Wednesday 17 January 2018

Stars pay tribute to creator of Australian soap 'Neighbours'

Jason Donovan starred alongside Kylie Minogue in Neighbours
Jason Donovan starred alongside Kylie Minogue in Neighbours

Hannah Stubbs in London

Jason Donovan has led tributes to the "legendary" Reg Grundy, the producer behind the soap opera 'Neighbours', who has died at the age of 92.

Grundy, who also presented his country's version of 'Wheel Of Fortune', died in Bermuda, where he had lived with his wife Joy since 1982, the BBC said.

Donovan, who starred alongside Kylie Minogue in the Australian soap opera as the young couple Scott and Charlene Robinson, said he was "lucky" to have known the TV mogul.

He continued: "I was so sad to hear about the passing of Reg Grundy. I'm old enough to remember a time when the true pioneers of Australian television industry built it from nothing and gave opportunities to actors, directors and crew alike.

"Reg was one of these legendary founders and 'Neighbours' was one of the many products of his life's work. I was lucky to be a small part of his world. My thoughts go out to his family at this time."

Sydney native Grundy's shows were hits around the world and also included 'The Young Doctors' and 'Prisoner: Cell Block H'.

Two of his shows - 'Family Feud' and the 'Prisoner' remake 'Wentworth' - picked up gongs at the Logie Awards in Melbourne on Sunday, an awards show celebrating the best of Australian television.

Grundy was also inducted into the Logies' Hall of Fame in 1993. He was made a Companion of the Order of Australia in 2008 for his outstanding contributions to the television industry and promotion of Australia overseas.

'Neighbours' executive producer Jason Herbison said: "Everyone at 'Neighbours' owes a huge debt to Reg Grundy.

"Quite simply, we wouldn't be here without him. He will be remembered as a pioneer of Australian television and a true gentleman."

Irish Independent

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