Australian television and film actress, comedian and writer Magda Szubanski will be joining the cast of Neighbours in a guest role as the celebrant for the first legal same sex wedding on Australian television.
Playing Jemima Davies-Smythe, Magda will marry David Tanaka and Aaron Brennan in an emotionally charged episode which will air in September
Jemima arrives in Erinsborough just in time to play an unexpected role in Aaron and David’s nuptials, and surprisingly, her character turns out to be connected to Ramsay Street royalty.
Neighbours Executive Producer, Jason Herbison said: “I’m a huge fan of Magda’s and I’ve always dreamed of having her in the show. Aside from being a brilliant actress, she inspired many of us during the same sex marriage debate.
“At the same time our story team were planning our first gay wedding, the country was trapped in a divisive plebiscite. Would our story about love and equality even be legal by the time it aired? Thankfully love won. Magda was a beacon of heart and hope during this time so we had to find a way to make her part of it.”
Network Ten Executive Producer of Neighbours, Sara Richardson said: “We are thrilled to have Magda on board and to be celebrating love with a Ramsay Street wedding.”
Neighbours actor Matt Wilson, who plays Aaron Brennan, said: “We are both ecstatic to be part of this huge moment in Australian television. It stands alone as the highlight of my career thus far and to top it all off, we get to work with Magda Szubanski – please excuse my fangirl-ing.
“This storyline means a lot to me, to my friends and to all the fans we hear from on a daily basis who love Aaron and David. Thank you to the writers for giving us this opportunity.”
Neighbours actor Takaya Honda, who plays David Tanaka, said: “It is an absolute privilege to be a part of what is and will be a historic moment in Australian television. Hearing Magda would be playing our celebrant was fantastic news, what a perfect icon of Australian television and the LGBTQIA+ movement to share this moment with. Representation matters for us all, and I am so happy to be doing what I do right now.”
Neighbours airs 6:30 pm weeknights on Eleven