Thursday, December 4, 2008

News Round-up

Signs that daytime soaps are in a recession
9. Viki Lord on ONE LIFE TO LIVE had to lay off one of her multiple personalities
8. You have to have a better HMO to watch GENERAL HOSPITAL
7. Erica Kane on ALL MY CHILDREN figures she'll just live with the guy instead of paying for another wedding.
6. GUIDING LIGHT can't afford its electric bill
5. DAYS OF OUR LIVES is living month to month
4. AS THE WORLD TURNS is spinning a little slower
3. THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS's Katherine will forgo this year's facelift
2. GENERAL HOSPITAL can't afford Laura to come out of her coma until May
1. If PASSIONS were still around, it'd just be called FLIRTS

As networks cut back, soap operas feel the pain
The reasons for the decline aren't hard to find. More women work outside the home than was the case 30 years ago, which crimps the soaps' natural audience. The rise of daytime talk shows has made it tougher for soaps to compete; ABC's THE VIEW, for example, is up 16% this season, to 4.1 million viewers. And networks' daytime schedule feel the same pressure from cable TV competition that the prime-time lineups do.

As a result, few industry analysts expect the soap format -- one of TV's oldest -- to enjoy a very bright future. Especially when, unlike their auto-industry benefactors, they don't look like plausible candidates for a massive government handout.

New Braeden film "brutal, bloody and, quite often, difficult to watch"
Michael H. Kleinschrodt of The Times-Picayune reviewed the DVD: "Although it was filmed in Texas, the story [in The Man Who Came Back] is set in Thibodauxville (the original name of Thibodaux) in 1887.

Reese Paxton (Y&R's Eric Braeden) was a trained assassin in the Confederate army, where he saw enough killing to last him a lifetime. With the war over, former slaves, now working in the sugar cane fields, strike for better treatment, and the planters begin a campaign of terror to force them back to work.

Paxton attempts to restore order, but the townspeople turn on the local legend and railroad him into prison on a false charge, viciously robbing him of his wife and son in the process. Eventually, Paxton escapes and returns to Thibodauxville, determined to exact his revenge as only a former assassin -- or the antihero of a slasher flick -- can.

The result is brutal, bloody and, quite often, difficult to watch.

Braeden gives a solid performance as the initially peace-loving Paxton. His eyes and voice convey the character's world-weary state and hint at the darkness that will emerge from Paxton's soul.

Other actors fare less well."

INTERVIEW: ALL MY CHILDREN's Vincent Irizarry (David)
"Leaving gave me the opportunity to go out to California, do something different, then come back and do it again. So it was okay."

Eric Burns files civil rights lawsuit against NYC
Burns, who has a recurring role on ALL MY CHILDREN, claims he was punched in the face by a policeman and attacked by several other officers on Aug. 31 outside a nightspot in the Chelsea district.

A Look Inside a Facebook for the Filthy Rich
Recession — and social network glut — be damned! Frank DeRose, managing partner of Ferrata Capital Management, plans to invest at least $1 million into Total Prestige, an invitation-only networking site for one of the world's most underserved internet demographics: the super- and super-duper rich. The network is invite-only, but DeRose offered an exclusive pass into its world to check it out. Note: We weren't allowed to show any screenshots to protect the privacy of members.

Some names that have been approved to disclose are Princess Elfi Odu-Dua of Benin, an international trader based in Germany; Jamal A. Al Akkad, one of the wealthiest businessmen in the Middle East; Countess Vanessa Kosta Pomponi from Monte Carlo, and actor Daniel McVicar from THE BOLD AND THE BEAUTIFUL.

Anne Heche, boyfriend expecting baby
The former ANOTHER WORLD Emmy winner is expecting her first child with boyfriend James Tupper, her publicist has confirmed to Us Weekly.

Burton & Depp Enter Dark Shadows
It was reported back in 2007 that Johnny Depp wanted to work on a film adaptation of cult television show DARK SHADOWS, a Gothic soap opera that Depp was apparently obsessed with as a child. Well, it's just moved that little bit closer: producer Richard D. Zanuck told that Deep is in and it will be the next project for Tim Burton to direct, starting next summer.

The plot follows a governess who arrives at the Collins family mansion to discover that all is not quite normal - and that paterfamilias Barnabas is, in fact, a vampire. Cue 1,225 episodes of Goth-tastic drama in what was basically a soap with fangs.

Rinna, Hamlin going to TV Land
Celebrity couple Lisa Rinna (ex-Billie, DAYS OF OUR LIVES) and Harry Hamlin are ready to expose their lives to the cameras in an unscripted project for TV Land. The network has ordered a pilot presentation of a project that would follow the lives of the husband-and-wife duo along with their two daughters. The project is executive produced by Jason Carbone.

INTERVIEW: Soap vet Sean Kanan
Soap vet Sean Kanan (GH, B&B) is thinking a lot about sex these days. Kanan is starring in "It's Just Sex," a daring, comedic exploration about what can happen when three couples decide to switch partners. The play runs through Dec. 28 at the Two Roads Theatre in Studio City, Ca. He was interviewed by Daytime Confidential in a recent podcast. FYI: There is still one more episode of SCRIPTS & SCRUPLES that Kanan will appear in.

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