Neighbours executive producer resigns

By David Knox on October 25, 2011 / Filed Under News 20

Neighbours is getting a new Executive Producer as Susan Bower resigns to take up new opportunities within FremantleMedia Australia.

Bower leaves after four years in the role, to depart in December.

She will be replaced by Richard Jasek, who took over the producing role on City Homicide following the exit of Maryanne Carroll. He has also been a director for City Homicide, McLeods Daughters, The Secret Life Of Us and Blue Heelers.

In a statement Ian Hogg FremantleMedia’s CEO said, “In her time with Neighbours Susan has overseen the most significant and comprehensive change in the history of the production. Susan has revolutionised the creative and production processes of the show and, most importantly, the culture of the production unit. It is also during her tenure that Neighbours made a very successful transition from TEN to ELEVEN.

“Susan’s passion and commitment have been inspiring, and I sincerely thank her for her dedication.”

Bower’s new role will see her providing broad assistance for the FMA development team, as well as a regional interface role with WorldWide Drama (WWD) and support for Paul O’Hanlon, as FMA’s Asian divison looks to expand its drama slate.

Also joining Neighbours executive production team is Alan Hardy in the role of producer.

“Alan is a very hands-on producer with an incredibly strong script, casting and production sense,” said Hogg.

“His early successes as script producer include The Sullivans, All The Rivers Run and The Henderson Kids. He has worked on a huge volume of Australian productions since and has most recently lead the script team on Home & Away, City Homicide and Shortland Street. He will be a valuable addition to the Neighbours team.”

20 Comments »

  1. Angus T October 31, 2011 at 4:33 pm -

    Lowest point of Susan’s tenure – at the height of the criticism that Ramsay Street was the least multi-cultural spot in the country, she wrote in a stereotypical Korean exchange student character, complete with shocking accent and everything else that went with it. Ramsay Street needs to write in an avalanche storyline, kill off half the bogan characters and return some fun/sex/style to the series.

  2. James October 26, 2011 at 11:02 am -

    While I agree with much of the criticism of Susan’s era, she surely cannot be blamed for everything – presumably the team she employed must shoulder equal responsibility.

    @ Tim – The Timmins family were not a nuclear family – they were an over-the-top single mum and three kids. The Parkers didn’t fit the bill either – both kids were fostered, sending a clear signal to the audience from the get-go – incestuous relationships and biological parents would follow.

    A well cast, well rounded nuclear family is absolutely what the show needs. It’s a no-brainer.

  3. Tim October 26, 2011 at 10:23 am -

    A Change is in the air, regarding teh Nuclear family everyone seems to so desperately want, Neighbours has had little success when doing this of recent times, with the Timmins & Parkers so they are probably a little hesitant.

    I’d Like to see a blended family introduced, perhaps including a previous character as a step aprent to tie them into the street, there are plent available, Michelle or Jack Scully, Lauren Carpenter, or even recast Hannah or Debie Robinson, it also wouldnt harm them to perhaps do it muli-generational, perhaps a widowed grandparent living with them also.

  4. stevieg October 26, 2011 at 10:20 am -

    It’s great that Alan Hardy will be involved. Someone who’s experience goes way back to The Sullivans, has got to be good.

    Not sure why the anti Kate sentiments? I hate how she and her siblings were brought into it, rewriting the history of the two main family’s, but her leaving won’t change that now. There should be other Ramsay and Robinsons from the past wanting to come and meet them and Kate’s brother should return, recast him if they have to.

  5. pete October 25, 2011 at 9:43 pm -

    I hope Lou Carpenter is given better exposure on screen.. being the longest serving character in Neighbours!!

  6. Ronnie October 25, 2011 at 9:28 pm -

    Doesn’t augur well for the future vision of FMA drama but great news for Neighbours! Where will two industry veterans take this series? And does it really matter anyway?

  7. Warrigal October 25, 2011 at 7:50 pm -

    About time they did that. Probably should have happened two years ago. Maybe we will actually get a nuclear family moving back into the street rather than these fractured families that we’ve only had in the last few years.

  8. Alex October 25, 2011 at 7:28 pm -

    A decision that pleases the whole audience. I totally agree about her taking her creation of Kate Ramsay with her. An abomination of a character and storyline if there ever was one, with a nasty rewrite of the history of the legendary original two families in the show.

  9. Goonies October 25, 2011 at 6:34 pm -

    It’s a ‘yay!’ from me too. Agree with the calls to cull Kate too.

  10. Loz October 25, 2011 at 5:23 pm -

    Hurrah! Can she take Kate Ramsay with her too please?

  11. mate October 25, 2011 at 5:16 pm -

    OMG Yay! So happy for this news!! We can really now get a PG rated show!!!!!!

  12. Daniel Hopmans October 25, 2011 at 5:03 pm -

    Finally!!

  13. tomothy October 25, 2011 at 4:06 pm -

    Yay! About time. She did not make a good EP for Neighbours. The past few years have been the most cringeworthy…

  14. Steev October 25, 2011 at 3:59 pm -

    Brilliant news. Under her reign the show may have looked better, but it’s plummetted in quality and has seen its audience in Australia fall by up to 75%. It’s great that it might have a new lease on life. Here’s hoping the new guy can salvage it. It’s a big job!!

  15. Adam October 25, 2011 at 3:54 pm -

    Good, she really ruined the show, and yes please please please take Kate with you.

  16. Dan October 25, 2011 at 3:46 pm -

    All I can say is – Hooray!!!!!!!!! :-) Sorry about all the exclamation marks, but I’ve been waiting for this day to come for a long time. Susan Bower has done a few good things for the show, but I don’t think her overall vision of the show represents what Neighbours is meant to be about. There was far too much focus on the teen characters for many years, and more recently too much focus on using visual effects like split-screen and musical montages to make the show “cool”. Hopefully the new blood will go back to focusing on what’s most important – the storylines and characters. With Alan Hardy’s strong writing background I’m hoping that will be the case.

  17. Rowie October 25, 2011 at 3:42 pm -

    There is a God!

  18. Bary October 25, 2011 at 3:29 pm -

    Can she take her cypher character Kate Ramsey with her?

  19. Benjamin October 25, 2011 at 3:22 pm -

    It might actually get watchable again.

  20. Al October 25, 2011 at 3:09 pm -

    Good riddance!

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