The Australian melodrama 'Return To Eden' ended its final episode with a cliffhanger. When the episode went on air in Atlanta in the U.S. it was reported, "Thousands of irate fans rang the local station to express their anger at how the series ended. And it's a cliffhanger which will almost certainly never be resolved." In the end, the producers decided to film an extra 5 minutes of scenes to provide viewers closure. 

On reflection, Hal McElroy remarked, "If there is more, then it's a great ending. We wanted to do another series, the cast was available and the sets were waiting." Up against 'Sons and Daughters', 'Knight Rider' and from May 1986 'The Flying Doctors', 'Return To Eden' fared poorly in the ratings on Monday nights. American imports 'Dynasty' and 'The Colbys' were shown after 'Return To Eden' at the time. 

On Australia's Day (January 26) in 1987, Rebecca Gilling was reportedly mobbed by thousands of Indonesian fans calling her "Stephanie, Stephanie," as Rebecca arrived at Jakarta airport to promote an Australian initiative forging closer economic ties and military links with Indonesia. The Foreign Affairs Minister at the time, Bill Hayden, wrote to Rebecca in praise of her Australian diplomatic triumph. 

Shayne Collier of 'Fairfax Media' noted at the time, "The overwhelming reception experienced by Rebecca Gilling says a lot about the power of the television serial. Not only is Rebecca (or Stephanie) revered in Indonesia, where 'Return To Eden' has an estimated 100 million viewers, but she is also a star in Poland, where the series attracts 22 million viewers out of a population of 37 million. The Spanish and the Swedish are just as caught up in the trials and tribulations of the luscious brunette. 

"Australian soap operas dominate daytime television in the U.K. 'A Country Practice', 'The Young Doctors', 'The Sullivans', 'Prisoner' and 'Neighbours' are popular daytime shows. According to a Scottish soapie addict now resident in Australia, 'Neighbours' has acquired a cult following in Glasgow. Her contacts told her that a growing number of Glaswegians were addicted to the antics of the fictional residents of the fictional Ramsay Street. 

"The Scottish might be hooked on 'Neighbours', but 'Sons and Daughters' has the Belgians on the edge of their seats. 'Sons and Daughters' is televised at 7:00pm on weekdays in Belgium. A Belgian singing duo recorded a cover version of the 'Sons and Daughters' theme song - one side was recorded in English, the other in Flemish. At last count, 'Sons and Daughters' had been sold in packages of 100 and/or 200 episodes to the Bahamas, Barbados, Egypt, Ireland, Luxembourg, Monte Carlo, the Netherlands, Spain and Trinidad. New Zealand and the U.K. bought the series lock, stock and barrel - that's about 900 episodes-worth of Australian soap. 

"Another overseas success is 'The Sullivans'. It has been screened in numerous countries including Argentina, Bahrain, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, El Salvador, Finland, Greece, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Nigeria, Panama, the U.K., the U.S., Zambia and Zimbabwe. Although the production of 'The Sullivans' was discontinued several years ago (in 1983), channel Nine still receives fan mail for its cast members. 

"The overseas fan mail for 'A Country Practice' arrives in droves at the offices of its production company, JNP Films. It is most popular in Ireland, where it is screened in half-hour episodes 5 days a week. 'A Country Practice' is also screened in New Zealand, Zambia, Zimbabwe, on America's PBL television and across Europe on Sky channel. It was recently sold to Papua New Guinea and Indonesia."

In 1986, the Hal and Jim McElroy production of 'The Last Frontier' went on air, watched by some 75 million Americans. Of casting Linda Evans, Hal theorized, "You don't sell a car to the Americans with a right-hand drive. We are now a very expensive export business. With the success of 'The Last Frontier' and 'Crocodile Dundee' the Americans can never again say that Americans don't like Australian movies. Producing is a very lonely business. You're out there on the end of the diving board with people throwing things at you." 

Linda Evans accompanied by stepdaughter Sean Derek arrived in Australia in June 1986 to work in the Australian outback for 6 weeks with a cast and crew of 100 people filming the $12 million mini-series, 'The Last Frontier'. The weather was reportedly 30 degree celcius hot and filming was 43 miles from Alice Springs. "The idea of working in Central Australia was very exciting and I like the challenge of playing Kate," Linda made known.

"I think back to 'The Big Valley' and the years I did the Westerns. There is something special about that life – being outdoors with nature and animals. That appeals to me … I thought I was coming to the end of the world from the descriptions I was given, but it’s beautiful. They told me it would be hot and unbearable but I get up in the morning, smell the fresh air and as far as the eye can see there are no buildings. It’s wonderful. I’m not even homesick and usually I’m distraught when I’m away from home. I’ve had 6 years (1981-86) of wearing dresses, being fussy and done up (on 'Dynasty') and this was a chance to get down, get dirty and get into life."

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