Popular Channel 4 show First Dates is set to be shot at an all-new restaurant when filming starts on series 16 later this year.
The firm behind the programme, production company Twenty Twenty, has confirmed that First Dates will be filmed at a restaurant in Manchester going forward.
Additionally, the First Dates casting team will be based at Channel 4’s new regional hub in Bristol, along with the programme’s story editing and post-production teams.
Channel 4 and Twenty Twenty also plan to co-fund a new scheme to train up 24 production staff to work on First Dates in Bristol, in roles covering research, casting, directing and editing.
Leanne Klein, managing director at Twenty Twenty, said: “We are very excited to be taking our flagship dating series to the regions. We have already begun tapping into the fantastic local talent pool in Bristol from where we are putting together our new team of casters and date editors.
“And with the move of the First Dates restaurant we will have the chance to expose our daters to a brand new experience with a few exciting new tweaks to the much-loved format.”
A brand new experience with a few exciting new tweaks.
Channel 4’s head of factual, Danny Horan, commented: “This move is so great for Channel 4 Bristol and Manchester. We are thrilled to be investing in new diverse talent with Twenty Twenty. This is just one part of Factual’s commitment to expand out of London at scale.”
It comes amid news that Channel 4 has recommissioned the BAFTA-winning show for 30 new episodes.
First Dates launched in 2013 and previously filmed at Paternoster Chop House, located at Paternoster Square in London, near St Paul’s Cathedral.
The format sees Maître d’ Fred Sirieix and his team serve singletons as they meet up on blind dates with the hope of finding their soulmates.
Its success over the years has led to the launch of a spin-off show, First Dates Hotel, which takes hopefuls to to luxurious hotels in Italy and France.
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