First Dates

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First Dates
First Dates.jpg
GenreReality
StarringFred Sirieix
Narrated byRalf Little (series 1 and 2)
Brian Protheroe (series 3-present)
Music byMiguel d'Oliveira
Country of originUnited Kingdom
Original languageEnglish
No. of series17 (regular)
1 (celebrity)
5 (hotel)
1 (teen)
22 (overall)
No. of episodes139 (regular)
11 (specials)
7 (celebrity)
6 (best bits)
30 (hotel)
6 (teen)
1 (celebrity hotel)
200 (overall)
Production
Production locations
Running time60 minutes (inc. adverts)
Production companyTwenty Twenty
DistributorWarner Bros. Television Productions UK
Release
Original networkChannel 4
E4
All 4
Picture format16:9
Original release20 June 2013 (2013-06-20) –
present
External links
Website

First Dates is a British reality television programme that has aired on Channel 4 since 20 June 2013. The programme has been narrated by Brian Protheroe since 2015.

Production[edit]

The programme was filmed at the Paternoster Chop House restaurant in Central London from 2013 to 2020, showing many people on dates, all of whom have not met each other before. At the end of the date, the couples are interviewed together and asked whether they would like to see each other again. The restaurant is closed to the public while filming takes place. The restaurant is fitted with 42 "Pan–tilt–zoom" cameras and there are at least 70 crew members on set during filming, which lasts 15 hours a day. Each diner is given £25 towards the cost of their meal.[citation needed]

The spin-off show, First Dates Hotel, follows the same TV format with contestants meeting for the first time in a hotel restaurant, but if the date goes well, the couples are offered the opportunity to check-in for the night. The first series was filmed at Le Vieux Castillon in Castillon-du-Gard[2] offering idyllic settings with a variety of activities for the successful second daters, and added sommelier Xavier Chapelou to Fred Sirieix's team. The second series was filmed at Aquapetra Resort & Spa in Campania near Naples, Italy.[2][3]

In 2020 it was announced that filming would move to Manchester for Series 16.[4] The specific location was later confirmed in January 2021, when it was announced that the sixteenth series would begin airing on 19 January 2021, in the new location of The Refinery, located in Spinningfields, in Manchester.[5]

Another spin-off show, Teen First Dates began airing on E4 on 22 February 2021 and consisted of 6 episodes. Each episode was also available to stream on All 4. Following the same format as the parent show and also taking place at Spinningfields, it follows 16-19 year olds as they begin dating for the first time.

Restaurant staff[edit]

Since series 3 (2015) the restaurant's maître d'hôtel Fred Sirieix offers pieces to camera on the nature of love, romance and dating.[6] When not filming for First Dates, he was the general manager at restaurant Galvin at Windows, although he left in December 2019 after 14 years.[7]

The waiting staff and barman do not work in the restaurant full-time, but are recruited for when the series is being filmed. CiCi Coleman is an actor who trained at New York Film Academy, whilst barman Merlin Griffiths is a pub landlord[8] who has previously worked as a global brand ambassador for Bombay Sapphire gin.[9] Griffiths also works alongside co-bartender Fiona Beck who alongside working in the First Dates restaurant, has a career in advertising, and has also worked as a model in the past and has featured in fashion shows in Paris, Barcelona and New York.[10] The waiting staff are joined by Grant Urquhart, David Marc and Daniella Kalita.[11]

Transmissions[edit]

Regular[edit]

Series Start date End date Episodes
1 20 June 2013 25 July 2013 6[12]
2 12 February 2014 2 April 2014 8[13]
3 6 March 2015 29 April 2015 9[14]
4 10 September 2015 17 December 2015 15
5 15 January 2016 4 February 2016 4
6 15 March 2016 19 April 2016 6[15]
7 9 August 2016 12 December 2016 17[16]
8 18 April 2017 11 July 2017 13[17]
9 18 September 2017 18 December 2017 13[18]
10 4 April 2018 6 June 2018 10[19]
11 29 October 2018 17 December 2018 8
12 16 April 2019 18 June 2019 10
13 12 November 2019 13 November 2019 6
14 20 February 2020 19 March 2020 5
15 1 October 2020 22 October 2020 4
16 19 January 2021 16 February 2021 5
17 6 September 2021 TBA TBA

Specials[edit]

Date Entitle
12 February 2016 Valentine's Special
19 December 2016 Christmas Special
13 February 2017 Valentine's Special
25 December 2017 Christmas Special
16 February 2018 Valentine's Special
25 December 2018 Christmas Special
14 February 2019 Valentine's Special
25 December 2019 Christmas Special
13 February 2020 Valentine's Special
23 December 2020 Christmas Special
9 February 2021 Valentine's Special

Celebrity First Dates[edit]

Series Start date End date Episodes
SU2C 12 October 2015 1
1 8 July 2016 29 July 2016 4
SU2C 2 November 2017 1
SU2C 25 October 2018 1

Teen First Dates[edit]

Series Start date End date Episodes
1 22 February 2021 5 April 2021 6

First Dates Hotel[edit]

Series Start date End date Episodes
1 2 January 2017 6 February 2017 6
2 8 January 2018 12 February 2018 6
3 28 August 2018 9 October 2018 6
4 5 September 2019 3 October 2019 5
5 30 April 2020 11 June 2020 7
6 24 March 2021 21 April 2021 6

Celebrity First Dates Hotel[edit]

Series Start date End date Episodes
SU2C 10 October 2019 1

Best Bits[edit]

Date Entitle
28 October 2020 Together Forever
4 November 2020 Opposites Attract
11 November 2020 Second Chances
18 November 2020 Plot Twists
25 November 2020 Celebrity Best Bits
2 December 2020 Fireworks

International versions[edit]

The format created in the United Kingdom has been adapted in Belgium, Finland, Netherlands, Canada, Germany, Australia, Spain, Ireland, New Zealand, Italy, Poland, USA, France, Brazil, Israel, Sweden, Norway, Argentina, Portugal, Austria and South Africa.

Country Title TV channel Year aired
 Netherlands First Dates NPO 3 (BNNVARA) 18 March 2015 – present
 Canada First Dates Slice 1 September 2015 – 18 April 2017
 Germany First Dates sixx 21 October 2015 – 9 December 2015
First Dates – Ein Tisch für Zwei VOX 5 March 2018 – present
First Dates Hotel 20 April 2020 – present
 Australia First Dates Seven Network 3 February 2016 – present
 Spain First Dates Cuatro 17 April 2016 – present
First Dates: Crucero 13 January 2020 – present
 Ireland First Dates RTÉ2 21 April 2016 – present
 New Zealand First Dates Television New Zealand October 2016 – present
 Sweden Första dejten SVT 13 March 2017 – present
 Italy Primo appuntamento Real Time 14 March 2017 – present
Primo appuntamento Crociera 18 May 2021 – present
 Poland Pierwsza Randka TVP2 16 March 2017 – 16 November 2017
 USA First Dates NBC 7 April 2017 – 26 May 2017
 France Premier rendez-vous et plus si affinités TF1 12 June 2017 – present
 Brazil À Primeira Vista Rede Bandeirantes 22 June 2017 – 21 September 2017
 Israel דייט ראשון
Date Rishon
Channel 2 18 December 2017 – present
 Norway Første date TVNorge 4 January 2018 – present[20]
 Argentina Primera Cita Telefe 14 February 2018 – 30 March 2018
 Portugal First Dates – O Primeiro Encontro TVI 2 January 2019 – present
 Austria First Dates Austria ATV 17 April 2019 – present
 Finland First Dates Suomi MTV3 19 September 2019 – present
 South Africa First Dates South Africa BBC Lifestyle 16 October 2019 – present
 Belgium First Dates Eén 5 March 2020 – present
 Czech Republic První večeře Prima 30 August 2021 – present

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Nisbet, Megan (19 January 2021). "First Dates restaurant Manchester: Where is the new series filmed?". WalesOnline. Retrieved 27 January 2021.
  2. ^ "Media".
  3. ^ "You can actually stay at the First Dates hotel!". 16 January 2018.
  4. ^ Heward, Emily (29 January 2020). "First Dates is filming its next series at a Manchester restaurant". men. Retrieved 21 February 2020.
  5. ^ "First Dates: Channel 4 series will feel 'more like real life'". BBC News. 19 January 2021. Retrieved 19 January 2021.
  6. ^ Nicholson, Rebecca (16 September 2015). "From Blind Date to First Dates: how TV matchmaking grew up". The Guardian.
  7. ^ bighospitality.co.uk. "Fred Sirieix leaves Galvin at Windows". bighospitality.co.uk. Retrieved 21 February 2020.
  8. ^ "Merlin Griffiths, The Priory Tavern". Cocktail Saturdays. Retrieved 17 February 2017.
  9. ^ "32 Things You Probably Didn't Know About "First Dates"". BuzzFeed.
  10. ^ "Who is Fiona from First Dates 2021? Meet the new bartender on series 16!". Reality Titbit. 19 January 2021. Retrieved 14 March 2021.
  11. ^ "Meet the new First Dates staff for series 16". Radio Times. Retrieved 14 March 2021.
  12. ^ "First Dates". Twenty Twenty. Retrieved 14 September 2021.
  13. ^ "First Dates Series 2". Twenty Twenty. Retrieved 14 September 2021.
  14. ^ "First Dates Series 3". Twenty Twenty. Retrieved 14 September 2021.
  15. ^ "First Dates Series 6". Twenty Twenty. Retrieved 14 September 2021.
  16. ^ "First Dates Series 7". Twenty Twenty. Retrieved 14 September 2021.
  17. ^ "First Dates Series 8". Twenty Twenty. Retrieved 14 September 2021.
  18. ^ "First Dates Series 9". Twenty Twenty. Retrieved 14 September 2021.
  19. ^ "First Dates Series 10". Twenty Twenty. Retrieved 14 September 2021.
  20. ^ "Dplay". www.dplay.no. Retrieved 26 September 2020.

External links[edit]