News Round-up: Clementine Ford, Jang Ja-yeon, NY Tax

Tragic star's sex claims rock TV and film industry
When Jang Ja-yeon killed herself at her home earlier last month, she did more than deprive South Korea of a wildly popular soap star. In a damning letter naming the men responsible for the distress that may have caused her to take her life aged 26, Jang heaped shame on the country’s entertainment industry with allegations of sexual abuse and exploitation.

In the seven-page letter, written a week before her death, the star of BOYS OVER FLOWERS, South Korea’s most avidly watched soap opera, chronicled the sexual and other favors she was expected to extend to progress in the cutthroat “Korean Wave” of TV and film.

INTERVIEW: Y&R's Clementine Ford (Mac)
Ford tells Michael Fairman at Advocate.com: "When I did the TV Guide interview I was angry because there is the whole perception now that I came out and I went back in. And what upset me was, I felt that because I did not 'come out' in that interview, I felt it was unfair to fans that bought the magazine expecting to get a tearful story that says 'I’m gay.' I thought it was misleading, and now because I was upset by that cover, I am apparently back in the closet and people hate me. Look, I am gay, and I just wanted there not to be this big emphasis on it."

N.Y. tax program gets one more year
Final score on the future of New York's production tax credit program: film 1, TV 0. A new $350 million in tax credits are due to be signed into the budget by Gov. David Paterson today, but the program is guaranteed to continue only for one year. Some biz-friendly lawmakers and industry leaders are worried that the extension to the tax credit program won't be enough to keep up the crucial influx of TV shows into New York. That limitation could prove much more harmful in 2009-10 than it would have in previous fiscal years.

JENNIFER GIBBONS: The Light Might Be Dimming
"If GUIDING LIGHT is canceled, no doubt I’ll mourn. In fact, I’ll even celebrate. How many shows stayed as long as it did? How many television shows can be passed down from generation to generation? It lasted through fourteen presidents, real-life drama that was at times frightening. Yet it lasted, so far for seventy-two years. And if that isn’t a legacy, I don’t know what is."

Turns Out People Aren’t Overly Outraged When It Comes To Lesbian Television Kisses
"Channel Seven says it has received fewer than 30 telephone calls nationally after screening the controversial 'lesbian kiss' episode of teen soapie HOME AND AWAY.

A Seven spokeswoman said last night that the calls were evenly split between those supporting the broadcast of the kiss and those raising concerns."

Host Your Own GREEK Viewing Party

In conjunction with the launch of the new season of the ABC Family original series GREEK, ABCFamily.com will be hosting weekly online viewing parties allowing fans to watch current episodes of the series simultaneously with others while chatting in real time.

Beginning today, March 31, fans of ABC Family’s hit series GREEK can visit ABCFamily.com to host their own Viewing Parties through View2Gether.com’s (www.view2gether.com) social viewing platform. View2gether.com’s unique synchronous streaming technology enables viewers to create an online lounge, meet other fans of GREEK customize content and watch and discuss current episodes of the popular ABC Family series together in real time, regardless of the viewers geographic location.

The GREEK Viewing Parties are integrated within ABCFamily.com’s popular community allowing fans to create their own parties with friends or meet other fans of the show and watch current episodes of the ABC Family series. In the coming weeks, members of the GREEK cast will be hosting their own viewing parties of their favorite episodes this season chatting directly with fans and giving behind the scenes details.

HOME AND AWAY Kiss Not Censored

The producers of Australian soap HOME AND AWAY did not censor a lesbian kiss between two of the characters on Tuesday night's episode, contrary to the prediction of local news media.

Newspapers belonging to Rupert Murdoch's News Ltd. had taken the lead in protesting the expected kiss, with one of them, the Melbourne tabloid Herald-Sun recently headlining, "Gay TV for kids." The News Ltd. newspapers reported over the weekend that Channel Seven officials had agreed to remove the scene following complaints from viewers

It turns out the kiss was short and sweet (see the end of the clip below). Thank you Channel Seven for not caving in.

Michael Logan on the GUIDING LIGHT Rumors

TV Guide's Michael Logan has weighed in on the GUIDING LIGHT cancellation rumors that TV Week stirred up on Sunday evening. Here's an excerpt.

Yet there’s been every reason to hold out hope. Bloom made a visit to the set of GL just a few weeks ago and — my moles tell me — strongly intimated that the soap would be getting a renewal. Even before that there was a growing sense of excitement behind the scenes, what with the return of fan fave Grant Aleksander (Phillip) and the feverish audience response to the latent-lesbian storyline involving Olivia (Crystal Chappell) and Natalia (Jessica Leccia). And, earlier this month, the soap took several cast members to shoot on location at Universal Studios theme park in Orlando, and flew in a bunch of press to cover the event. Thus, it’s no surprise that the TV Week report is said to have thrown GL executive producer Ellen Wheeler for one hell of a loop.

It’s not my intention to paint an inaccurately rosy picture here. For all I know, GL is as dead as Harry Truman. But do keep in mind that nothing has been officially decided here. And miracles do happen.

Read the complete article here.

Big Swings for Cable Ratings in Q1

Thirteen of ad-supported cable’s top 40 networks notched double-digit ratings gains in the first quarter of 2009, a period that was also marked by a few violent shifts in the other direction.

According to Nielsen ratings data for the three months ended March 29, while the first- and second-tier nets accounted for an aggregate 5.2 percent increase in nightly deliveries, a handful of networks sustained declines of 10 percent or more in prime.

The biggest average nightly audience belonged to USA Network followed by Fox News Channel, TNT and TBS. ABC Family also ranked in the top 10, up 16 percent to 1.41 million nightly viewers.

Also making great strides in Q1 09 were: Oxygen, which grew its nightly deliveries by 24 percent, averaging 444,000 viewers; Lifetime Movie Network (up 18 percent to 651,000) and SOAPnet (up 11 percent to 343,000).

SOAPnet Has Most Watched Quarter Ever

In a new ratings release out today, SOAPnet is reporting that 1Q09 ranks as the network's most-watched quarter ever, driven by record deliveries for ALL MY CHILDREN and THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS and near-record levels for ONE LIFE TO LIVE.

Day/Date Sales Prime (M-F, 7:00 p.m.-12:00 a.m.)

In 1Q09, powered by record deliveries for "All My Children" and a near-record performance for "One Life to Live," SOAPnet registered its largest quarterly audience on record in the key daypart in Total Viewers (455,000), and ranked second among all quarters in Women 18-49 (159,000).

Compared to 1Q08, SOAPnet jumped by 20% in Total Viewers (455,000 vs. 378,000) and by 17% in Women 18-49 (159,000 vs. 136,000).

THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS (M-F, 7:00-8:00 p.m.)

Growing its audience for the third straight quarter, THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS posted the show's best quarterly ratings ever on SOAPnet in Total Viewers (746,000) and Women 18-49 (254,000).

Versus year-ago levels, THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS improved by a hefty 45% in Total Viewers (746,000 vs. 513,000) and by 60% in Women 18-49 (254,000 vs. 159,000).

ALL MY CHILDREN (M-F, 8:00-9:00 p.m.)

Delivering its third consecutive quarter of growth, 1Q09 qualified as ALL MY CHILDREN's most-watched quarter ever in its nine years on SOAPnet in Total Viewers (468,000), and delivered the series' third-largest Women 18-49 quarterly audience ever (162,000).

Versus year-ago levels, ALL MY CHILDREN outperformed by 37% in both Total Viewers (468,000 vs. 342,000) and Women 18-49 (162,000 vs. 118,000).

ONE LIFE TO LIVE (M-F, 9:00-10:00 p.m.)

Boasting 1Q best deliveries, ONE LIFE TO LIVE tallied the show's second largest audience on SOAPnet ever in Total Viewers (410,000), behind only 4Q08. In Women 18-49, this was the series' third most-watched quarter on record in Women 18-49 (150,000).

Year-to-Year, ONE LIFE TO LIVE jumped by 19% in Total Viewers (410,000 vs. 344,000) and by 21% in Women 18-49 (150,000 vs. 124,000).

Source: Nielsen Media Research (National Ratings, 1Q09: 12/29/08-3/29/09, Most Current; Year-Ago, 1Q07: 12/31/07-3/30/08, L + 7.

As The Epic Turns


If you are in the New York City area or will be in town for the AS THE WORLD TURNS Fan Club luncheon weekend, check out the "As The Epic Turns" benefit on Friday and Saturday nights, April 17 and 18.

Stack and Brier Out at OLTL

SoapOperaDigest.com is reporting that both Chris Stack (Michael) and Kathy Brier (Marcie) have been let go by ONE LIFE TO LIVE.

FNL's Katims Says Some Stars Will Be Back

FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS executive producer Jason Katims spoke to TV Guide about his excitement at the show's two season renewal. He said some of the cast will definitely be back.

The Taylor family (Chandler, Teegarden and Connie Britton as Tami)…Jesse Plemons’ character, Landry, is a senior, so he’ll be back, and I want to make sure everybody comes back in some way, whether or not they’ll be there for every episode. We set a nice precedent with that last year in our story arcs with Gaius Charles (Smash) and Scott Porter (Jason). Even though they weren’t there for the whole season, they definitely left their mark on Season Three in a big way. If we feel we can’t service all the characters for the whole season, we’ll want to find meaty arcs for them to play.

I can't imagine this show without Matt and his grandma. They need to return. Katims goes on to talk about next season (spoiler included for those who haven't finished the NBC season yet).

I think there is a natural rivalry that’s going to be set up between East Dillon High and Dillon. Exactly how we play that out, I don’t know yet. I’m really committed to the idea we left with, of Coach Taylor being moved to East Dillon High School. That suggests a really interesting place for us to go story-wise. It will be FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS but gives us a fresh new pallet. We’ll be able to draw upon the characters we know and love – but meet new faces as well.

The set up for Season 4 is very intriguing. I can't wait to see how it plays out.

We Love Soaps March Madness: Champions

The 1st Annual We Love Soaps March Madness Couples Tournament has now wrapped up and GUIDING LIGHT's Olivia and Natalia have won the championship this year. In the finals, they defeated DAYS OF OUR LIVES' Bo and Hope by a landslide.

"Otalia" has knocked off soap heavyweight couples along the way including Y&R's Phyllyis and Nick, AMC's Angie and Jesse, and GH's Jason and Liz in a battle for the ages. The fans of this couple continue to show how passionate they are about Olivia and Natalia and GUIDING LIGHT. Congratulations on a well-earned victory.

Kudos also to fans of DAYS' Bo and Hope who knocked off top-seeded Robin and Patrick in the Elite 8 round and made a surprising run to the finals.

Thanks to everyone who participated this year. It has been a lot of fun to see these results play out, sometimes in unexpected ways.

As a prize for their victory, We Love Soaps will be playing Otalia content in our "Featured Video" section for the rest of the week - clips, music videos and interviews.

To see the final bracket, click the image below to enlarge.

HOME AND AWAY's Lesbian Kiss Sparks Controversy

The Australian reported on Friday that Channel 7 had bowed to pressure from conservative groups and censored a lesbian kissing scene from an episode of HOME AND AWAY.

Dozens of women protested at Federation Square about rumored censoring of the kiss, but Channel 7 denied tampering with the scene involving Esther Anderson and Katie Bell (Charlie and Joey). Channel 7 spokeswoman Susan Wood said: "Some viewers were in support of the storyline and some were concerned."

The show is broadcast in Australia at 7pm and is officially rated PG and attracts a young audience of around one million viewers. Australian media reports that ratings have slipped by one hundred thousand since the controversy around the storyline began.

Australian media commentator David Knox said that the PG ratings did not discriminate between gay and straight content. "It's sad that in 2009 a kiss is considered more threatening to advertisers and family values than stalkers, serial killers and kidnappers, all of which sustain Summer Bay story-lines on a regular basis."

A fan site for the show has now published the following note supposedly from the show: "A source on the show contacted us today to set the record straight, that the articles are completely unfounded and that the kiss will be airing on Tuesday night as originally planned."

Jess Walton Staying at Y&R

Soap Opera Weekly is reporting that Jess Walton has re-signed and will remain as THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS's Jill.

Perhaps she watched the videos on the Classic Brenda Dickson post yesterday and realized a great Jill has been replaced before and could be again.

Scott Porter Joins MASTERWORK

Scott Porter has joined Fox's drama pilot MASTERWORK. The show centers on an FBI agent (Matt Passmore), a specialist in the acquisition of stolen art. FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS alum Porter will play his cohort, also an agent tracking down international art thieves.

Chapman and Wheeler in TRAPPER JOHN

Judith Chapman (Gloria, THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS) and GUIDING LIGHT executive producer Ellen Wheeler both guest starred on the November 6, 1983, episode of TRAPPER JOHN, M.D. This is the earliest footage I've seen of Wheeler who debuted as Marley on ANOTHER WORLD in 1984. Chapman had left AS THE WORLD TURNS in 1978 and appeared on RYAN'S HOPE around this time. She joined GENERAL HOSPITAL as Ginny in 1984.

News Round-up: FNL, SOAPnet, UK's Steamiest, Otalia

FNL may film Seasons 4 and 5 back-to-back
FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS has struggled to find a mass audience, but has been critically lauded. The audience it does reach is largely an upscale demographic. Helping to make the pickup economically feasible is the fact FNL is produced efficiently in Austin, where it enjoys tax incentives. To keep costs even lower, the upcoming seasons might be filmed back-to-back. Season 4 will air next season, and Season 5 runs the following season.

Angela Bromstad, president of scripted programming at NBC and UMS, admitted that FNL would have been canceled without the DirectTV deal, brokered by NBC co-chairmen Ben Silverman and Marc Graboff. She added, though, that "it was important to keep this beloved, quality show alive because, while we need a bigger and broader audience, it's hopefully an indication of the type of shows we want to do at NBC."

CBS: Smaller Shows, Bigger Film Division
Nikki Finke writes: "I've just learned that CBS has demanded that each existing TV show -- even the hit ones -- reduce their budgets for next year, if renewed. This may mean smaller writing staffs."

EMMERDALE is UK's steamiest soap
A survey has found the countryside-set ITV show has an average of 1.8 sexually-related incidents every half-hour, narrowly beating teen drama HOLLYOAKS, which had 1.6 sexy moments.

INTERVIEW: DAYS' Jay Kenneth Johnson (Phillip), Shelly Henig (Stephanie) and, Molly Burnett (Melanie)
Hennig: Stephanie likes to change guys. She tries with all her heart. I think she’s hoping to bring out the best in Phillip. She sees past the Kiriakis in him and sees a genuine guy who is completely adorable with his dimples and is very caring.

Burnett: I’m a woman’s right activist and I think that for a young girl to have the guts to take [EJ and Tony] on is great. Melanie’s not usually afraid of guys because of the way she grew up.

Lynn Liccardo on GUIDING LIGHT
"CBS must do more to promote the show. I don't even know where to start talking about all of the things the network could be doing but isn't."

Ode to an OTALIA Widow
"OTALIA. I know, it sounds like a character in some Shakespearean tragedy, but the real tragedy is that OTALIA is a soap opera couple. This is not any soap opera couple, but a pairing of sex siren, Olivia Spencer, and self-martyred matron, Natalia Rivera. This is the kind of coupling that makes men weep and lesbians lose their collective minds."

Tonja Walker-Davidson joins "Raissa and Friends" benefit
The line-up has been announced for "Raissa and Friends - Not the Usual Suspects," a Cabaret Cares benefit to be held at the Laurie Beechman Theatre, on April 13. The show will star Raissa Katona Bennett, who will be joined by Emmy nominated soap star Tonja Walker-Davidson.

SOAPnet: The Television for Women we've been waiting for?
Jennifer Armstrong of Entertainment Weekly writes: "Having spent a weekend glued to SoapNet, I'm pleased to say I think I might've found the closest thing we've got to TV for Smart Women Who Still Don't Take Themselves Deadly Seriously.

Soaps March: When a House Is Not a Home
Marlena De Lacroix writes: "Are you a loyalist who didn’t feel so loyal to soaps in March? And how does that make you feel? I feel … homeless."

PREVIEW: Tonight's 90210

90210 returns tonight on The CW at 9pm ET/PT.

In an attempt to get close to Liam (guest star Matt Lanter), Naomi (AnnaLynne McCord) offers to be his math tutor, but she gets more than she bargains for when he takes her out for a wild night.

Silver (Jessica Stroup) takes a class assignment a little too far when she creates a video that documents her love for Dixon (Tristan Wilds). When Silver screens the video for her fellow students, everyone, including Ryan (Ryan Eggold), is shocked when they see Dixon and Silver in an intimate situation. Upon seeing the reaction of everyone around her, Silver blames Ryan for the situation.

Ethan (Dustin Milligan) and Annie’s (Shenae Grimes) relationship remains rocky but more problems arise when Adrianna (Jessica Lowndes) reveals that Rhonda (guest star Aimee Teegarden) and Ethan shared a kiss at the dance.

Harry (Rob Estes) and Debbie (Lori Loughlin) are surprised to learn that Annie quit the school play in order to spend more time with Ethan.

Today's Soap World Birthdays

Shirley Jones (ex-Colleen, DAYS OF OUR LIVES) - 75
Christopher Walken (ex-Mike, GUIDING LIGHT) - 66
Anne Marie Howard (ex-Nicole, ANOTHER WORLD; ex-Kimberly, DAYS OF OUR LIVES) - 49
Emma Atkins (ex-Charity, EMMERDALE) - 34

The Latest in Soap Videos

Here are some of the latest soap videos to hit the web.

OTALIA: Olivia nursed a major hangover and dealt with Phillip on Monday's GUIDING LIGHT. Meanwhile, Frank and Natalia told Rafe they were getting married. Watch Part 2, Part 3, Part 4.

DAYS OF OUR LIVES: Lexie sensed something was wrong with Tony (who had just been visited by Nicole) on Monday's episode so she gave him a notepad to write down what it was. Later, when he was along with EJ, Tony began to write.

GLAAD MEDIA AWARDS: Ben Harvey and queerty.com talk to celebrities at Saturday's event including ATWT's Van Hansis and Jake Silbermann.

ALL MY CHILDREN: Zach beat Ryan in a tense game of Texas Hold 'Em on Monday's show.




BONUS:
Jay Brannan, an actor/singer who recently auditioned for ATWT, has released a new video for his song "Can't Have It All."

ABC/SOAPnet Video Hitting YouTube

The Walt Disney Co. said Monday it has agreed to provide short-form videos from its ABC and ESPN television properties to run on Google Inc.'s YouTube under an ad-revenue sharing arrangement. Financial details of the arrangment were not disclosed, except that Disney Media Networks will be able to sell advertising attached to its content. Google and Disney will split ad revenue generated from the partnership.

Disney will create YouTube "channels" launching next month and the following month for ESPN, ABC Entertainment, ABC News, ABC Family and SOAPnet. It also has the option to create channels for specific TV shows.

Content will be short-form only, each piece running five minutes long or less, and will include behind-the-scenes action from ABC shows, interviews with celebrities, sneak-peaks of upcoming episodes and recaps of episodes already aired. A sample show at Youtube now from ESPN is a four-minute segment about fantasy baseball.

Disney has yet to announce a deal with YouTube to share full episodes of programs.

GREEK is Back!

Now that THE SECRET LIFE OF THE AMERICAN TEENAGER has wrapped up it's first season, ABC Family premiered the new season of GREEK tonight to fill the void. And GREEK filled that void admirally.

GREEK has always been a fun and engaging show and this episode, "Take Me Home Cyprus Rhodes," was no different. The hour really flew by which is a good sign. The show does drama well but there is always a hint of comedy. And then at times it's purely comical.

Spencer Grammer continues to shine as Casey, showing a spark that never came through when she played Lucy on AS THE WORLD TURNS.

Tonight's episode began a new school year. Casey's D.C. internship wasn't all it was cracked up to be and she wanted to make some changes. She rented an off-campus apartment, but by the end of the show, she had decided to stay at the ZBZ house and Rusty and Dale were sharing the new pad. Speaking of Rusty, he wanted to live at the KT house, but he just couldn't mesh with the routine of the rowdy bunch, including the always hysterical Beaver.

In a surprising twist, Rebecca turned out to be a spy for the ZBZ's in Frannie's new soririty, IKI (or "icky" if you're Casey and Ashleigh).

Jesse McCartney debuted as Andy, a freshman friend of Calvin's, who was caught in a battle between the KTs and Omega Chis. He had significant airtime but didn't make a huge impact on this episode. The previews show he will definitely be heavily involved in the action though.

If you're not watching GREEK, check it out. It's good soapy fun and escapism.

INTERVIEW: Stage, TV and Film Star Patrika Darbo, Part 2

In Part 1 of the We Love Soaps interview with Patrika Darbo, the former soap star talked about her background, moving to Los Angeles and becoming a full-time actress, and her many guest appearances on primetime shows.

In Part 2, she discusses her recent role on DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES, her film career and her years on DAYS OF OUR LIVES.

We Love Soaps: You turned up on DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES a few weeks ago. I enjoyed your scenes with Eva Longoria Parker as Gabby's seamstress.
Patrika Darbo: She was very sweet. I enjoyed the show very much. I said to her just before I left, 'I want to thank you because, as a guest star, someone that comes on a show that you like to see each week, you hope the experience will be good. And it was.' She was very gracious and made it very easy, and she was very nice. I carried away a nice experience all the way around.

Everybody said to me, 'Do you think you'll be back?', and I didn't even think of that. The character said she had been with her [Gabrielle] for years. I'll be there in a heartbeat if they call.

CONFIRMED: FNL Gets Two-Season Pickup

The best show on television, FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS, has been renewed for two seasons according to Variety. Finally some good news to celebrate today.

It's official: NBC and DirecTV have come to terms on a two-season, 26-episode pickup of FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS.

Deal calls for the Imagine TV/Universal Media Studios drama skein to continue through a fourth and fifth season of 13 episodes each. As they did this season, FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS's third, DirecTV will get the first shot at airing the segs commercial-free before they bow on NBC. The negotiations between the Peacock and DirecTV hit a roadblock last week but ultimately resumed and the agreement was reached today.

Hopefully the GUIDING LIGHT renewal announcement will be next.

Dustin Milligan Leaving 90210

Michael Ausiello is reporting that Dustin Milligan will not be returning to the role of Ethan on The CW's 90210 in the fall, at least not full-time.

Reps for The CW and producer Paramount declined comment, but a 90210 insider confirms that Milligan's contract option is not being picked up for next season. The source adds that the door is being left open for the actor to briefly appear in the fall to wrap up Ethan's story.

All indications are that Milligan's exit was strictly a creative decision. "Everyone loves Dustin," maintains the insider. "There was just a feeling that the character had run its course."

News Round-up: FNL Decision, Spelling, Turner, Nuke

FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS: Show's fate expected to be settled Monday
One way or another, Monday should be a big day for FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS fanatics. A final decision is expected to come from NBC and DirecTV on a two-season, 26-episode pickup of the acclaimed drama series.

Earlier this month, all signs were pointing to the Peacock and the satcaster were closing in on a deal to save the Imagine TV/Universal Media Studios series, but then early last week there was a hiccup over money, specifically the fee that DirecTV would pay for the right to air the episodes first, commercial-free, as the marquee offering on its 101 Network channel.

Zach Gilford: "They kind of left it open"
On if he would be back for a fourth season of FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS: "I don't know. They kind of left it open. They told me, 'We're not sure what we're going to do if we come back, yadda, yadda, yadda.' So I have no clue. I can see it going either way. Matt can go off to college or he can stay and take care of grandma. They have options. It's just a matter of what they feel like doing."

Kathleen Turner heats up CALIFORNICATION
Former THE DOCTORS star Kathleen Turner is joining Showtime's CALIFORNICATION for a recurring arc during the dramedy's upcoming third season.

Tori Spelling: "It was never about money"
During her two back-to-back episodes, which she filmed on the show's Hermosa Beach set last month, you'll learn that Donna has returned to Beverly Hills from Japan, where she's living with hubby David Silver (Brian Austin Green) and their new baby and working as a fabulous fashion designer.

As for the rumors about her refusal to return to the series until she was offered the same salary as Garth and Doherty, Spelling says it's all hogwash.

"That was all a build up in the press, such hearsay," she says. "It was never about money -- I still, to this day, have no idea about what Jennie and Shannen made or make, so it clearly wasn't an issue."

ATWT's Hansis and Silbermann on their new storyline
Silbermann: "Something is coming that would normally test a relationship, but they both go over it really quickly."

Hansis: "There's a bunch of kisses — well, maybe not a bunch, but some — that involve either one or the other of Luke or Noah ... but not the two of them together."

Yvonne Perry cancer update
"I remember years ago, when I was still on the soap [AS THE WORLD TURNS], thinking that I just wanted a scene where I was in a hospital bed and had those little oxygen tubes up my nose. Don’t ask me why. . . I think I thought of those clear plastic tubes as a rite of passage into true daytime television. Like - I couldn’t ever claim to have been on a soap opera unless I had videotape of myself lying in a hospital bed to prove it. Oh, the drama!

Then came the storyline I’d been waiting for. My character got in a big car accident, and I was thrown from my vehicle. I was found unconscious and not breathing by the side of the road, and had to be resuscitated via mouth to mouth.
Then my car exploded. It was all very dramatic. Sure enough, the next scene found me lying in a hospital bed. I’d finally earned my little oxygen tubes! Give me my oxygen tubes, I wasn’t breathing! But I was denied. Denied! No little oxygen tubes up my nose. In fact, I had an instantaneous recovery and was bouncing around on screen by the next episode. God, I was pissed.

Now, it’s hard for me to imagine even the idea of romanticizing being prone in a hospital bed.

Yesterday I was admitted into the ambulatory center at around two pm to get prepped for my final (hopefully!) surgery. I peed into the cup for the mandatory pregnancy test. I changed into the well-worn gown. I got my IV plugged into a vein in my arm. I put on my little hair cap. And I waited."

Hazen/Sanders Win Young Artist Awards

AS THE WORLD TURNS' Mick Hazen (Parker) won a Young Artist Award on Sunday at the 30th annual ceremony.

Here is a list of the soap-related nominees and the winners (in red italics) that I know. I will update this post once I have the complete list of winners.

BEST PERFORMANCE IN A TV SERIES - Recurring Young Actor
Eddie Alderson (ONE LIFE TO LIVE)
Preston Bailey (DEXTER)
Aaron Hart (MAD MEN)
Mick Hazen (AS THE WORLD TURNS) - Winner
Joey Luthman (WEEDS)
Dylan Minnette (SAVING GRACE)
Terrell Ransom Jr. (DAYS OF OUR LIVES)
Connor Stanhope (SMALLVILLE)
Austin Williams (ONE LIFE TO LIVE)

BEST PERFORMANCE IN A TV SERIES - Recurring Young Actress
Kristen Alderson (ONE LIFE TO LIVE)
Darcy Rose Byrnes (THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS)
Danielle Hanratty (THE UNIT)
Haley Ramm (WITHOUT A TRACE)
Christina Robinson (DEXTER)
Erin Sanders (THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS) - Winner
Kiernan Shipka (MAD MEN)
Mackenzie Smith (TERMINATOR: THE SARAH CONNOR CHRONICLES)
Brittany Underwood (ONE LIFE TO LIVE)

OUTSTANDING YOUNG PERFORMERS IN A TV SERIES
THE BILL ENGVALL SHOW - TBS - Winner
Skyler Gisondo, Graham Patrick Martin, Jennifer Laurence


CORY IN THE HOUSE - Disney Channel
Jason Dolley, Kyle Massey, Madison Pettis, Jake Thomas

iCARLY - Nickelodeon
Miranda Cosgrove, Nathan Kress, Jeanette McCurdy, Noah Munck

ONE LIFE TO LIVE - ABC
Eddie Alderson, Kristen Alderson, Camila Banus, Carmen Lo Porto, Austin Williams

BEST PERFORMANCE IN A TV SERIES (Comedy or Drama) - Leading Young Actor
Jake T. Austin (WIZARDS OF WAVERLY PLACE)
Jamie Johnston (DEGRASSI)
Nathan Kress (iCARLY)
Graham Patrick Martin (THE BILL ENGVALL SHOW) - Winner
Nat Wolff (THE NAKED BROTHERS BAND)

BEST PERFORMANCE IN A TV SERIES (Comedy or Drama) - Leading Young Actress
Miranda Cosgrove (iCARLY) - Winner
Miley Cyrus (HANNAH MONTANA)
Selena Gomez (WIZARDS OF WAVERLY PLACE)
Taylor Momsen (GOSSIP GIRL)
Vanessa Morgan (THE LATEST BUZZ)
Shailene Woodley (THE SECRET LIFE OF THE AMERICAN TEENAGER)

BEST PERFORMANCE IN A TV SERIES (Comedy or Drama) - Supporting Young Actor
Moises Arias (HANNAH MONTANA)
Skyler Gisondo (THE BILL ENGVALL SHOW)
Mark Indelicato (UGLY BETTY)
Ryan Malgarini (GARY UNMARRIED)
Larramie Shaw (TYLER PERRY'S HOUSE OF PAYNE) - Winner

Classic Brenda Dickson

Here are some great Brenda Dickson clips from YouTube. Some of my favorite work of hers on THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS as Jill Foster was from the 70s which is rare online, but the first two clips have nice flashbacks to that time. I had forgotten about Jill's bought with depression and how John was going to send her away for "shock treatment".




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Soap Fans Say "Save Our Soaps"

EDITOR'S NOTE: I'm re-posting this topic from FRIDAY in light of this morning's news. One daytime soap going off the air would be bad news for them all. If you care about the industry, now is the time to act.

With the constant threat of our daytime soaps being taken off the air, new efforts are being initiated by soap fans who are trying to mobilize fellow fans into doing something about it. I want to highlight a few of those efforts here. If there are others please post them in the comments and I will add to this post. Spread the word!

Keep the LIGHT Shining!

"Join the KEEP THE LIGHT ON CAMPAIGN! Please print and send some of the postcards found in the photo section. We want to flood the studio with our POSITIVE support! Don't forget to let CBS know we want to KEEP THE LIGHT ON!"

These dedicated longtime fans urge GL fans everywhere to be vocal in support of the 72-year-old show. There are many different postcards here than can be easily printed off to send to the executives at CBS.

Don't Cancel AS THE WORLD TURNS

"Nearly all of us support Proctor and Gamble on a daily basis by stocking our homes and offices with their food, body care products, and appliances. Whether or not the rumors of cancellation are true, AS THE WORLD TURNS fans are coming together to send this unified message to Procter and Gamble: We support you, please support us by not canceling As the World Turns."

Fans are posting pictures with their favorite P&G products.

And in a soap-esque effort which many peopled have contacted me about, KYLE XY fans want to save that show as well despite the fact that it recently aired its final episode.

Save The Tub
Save The Tub - Save Kyle XY

TV Guide Canada's "Nelson Ratings" - Tricia Cast Returns


The latest "Nelson Ratings" from TV Guide Canada's Nelson Branco are now online.

Branco names the top soaps, storylines and moments to watch this week, as well as the top actors, actresses and duos.

He also reveals that Tricia Cast wil be returning to THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS as Nina later this spring or early summer.

Manhattanites DVD Cover & Preview


Manhattanites will be released on DVD on May 6. Information about where to order will be published in the next couple of weeks. The film stars a number of recognizable soap actors. Here's a preview of the stories in the film.

Marilyn Marsden (Ilene Kristen, ABC's ONE LIFE TO LIVE) is an entertainment lawyer representing up and coming artist Matt Malone (Forbes March, MUTANT X). Everything in her life is just right, with a prominent career and her engagement to Family Focus Magazine Editor-in-Chief Blake Whitney (Lev Gorn, HBO's THE WIRE).

Gretchen Styles (Caroline Hay, The Trial of Jack) is a waitress at a seedy midtown diner. Her dreams of a career as a television news reporter are fading until a chance encounter with anchorman Kyle Carpenter (Aiden Turner, ABC's ALL MY CHILDREN) changes her whole world.

Hannah Richards (Newcomer Tasha Guevara) is a secretary at TM productions and spends her days planning her perfect wedding. She has a job she enjoys, is engaged to the man of her dreams and thinks the world is a beautiful place. In her rose-colored eyes, everything is falling into place just as she planned.

But are things always as they seem? In a city of 8 million people...
are we living in mere coincidence? What is coincidence?

Featuring hilarious appearances by Alex McCord (BRAVO's THE REAL HOUSEWIVES OF NEW YORK) and Jill Larson (ABC's ALL MY CHILDREN).

manhattanitesthemovie.com.

51st TV Week Logie Award Nominations Announced


The nominations for Australia's 51st TV Week Logie Awards have been announced. Stars from HOME AND AWAY AND NEIGHBOURS have been nominated.

TV WEEK SILVER LOGIE — Most Popular Actress
Rebecca Gibney (PACKED TO THE RAFTERS, Channel Seven)
Jodi Gordon (HOME AND AWAY, Channel Seven)
Simmone Jade Mackinnon (MCLEOD'S DAUGHTERS, Nine Network)
Kate Ritchie (HOME AND AWAY, Channel Seven)
Kat Stewart (UNDERBELLY, Nine Network)

TV WEEK SILVER LOGIE — Most Popular Actor
Gyton Grantley (UNDERBELLY, Nine Network)
Todd Lasance (HOME AND AWAY, Channel Seven)
Mark Priestley (ALL SAINTS, Channel Seven)
Ian Smith (NEIGHBOURS, Network Ten)
Erik Thomson (PACKED TO THE RAFTERS, Channel Seven)

MOST POPULAR NEW FEMALE TALENT
Kirsty Lee Allan (SEA PATROL, Nine Network)
Rebecca Breeds (HOME AND AWAY, Channel Seven)
Ricki-Lee Coulter (AUSTRALIAN IDOL, Network Ten)
Jessica Marais (PACKED TO THE RAFTERS, Channel Seven)
Margot Robbie (NEIGHBOURS, Network Ten)

MOST POPULAR NEW MALE TALENT
Dean Geyer (NEIGHBOURS, Network Ten)
George Houvardas (PACKED TO THE RAFTERS, Channel Seven)
Matt Lee (SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE AUSTRALIA, Network Ten)
Jordan Rodrigues (HOME AND AWAY, Channel Seven)
Hugh Sheridan (PACKED TO THE RAFTERS, Channel Seven)

MOST POPULAR AUSTRALIAN DRAMA
HOME AND AWAY (Channel Seven)
MCLEOD'S DAUGHTERS (Nine Network)
NEIGHBOURS (Network Ten)
PACKED TO THE RAFTERS (Channel Seven)
UNDERBELLY (Nine Network)

The winners will be announced on May 3 in a ceremony in Melbourne.

News Round-up: AMC Cross-Platform, Greg Rikaart, Cable

Online Initiative Takes ALL MY CHILDREN Cross Platform
All My Children has launched an Internet initiative to enhance international broadcast licensee opportunities for cross-platform monetization. AMC creator Agnes Nixon, together with Toronto-based The Fremantle Corporation, are also presenting opportunities to participate in additional revenue streams such as merchandising and DVD sales, linking up with the www.AgnesNixon.com website, texting opportunities and measurement apparatus.

The goal is to enhance the value of the soap to broadcasters through a cross platform Internet expansion to help promote, expand access and add value for advertisers, viewers and broadcasters, while maintaining geographic exclusivities.

What's Keeping Cable Network Execs Up at Night
Broadcasting & Cable spoke with several cable network chiefs to take their temperature on the challenges they face. From those conversations emerged five things that they had better keep an eye on, or risk losing their lofty status within the TV industry.

The GREEK life is good for Spencer Grammer
Spencer Grammer, in New York for a few days before a trip to Hawaii, has just finished a 10-month, 13-hour-day shooting schedule for GREEK. "I think I have more confidence now than I did (during Season 1)," says Grammer.

She calls her previous experience on soap opera AS THE WORLD TURNS "too serious." Comedy, she says, "is the unrelenting drive to make something real."

INTERVIEW: Y&R's Greg Rikaart (Kevin)
Rikaart tells the "Soap Shrink" Damon L. Jacobs, "I’d like to see some tension and conflict between Kevin and Jana. coupleI don’t like playing him content. I don’t find that interesting. Recently Jana and Daniel have had some scenes together. And Kevin and Amber have had scenes together. So they may be toying with something there. I’d be really interested in seeing him become a dad, and the anxiety I’m sure he would have over rearing a child and hopefully not making the same mistakes. But I don’t think that would be a complete blessing, I think he would have a tough time with that."

GREY'S Meredith and Derek to get married May 7
At a party marking the filming of GREY'S ANATOMY's 100th episode, series creator Shonda Rhimes confirmed that the milestone hour will air May 7 — and indicated that it might feature the nuptials of the show's central couple.

"The only thing I'll tell you about the 100th [episode] is that it takes place on Meredith and Derek's wedding day," Rhimes told the Associated Press at the show's celebration.

CBS Shopping for GUIDING LIGHT Replacement?

According to a new article published by TV Week's Josef Adalian, CBS may soon decide to pull the plug on GUIDING LIGHT.

In the most significant indication that the network is seriously pondering life without GUIDING LIGHT, CBS has been talking to outside studios about potential replacement programming for the show, sources said.

Possibilities under discussion include both game shows and talk shows. CBS could easily cut its programming costs for the hour in half by switching away from a scripted drama.

Representatives for CBS and P&G declined comment.

In addition to contracting with an outside studio for programming to replace LIGHT, CBS daytime chief Barbara Bloom has been developing possible in-house candidates for the soap opera’s slot.

It’s possible P&G or CBS could attempt to keep the show alive in some form on the Internet, though doing so likely would require another radical reinvention of its production model.

If you would like to write Barbara Bloom and let her know you do not want to see GUIDING LIGHT off the air, here is the addresss:

Barbara Bloom
Senior VP, CBS Daytime Programs
CBS Television
7800 Beverly Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90036

Writing to Bloom's boss, Nina Tassler (President, CBS Entertainment), might also be a good idea. Tassler reports to Nancy Tellem, President, CBS Paramount Network Television Entertainment Group.

SNEAK PEAK: Zac & Zoe on AS THE WORLD TURNS

On Thursday, April 2, Nicholas Galbraith and Melinda Sullivan will debut on AS THE WORLD TURNS as Zac and Zoe Finn, twins who offer to help Luke and Noah with the Luke Snyder Foundation.

Originally from Abilene, Texas, Galbraith received a B.F.A. from The University of North Carolina School of the Arts in 2007 and has extensive theater experience. Sullivan toured as an original cast member of Disney's "High School Musical" and was part of the 25th Anniversary Tour of "CATS". She also is an exceptional tap dancer.

The arrival of these talented actors as Zac and Zoe is a promising new twist in the ongoing Luke and Noah saga. Van Hansis (Luke) teased in the April 7 issue of Soap Opera Weekly that, "One goes after Luke and one goes after Noah. Zack and Zoe are pretty fun characters, and nothing like Oakdale's seen in a while."

AS THE WORLD TURNS won a second consecutive GLAAD Media Award on Saturday as "Outstanding Daily Drama" and is making another run at it this year.

If you can't wait until Thursday to see Zac and Zoe in action, We Love Soaps has obtained an exclusive sneak peak of their debut scene that you can watch below.


For more information on AS THE WORLD TURNS, visit astheworldturns.net or CBS.com.

You can watch the show weekdays on CBS. Check your local listings for times.

PREVIEW: Tonight's GREEK

Summer is over and the students of Cyprus-Rhodes University are back on campus in all new episodes of the ABC Family hit series GREEK, premiering tonight (8:00 – 9:00 PM ET/PT). Jesse McCartney joins the cast in the premiere episode, “Take Me Home Cyprus Rhodes” (directed by Michael Lange and written by Jessica O’Toole & Amy Rardin.)

After her summer internship, Casey (Spencer Grammer) returns to campus with secret plans to move out of the ZBZ house. However she fears hurting Ashleigh (Amber Stevens) at a time when she needs her most, as the drama with Frannie’s (Tiffany Dupont) new sorority is heating up, causing Ashleigh to enlist a secret spy – a spy that Casey isn’t sure can truly be trusted.

Meanwhile Calvin (Paul James) introduces his high school friend and new Cyprus-Rhodes freshman Andy (Jesse McCartney) to Rusty, who takes an instant liking to him and encourages Andy to join KT. But Andy gets locked in an epic battle for brotherhood, as Evan (Jake McDorman), upon seeing just how in demand Andy is on campus, wants him join Omega Chi. What lengths will Calvin and Rusty go to to win Andy’s pledge?

Having spent his summer as a camp counselor, alongside guest star Ken Marino, Rusty (Jacob Zachar) begins his sophomore year on campus by finally moving into the Kappa Tau house. However, he struggles to reconcile how he will balance the pressures of his engineering major with living in the fraternity.

Today's Soap World Birthdays

Justin Deas (Buzz, GUIDING LIGHT; ex-Keith, SANTA BARBARA; ex-Tom, AS THE WORLD TURNS; ex-Bucky, RYAN'S HOPE) - 61
Ian Ziering (ex-Erich, THE DOCTORS; ex-Cam, GUIDING LIGHT; ex-Steve, BEVERLY HILLS, 90210) - 45
Mark Consuelos (ex-Mateo, ALL MY CHILDREN) - 38

News Round-up: Cady, Thaao, N.Y. Tax Credit

N.Y. state eyes $350 mil for productions
New York would free up an additional $350 million for an existing film and TV production tax credit program under a budget agreement reached in Albany over the weekend. Industry folks said, though, that the funding is a small Band-Aid for the short-term rather than a long-term solution. Their main concern: The new funding won't attract and bind TV shows to the state, and it likely will run out within less than a year.

CORONATION STREET story to highlight dangers of fire
Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service have recently worked in collaboration with the producers of CORONATION STREET to highlight the dangers of accidental fires in the home and the importance of maintaining a working smoke alarm. In a plot due to be broadcast tomorrow Monday night, Peter Barlow falls asleep with a cigarette, after having a drink, setting the flat on fire where he and Simon his son live. It is discovered that the smoke alarm in the flat has also had the battery removed.

Cady McClain: This story "has a message that I believe"
"I guess that in a long career of working in daytime, returning feels good in a whole new way. I don’t feel jaded about the business, I feel like I know who I am now, and what I care about, and this just happens to be a medium that (with the right story) allows me to express that caring. I don’t feel like I am at the mercy of show business anymore. I feel like I have made a choice to do this story because it has a message that I believe in and that feels very empowering. I feel proud of myself, and that is a feeling that I would hope for all young people to have."

Thaao Penghlis: "I'm sure they won't be leaving their imaginations to science"
"Did an interview with Stephanie at SOD the other day. She certainly liked the work. I said somethings, and the way they come out, I'm even surprised concerning the show and circumstances that brought about Tony's exit. I now have a better idea who was responsible and their connection to JR. But its done and the way it was executed story wise could have been a little more heroic and a little less convenient. I'm sure they won't be leaving their imaginations to science."

Jesse McCartney wins Kids' Choice Award
GREEK's Jesse McCartney claimed the favorite male singer prize at Nickelodeon's 22nd annual Kids' Choice Awards.

INTERVIEW: Y&R's Jerry Douglas
Douglas appeared on "Olivia Wilder Times" on March 20 discussing Y&R, Maria Bell and the soap industry.

Shilpa Shetty to join EASTENDERS?
CELEBRITY BIG BROTHER star Shilpa Shetty is reported to be in talks with the BBC1 soap opera’s producers about joining the cast. Shetty, whose BIG BROTHER row with the late Jade Goody made headlines across the world two years ago, is thought to have bought a £10million mansion in Weybridge, Surrey, recently.

We Love Soaps March Madness Tourney: Finals

Two close matchups took center stage in the Final Four round of voting in the 1st Annual We Love Soaps March Madness Couples Tournament. I am completely blown away by the dedication of the fans of all the couples who are involved. DAYS' Bo and Hope continued their run by knocking off GL's Bill and Lizzie in their semifinal contest. Meanwhile, GL's Olivia and Natalia outlasted GH's Jason and Liz in the battle of the century. What a slugfest. I counted the results multiple times. There were some repeat votes which made it difficult, along with some votes in other posts and some emailed votes as well.

It's going to be an uphill battle for Bo and Hope in the finals but they have surprised me two rounds in a row so anything is possible.

In honor of the Jason and Liz fans who have been incredible, I would love to hear from you to help spread your message. Consider this an invitation to write a Guest Column on your favorite couple. Your support in this tournament and in various polls I've seen proves how dedicated you are, and you can probably write a much better article on why you love this couple than I could. Email me at editor@welovesoaps.com if you are interested.

Voting for the finals will end on Tuesday, March 31 at Noon ET. The winner will be announced shortly after the voting has concluded. Vote by picking the couple of your choice in the comments of this post: Bo/Hope or Olivia/Natalia.

(click to enlarge)

REVIEW: "The Kettlebell Way to Your Perfect Body"

In an effort to finally begin one my New Year's resolutions for 2009, I tried "The Kettlebell Way to Your Perfect Body" Volume 1 developed by GUIDING LIGHT's Beth Chamberlin (Beth) who highly recommends it.

The following is an overview of the DVD and my review of the workout.

Product Description: "The Kettlebell Way to Your Perfect Body" is a 40-minute workout led by Americas foremost kettlebell expert, Anthony Diluglio and kettlebell enthusiast, actress Beth Chamberlin.

This follow-along workout is turn-key. It contains a tutorial and a forty-minute workout that allows the user to safely and effectively begin using this product right out of the box. The program works for men as well as women. Different sized kettlebells are the differentiating factors between individual users.

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Cost: $49.95

Preview: Round 7 - Clean & Press

DVD Options: The DVD is well put togehter and includes a heartfelt introduction from Chamberlin and an introduction to how the project came to be. Chamberlin financed the DVD and asked Anthony Diluglio to help her with it.

Next there is a Tutorial option to learn the moves before you begin. Then you start the actual workout which begins with a warm up, 14 exercise rounds and a bonus round.

The DVD menu also includes links to both Chamberlin's and Diluglio's websites.

My Workout and Review: One thing I loved about the DVD right away was Beth Chamberlin's introduction. She convinced me that this workout was something worth trying and you only needed to do it twice a week. Only one kettlebell is needed and being able to work out at home is a big plus, both from a time and cost perspective. I have limited time and committing to going to the gym never seems to work for me.

Despite Chamberlin's warning, I initially purchased a kettlebell that was too heavy so I had to return it and downgrade the weight. But the workout isn't focused on the weight of the kettlebell, it's about the motions you are putting your body through and combining cardiovascular and strength training.

The tutorial was very helpful for me. I've heard about kettlebell workouts for a while, but was not familiar with the excercises. Maintaining proper form is very important and something I have struggled with at the gym. When you start the workout, Diluglio does a quick review of the exercises and then he and Beth go through the moves.

During each round of exercises a time bar appears on the left hand side of the screen to let you know how much time remains.

Another thing I like about the workout is that you are moving from one exercise to another and it's easy to stay engaged. If I get on a treadmill, I tend to get bored after a few minutes. That doesn't happen with the kettlebell program.

I will admit it took me a bit longer to do the workout than Chamberlin and Diluglio, mostly because I am out of shape. But I can easily see the benefits of doing the workout and how it would become easier over time.

In summary, if you're looking for a workout program and others have not worked for you in the past, this routine works for both women and men, doesn't require a lot of time and is cost effective and easy to use. If I can do it, you can too.

The Latest in Soap Videos

Here are some of the latest soap videos to hit the web.

GLAAD AWARDS: Interviews from the red carpet at last night's event in New York including AS THE WORLD TURNS star Van Hansis and Jake Silbermann.

JESEE MCCARTNEY IN GREEK: The former ALL MY CHILDREN actor debuts on the new season of GREEK on Monday night.

THE DEATH OF MIKE ROY: In a classic ALL MY CHILDREN scene, one of Erica's many loves dies in the hospital after declaring his love her her.

YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS: Kay's DNA results were delivered on Friday. This is the full episode.


90210 Cast Holds Press Conference to Promote Return


Michael Steger, Tristan Wilds, Ryan Eggold, Dustin Milligan, Shenae Grimes, AnnaLynne McCord, Jessica Stroup and Jessica Lowndes participated in the 90210 press conference at the Four Seasons Hotel on Thursday in Beverly Hills. After a hiatus, 90210 returns on Tuesday at 9pm ET/PT on The CW.

News Round-up: Michael Easton, Jack Wagner, Gordon

INTERVIEW: ONE LIFE TO LIVE's Michael Easton (John)
His book of poetry, “Eighteen Straight Whiskeys,” is in its third printing. And in June 2008, he released his first graphic novel, “Soul Stealer.”

“This is one of the things that I’ve ever done where I feel like I’ve done something beautiful and pure. It’s the closest I’ll ever come. The way it came about was I started asking a lot of questions in my life, like: Have you ever lost somebody, and how far would you go to get them back? So, out of that came this character Kalan, who is sort of this Etruscan warrior-poet, and he develops the ability to bring back souls from the afterlife. He uses this to wander the earth searching for his one true love, who has been taken away from him.”

With the great reception Michael’s books have received, should John McBain fans fear for his future in Llanview? Would he ever quit acting to be a full-time author? “It’s a good side thing, so I don’t get too obsessed with what’s going on over at ABC. But both jobs co-exist pretty well right now. It gets a little tricky switching from my day job (at OLTL) to writing, and sometimes the dialogue blurs over from one to the other. Especially if I’ve had a couple of drinks,” he adds jokingly. “But I think I’m good right now.”

It's official: LIPSTICK JUNGLE is dead
The show's leading lady, Brooke Shields, told E! that cast and crew received the bad news late last week. "I think a lot of people were really sad, but I think we hung on a really long time," she said. "It was three great years that we've been working on it."

B&B's Wagner set for upcoming golf event
B&B's Jack Wagner will be holding the Third Annual Jack Wagner Celebrity Golf Classic on Saturday, April 21. He explained his motivation to the L.A. Canyon News: “My brother Dennis has been battling leukemia for 10 years now. He received a full bone marrow in July of 2007 and his survival is based upon the research and combination of new treatments which is what my annual golf event raises money for.”

On keeping his character fresh on B&B: “I treat every day as a new play and a new performance. One scene at a time and try to make the most interesting choices I can.”

SESAME STREET's Roscoe Orman (Gordon) on his soap experience
"I learned early on," he said. "After my first season on SESAME STREET, I took a job on a soap opera as a bad guy. A really bad guy. Tyrone the pimp. I got in a lot of trouble over that . . . with the moms who were watching their soap -- and there was Gordon beating people up.

"If you're Gordon on SESAME STREET, you can't do stuff like that. Not on daytime TV, especially. . . . I tend to veer away from really bad characters on TV but in theater, I don't have any kind of restrictions, so I get to play the whole gamut of roles."

Justin Cotsonas in new Off-Broadway play
Producer Allision Ferrier has announced the upcoming Off-Broadway production of Brandt Reiter's new drama "End of Play," which will begin performances on April 17th, 2009. "End of Play" is a thirteen-character drama about Theatre, Hollywood and the cost of dreams. When industry outcast Jack Wells abandons his NYU teaching post for Los Angeles to support his young girlfriend's fledgling career, he finds himself caught between the depth of her ambition and his own tarnished soul. Former AS THE WORLD TURNS actress Justin Cotsonas will star along with Mark Doherty who has appeared in minor roles on the New York soaps.

Jessie Wallace to make EASTENDERS comeback?
The Mirror reports that Wallace - who played Kat Slater - has told friends that she is heading back to Walford to reprise the role that made her a star.

"Jessie is very excited about playing Kat again," a BBC source told the paper. She’s been off screen for a few years and a lot has happened since she was last in the show.

"She feels the time is right for a return and says she can’t wait to get back into the Square and stuck into some meaty storylines."

Spencer Grammer Previews New Season of GREEK

ABC Family's GREEK kicks off a new season this Monday at 8 pm/ET. In an interview with TVGuide.com, Spencer Grammer (Casey) previews the upcoming season.

Kids' Choice Awards Fashion


While her co-stars were in New York at the GLAAD Awards, UGLY BETTY's America Ferrera was in Westwood, California at UCLA's Pauley Pavilian for Nickelodeon's 2009 Kids' Choice Awards. Other celebreties opting for the Kids' Choice Awards included Tori Spelling, Lisa Rinna and Jesse McCartney. McCartney can be seen on the new season of GREEK starting tomorrow night.

GLAAD Fashion: UGLY BETTY Cast


The cast of UGLY BETTY made their presence felt at the GLAAD Media Awards on Saturday night. Vanessa Williams, Michael Urie, Ana Ortiz and Judith Light all participated in the ceremony.

Full List of New York GLAAD Award Winners


Here's a rundown of the New York winners at tonight's GLAAD Media Awards.

OUTSTANDING DAILY DRAMA
AS THE WORLD TURNS (CBS)

OUTSTANDING NEWSPAPER ARTICLE
"Owning His Gay Identity – at 15 Years Old" by Theresa Vargas (The Washington Post)

OUTSTANDING NEWSPAPER OVERALL COVERAGE
New York Times

OUTSTANDING DIGITAL JOURNALISM ARTICLE
"Gay Athletes are Making Their Mark" by LZ Granderson (ESPN.com)

OUTSTANDING DIGITAL JOURNALISM – MULTIMEDIA

"Is Gay the New Black?" by Jessica Bennett and Jennifer Molina (Newsweek.com)

OUTSTANDING MAGAZINE OVERALL COVERAGE
Newsweek

OUTSTANDING DOCUMENTARY
A Jihad for Love (First Run Features)

OUTSTANDING MAGAZINE ARTICLE
"Let God Love Gene Robinson" by Andrew Corsello (GQ)

OUTSTANDING NEWSPAPER COLUMNIST
Leonard Pitts, Jr. (The Miami Herald)

Special Awards given to Tyra Banks (Excellence in Media Award), (Suze Orman - Vito Russo Award) and Phil Donahue (Special Recognition Award).

AS THE WORLD TURNS Wins Another GLAAD Award


The 20th Annual GLAAD Media Awards were held Saturday evening at the Marriott Marquis in New York City. AS THE WORLD TURNS won this year's GLAAD Award in the "Outstanding Daily Drama" category beating out ALL MY CHILDREN.

There were many ups and down during the Luke and Noah storyline in 2008 and much controversy but the special Gay Pride episode featuring Cyndi Lauper on July 3 was enough by itself to warrant this recognition. Aside from the ending where Noah announced he was joining the Army, this was a near perfect show. It was definitely the gayest episode of daytime drama ever and possibly in broadcast television history. The show also deserves kudos for showing one of the few continuing gay couples in television. Whenever I think about the missteps, I just remind my self about all the other soaps telling a love story between two men and realize there aren't any. It makes me appreciate the visibility.

With GUIDING LIGHT's brilliant Olivia and Natalia story this year, the two P&G soaps are now leading the way in daytime in representing gays on the soaps.

Congratulations to ALL MY CHILDREN as well on their nomination. The Bianca and Reese arc did not turn out exactly how many had hoped but the intentions were good and the actresses dedicated themselves fully to the storyline.

There are still two more GLAAD Awards shows to go with other categories being announced at each. The Los Angeles ceremony will be held on April 18 followed by an event in San Francisco on May 9.

Watch FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS

Last night's episode of FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS, "A Hard Rain's Gonna Fall," was brilliant. You can watch it at NBC.com or Hulu.com but whatever you do, watch it.

Matt's struggle to deal with his grandma's deteriorating mental health has been a highlight of this season including in this episode. But the most shocking moment comes near the end when Joe McCoy freaks out on his son J.D. despite the Panthers making it to the State championship.

FLASHBACK: Rebecca Herbst Enjoys Vixenish Role 1998

Rebecca Herbst enjoys vixenish `GH' role

By Nancy M. Reichardt
United Feature Syndicate
January 4, 1998

NEW YORK -- Watching her deliciously vixenish portrayal of Elizabeth Webber makes it hard to imagine Rebecca Herbst playing a perfect little angel. But, believe it or not, she originally screen-tested for GENERAL HOSPITAL good girl Sarah Webber.

"Casting decided they liked Jennifer Sky for the role of Sarah," says Herbst. "But thank God the show found a spot for me, because I really wanted to do it."

And what a spot it was -- as Sarah's bratty little sister. Herbst had already tackled a similar assignment with her role as Kristen on the sitcom BROTHERLY LOVE for the WB.

"Kristen was a bad girl, too, for the first few episodes," says the actress. "Then, she went through this change and ended up good. Playing naughty was a lot more fun."

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Herbst's career, however, definitely started out on an innocent note. She debuted before the cameras at age 6 in a commercial for Banner toilet tissue. Ads for Kentucky Fried Chicken and Mattel's Barbie followed.

"I loved the Barbie commercials," she says. "Because I got to play with toys and keep them. They always gave you the doll."

By the time Herbst got to high school, she realized that acting was her calling, and she knew which branch of the medium she wanted to delve into.

"Although I took theater class, I never did any school plays. It wasn't my thing," Herbst says. "I feel that theater and television aretwo different worlds. Theater is great. I love to watch it, but I don't feel comfortable on stage. I enjoy this end of the business."

GENERAL HOSPITAL marks the perfect spot for Herbst to spread her acting wings. And she's been enjoying every minute of it. That is, after she got through her first day on the job.

"That was nerve-wracking," she says. "I didn't sleep the night before at all. I had all this anxious, nervous energy going on."

Fortunately, it didn't take long for Herbst to relax. She credits the warm welcome she received from her co-stars.

"Jennifer Sky has been great, so nice. And Jonathan Jackson (Lucky Spencer) and I clicked right off the bat. There are just some people you do that with," Herbst says. "We get along wonderfully and I'mso glad because we work together so much. We do lunch and hang out. And when we talk, we can talk for hours. Our conversation just flows."

Herbst also notes that landing on GENERAL HOSPITAL has made a lot of her friends extremely happy.

"I never heard one person -- not any of my friends -- ever say they watch GENERAL HOSPITAL," says the actress. "Then, I told them I was going to be on the show. Now it's like, `Oh my God! You get to work with this person? You get to work with that person? Tell me what's going to happen next.' It's so funny."

News Round-up: Michelle Ryan, Heigl, Purple Power

Shock pregnancy for EASTENDERS character
EASTENDERS cheese lover Heather Trott gets the shock of her life in a few weeks' time when she realizes that she is pregnant, sparking a 'who's the daddy?' mystery.

Former EASTENDERS star may play Goody in film
Reports are circulating that former EASTENDERS star Michelle Ryan will play Jade Goody in a film about her life. The movie is understood to focus on Jade's days of growing up in south-east London to her appearance on BIG BROTHER and diagnosis with cervical cancer. Actors being considered to play her husband Jack Tweed include Danny Dyer and Sean Maguire.

Heigl says she'll stay if GREY'S will have her
Katherine Heigl, the GREY'S ANATOMY star known for speaking her mind, is happy to stick with the show as long as they will have her. At a party yesterday celebrating GREY'S 100th episode, Heigl said she did not know whether her character, Dr. Izzie Stevens, who is battling cancer, was going to be killed off at the end of this season. According to an AP report, the actress said, "I was assuming that at one point and I got a lot of shrugged shoulders and shakes of the head, so I don't know if that's a yes or a no. No one will tell me and I don't know how this is going to go. I don't know if I live or die. I don't know how Izzie fares." If Izzie does kick cancer, Heigl said she'd gladly remain on GREY'S -- "I'm there," she told the AP -- and called the set "one of my favorite places to be."

Pay cable tests online delivery
Select Time Warner Cable subscribers in Milwaukee are being allowed to stream or download HBO shows at the same time they're airing on TV. No ads. No extra fees. No telling how this might change the cable TV landscape. The service, scheduled to roll out to a broader audience this year, is one of several initiatives championed by Time Warner and Comcast to make episodic programs and movies as ubiquitous online as such broadcast TV shows as DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES and THE OFFICE. Despite piracy concerns and the potential to dilute premium content, the efforts are attracting support from other cable operators, TV programmers and new competitors AT&T and Verizon.

FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS continues hot streak into state playoffs
"This show tugs beautifully at the small-town class system."

ABC off Time Warner in Charlotte?
Charlotte ABC affiliate WSOC-TV has threatened to remove its programming from Time Warner Cable customers unless their unprecedented demands are met. Cox Television, the parent company of WSOC-TV, is trying to use the Charlotte market as leverage to renegotiate unexpired retransmission consent agreements held in other Time Warner Cable markets.

If an agreement is not reached by April 1, WSOC-TV may choose to pull its programming off the Time Warner Cable channel line-up. By law, TWC cannot continue to carry WSOC-TV programming without the station’s consent.

FAIRMAN: Otalia, Purple Power and the new James Spaulding!
Part two of Michael Fairman's GUIDING LIGHT in Orlando report examines the direct connect between the impact of a hot storyline, it's actors and the affects it has on its fans base, and what it's like being the new kid on the block. He has quotes from Crystal Chappell, Jessica Leccia, Frank Dicopolous and Zack Conroy, as well as Otalia fan Crystal Collins.

INTERVIEW: Soap Vet Sean Kanan
Kanan appeared on "Olivia Wilder Times" on March 16 discussing B&B, Y&R, MonaVie and much more.

Soap Opera Real Estate Report

I have been posting real estate updates quite often lately so I thought I would consolidate the recent ones here. Here's your chance to buy one of the star's homes.

McDreamy lists his L.A. home
GREY'S Dr. McDreamy has listed his L.A. home at $3,595,000. His Bel-Air home is a New England traditional with four bedrooms and 5 1/2 bathrooms in 3,841 square feet. The house, gated and hedged for privacy, has a fireplace in the living room and a formal dining room. There is a pool, a brick patio and a large, flat lawn. There is also a matching treehouse with a porch that sits high up on the slope of the property.

Y&R's Jerry Douglas selling his two-storey Encino house
Jerry Douglas and his wife, Kym, have listed their 4,400-square-foot Cape Cod-style home at $3,999,000. It has five bedrooms and six bathrooms plus a one-bedroom guesthouse near the pool. The main house has a dramatic entryway with vaulted ceilings and hardwood floors. There are four bedrooms upstairs and one on the main living level. Two of the bedrooms have large balconies overlooking the grounds, which include rock gardens and a hillside waterfall. The gourmet kitchen has a Viking stove, a warming oven, a double oven and large butler's pantry. An old oak tree frames the house, which sits on half an acre.

Kerr Smith selling his French country house in the Encino
The former ATWT and DAWSON'S CREEK actor has listed his L.A. home at $1,479,007. The French country house was brought down to the studs and rebuilt completely. The home has exposed wood rafters, a gourmet kitchen with Viking appliances, a saltwater pool and spa and a detached studio/media room with two LCD televisions. There are three bedrooms and three bathrooms in 2,911 square feet plus the detached room, which adds 380 square feet of living space.

Spelling Mansion Listed at $150 Million, Now World's Most Expensive Estate
Candy Spelling's legendary massive 123-room Holmby Hills mansion has officially hit the market with a record-breaking asking price of $150 million. That's $25 million more than the Beverly Hills behemoth Mariah Carey is said to have made an offer on recently, and officially makes the Spelling mansion, called "The Manor," the world's most expensive estate in terms of current listings, the Wall St. Journal reports. The 57,000-sq.-ft. mansion, which has at least 11 bedrooms and 16 baths, was built by TV producer Aaron Spelling on the site of Bing Crosby's former estate, which they razed.

And here's one just off the market.

Hickland and Knight have sold their co-op
ONE LIFE TO LIVE star Catherine Hickland and her estranged husband, ALL MY CHILDREN actor Michael Knight of All My Children, have sold their 12th-floor co-op at 255 West 84th Street for $2.3 million.

The Latest in Soap Videos

Here are some of the latest soap videos to hit the web.

OTALIA: Natalia and Frank announced their engagement to the Coopers on Friday's GUIDING LIGHT while Olivia got drunk with Shayne and Edmund and hilariously played some variation of ROCK BAND. Watch Part 2, Part 3, Part 4.

GENERAL HOSPITAL: On Friday's episode, Robin was "talked out" after her conversation with Jason much to Patrick's chagrin.

TABLE OF CHOICES: In the latest webisode, Starvros opened up to Dr. Jones about his feelings toward his brother Kenneth. Trent questioned Starvros about Nathan Walsh.

I OWN YOUR ASS: In their latest confrontation, Rick told Ridge on Friday's episode of THE BOLD AND THE BEAUTIFUL that he would keep quiet about Thomas but Ridge had to give him another car, a new coat of paint on the beach house, to be treated as an equal at Forrester and a relationship with Steffy