Channel 5 Eyes Eldorado Revival?

Channel 5 executive Ben Frow has cited Eldorado as one of the shows he’d like to revive.

In an interview with ThisIsVERiFiED, Frow – Director of Programmes for the broadcaster – noted that the soap would “play nicely with our two current ‘sunny’ soaps, Neighbours and Home & Away”.

Eldorado was a short-lived BBC One venture created by Julia Smith and Tony Holland in 1992. It ran for just a year before being axed by incoming BBC One controller Alan Yentob following bad press. The soap was plagued with production problems from the start which made for a very bumpy on-screen debut, however an upturn in quality saw ratings increase (editions routinely attracted over 8 million viewers) before the show’s demise.

The Spanish based soap opera was set in the fictional town of Los Barcos and starred, among others, Jesse Birdsall, Patricia Brake, Polly Perkins and Derek Martin. It followed the exploits of Ex-Pats living on the Costa Del Sol. The BBC hoped its exotic location and sunny nature would make it a hit but they hadn’t counted on an array of problems blighting it.

Despite only having aired for a year the s how remains popular thanks to repeats on UK Gold in the late 1990s and early 2000s. Last year the possibility of the BBC reviving Eldorado was widely touted by the press. Earlier this year a poll by ATV Today found Eldorado was the soap most readers wanted to see revived.

Channel 5 currently airs two soaps; Australian imports Neighbours and Home & Away. It has not had a home-grown soap since it cancelled Family Affairs in 2005. When the network launched in 1997 bosses originally hoped to revive the Midlands based series Crossroads but owners Central Television declined permission, although they would later see a short lived revival for it later on its original ITV home running from 2001 to 2003. Without Crossroads Channel 5 opted for a new midland-set soap Family Affairs which later relocated to London in the storyline. It had always been produced in the capital.

For the broadcaster’s early years on-air Family Affairs sat alongside American imports such as The Bold and the Beautiful and Sunset Beach. The Reg Watson soap opera Prisoner Cell Block H has also been repeated on Channel 5 in a late-night slot becoming a cult favourite. Although Prisoner had aired on various ITV regions it was the first time it had ever been networked across the country. Channel 5 aired all the episodes of Prisoner with its repeat-run concluding in 2001.

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9 Replies to “Channel 5 Eyes Eldorado Revival?”

  1. It would be great to see Eldorado return I always thought that the BBC axed it too early, it should have given it another 12 months to run before considering cancelling it, But if they want it to be a success they would have to recruit a large number of the original cast otherwise it won’t work after all 2001 when Carlton TV tried reviving Crossroads only 3 members of the original cast returned to the soap and that’s why it never was a ratings winner, But if Chanel 5 doesn’t bring back Eldorado they should consider buying the New Zealand TV Soap “Shortland Street” I started to get into the programme when Living TV Decided to axe it after only 2 months on air, and I think that soap was also axed too early from British TV.

  2. Completely disagree with Mikey in Devon.

    If they do revive it, they should fundamentally rework the format so that it more closely captures the siege mentality of ex pat Brits living on the Costa Del Sol as originally envisaged by the show’s creators.

    Also, all dialogue should be spoken in English (no subtitles please!) and they will need to drastically improve on the original production values. I would suggest doing the interiors in studio.

    Wouldn’t particularly want to see any of the original characters brought back as they were part of a format that did not work.

    1. the first few months of the show were very poor but they got Colleen hollingworth in as the shows boss and she turned the show around dramatically and by the end it was doing well and was actually a good show, but the bbc cancelled it after only a year. if the show was bought back and well produced and well scripted it could be a huge success.

  3. I would love to see Eldorado back. I agree that it should be about british expats but they should bring back Patricia Brake, Julie Fernandez, Polly Perkins, Derek Martin and the legendary Jesse Birdsall along with a new cast. If Channel 5 does go ahead with bringing the show back they should have it on a teatime slot. It would be paticularly great to see the spanish sun in the cold winter months and hope this time it will be bigger than EastEnders and give it a run for its money.

  4. Eldorado Mondays and Wednesdays at 9pm would in fact be the original idea before it became watered down by the BBC to a 7pm slot.
    Plenty of original cast actors like Patricia, Polly and Faith Kent could be brought back along with several new ones. Yes it could easily be a huge success for channel 5. I’d watch it.
    The Eldorado concept was way ahead of it’s time and if it was relaunched in a proper, non-rushed way it would be fabulous.
    By the way, anyone think Phillipe Leduc the tennis player with good legs was a dish?

  5. ELDORADO what? this soap was the biggest piece of SHIT ever created so CHANNEL 5 revives crap like big brother, shoWs Neighbours axed by BBC, shows Home and Away axed by ITV, shows DALLAS crappy remake of defunct 80s soap and WENTWORTH rework of PRISONER CELL BLOCK H. Bury ELDORADO it was a terrible trashy boring crap soap as CROSSROADS ran for 25 YEARS it was a legend while ELDORADO is as entertaining as DAVID CAMERON WITH THE TROTTS so forget it and put on CROSSROADS instead!

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