The new producer of Coronation Street, Phil Collinson, has revealed that the soap hasn’t lined up any characters to return for the 50th anniversary later this year. The news comes after various tabloids reports claiming actors such as Julie Goodyear and Jean Alexander has been approached to reprise their respective roles. The news will also disappoint fans of the Granada soap who were hoping the show would mark such a landmark by bringing back some familiar faces.
The new producer of Coronation Street, Phil Collinson, has revealed that the soap hasn’t lined up any characters to return for the 50th anniversary later this year. In an interview with Digital Spy the new producer was asked if the soap was planning to bring back characters from the past to celebrate its 50th anniversary later this year. The producer revealed though that there were no such plans and that the soap will look to the future rather than the past when it celebrates 50 years on-air.
“There’ll be no returning characters from the past, no big nods to nostalgia… The Street itself is 50 years old and characters like Ken and Emily have been in it for that long and reflect that, so I don’t want to look backwards.” – Phil Collinson talking to Digital Spy
The news comes after various tabloid reports linking former stars of the soap as returning for its anniversary. A tabloid report over the weekend claimed that Jean Alexander had been asked to reprise her role of Hilda Ogden but declined while Julie Goodyear was similarly reported as approached to reprise her role of barmaid Bet Lynch. Suranne Jones and Kevin Kennedy have also been tipped for returning by the press. The news that there are no such returns planned will disappoint fans who were hoping that Coronation Street would mark its 50th anniversary – a huge landmark – by bringing back some familiar faces.
The move is also in stark contrast to BBC One rivals EastEnders who celebrate its 25th anniversary this year. As part of the celebrations Lindsey Coulson and Devon Anderson returned to the soap full-time as Carol and Billy Jackson while Natalie Cassidy and Dean Gaffney reprised their respective roles for a week. The celebrations also included a live episode as the climax to the Who Killed Archie Mitchell? storyline. In the same interview with Digital Spy Collinson revealed that he hasn’t ruled out a live episode for Coronation Street – ala its 40th anniversary in 2000.