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If you thought the Marvel Cinematic Universe was ambitious, the UK’s biggest soaps—EastEnders, Coronation Street, Emmerdale, Hollyoaks, Doctors, Casualty and Holby City—are set to crossover for the first time ever.
With Coronation Street and EastEnders at the centre, the event is set to tackle the climate crisis and raise awareness amongst its viewers. Starting November 1, each respective soap will adapt the same storyline, as its airing coincides with the COP26 climate conference with world leaders.
“I’m thrilled that our soaps and serial dramas have all come together to help highlight the issue of climate change amongst our millions of viewers,” said Kate Oates, head of continuing drama at the BBC.
Although working with the same pitch, each soap will try to tackle different aspects of the climate crisis, with cast members from each respective series making cameos and offering up different perspectives throughout.
A Hollyoaks star will make a brief appearance in EastEnders, whilst Hollyoaks will make nods to Holby City. However, on Coronation Street, two Emmerdale characters and one Doctors actor are set to appear on the beloved soap, culminating in the Coronation Street storyline getting discussed by EastEnders stars on Albert Square, bringing the proceedings full circle.
Initially envisioned by Emmerdale’s executive producer, Jane Hudson, the crossover reportedly took months of planning and meetings between each soap’s editorial teams.
“Never before have all five soaps and both continuing dramas come together and united in telling one story,” Hudson said. “And we certainly haven’t seen characters pop up in other shows before. This is a real treat for our audience whilst also allowing us to get across a very important message.”
Coronation Street, EastEnders and Emmerdale have carved their name into British culture over the last century. Corrie, in particular, has been on air since 1960 and produced well over 10,000 episodes, with Emmerdale and EastEnders just behind, clocking in 9,162 and 6,348 episodes, respectively.