South Africa's most watched soapie 7de Laan, which launched on SABC2 in April 2000, will celebrate its 777th episode tonight at 6.30pm.

There have been several milestones since the show's inception, such as the highest audience figures for a New Year's Eve show two years in a row. And viewers can prepare themselves for another great show this New Year's Eve.

In the past year the show said goodbye to Christelle (Anna-Mart van der Merwe), Wilmien (Nina Swart) and Simphiwe (Fiks Mahola).

Audiences said hello to Paula (Diaan Lawrenson), Carlos (Pedro Camara), Marko (Francois Lensley), Liesl (Anel Alexander) and Toni (Jacques Broodryk) who are proving as popular as their predecessors.

Colin Howard, line producer for Danie Odendaal Productions which produces the show, says: "In the beginning we were faced with lots of scepticism. Many thought the show would not make its second season, let alone 777 episodes. Now it's a national phenomenon. Pop songs have been written about it and many of the expressions used by the characters have been assimilated into everyday language.

"I'd like to pay tribute to the cast and crew of the show, without whom we would not have achieved the amazing success we have had with 7de Laan."

Head writer, Linda Scheepers says it feels like yesterday when she sat around a table planning the first episode. "Today 7de Laan is one of the most famous streets in the country."

Don't miss the 777th episode at 6.30pm tonight on SABC2.