First broadcast on October 16, 1972, the ITV1 show has transmitted 6,369 episodes to date and established itself as one of the UK's most popular programmes.
> 'Emmerdale's 40th anniversary - full coverage
While we usually hear of rivalry between the soaps, cast members from Coronation Street, Doctors, EastEnders, Hollyoaks and Neighbours have recently sent Digital Spy some exclusive messages of support for the Emmerdale team as the serial turns 40 and prepares for one of its biggest challenges.
What do other soap stars have to say about Emmerdale's big birthday and live episode? Read on to find out!
Stefan Dennis (Paul Robinson, Neighbours): "We are mere young bucks in our 28th year compared to you guys! Congratulations on your 40th anniversary and may you all be doing it for another 40."
Tameka Empson (Kim Fox, EastEnders): "Emmerdale actors, take a deep breath in, hold for four seconds, breathe out and just let it flow! If you mess up in the live episode, we won't know - just let it flow. Be strong if you get it wrong, but before you're wrong, just try and get it right! But if you can't, be wrong and strong - that's what I'd say! Good luck!"
Jorgie Porter (Theresa McQueen, Hollyoaks): "I absolutely love Emmerdale, especially as it got quite sexy! There was a point where everybody got a bit fit, and I love what they do with the farm and countryside setting. All of these crazy things happen to hot people in the country!"
Jessica Fox (Nancy Osborne, Hollyoaks): "Congratulations to the cast and crew for the show's 40th birthday. My advice for the live episode is try not to swear! Everything else will probably be fine!"
Matthew Chambers (Daniel Granger, Doctors): "What I'd say to the Emmerdale cast is keep on trucking! I think it's amazing that the programme has been going for 40 years - that's quite something. They've got to be doing something right, haven't they?"
Charlie Clemmow (Imogen Hollins, Doctors): "I'm definitely going to see the live episode - I can't wait. I think it's terrifying and the cast are all very, very brave! I know a couple of people in Emmerdale and I don't envy them in the slightest when it comes to the live episode, but I think it's such a brilliant decision. I think it will really show how wonderful they are at their jobs."
Alan Halsall (Tyrone Dobbs, Coronation Street): "I've done two live episodes now and I absolutely loved them, so my advice to the Emmerdale cast would be to try and enjoy it! It might be ten years before they get to do it again. For me it was a challenge and everyone loves a challenge - that's what we're in the job for. They've got a great crew behind them at Emmerdale and the director Tony Prescott is absolutely amazing - he's done both of our Coronation Street live episodes. They're in safe hands so I hope they enjoy it!"
Craig Charles (Lloyd Mullaney, Coronation Street): "Everyone's going to be watching the live episode - it's a major TV event. I love watching the live episodes, but I've got to be honest, you do watch just to see people mess up! I think the most disappointing thing about the Corrie live episode was that nobody made a mistake - it was so spot on. Good luck to the cast and crew."
Nick Pickard (Tony Hutchinson, Hollyoaks): "Happy anniversary to everyone over at Emmerdale and best of luck for your live episode (don't forget your lines!)"
Danielle Henry (Mandy Marquez, Doctors, also played Latisha Daggert on Emmerdale): "Happy 40th birthday Emmerdale! I have many fond memories of my days on the farm. Here's to another 40!"
Nicole Barber-Lane (Myra McQueen, Hollyoaks. In real life married to Emmerdale's Liam Fox, who plays Dan): "Happy 40th, good luck with the live ep - we'll be watching. Do me proud Liam and I've got my eye on Chas - he's already got one wife!"
Emmerdale Live airs on Wednesday (October 17) from 7pm on ITV1.