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TV3 battle to bring The Clinic back to life looks doomed

TV3's plans to bring hit medical drama The Clinic back to the small screen next September looks to be in jeopardy.

Despite the commercial station's claims that they would commission the series in time for their autumn schedule launch this year, a deal has yet to be tied down with producers of the series, Parallel Pictures.

The former RTE series, which enjoyed six years of impressive ratings, was axed by the national broadcaster last November, with TV3 immediately jumping in to bid for the programme.

However if successful with their bid to keep the show on the air, the commercial station has admitted it will be a "reformatted" version.

And there is no guarantee that the original cast of characters will appear, with a representative for the station unable to confirm that the cast of actors including household names Amy Huberman, Leigh Arnold and newcomers Victoria Smurfit and Alison Doody, would be in the line-up.

"We can't disclose any further information about that at this point," they told the Herald when asked about the characters who will feature.

According to the TV3 representative: "Nothing had been confirmed yet but what I can say is that we've had a rebudgeted and a reformatted version of The Clinic sent in. We're still considering it at the moment but no decision has been made yet," they added.

Parallel Pictures, the company behind the popular drama declined to comment.

Former stars of the show will remain in the dark until a decision is made next month.

Salary

"None of the actors have been firmed up yet," said one programme insider. "The production company won't make contact with them until TV3 makes a decision about whether it's going to be commissioned or not. It's unlikely that a lot of the big names will be back. If they do agree to shoot it they'll have to be willing to take a large drop in salary.

"Some of them have been working on the series since it started over six years ago and they're ready to move on to other projects and other shows.

"They feel it might be better to go out on a high now while the show is still remembered at its peak," they added.

At the time of the announcement last November, stars including Leigh Arnold, Amy Huberman and Victoria Smurfit all expressed their shock at the news that the series had been axed.

Since then Amy has bounced back in RTE show, Your Bad Self; Victoria has been working alongside Will Young on a new Miss Marple drama for ITV; while Leigh Arnold has been busy trying to launch a career as a TV presenter.

lnolan@herald.ie


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