Kylie Minogue and Jason Donovan return to Neighbours for soap’s farewell

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Kylie Minogue and Jason Donovan’s 1988 wedding on Neighbours drew 20 million UK viewers (Freemantle Media)
Kylie Minogue and Jason Donovan’s 1988 wedding on Neighbours drew 20 million UK viewers (Freemantle Media)

Kylie Minogue and Jason Donovan will return to long-running Australian TV soap Neighbours for its finale after more than 30 years away.

The 53-year-olds are resuming their roles as much-loved characters Scott Robinson and Charlene Mitchell in the fictional Melbourne suburb of Erinsborough.

Neighbours - first aired in 1985 - confirmed on Sunday Minogue and Donovan will be back in Ramsay Street before the show ceases production in June after being dropped by its broadcaster.

The show’s official Twitter account shared a message from executive productor Jason Herbison saying: “Scott and Charlene are the ultimate Neighbours couple and it would not feel right to end the show without them.

“We are thrilled that Jason and Kylie have come home to play a very special part in our series finale.”

A follow-up post continued: “It has been an emotional experience for them, for us and I’m sure it will be for our viewers.”

Minogue and Donovan played Scott and Charlene until their departures in 1989 and 1988 respectively.

The pair were Ramsay Street’s power couple and a favourite with viewers.

In response to news of her return, Minogue posted a photo of what appeared to be a glimpse of a Neighbours script on Instagram, with the caption: “Omg!!”

Donovan posted a similar image showing the script from a different angle and captioned it with his co-star’s Instagram handle.

Scott and Charlene’s 1988 wedding episode was watched by an audience of almost 20 million in the UK and more than two million Australian viewers.

The ceremony became one of the most-watched TV moments of the decade.

After it was announced that the soap would be ceasing production, Donovan said: “I think it’s sad… but I think it’s time to celebrate Neighbours.”

Minogue - who has then had a successful pop career with hits including I Should Be So Lucky and Spinning Around - said she would be “forever grateful” for her time on the show as mechanic Charlene.

Donovan also moved to a career in music with hits including Especially for You - his duet with Minogue.

He has also appeared in musicals, including taking the lead role in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat in the 1990s.

Kylie Minogue and Jason Donovan made their names on Neighbours (PA) (PA Archive)
Kylie Minogue and Jason Donovan made their names on Neighbours (PA) (PA Archive)

Neighbours has aired on Channel 5 for more than a decade, having previously been broadcast on the BBC.

Earlier this year, Channel 5 announced it was dropping the show from its schedules.

That decision left producers with a funding gap, as the British network was a key broadcast partner in the series.

Producers later said they were “so sorry” but had “no option but to rest the show”.

Donovan’s father Terence used to star on the show, as Doug Willis, and his daughter Jemma is part of the current cast, playing Harlow Robinson.

The programme has also launched careers of Hollywood stars Margot Robbie, Liam Hemsworth and Guy Pearce, as well as singers Natalie Imbruglia and Delta Goodrem.

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