The Wiggles (lost unaired ABC pilot featuring children's group; 1995)

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Wiggles 1995 Firefighters.jpg

The Wiggles with some firefighters from the pilot.

Status: Lost

The Wiggles is a popular children's group that formed in 1991 in Sydney, Australia. They are known for their hits Hot Potato, Get Ready To Wiggle, Fruit Salad and many others. Between 1991 and 1998, they mostly released albums and videos and toured heavily and would gain popularity in Australia. In July 1998, their first television series would air on the Seven Network and would be very popular in Australia and the group would gain international popularity with the debut of the second television series and the remakes and re-recordings of their most popular releases Wiggle Time and Yummy Yummy. Before the well-known series that premiered in 1998, a pilot was filmed in late 1995 for the ABC (who released a lot of their albums and videos in Australia).

The pilot is reportedly very different from the series we know today. Only two songs Hot Potato and Rock-A-Bye Your Bear are known to have been performed in the pilot, with the rest of the five minute long pilot consisting of silent comedy skits, one of which included the group riding a four-seated bicycle around Sydney. The group wore short sleeved shirts, shorts, baseball caps and colored sneakers instead of their iconic skivvies, black pants, black shoes and belts dawning the group's logo. These changes came from ABC as they thought the group couldn't communicate with children. The group didn't like how the pilot turned out and more creative differences with ABC lead the pilot to be rejected.[1] The group would dawn the look they had for the pilot for their next video Wake Up Jeff!, but the video ended up being re-recorded with the group's signature colored shirts, black pants and black shoes (the look they had in their previous video, Big Red Car). The group would go on to fund their own television series and the show would be picked up by the Seven Network in 1998.[2]

Information on this pilot would be revealed in a October 2002 article by The Sydney Morning Herald about their third television series that would be moving from the Seven Network to ABC. Founding member of the group Greg Page mentioned the pilot in a since deleted Q&A, he also mentioned that he is in possession of the pilot.[3] It's unknown if he will release it or not or if it will be released as part of The Wiggles' Unreleased NEVER-BEFORE-SEEN Specials series on YouTube. No footage from the pilot has surfaced and only three photos from the pilot have been released.

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