diversity, parental and peer pressure, and teacher-student relationships.”
Herbison is keen to explore more spin-offs, taking advantage of such locations as the town’s hospital, law office, police station and hotel.