Evening News

Hometown boy Michael Park returns — now he's ruling Egypt
Back when Michael Park was a lion thrashing across Rochester’s Memorial Art Gallery stage in 1991, he had no idea where community theater would take him. In the years since, he has toured with "Phantom of the Opera," starred in Broadway productions and become a brooding detective on AS THE WORLD TURNS.

He’ll return to the Rochester area this weekend as Pharaoh in the Rochester Children’s Theatre’s production of "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat," for its Aug. 2-3 shows at Nazareth College. (Another actor, David Autovino of Auburn, will assume of the role of the Egyptian ruler for the Aug. 9-10 shows.)

"Never in my lifetime did I ever expect my life would take the turns it (has) taken," Park said. "Fate has been very good to me."

Shake-up on set of DAY
Soap stars had to deal with some real-life drama earlier this week. On Tuesday, when an earthquake that measured over five on the Richter scale stopped people in their tracks from Los Angeles to San Diego, DAYS OF OUR LIVES stopped tape, allowing the cast and crew to evacuate the building.

Forever young: Former DALLAS and B&B star Linda Gray looks sensational at 67
Nobody can predict how people will age. While some beauties wither as they get older, others seem impervious to the ravages of time.

Linda Gray certainly falls into the latter camp.

Indulging in a spot of retail therapy while out and about in Los Angeles, the actress looked years younger than someone who turns 68 in September.

Not much to say yet about the fall season -- or see
In previous years, a TV critic could expect to preview a majority of fall series by mid-June. DVDs would arrive from each network with the caveat that "numerous changes may be made" before the airdate. These works-in-progress offered useful clues to what awaited the audience come fall. They gave critics a chance to start spreading the word about any new series that stood out. So far this summer, critics have gotten a peek at just a half-dozen upcoming shows.

HOLLYOAKS to star in online soap
Not content with monopolising the tea-time TV slot, Channel 4 teen soap HOLLYOAKS now has the internet in its sights and plans to launch an online soap opera.

According to the BBC, Hollyoaks characters will be seen talking about and watching clips of RUNNERS – an online soap opera based around a group of students working as runners in fashion and the entertainment industry, during episodes.

Fans of the Chester-based soap will also be able to keep up-to-date with RUNNERS themselves by logging on to the HOLLYOAKS website to view regular three-minute episodes. It's also thought RUNNERS will be available through Bebo, MSN Messenger TV, Facebook and iTunes.

The online soap opera will start a 10-week run early next year while a weekly 15-minute summary episode is also expected to air on TV, most likely following the HOLLYOAKS' Sunday omnibus.

SCRIPTS & SCRUPLES: Episode #836
Sam tries to comfort Stacey.


INTERVIEW: MVP's Dillon Casey
"I always looked at Trevor as a guy who is between Gabe and Damon. I would look at Peter Miller’s character of Damon and think that is the most fun character to play on the show. The bad guy is always the most fun. When Trevor goes to the dark side I get to be more like Damon Trebuchet. So, the scenes were a lot of fun in episode 7. My favorite scene coming up has Damon and Trevor partying. At this point, Trevor has decided to become Damon. He goes to Lagoon, which is the “MVP” version of the Playboy Mansion, and it’s no holds barred for Trevor. He is just a kid in a candy store. He is a young Damon Trebuchet, by this point."

SPOILER: ATWT's Dusty is alive
When Grayson McCouch returns to AS THE WORLD TURNS as Dusty Donovan on September 24th, he won't be playing a ghost. Dusty is alive, despite "dying" on camera back in January.

Daytime Nielsen Ratings: Week of July 21-25, 2008

From the ABC Daytime Ratings Release:
* ABC extended its streak as Daytime's No. 1 network in key Women 18-49 to 11 straight weeks (1.3 rating/858,000), topping No. 2 CBS by 8% (vs. 1.2 rating/793,000) and No. 3 NBC by 18% (vs. 1.0 rating/679,000).

* For the second consecutive week and the fifth time in six weeks, ABC stood as Daytime's No. 1 network in Women 18-34 (0.9 rating/309,000), beating No. 2 NBC by 13% (vs. 0.8 rating/254,000) and No. 3 CBS by 29% (0.7/226,000) for the week.

* In Women 18-34, with "General Hospital" (No. 2, 1.0 rating/348,000), "The View" (No. 3T, 0.9 rating/317,000), "One life to Live" (No. 3T, 0.9 rating/297,000) and "All My Children" (No. 5T - 0.8 rating/273,000), ABC positioned all programs among Daytime's Top 5 for the second week running, with this week the 16th in a row that ABC was home to at least 3 of the Top 5.

* In Women 18-49, for the third consecutive week ABC placed all programs among Daytime's Top 5 programs, marking the 16th week running the net has ranked at least 3 shows among the upper echelon: "General Hospital" (No. 2, 1.4 rating/923,000), "The View" (No. 3, 1.3 rating/884,000), "One Life to Live" (No. 4T - 1.2 rating/821,000) and "All My Children" (No. 4T, 1.2 rating/804,000).

* Hitting a four-month high in Women 18-34 (since week of 2/25/08) and a six-week high in Women 18-49 (since week of 6/2/08), "All My Children" increased its margin of victory over time period rival NBC's "Days of Our Lives" (1:00 - 2:00 p.m.) week to week, defeating the time period rival by 7% (273,000 vs. 254,000) and by 18% (804,000 vs. 679,000), respectively. In Total Viewers, "All My Children" outdrew "Days of Our Lives" by 6% in Total Viewers (2.67 million vs. 2.52 million).

* Ranking among Daytime's Top 5 programs for the 15th straight week in target young women, "One Life to Live" topped CBS' "As the World Turns" (2:00 - 3:00 p.m.) head to head by 50% in Women 18-34 (297,000 vs. 198,000), by 20% in Women 18-49 (821,000 vs. 687,000) and by 2% in Total Viewers (2.76 million vs. 2.71 million).

* "General Hospital" overshadowed CBS' "Guiding Light," surpassing the time period competitor (3:00 - 4:00 p.m.) by an impressive 87% in Women 18-34 (348,000 vs. 186,000), by 39% in Women 18-49 (923,000 vs. 662,000) and by 20% in Total Viewers (2.83 million vs. 2.35 million).


Following are the Daytime Lineup averages, plus Top 5 Programs Ranks - Week of July 21, 2008:
Daytime Rank:        Total Viewers      Women 18-49 (Rtg/000s)
No. 1 CBS 3.63 million No. 1 ABC 1.3/858,000
No. 2 ABC 2.95 million No. 2 CBS 1.2/793,000
No. 3 NBC 2.52 million No. 3 NBC 1.0/679,000


Top Daytime Programs in Women 18-49 (rank based on rating)
Program                    Net              Rtg/000s
The Young & the Restless CBS 1.8/1.16 million
General Hospital ABC 1.4/923,000
The View ABC 1.3/884,000
One Life to Live ABC 1.2/821,000
The Bold and the Beautiful CBS 1.2/815,000
All My Children ABC 1.2/804,000
As The World Turns CBS 1.0/687,000
Days of our Lives NBC 1.0/679,000
Guiding Light CBS 1.0/662,000

Flashback: ANOTHER WORLD 1991

Now that ANOTHER WORLD is on Hulu, it's wonderful to watch shows from May and June 1991, which was a very good time for the soap. This episode from June 5, 1991, features many of my favorites inclucing Michael and Donna (Kale Browne and Anna Stuart), Jake (Tom Eplin) and Marley/Vicky (Anne Heche, in her last days on the show).

News Brief

INTERVIEW: IMAGINARY BITCHES' Eden Riegel
"My husband and I really loved working with each other, and the web really afforded us the opportunity to have people see it. It’s amazing that the business has inverted itself. Now, it’s very easy for a couple of morons with a camera to make things huge."

Eva Longoria takes biker chic inspiration from pal Victoria Beckham
Actress Eva Longoria must be 'desperate' for fashion tips, as the DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES star appears to be taking plenty of inspiration from her friend Victoria Beckham.

As the 33-year-old actress stepped out in Hollywood wearing sunglasses and a black cadet cap, much like her former Spice Girl friend.

Southern California earthquake interrupts Shawn Christian interview
Michael Fairman writes: "DAYS Shawn Christian (Dr. Daniel Jonas) and I were starting our interview via phone for “Michael Fairman On-Air On-Soaps” and TV SOAP Australia, when all of sudden today’s 5.8 Southern California earthquake hit! As we remained on the line, and while my apartment on the third floor of my building was shaking pretty excessively, Shawn admitted he has never been in a Southern California earthquake before."

INTERVIEW: ATWT's Billy Magnussen
On what it's been like working on a soap for the first time: "The scandal, the intrigue, the sex -- crazy!"

On doing love scenes with Jon Hensley's wife: "It was at first. But ... we only, like, tackled and fought each other one time."

INTERVIEW: Y&R's Daniel Goddard
"I always try to justify things, if they do things that make the character look like not the sharpest tool in the shed. You have to be very careful. You are walking a fine line. If you’re not careful, you will make your character look like a manipulator, unless they are going to do a Nick and Phyllis type of story where they start off hating each other, but Cane comes to realize that he really likes Chloe."

Schlereth pitches a reality show
A Denver resident, Mark Schlereth had been in the Los Angeles area the last two weeks networking. The former Washington Redskins and Denver Broncos lineman has appeared on the soap opera GUIDING LIGHT and is trying to pitch a reality TV show based on his family from his wife's perspective.

Mosko, Sony Pictures TV Sticking Together
Steve Mosko is staying put at Sony. The president of the studio's television division has signed a new four-year deal with Sony Pictures Entertainment that will keep him there through 2012. SPE Chairman and CEO Michael Lynton and SPE Co-Chairman Amy Pascal announced the deal Wednesday.

Mr. Mosko has been at Sony since 1992 and has run the TV division since 2001. He supervises long-running Sony hits such as THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS, WHEEL OF FORTUNE and JEOPARDY!"

Guy Burnet E4 soap spot
Guy Burnet is returning to the small screen with a late-night version of HOLLYOAKS. Burnet will reprise his role as Craig Dean for the new series, currently entitled LATE NIGHT HOLLYOAKS. Fans will see him save his sister in a dramatic clifftop rescue.

Over the course of five 60 minute episodes, viewers will also see various characters travel to Belfast with unexpected results. They include an extremely unlikely marriage; the Dirty Diegos fighting first night nerves as they prepare to play their debut gig; and the students of Hollyoaks Community College spicing things up and getting more than they bargain for. Filming will start in September and transmission will be on E4 in November.

HOLLYOAKS wedding: ... And the bride wore roller skates
It was a wheely special day for HOLLYOAKS chav family the McQueens. The ultra-tacky wedding of the year included all the essentials for Carmel and Calvin's big day – bride, groom and . . . roller skates.

Actress Gemma Merna, who plays Carmel McQueen, wore a classic white gown to film the glitzy scenes in Childwall yesterday, along with plenty of fake tan and roller skates. Fans will see Carmel get her skates on to marry hunky copper Calvin Valentine, played by Ricky Whittle.

Today's Soap Star Birthdays

Susan Flannery (Stephanie, THE BOLD AND THE BEAUTIFUL; ex-Laura, DAYS OF OUR LIVES) - 69
Lane Davies (ex-Cameron, GENERAL HOSPITAL; ex-Mason, SANTA BARBARA; ex-Evan, DAYS OF OUR LIVES) - 58
Wally Kurth (ex-Sam, AS THE WORLD TURNS; ex-Ned, GENERAL HOSPITAL; ex-Justin, DAYS OF OUR LIVES) - 50
Jay Bontatibus (Rob, DAYS OF OUR LIVES; ex-Andy, GENERAL HOSPITAL; ex-Tony, THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS; ex-Russell, ANOTHER WORLD) - 44
Annie Parisse (ex-Julia, AS THE WORLD TURNS) - 33

Evening News

Soap Power: The 21 Most Influential Players

What a difference a year makes! You won’t believe who made TV Guide Canada's second annual countdown of soaps’ biggest movers and shakers.

Deep Soap: Off-Screen Drama
Sara A. Bibel blogs: "For the past few days, the internet has been buzzing with rumors of intrashow warfare between the Head Writers and Executive Producers of DAYS OF OUR LIVES and THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS. Allegedly, producers were rewriting scenes without the writers' permission. It's difficult for me to cover this story objectively. I have worked closely with several of the people involved. I know others socially. I like and respect all of them. I don't want to believe that any of them would be involved in something like this. I don't know all the facts. I'm not sure anyone does. I find the whole thing incredibly sad. Writers and producers should be each other's biggest allies. Both have the common goal of making the best possible show. Each plays an equally important role. Of course they're going to disagree at times, sometimes passionately. But they should work together to resolve their differences, in conjunction with network and studio executives. The relationship should never degenerate to the point where individuals are attempting to sabotage each other and outsiders are involved. It's virtually impossible to do high quality work in an atmosphere where individuals are wasting a significant amount of time and energy fighting each other. Making a soap opera is an inherently difficult process. Let's hope that everyone calms down and focuses on the drama in front of the camera."

VIDEO: GH fan frenzy in NYC
Several GH cast members, including Bradford Anderson (Spinelli), Kelly Monaco (Sam), Greg Vaughan (Lucky) and Rick Hearst (Ric) gathered in New York City on July 26 and 27 to greet fans and dish about the show, their castmates and their trip to the big apple.

More on William deVry's return to B&B
THE BOLD AND THE BEAUTIFUL takes a dark turn August 5–6 when Storm Logan (William deVry), who killed himself last spring, returns in a fantasy sequence. His sister Katie, who is distraught over an unexpected pregnancy, will see him rise naked from the sea and urge her to join him in death. When she dives underwater after him, he morphs into a demon.

New Canadian B&B star not afraid of a little criticism
Web-savvy soap opera star Jacqueline MacInnes Wood tells CTV.ca that she's not afraid of what THE BOLD AND THE BEAUTIFUL fans have to say about her online.

"Good, bad or indifferent, fans have helped me out so much -- I love it," says the Windsor, Ont.-born star, who admits to reading fans' blogs everyday.

"I know a lot of actors who say they don't, but they all do... I'm just admitting it!"

VIDEO: Who Will Save DAYS' Marlena from Stefano?
DAYS OF OUR LIVES viewers have not seen the last of Stefano. In this video interview, Deidre Hall wonders who, with John still not himself, might help Marlena survive the indefatigable megalomaniac's latest reign of terror. Plus: Scoop on the dual role ahead for Hall!


Dazzling Daytime Emmy Winners
Brite Smile, the world-famous leader in the teeth whitening industry, opened its doors in Beverly Hills to host the 2008 Dazzling Daytime Emmy Suite, to honor the TV industry's Daytime Emmy Nominated actors, presenters and personalities. Over 200 daytime stars attended the exclusive 2- day event, including Jeanne Cooper (THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS) who won an Emmy as Best Actress, and Kristoff St. John, who won an award as Best Supporting Actor in the same Soap.

TV Squad Soap Report: Heavenly fun on ONE LIFE TO LIVE
"I liked the idea of Agnes Nixon -- creator of ONE LIFE TO LIVE -- appearing as Agnes, the creator of it all, checking a script and watching the action with rapt attention. The execution, however, left something to be desired. And I'm not sure what to make of the breaking of the fourth wall, when Erika joined Agnes in a thank you to everyone out there -- meaning us fans. It was a little jarring and could have been done in a more clever way."

SAG to AFTRA: Let's talk commercials
Embroiled in stalled negotiations with producers on a new TV and film deal, SAG is seeking an extension of its soon-to-expire commercials contract and to jointly negotiate a new version with AFTRA, the sister union with which it has been fighting for more than a year.

A Martinez Joins the OLTL Cast

Soap Opera Digest is reporting that Emmy-winning daytime vet A Martinez (ex-Cruz, SANTA BARBARA; ex-Roy, GENERAL HOSPITAL) is returning to daytime in the new role of Ray Montez on ONE LIFE TO LIVE.

Martinez won three ALMA Awards for his work on GH. He also won an Emmy as Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series in 1990 for his most memorable role, as Cruz Castillo on SB.

Martinez said about New York (where OLTL tapes) in 2001: "Manhattan is an amazing place. The sheer level of energy on the streets lights me up like nowhere else I go."

New Album From OLTL's Delaria

Ghostlight Records, a division of Sh-K-Boom Records, is partnering with Warner Jazz for the worldwide release of the new CD from acclaimed singer, actress, comedian and author Lea Delaria. The Live Smoke Sessions – recorded in concert at the popular uptown Manhattan jazz club last fall – will be released online and in stores on September 9. The disc features special guest performers Gil Goldstein on piano, Seamus Blake on saxophone and BBC “Jazz Singer of the Year” Ian Shaw on vocals.

As a part of her busy fall schedule, Lea will appear in dual roles on the ABC-TV daytime drama ONE LIFE TO LIVE starting in September (one character, the psychic Madame Delphina, was recently labeled “What’s Hot” in Soap Opera Digest). She will celebrate the CD with a return to the New York jazz club Smoke for two Mondays, September 29 and October 6; and at the 606 Club in London on November 9. Her long-running weekend show at the Art House in Provincetown, Massachusetts runs through September 6.

SORDID LIVES Soundtrack Coming Soon


Del Shores (creator, writer and producer of SORDID LIVES: THE SERIES) has announced the show's soundtrack will be available soon, as will the episodes after they air on LOGO:

"There is going to be a soundtrack!!! It will include the five new Olivia songs written by Olivia and Amy Sky, a long verson of the theme song (the version Olivia sang live at LA PRIDE), it also will include three Tammy Wynette songs sung by her daughter Georgette Jones. Also, one song by the amazing Sean Wiggins, one by great Kacey Jones and one awesome dance song called "Joyful Sound" performed by Debby Holiday and written by Debby and DJ Scotty for the show (prediction: This great song will be Debby's biggest dance single to date).

The soundtrack should be available in a few weeks on iTunes and CD Baby.

Also, the shows will be available for purchase on iTunes in a few weeks too."

Don't miss Episode #2 tonight at 10pm ET on LOGO.

Hererra and McCouch Returning to ATWT


The evil James Stenbeck, ATWT's all-time villain played by Anthony Hererra on and off since 1980, is returning to the show, and will first appear on August 27th. Now that the cat is out of the bag, I can report that I did see James on the shooting schedule when I visited the studio recently, but couldn't reveal this tidbit until it was formally announced.

Soap Opera Digest is reporting that Grayson McCouch is returning as Dusty Donovan. He will begin taping in mid-August and debut on September 24th. This one is news to me. Dusty died earlier this year, so I'm not sure if this return means Dusty isn't dead or not (ATWT has featured ghost Sofie a lot lately). But he probably is alive since his return is somehow connected to James, the master at coming back from the dead.

Also joining the cast is Benton Greene, whose character will make life difficult for Paul starting August 18th.

With all the talk about budget issues at ATWT, the show certainly has not stopped casting, recasting and casting some more. This has lead to the show being very hit or miss and feeling disjointed from one day to the next.

Antonio Sabato Jr Can't Decide if He'd Choose To Be Gay or Stupid

On last night's CHELSEA LATELY, Antonio Sabato Jr. was on talking about his role on GENERAL HOSPITAL: NIGHT SHIFT, a prime time spin-off which looks at the nocturnal activities of characters related to the daytime soap. After showing a clip in which the gay innuendo runs high , they get into a discussion of whether Antonio would rather be gay or stupid, as he looks either/or in the clip.

CHELSEA: So in that scene you're with a guy, is there a gay storyline there?

SABATO JR: No not for me, no.

CHELSEA: Okay, a little bit on the show is there?

SABATO JR: There is, actually. There is. There always has to be a gay storyline these days, otherwise they're not hip.

CHELSEA: Okay. But you - because I looked at your body on there and I would think to myself, you're either gay or really stupid. Anyone who has a body that looks like you - and it's the same with women - you're ether really gay or really dumb...So if you had to choose gay or stupid what would you choose? If you had to be one what would you choose?

SABATO JR: I gotta be political, that's a tough question.

CHELSEA: (whispers) Just say gay.

SABATO JR: No, I won't answer that.


Source: Towleroad

News Brief

LYNN LICCARDO: On the current state of ATWT
"Besides the Hughes-Stewart stories, I'm getting frustrated along with everyone else about Luke and Noah, largely because the story's so very contrived, particularly in contrast to how sex is portrayed among the straight couples. But, really frustrates me is golden opportunity TPTB squandered by killing off Noah's father; rather then tell a fully-developed, multi-generational story that explored the Colonel's homophobia, possibly revealing his own homosexuality, TPTB rushed the plot along by making him a psychopath. Of course, his body's never been found. And, this is a soap opera..."

VIDEO: "Night Shift": Moving In
Find out what happens when two interns from GENERAL HOSPITAL: NIGHT SHIFT move in together in the first episode of "Night Shift: Claire & Kyle."


Kentucky native loves 'Sordid' role
When Rosemary Alexander was growing up in rural Kentucky, she didn't really know anyone who was leading a sordid life, but tonight on television she plays one of the sorriest characters you'll ever meet. Alexander is Dr. Eve Bollinger on SORDID LIVES: THE SERIES.

Dr. Eve is the chief psychiatrist at the Big Spring Texas State Mental Institution, Alexander explained in a phone interview from Los Angeles, where she lives.

"The character is career-driven and bent on getting on 'Oprah,' and her method of achieving that glory is to develop her theory of dehomosexualization," said Alexander. "She's trying to dehomosexualize the gayest man in the world (Jordan) who thinks he's Tammy Wynette or channels Wynette while he's dressed in drag."

Threatened SAG board reaches out to AFTRA
The national board governing the US Screen Actors Guild (SAG) is hoping to head back to the negotiating table with its estranged sibling the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (AFTRA), as its leadership comes under threat from a rival faction.

Unite for Strength, a group of 31 Hollywood branch members including Sally Field, Adam Arkin and THE SIMPSONS voice actress Marcia Wallace, has announced it intends to try to wrestle control of the national board away from the currently ruling Membership First faction when Guild members vote for new leaders next month.

CBC, ABC committed for LIFE
CBC and ABC have come together to make 18 TO LIVE, a Cancom pilot from Montreal's Galafilm. The deal is said to mark the first time US and Canadian broadcasters have worked together on a prime-time sitcom, and continues the recent trend of cross-border buying and co-operation that has also sent CTV's FLASHPOINT and THE LISTENER to CBS and NBC, respectively, and the CBC's SOPHIE to ABC Family. A former CBC show MVP has also been playing well on ABC's sudsy cable sister SOAPnet.

"For the CBC to have ABC invest and collaborate in the pilot for an all-Canadian half-hour comedy series is truly remarkable," says CBC programming boss Kirstine Layfield.

The would-be series is about a pair of teen sweethearts who get married at 18, despite the objections of meddling friends and family. It stars Stacey Farber, of DEGRASSI: THE NEXT GENERATION with Michael Seater of LIFE WITH DEREK, joined by Al Goulem, Ellen David and Peter Keleghan.

Pioneering Broadcast Journalist Edie Huggins Has Died
Edie Huggins, who began her television career at WCAU-TV (now NBC 10) in 1966 as a feature reporter on the BIG NEWS TEAM WITH JOHN FACENDA and became one of Philadelphia's most respected and celebrated television personalities during her 42-year career, has died after a hard fought, lengthy illness.

A native of St. Joseph, Missouri, Edie Huggins graduated cum laude from the State University of New York with a bachelor's degree in Science. After graduation, she worked at both Bellevue and Flower-Fifth Avenue Hospitals in New York City as a registered nurse. At the same time, she made national headlines by doubling as an actress and an unofficial consultant for the NBC daytime drama, THE DOCTORS. She also appeared on THE EDGE OF NIGHT and LOVE OF LIFE, both produced by CBS Television.

EMMERDALE tops EASTENDERS in head-to-head
EMMERDALE came out on top in the battle of the soaps last night in another head-to-head clash with EastEnders.

An hour-long edition of the Yorkshire-based soap, EMMERDALE: RISKY BUSINESS, pulled in an average of 5.47m (30.9%) for ITV1 from 7pm to rank as the top non-news programme of the day on any channel. EASTENDERS, shown between 7.30pm and 8pm, came second with 5.25m (28.6%).

Catching up with Rick Springfield
"The good thing is they brought in a different character and he gets to do my new single, which I'm really happy about," Springfield said last week. "Any time you can get on TV with a new song is great."

SCRIPTS & SCRUPLES: Episode #835
Matt decides to extend his visit to New York.


EXTRA hires ex-B&B star Mario Lopez as host
"Mario ... has established himself as a highly engaging, likeable and sought-after host and personality," says EXTRA'S boss. Lopez will replace current host Mark McGrath. The shakeup comes amid sagging ratings for the entertainment news show.

Today's Soap Star Birthdays

Ilene Kristen (Roxy, ONE LIFE TO LIVE; ex-Delia, RYAN'S HOPE; ex-Norma, LOVING; ex-Madeline, ANOTHER WORLD) - 56
Ben Jorgensen (ex-Chris, AS THE WORLD TURNS; ex-Kevin, ALL MY CHILDREN) - 39
Victor Alfieri (ex-Gianni, PASSIONS; ex-Giovanni, THE BOLD AND THE BEAUTIFUL; ex-Franco, DAYS OF OUR LIVES) - 37

Evening News

Higley Out at DAYS?
DAYS OF OUR LIVES had no official comment, but Soap Opera Digest has learned that Higley is still in her Head Writing post. "It's business as usual," reports a setsider.

Graham from THE BACHELORETTE dating AMC's Stause
Graham Bunn, who was a heavy front runner for DeAnna’s affections on last season's THE BACHELORETTE is, at least temporarily, off the market. He has confirmed that he has a new love, actress Chrishell Stause, who plays Amanda Dillon on the soap opera ALL MY CHILDREN.

The couple supposedly met and dated occasionally before Graham ever went on the show. According to him they broke up in December before the show started taping. After the show was over “sparks flew” and they rekindled the romance.

According to the actress he is the perfect boyfriend. She doesn’t mention him clamming up at all and states that he is sweet and romantic. The couple seem to be falling very much in love, but after all…he is the one that had not had a relationship longer than 4 months before the show started. I guess we will just have to see if this lasts.

From Luke and Laura to Luke and Noah
During the early 1980s, the popular daytime drama, GENERAL HOSPITAL, featured favorite super-couple Luke and Laura. Whether a regular viewer of this sudsy drama or not, it seemed like anyone living in that decade was well aware of who the famous couple were.

Fans became so infatuated with Luke and Laura that in November 1981, when the duo finally wed, the episode was watched by nearly 30 million viewers. Today, the episode remains the highest-rated hour-long daytime drama in history.

Fast forward to the year 2008, and things have changed slightly. Today, there’s a new super-couple making its mark on the daytime scene — Luke and Noah of AS THE WORLD TURNS — portrayed by Van Hansis and Jake Silbermann respectively.

TOM CASIELLO: Support Groups
"I want to reiterate what I said last night on 'Buzzworthy.' At the end of the day, this isn't about who wrote what, or which actor or actress changed what. This is a much bigger issue about people putting themselves over what's good for the show. The in-fighting and the behind-the-scenes free-for-all isn't helping anything. It's hurting the show, and it's hurting the fans. If you're writing letters or making calls, remember what's really important here. The show, and just wanting a team that works together - not apart. Not about naming names, or pointing fingers and placing blame. That makes us no better than them. We all just want a great show, and a positive experience viewing it."

Earthquake Rocks LA!
An earthquake that measured about 5.8 on the Richter scale just hit LA and interrupted filming. At DAYS, the cast had to exit the building, which gave them a good opportunity to sing "Happy Birthday" to Bryan R. Dattilo (Lucas), who is celebrating today. Everything seems fine and they're already back to work. In an unusual twist, PASSIONS ended today’s show with — what else? — an earthquake.

Dates Set for ABC's 13th Annual Super Soap Weekend
ABC: "The 13th annual ABC-SOAPnet Super Soap Weekend will be held November 15-16 at Disney’s Hollywood Studios at Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. Colgate Total toothpaste will serve as the presenting sponsor of the event for the ninth consecutive year.

"Throughout the weekend, fans will have the opportunity to meet favorite stars from ALL MY CHILDREN, ONE LIFE TO LIVE and GENERAL HOSPITAL. Festivities include celebrity motorcades, autograph sessions, game shows, interviews and the chance to purchase one-of-a-kind memorabilia from each of the shows. The Colgate Total Street Jam will close the event each day with live musical performances by some favorite Daytime stars.

"The Colgate Total sponsorship includes a national sweepstakes, awarding four trips for four to the 13th annual ABC-SOAPnet Super Soap Weekend, or one of many other great prizes. Go to SOAPnet.com for details and official rules."

Jon Prescott Exits ATWT

A message from Jon Prescott (Mike, ATWT):

Because of budget constraints on AS THE WORLD TURNS Mike Kasnoff will be leaving Oakdale at the end of August.

I'd like to express my gratitude to the entire cast, crew, and production team who have made this an irreplaceable experience. I have been privileged to be a part ATWT and this concludes an invaluable education. Most importantly, thank you to the fans who have been energetic supporters of both Mike Kasnoff and the show as a whole. I view my departure as a positive step forward. Stay tuned as I share my next creative challenge with you shortly.

Wishing you peace and power,
Jon Prescott

Martha Byrne on "BuzzWorthy Radio"

Martha Byrne (ex-Lily, AS THE WORLD TURNS) was a guest on "BuzzWorthy Radio" today. She is an actor who truly understands the genre and offered a number of insights from her early days on the show under Robert Calhoun and Douglas Marland.

She spoke about her upcoming film project producing a screenplay written by Paul Leyden (ex-Simon) and starring Paolo Seganti (ex-Damian). She is also going to publish some new songs on her website in the near future for fans.

She mentioned that she keeps in touch with many of her former co-stars, and even wrote a song for Michael Park's recent birthday party that she sang to him.

Flashback: Soaps & Serials 1986

THEY'VE SEEN THOSE TV SOAP OPERAS, BUT WILL THEY BUY A BOOK VERSION?
New England Business, September 1, 1986

Publisher Sydney R. Seltzer, chief executive officer of Pioneer Communications Network Inc. in Rocky Hill, Conn., compares book publishing to producing a Broadway show. A publisher may think he or she has a sure thing, but until the public jumps on the bandwagon there just isn't any guarantee.

Indeed, publishing can be risky. But there are some formulas that are fairly sure to produce a success. Seltzer contends he has one. Rather than trying to develop markets for books that have already been written, Seltzer found a market, created a specific format for its books and then lined up authors to write them. Seltzer approaches books as "products' rather than literature.

He calls the final product Soaps & Serials--a series of books based on television's soap operas.

For $2.50, readers can purchase "Unspoken Desires,' "Love's Shattered Dreams,' or any of the six other paperbacks produced by Pioneer each month. Soap opera fans can read about the early days of their favorite shows. All of the juicy details are there--the illicit love affairs, the family feuds, the sudden tragedies. The covers of these soap sagas are illustrated with couples locked in passionate embraces, but the sexual content of the books wouldn't make your grandmother blush.

Pioneer's initial public offering was in December 1985, and full production began in May. Seltzer doesn't expect to garner the attention of all soap opera fans. But he maintains that if even a small portion of the 55 million people who watch at least one daytime or nighttime soap opera are interested in reading books based on their favorite shows, Pioneer will be a winner.

"We tested for two years before we came into the market," says Seltzer. "We threw away a lot of manuscripts because we hadn't hit the right formula." Startup costs were high and the company ran into financial problems when Havens & Co., its original underwriter, went out of business just before Pioneer's prospectus was scheduled to go into printing.

"It was a hell of a situation to be in after we spent all of that money,' says Seltzer, "but we knew we had a good idea." A few months after their original attempt fell through, Pioneer engaged Monmouth Investments Inc. of English-town, N.J., as its underwriter. Pioneer was only the second underwriting venture for Monmouth, but Seltzer says he went with a less-seasoned firm because it is difficult to find a major one to underwrite a company that hasn't even gone into production. Further, because Monmouth is a small firm, Seltzer figured it would devote more attention to Pioneer's underwriting than a larger firm might.

Since the initial public offering of Pioneer Communications' 2.5 million units (which consist of one common share and warrants to buy two further shares), the issue has performed both boldly and wildly in the aftermarket. The issue went public at $1 per unit, and they have subsequently traded as high as $8 per unit. At presstime, the units were bid at $1.69. As many as 1 million units have changed hands in one day.

WOULD THE FANS READ?

Seltzer knew soap operas had large followings, but the major question was whether soap opera fans would want to read about their shows. Pioneer conducted marketing studies in an attempt to lessen its chances of failure. "So Tender, So True," a book based on the GUIDING LIGHT series, was tested in supermarkets in the Troy-Schenectady-Albany area of New York. The results were quite positive, says Seltzer.

The target audience of Soaps & Serials is more likely to frequent supermarkets rather than bookstores. "We never thought of bookstores as a great marketplace for these books," says Seltzer. The books are now distributed to 22,000 supermarkets and drugstores nationwide and are in the bookstore chains, Walden Books and B. Dalton.

"I'm not an expert on the soaps, but I do know how to put a paperback together," maintains Seltzer, who has spent more than 25 years in the publishing industry. Most of his experience is in publishing educational materials for children.

In 1979, while visiting a New York television studio, Seltzer noticed three monitors, each showing a different soap opera. This first exposure to soap operas led to the idea of publishing soap novels. "It was like an electric lightbulb," he says. Seltzer had never seen a soap opera. Nonetheless, he figured a market must exist for books based on the shows. He studied the demographics of soap opera audiences and asked if anyone had ever produced a continuing series of novels based on soaps. He then queried the soap opera production companies about the licensing rights for publishing novelizations of their television shows.

LICENSING RIGHTS

It took two years for Pioneer to obtain licensing rights from Columbia Pictures Industries Inc., Procter & Gamble Productions Inc., the largest soap opera producer, and three other television production companies. Obtaining the licensing rights for the daytime soap operas was critical to Pioneer's success, says Seltzer. "I've got them all sewed up. There is no way anyone can compete with me."

Most of the licensing companies require Pioneer to produce a minimum number of books. Procter & Gamble's agreement calls for at least one book a month for each soap opera. Further, all of the companies require that Pioneer submit all proposed plot outlines, completed manuscripts, cover art and other material for approval.

"No one has been successful in the past with these kinds of books in the soap opera field," says Lester J. Borden, vice president of Columbia Pictures Merchandising in New York. But Borden contends Seltzer may have the right approach. "What he's done is put them at a low price" while mintaining good quality, he says, and displayed them in the supermarkets.

The principals at Pioneer don't want to leave much to chance. They are using calculated strategies to attract and hold on to readers of soap opera novels. In addition to supermarket and bookstore sales, Seltzer plans to begin a book club next year for Pioneer's Soaps & Serials series along with soap opera clubs.

Plan also are under way to market books based on several non-serial nighttime programs such as T.J. HOOKER and FAME and magazines based on FAME and the GIDGET television series.

In May, the company launched the first installments of its series with paperback books based on eight soap operas: THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS, ANOTHER WORLD, KNOTS LANDING, GUIDING LIGHT, DAYS OF OUR LIVES, DALLAS, CAPITOL and AS THE WORLD TURNS. Each book has a central plot and a subtle cliff-hanger subplot. The subplot then becomes the main plot in the next installment in each series.

The soap publisher claims his books represent "a new genre" in publishing. Like many romance novels, Pioneer's books are formula written, but Seltzer says the important difference is that his books are based on something most people recognize and identify with, soap operas. Further, like soap operas, they are written with a continuing story line to entice readers to keep up with the series.

Sylvia M. King, 33, of North Adams, Mass., says she doesn't read romance novels, but the idea of books based on soap operas appealed to her. When she saw the Soaps & Serials series, she bought two books based on her favorites--AS THE WORLD TURNS and GUIDING LIGHT. King has been an avid fan of GUIDING LIGHT for 23 years. "The books are well-written and move right along," she says.

According to Seltzer, "The key is to write a good story. . . . This is not schlock material." The story editor of the series is Mary Ann Cooper, a nationally syndicated columnist who writes about soap operas. She uses the original television scripts to write outlines of each book, which are then completed by free-lance romance writers. The formula for these books specifies how they are written, even to the number of words. Each book is 192 pages in length with an average of 40,000 to 45,000 words. The $2.50 cover price is calculated to be competitive.

The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2

Actresses Blake Lively, Alexis Bledel, America Ferrera and Amber Tamblyn attended the premiere of their new film, The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2, at the Ziegfeld Theatre on Sunday in New York City.

Lively is best known for her role as Serena on GOSSIP GIRL.

Bledel played Rory on GILMORE GIRLS.

Ferrera is Betty on UGLY BETTY.

Tamblyn is known to soap fans as Emily on GENERAL HOSPITAL, a role she played throughout her teen years.

GH: NIGHT SHIFT Preview for Tonight

Episode 202 ("Other People's Children) – When an adopted girl from China is rushed into the ER, Robin (Kimberly McCullough) races against the clock to find a donor match. But she gets more than she bargained for when she uncovers a secret about the girl. Meanwhile, Claire (Carrie Southworth) is pursued by a drunk patient, but she's more interested in his sober buddy, and Leo and Kyle stop fighting long enough to have a drink and be civilized, if only for a moment. Later, Jagger (Antonio Sabato, Jr.) storms out after a fight with Robin about Stone on GENERAL HOSPITAL: NIGHT SHIFT, TUESDAY, JULY 29 (11:00 p.m. – 12:00 a.m., ET/PT) on SOAPnet.

News Brief

Shaking things up on GUIDING LIGHT
Matthew Gilbert of the Boston Globe writes: "On GUIDING LIGHT, all this in-their-face realism comes off like a miscalculation. The typical soap-operatic stories - so bogus and, at times, preposterous - can't quite support the direct impact that comes with hand-held camerawork. And neither, with all due respect, can the acting. Pungent daytime melodramatics tends to be as artificial as the scent of Ivory and Irish Spring, and fitting them with documentary affectations feels off base and, at times, ridiculous. On reality TV, verite can be humorous or ironic, but when it runs amok on a soap opera, it's just strange."

INTERVIEW: David Fumero
Fumero (Christian, ONE LIFE TO LIVE, and one of the stars of Manhattanites) appeared on "Stardish Radio" last night.


Noah Newman recasted on Y&R
When Noah returns to Genoa City on August 13, Nick and Sharon's son will be played by Kevin Schmidt. Schmidt, who turns 20 on August 16th, replaces child actor Hunter Allan in the role. Here's a YouTube Q&A with Andover, Kansas native Schmidt.


EVENT: OLTL's Jason Tam in a hoedown
Dust off that ten-gallon hat and get ready for an evening of hootin’ and hollerin’ as NYMF shuts down Spanky’s BBQ for The NYMF Hoedown (or, “Musical Theater I Wish I Could Quit You”) Benefit, featuring Broadway celebrities on Sunday, August 10, 2008 from 8-11pm.

Get ready to let everyone know who’s the most rooten tootenist cowpoke as guests play one on one with the likes of Skylar Astin ("Spring Awakening") and Jason Tam (ONE LIFE TO LIVE) in one of our exciting country fair games, including pie eating competitions, bean bag tosses, and the outlawed Lasso a Star challenge.

EASTENDERS: Shootout?
t's no secret the Branning brothers are at each other's throats, but The Sun's delivered a rather shocking scenario. They say the brothers are set for a violent shoot-out, which see one of men left fighting for his life.

"Max has recently realised Jack is taking his brotherly duties just one step too far. He starts acting like the golden boy, cozying up to his kids and Max is unable to accept it. In his stressed-out state he gets his hands on a weapon. A round is fired and one ends up fighting for his life."

Martha Byrne will appear on "BuzzWorthy Radio" today
The two-time Emmy winning Byrne (ex-Lily, AS THE WORLD TURNS) will be interviewed and take fan questions at Noon ET/9am PT today.

Today's Soap Star Birthdays

Kevin Spirtas (Jonas, ONE LIFE TO LIVE; ex-Craig, DAYS OF OUR LIVES; ex-Tom, RITUALS) - 46
Lisa Peluso (ex-Wendy, SEARCH FOR TOMORROW; ex-Gina, ONE LIFE TO LIVE; ex-Ava, LOVING; ex-Lila, ANOTHER WORLD/AS THE WORLD TURNS) - 44
Bryan Dattilo (Lucas, DAYS OF OUR LIVES) - 37

GL & ATWT Stars Play Softball for Autism Charity

The 3rd Annual Autism Speaks Celebrity Softball Game was held on Saturday at KeySpan Park where the Brooklyn Cyclones play in Coney Island, New York.

GUIDING LIGHT's Kane Manera (Gillespie) and AS THE WORLD TURNS stars Jon Prescott (Mike) and Meredith Hagner (Liberty played in the game featuring two all-star teams.

Team NBC won (which had Meredith and Jon on it) over Team Z-100.

Marnie Schulenburg was originally slated to play in the game but was replaced by Hagner.

Evening News

TV Guide Canada's Weekly "Nelson Ratings"

Nelson Branco reviews last week’s soaps, provides this week’s viewing cheat sheet, and names top-rated actors and shows.

Deep Soap: Don't Believe The Hype
Sara A. Bibel blogs on Friday's "Sudden Impact" on THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS: "I'm not criticizing Y&R. It was a solid Friday cliffhanger. I'm thrilled that things are happening on the show again. However, CBS's relentless hyping made the episode anti-climactic."

PATRICK ERWIN: Audacious list (1 of 10) - A lack of diversity
"Diversity on daytime, or the lack of it, is hardly a new conversation. OLTL is celebrating its 40th anniversary, and it was new and bold in 1968 specifically because it did have ethnic diversity (much more diversity, it should be noted, than the show has today)."

Irish Pop Singer May Play Tehran
As Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice considers the latest remarks of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad of Iran, there’s another sign of warming relations between Iran and the West. Reuters noticed a report from Iran’s semiofficial Press TV saying that Chris de Burgh, the Irish singer, was planning to perform in Tehran in November.

While the gig itself remains an open question, we’re free to wonder what impact “Lady in Red,” Mr. de Burg’s biggest hit, may have on world affairs. If the song brought together Patch and Kayla on DAYS OF OUR LIVES, why not Iran and the West?

EVENT: Soap Cruise to Set Sail on Celebrity Century
Cruise enthusiasts who enjoy the intrigue, drama and romance of daytime TV's most popular soap operas - and the actors who star in them - are likely to find the vacation of their dreams in "Soap Cruise," which will be held on Celebrity Century in 2009.

Hosting Soap Cruise will be Cameron Mathison, who plays "Ryan" on ALL MY CHILDREN, and has appeared on DANCING WITH THE STARS. Mathison will be joined on Celebrity Century by fellow All My Children actors Alicia Minshew ("Kendall"), Ricky Paull Goldin ("Jake") and Jacob Young ("J.R."); Austin Peck ("Brad") from AS THE WORLD TURNS; Brandon Beemer ("Owen") of The Bold and the Beautiful; Winsor Harmon ("Thorne") and Lesli Kay ("Felicia") of THE BOLD AND THE BEAUTIFUL; Nadia Bjorlin ("Chloe") and Jay Johnson ("Philip") of DAYS OF OUR LIVES; Bradford Anderson ("Spinelli") and Greg Vaughn ("Lucky") from GENERAL HOSPITAL; Murray Bartlett ("Cyrus") of GUIDING LIGHT; Kamar de los Reyes ("Antonio") on ONE LIFE TO LIVE; and Don Diamont ("Brad") and Christian LeBlanc ("Michael") of THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS.

WHERE ARE THEY NOW: AW, AMC and NS alum Alla Korot
Hulu begins airing ANOTHER WORLD tomorrow from May 10, 1991. Those episodes feature Alla Korot, who was very popular as Felicia's adopted daughter, Jenna. Korot later went on to play Allie on ALL MY CHILDREN and starred in the first season of GH: NIGHT SHIFT. She is current shooting the Gruntworks Entertainment film, The Intruders, where she has the lead role. The film also stars Brody Hutzler (ex-Patrick, DAYS OF OUR LIVES) and Derrell Whitt (Lucas, SCRIPTS AND SCRUPLES). The film is directed by Gregori J. Martin who also directed my film, Manhattanites.

Kelley Menighan Hensley's Pet Peeve: Arguing
Everyone has pet peeves, and actress Kelley Menighan Hensley's involves her kids -- Sophie May, 9 ½, Spencer James, 6 ½, and Georgia "Gigi" Grace, 13 months. The AS THE WORLD TURNS star admits "my kids fighting and arguing over stupid stuff annoys me to no end," adding that she just "want[s] to take everything away and leave them with one book to play with." The fighting that Kelley's kids do just makes the 41-year-old realize that "our children are so overindulged -- and we've probably created it -- that I can't stand it."

Bell parties with the Pritkzers
A Chicago's Who Who (including B&B Producer/Writer Bradley Bell) trekked to Lake Geneva and Bristol, Wis., for a pair of extravagant bashes that long will have folks buzzing: M.K. and J.B. Pritzker's party toasting both her birthday and the couple's 15th wedding anniversary, and Chicago philanthropist and financial guru Richard Driehaus' annual party celebrating his birthday.

EVENT: ATWT's Magnussen & AMC's Stause

Event: “Gifts of Love” AIDS Benefit Luncheon/Auction

Beneficiary: AIDS Center of Queens County, Queens NY

Hosts: Billy Magnussen (Casey Hughes) AS THE WORLD TURNS & Chrishell Stause (Amanda Dillon) ALL MY CHILDREN

Date: Sunday, October 19, 2008

Location: Terrace On The Park, Flushing Meadow Park (Flushing, New York)

Time: 12:00 pm — 4:00 pm

Tickets: $100.00 (10 Available to have lunch with the Actor of Your choice at their table)

General table seating: $75.00

Call: 718.896.2500 9 am — 5 pm for ticket sales and more information. Please specify if you want tickets for the Actor’s table and which actor you would like to have lunch with. Questions, please email Jeff at
Jaj3854@aol.com

Activities: Buffet Luncheon, Open Bar, Live Action, Silent Auction

Big Pussy checks into GENERAL HOSPITAL

Entertainment Weekly is reporting that Vincent "Big Pussy" Pastore is set to appear on GH this October as Maximus Giambetti, a big-time mobster who comes to Port Charles to deal with his two sons, Sonny's bodyguards Max (Derek Cheetwood) and Milo (Drew Cheetwood). (And yes, they're brothers in real life.) Pastore's Max hits town thinking his eldest is actually the local mob boss — an idea that his son may have helped foster — and is none too happy to find out about his sons' lowly status in the biz. You can definitely expect the storyline to have some humor mixed in, sources tell us.

Pastore’s guest turn came about after he taped some promos (which start airing later this week) for GH, ABC, and SOAPnet as part of a campaign that jokingly gives people "permission" to watch soaps. Other stars in the campaign include Spice Girl Mel B. and actress Elizabeth Berkley.

DAYS Backstage Turmoil

Nelson Branco of TV Guide Canada has provided additional details in his latest Suds Report on Dena Higley's exit as Headwriter for DAYS OF OUR LIVES.

Meanwhile, Tom Casiello has written an interesting blog on the situation at DAYS: "Since I heard the first inklings Friday morning of this insanity, I've had a hard time focusing. Or sleeping. And the more I hear about it, the more people tell me, the more the pieces fall into place and I see where this is heading over the next weeks? The more I want to scream at the top of my lungs and put a fist through a wall. And yeah, I'll say that out loud, on a blog, to anyone who wants to hear it. I'm hurt, and I'm angry, and I'm really sad about what this means for Salem, a town I love as much as my hometown, as much as my current city of New York."

News Brief

Rick Springfield: It's good to be singing
Rick Springfield has a new album coming out Tuesday, the same day he will perform his single "Victoria's Secret" on an episode of GENERAL HOSPITAL.

No, it isn't 1982, when he was playing Dr. Noah Drake on the ABC soap at the same time that he had a thriving career as a Grammy winning pop star with 17 top-40 hits, including "Jessie's Girl," "I've Done Everything For You" and "Don't Talk to Strangers."

Fast-forward more than 25 years and Rick, who still drops by to play Noah on occasion, will appear on the soap this week as rocker Eli Love.

"The good thing is they brought in a different character and he gets to do my new single, which I'm really happy about," Rick said last week. "Any time you can get on TV with a new song is great."

Love Stinks for GENERAL HOSPITAL's Anna
Eighties icon Rick Springfield is back on GENERAL HOSPITAL as lookalikes
Dr. Noah Drake and rock star Eli Love. And the latter turns out to be quite the ageist pig. Eli will perform a concert in Port Charles on Tuesday, July 29 (Springfield's new CD Venus in Overdrive drops the same day), and he'll deny to the press that he's dating his ladylove Anna (Finola Hughes). The reason? Her daughter, Robin (Kimberly McCullough), is pregnant.

"Eli is afraid it'll do damage to his career to be seen hanging out with a grandma — what will his young fans think?" the 58-year-old Springfield says. "It was a hard thing for me to play because it's such a jerky thing to do."

AUDIO: DC #275: One Life to Live's 40th Anniversary With Nelson Branco
Join the Daytime Confidential gang and TV Guide Canada's Nelson Branco as they celebrate One Life to Live's 40th Anniversary by taking a trip down memory lane and reminisce about how they became hooked on the ABC soap and who is their favorite character.

ATWT debuts on Hulu today
Hulu is starting with the June 1, 2007 episode (Noah Mayer's debut).

LYNN LICCARDO: Scrolling through the chaff
"...back in the day, Soap Opera Weekly quite simply reinvented the soap opera fan magazine. While sister publication, Soap Opera Digest, would publish the occasional serious article, SOW was the first to treat soaps as an industry, providing fans with real information about the people behind the camera and in the front offices, in addition to the de rigueur interviews with soap stars. Other SOW firsts: outspoken editorials by founding editor, Mimi Torchin, along with informed criticism by Marlena de Lacroix and other editors; there was even an opportunity for fans to weigh in with their opinions."

SCRIPTS & SCRUPLES: Episode #834
Bobby tries to forget about Stacey.


FNL's Porter joins The Good Guy
Alexis Bledel (The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2, GILMORE GIRLS) and FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS star Scott Porter are joining Bryan Greenberg, Andrew McCarthy, Aaron Yoo and Anna Chlumsky in Julio DePietro's romantic comedy The Good Guy, says The Hollywood Reporter.

Joyner let down by EASTENDERS role
You'd think EASTENDERS actress Jo Joyner - aka Tanya Branning - would be on top of the world, what with having a juicy part in a leading soap. But apparently not. The bubbly blonde has admitted she felt let down by the role, until she started to get her teeth into some meaty storylines.

Joyner told the Daily Star Sunday: "I have to be honest, in the past I've been a little bit disappointed with the way things have gone for Tanya. I really didn't think she'd be so mumsy. And I don't feel like I've made much of an impact since I've been in the show."

HOLLYOAKS stars in football charity match for Coventry hospital
HOLLYOAKS stars took to the pitch to raise money for a Coventry hospital - and delighted their crowd of female fans. The all-star 11 from hit Channel 4 soap played a select team from Earl Shilton, near Hinckley, to raise money for Coventry's University Hospital. The match was organised by friends of Earl Shilton man, Steve Garrett, whose life was saved by the hospital.

Today's Soap Star Birthdays

Sally Struthers (ex-Jennifer, GENERAL HOSPITAL) - 60
Lori Loughlin (ex-Jody, THE EDGE OF NIGHT) - 44
Tom Pelphrey (ex-Jonathan, GUIDING LIGHT) - 26
Alexandra Chando (ex-Maddie, AS THE WORLD TURNS) - 22

News Brief

With Three Sons, Joshua Morrow Hopes Next Will Be Girl
"I did all the secret things last time, like keep the lights on, then the socks on and then there were times she would call me and say, 'Come home right now!' I know the sex of the baby is my fault, but the running argument is I make great boys."

INTERVIEW: Marsha Clark
A familiar face has been seen in Salem lately – in the role of Judge Karen Fitzpatrick, to be exact. Marsha Clark knows her way around a soap set. She’s played iconic roles on GUIDING LIGHT and ONE LIFE TO LIVE, and even voiced a spirit on PASSIONS. Now she is lending her vast talent and experience to the set of DAYS OF OUR LIVES, and she couldn’t be happier doing it.

"I have been having loads of fun. It’s such a nice cast; they are really great people. It’s a fun role. Karen started out as an upstanding citizen, but now I am beginning to think she might not be as upstanding as I had originally thought."

EASTENDERS actress "gutted" over axing
EASTENDERS star Emma Barton has admitted that she felt "gutted" to be axed from the show. The actress, who joined the BBC One soap in 2005, was told in April that her character Honey Mitchell would be written out. She filmed her final scenes for the programme a few weeks ago.

Barton told The People: "I was gutted when they told me. I know that's the nature of the job and nothing is forever but I didn't want it to end so soon."

BLOG UPDATE: Michael Fairman
"I must say, kudos to you Hogan Sheffer and the new writing regime at Y&R. The gala looked spectacular. The remote scenes were some of the best looking ones I have seen from daytime in awhile. And I loved how the drama slowly unfolded throughout the episode until it all came to a screeching halt at the end! Literally!"

"The Nuke Fancast" Episode #9
Last week's Luke and Noah recap, news and reviews.


WHERE ARE THEY NOW: AMC's Melissa Leo (ex-Linda)
EARLY one especially fine morning last month in Central Park, New Yorkers kept stopping to watch Melissa Leo shoot a scene for a movie called Veronika Decides to Die. There wasn’t a lot to see, just Ms. Leo on a park bench trading lines with the English actor David Thewlis, who, like her, is known as an actor’s actor, which is to say, immensely talented and insufficiently famous. The movie, based on a Paulo Coelho novel and starring Sarah Michelle Gellar, is an indie aimed for release next year. Ms. Leo does a lot of those, and her part is secondary. She does a lot of those too. But, she said later of the character she plays, "It’s a pretty classic supporting role, with several scenes throughout and her own arc in the film."

A Nuke-lear explosion, and the world keeps turning
"Between the Nukesters, Maury Povich's frequent 'she's gone lesbian on me' shows and Ellen Degeneres' goofy a.m. chatfest, they may as well call it 'gaytime TV.'"

5-year-old actress can't wait to be next Hannah Montana
Many days, Haley Scott's audience is a row of carefully placed stuffed animals, her stage a flipped over laundry basket, and her venue a walk-in closet in her parent's bedroom. Then there are the other days, when the 5-year-old Center girl's plan to become the next Hannah Montana seems far more than just a dream.

Haley, who will enter kindergarten at Center Township Elementary next month, appeared in a speaking role last week for the long-running daytime soap, GUIDING LIGHT.

WHERE ARE THEY NOW: ATWT's Colleen Broomall

We Love Soaps is launching a new feature with "Where are They Now" interviews with former child actors from the soaps. I'm starting with one of my favorites, Colleen Broomall, who debuted when she was only two months old as Danielle "Dani" Andropolous, the daughter of legendary couple, Steve (Frank Runyeon) and Betsy (Meg Ryan), on AS THE WROLD TURNS. Betsy believed that her husband, Craig, was Dani's father at first, but later found out her true love, Steve, had fathered her, and the two of them got married in one of the highest rated episodes in soap history.

Colleen remained on the soap for the next several years which saw Runyeon leave the show and Lindsay Frost assume the role of Betsy.

In early 1988, she appeared in a "Soaps' Most Adorable Babies" feature in Soap Opera Digest:
What happened at the soap audition: The casting director picked up Colleen and played with her and made sure she had no difficulty separating from her mother.
Favorite Song: "This Land is Your Land"
Favorite Story: Goldilocks and the Three Bears
Favorite Actor on the show: The entire cast, she loves everyone.
Best unplanned moment during taping: Colleen was about one year old and had just begun talking. There was a scene where a brain-washed Craig told Betsy that he had to take Danielle away from her. Colleen looked up at him and said, "No, no."

A lot has changed since then. In this interview, Colleen talks about her time at ATWT and what she's doing now, almost 25 years after she debuted as Dani.

We Love Soaps: You were just two months when you were cast on AS THE WORLD TURNS as Dani. You were six when you left. Do you remember much about the show and that time?

Colleen Broomall: All of the memories that I do have are amazing ones. The ones that stick out the most would have to include the annual ATWT holiday parties, charity softball games, meet and greets with fans, and the wardrobe team who so kindly allowed me to try on all of the "grown up" shoes, dresses and jewelry -- talk about a little girl's dream. I also absolutely loved my time with Scott Bryce, Lindsay Frost, and Patsy Bruder. During the summer months, production arranged it so that my brothers and sister were extras at the beach club. It was so fun for all of us to be on set together.

WLS: Steve and Betsy were one of the all-time great couples on AS THE WORLD TURNS. Fans remember your version of Dani very well from those days. Have you had any contact with either Betsy, Meg Ryan or Lindsay Frost, since your ATWT days?

CB: Thank you so much! It's so cool (not to mention flattering!) that people would remember me because I feel like it was so long ago. We did send letters for a little while, but there hasn't been any recent contact. After I left the show, my mom started graduate school and she was also raising four children at the time, so it was pretty chaotic in the Broomall household. I'm sure it would have been a lot easier to stay in touch if we had things like cell phones and Facebook back then!

WLS: Do your friends know you were cast as Meg Ryan's daughter as a baby? I would think that would be an interesting story at parties. :)

CB: It's actually really funny, because my life has had a lot of interesting chapters, and ATWT is just one of them, so it's not really something I share with people unless it comes up for some reason. I do remember one time during my senior year of college, I was at a party and Meg Ryan came up in conversation. I said something along the lines of, "It's so weird to think she played my mom on TV." One of my closest friends - I'd known her since freshman year - really thought I was joking around and didn't believe me until I took her upstairs to a computer! A few weeks before I graduated, my college newspaper did a
feature on me, so the word kind of spread and everyone joked that I'd been hiding a secret life all this time. More recently, people have been constantly telling me that I look just like Alison Sweeney (Sami from DAYS), so if I'm feeling silly, sometimes I'll respond with, "It's funny you say that, because I actually used to be on a soap
opera myself!"

WLS: What have you done in your years since ATWT?

CB: Well, the thing with my family is that we were only in the business to help us pay for our college educations, so our lives were always really normal. It was almost like going on auditions was an after-school activity like Girl Scouts or karate. I remember begging my mom to let me audition again, but it was time for her to pursue her career as a special education teacher. Plus, she knew that this business wasn't a place for any kid to spend their adolesence, so I just really threw myself into both my education and my extracurricular activities. During high school I played soccer and was class secretary - pretty normal stuff. After my freshman year of college, however, I got an internship at a teen magazine and absolutely loved it. Combining my love of writing with my love of entertainment was the perfect gig for me. I also think that I had a unique perspective when I interviewed these teen stars because my experience as a child actor helped me relate to them more. That internship led to many other
opportunities during college and I worked steadily in magazines up until college graduation, when I moved out to LA to work as an editor at Tiger Beat and BOP magazines. On a more personal note, I am really sad to say that my brother, Jim, was killed in a car accident in 1999 and my other brother, Tom, passed away last February. Going through something like that forces you to reevaluate everything in your life and so I decided to move back home to be closer to my family at the end of last summer. For a while, I was seriously considering going to graduate school and becoming a high school teacher, but I recently made the decision to go ahead and try and see if the acting world has any room for me. I also recently got a puppy and am training her to be a therapy dog, so I'm really excited about that.

WLS: Now that you are getting back into the acting scene, would you consider a role on a soap? What are your long-term aspirations in the industry?

CB: Oh my gosh, definitely! Only I'm not sure if they'd take me because it's been so long! Haha, but honestly, as cheesy as this might sound, I just want to make a difference. I think that some of us don't realize the power we have to make a difference in the world and it's so important to embrace that. When I would write articles for the teen magazines, I'd always pick topics that might empower and/or help a kid get through anything negative that might be happening in his or her life. I've been through a lot of difficult times myself and it's things like movies and television shows that help me forget about them for just a little while and make it possible for me to go on. If I can use my talents to do that for someone else, whether it's acting on a soap opera, hosting a TV show, or even appearing in a 30 second commercial that makes somebody smile, then I'd be absolutely thrilled. I also love to write and recently started working on a novel.

Updated "Suds Report"

Nelson Branco from TV Guide Canada has updated his weekly "Suds Report" with some breaking news.

Dena Higley quits!

New roles for Susan Lucci and Deidre Hall!

Are Hearst and Hickland out?

Ehlers and Goldin: Emmy winners?

Soap vet dead.

‘AMC’ aborts Colin!

Oh, no: Alden named co-head on ‘B&B’!

Lau joins ‘ATWT’, but another star fired!

News Brief

1991 ANOTHER WORLD and 2007 AS THE WORLD TURNS/GUIDING LIGHT coming to Hulu
TeleNext Media, Inc. announced on Friday its two long-running soap operas GUIDING LIGHT and AS THE WORLD TURNS, plus the classic soap opera ANOTHER WORLD, will be the first of the genre to make full episodes available for viewing on Hulu.com . Initially, viewers will be able to enjoy 18 full episodes of each show, with an additional three episodes going up on the site per week. GUIDING LIGHT will debut on July 25, 2008, AS THE WORLD TURNS on July 28, and ANOTHER WORLD on July 29.

"Our shows have always been media pioneers," said Brian T. Cahill, Senior Vice President and Managing Director of TeleNext Media Inc. "We were the first to transition from radio to television and the first to podcast. We are proud to be first here as well, and happy to do it with such a great strategic partner as Hulu."

Both GUIDING LIGHT and AS THE WORLD TURNS will debut on Hulu with episodes that originally aired on television on June 1, 2007 (on ATWT this was Noah's first episode). ANOTHER WORLD will debut with an episode that originally aired on May 10, 1991 and that is also the episode viewers last saw when the show more recently aired on SOAPnet (in the middle of the Cass/Kathleen/Frankie triangle and Anne Heche's last weeks on the show).

Soap Chat: The 80s Keep Calling
Could it be? Yet another star from the era that was 1980s television be making his way to the daytime arena? Following in the footsteps of Patrick Duffy (Stephen, THE BOLD AND THE BEAUTIFUL; ex-Bobby, DALLAS) and Joan Van Ark (ex-Gloria, THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS; ex-Valene, KNOTS LANDING) and Ted Shackelford (Jeffery, THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS; ex-William, THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS; ex-Gary, KNOTS LANDING) and Linda Gray (ex-Priscilla, THE BOLD AND THE BEAUTIFUL; ex-Sue Ellen, DALLAS) and Joan Collins (ex-Alexandra, GUIDING LIGHT; ex-Alexis, DYNASTY) comes a rumor that could have FAMILY TIES patriarch, Michael Gross joining THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS as the father of Michael Baldwin, portrayed by Emmy winner Christian Jules LeBlanc.

Subway sweethearts break up
Camille Hayton is the vivacious Aussie girl who captured a city's heart when a love-struck New York Romeo spotted her on the Subway and went to extraordinary lengths to track down his "dream girl." Hayton says she is still recognized about three times a week on the streets of Manhattan as "that girl" and the question is always the same: so what happened?

Sadly for romantics the world over, there was no fairytale ending for Ms Hayton and 22-year-old Brooklyn web designer Patrick Moberg, the couple New Yorkers dubbed "the Subway sweethearts."

She said she dated Moberg for about two months, but it just didn't work out. Last week, she had a small role as a waitress on AS THE WORLD TURNS.

Ex-EASTENDERS star wins home battle
Former EastEnders star Nicola Stapleton has won her High Court bid to have a house she bought from her fraudster father excluded from a confiscation order imposed on him.

Turkish soap opera flop takes Arab world by storm
A Turkish soap opera that flopped when first broadcast in its native Turkey three years ago has taken the Arab world by storm, provoking a flood of Gulf Arab tourists to Turkey that even includes royalty.

NOOR became an immediate hit when Saudi-owned MBC satellite television began airing it earlier this year, partly because of its unconventional usage of colloquial Arabic dubbing -- and because its blond-haired, blue-eyed leading man had women swooning.

So You Think You Know Your Soap?
Soaps are heating up in July. All of the Hollywood-based soaps are outdoors as much as possible, but New York soaps GUIDING LIGHT and AS THE WORLD TURNS have been leading the way.

Evening News

GENERAL HOSPITAL: Will NIGHT SHIFT 2 Be Nightmare 2?
Marlena De Lacroix writes: "The premiere of any show is at least supposed to be exciting, vamping you for the entire season. NS head writer Sri Rao has done a teenish soapish series for MTV, but this is really his first effort at a full-blown soap. His clunky, abysmally paced first episode showed that inexperience."

REVIEW: NIGH SHIFT Episode 1 "Crash"
Becca Thomas from Serial Drama writes: "I'm not saying it was perfect, but this season premiere of Night Shift did nothing to diminish my optimism about the second go-around for this show that previously led me to question the continuing necessity for cable television."

Deep Soap: Sex Education
Sara A. Bibel blogs: "Conservative activists warn that if you give teenagers access to birth control, it will encourage them to have sex. Thursday's episode of AS THE WORLD TURNS was a dramatization of this idea that Pat Robertson might find over the top. Janet (Julie Pinson) feared her sixteen year-old Liberty (Meredith Hagner) might end up getting pregnant, like she did back in high school. So she took her to the gynecologist to get condoms and birth control pills. That same day, she had sex with her fifteen year-old boyfriend Parker (Mick Hazen), who in soap fashion is both her adopted cousin and her mother's boyfriend's stepson. And I mean literally in bed. They were under the sheets. He was shirtless. She casually handed him a condom. Hazen is an authentic fifteen year-old. Hagner is a very young looking twenty-one year-old. At the risk of sounding like an old fart, eeew."

Mario Lopez Portrait Unveiled at Tony's DiNapoli

On July 24th, 2008 Mario Lopez (ex-Christian, THE BOLD AND THE BEAUTIFUL) had his very own portrait unveiled at the popular theater district Italian eatery, Tony DiNapoli's, in New York.

Will Maurice Benard re-sign with GH?
As fans know by now, GENERAL HOSPITAL is welcoming back Genie Francis (Laura), but are more stars on the way out? In the August 5 issue of Soap Opera Digest, Maurice Benard (Sonny) discusses contract negotiations, saying, "If I re-sign, I need to know what's gonna happen after I re-sign."

ABC names Kazi VP of synergy
ABC has named Nabil Kazi VP of synergy. Kazi, a 15-year veteran of Disney, will be responsible for synergy in all dayparts at the Alphabet, including building relationships with other Disney properties, including ESPN, SoapNet and the theme parks. He will report to co-exec veepees of marketing Michael Benson and Marla Provencio.

DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES presses the reset button
"I wanted to get back to where we were that very first season, where it's just the problems of some ordinary women ... small and relatable," said Marc Cherry, the show's creator and producer.