The channel has ordered 24 new hour-length episodes of the popular observational documentary series from Twenty Twenty Productions, up from its previous 12 x 60 commission. The order will take the award-winning series into its fourth year on Channel 4.
Using similar fixed-rig filming to 24 Hours in A&E and Educating…, the programme witnesses first meetings at a unique restaurant, in which every diner is on a real blind date. The new episodes will begin broadcasting in Q4 2015.
Tim Carter, CEO at Twenty Twenty Productions said: “We made a number of subtle but significant improvements to the format last series and they paid off with 50% more viewers coming to the First Dates restaurant. With a bigger fourth season order, we have the chance to continue to build this show”.
Madonna Benjamin, Documentary Commissioning Editor at Channel 4’s adds: We’ve been delighted with viewers’ growing appreciation of First Dates, with the latest series joining the likes of Gogglebox as one of the channel’s most talked and tweeted about shows. The series stands out as an example of Channel 4’s determination to show the modern lives of Britons from all backgrounds. Just like our daters, we’re excited to see who will walk into the First Dates restaurant next.”
Casting has resumed for singletons hoping to meet their match on the programme. Single people from across the UK hoping to find romance can apply for the next series via www.channel4.com/firstdates.
The second series of First Dates won Best Dating TV Show at the UK Dating Awards 2014.