Tuesday, September 29, 2009

INDIE SOAP BEAT: September 29, 2009

In this week's "Indie Soap Beat" feature, we take a look at the latest happenings from around the world of independent soap opera production.

Tristan Rogers' REALITY BYTES web series has released some new information this week on their Twitter page. The show is planning a storyline for a "romantic, balanced lesbian couple" who will be played by two "great actresses." The show has also cast a "very sexy young man" to play the character of Ben Anderson. Stay tuned!

Martha Byrne has announced that designer Nicole Miller will be providing wardrobe for GOTHAM. The production team met on Monday and the show is scheduled to begin taping on October 17 with a launch in November. The show has previously announced Byrne, Michael Park and Anne Sayre in the cast, and that Lisa Brown would be directing the first three episodes.

We Love Soaps spoke with Jessica Leccia (Ani) at the Broadway Flea Market on September 27 and she revealed more details about VENICE: "VENICE is going strong. Crystal is working really hard on it. I'll be working on it and people will be seeing it soon - I believe November. Crystal's character, Gina, has a large circle of friends, she's a social butterfly. My character happens to be part of that social group. There's a relationship between them that will be interesting to see. She's got all these other interesting relationships on there. It's really real, the kind of things audiences want these days."

Menwhile, Emmy winner Jeff Branson has assumed the role of Owen, which had previously been announced would be played by Daniel Cosgrove (who is unavailable when the show is taping in November).

Lauralee Bell's web series, FAMILY DINNER, is back with an all new episode. Bell told We Love Soaps: "This is a good gig because we had three cameras this time instead of two, and in today's market, this is exactly what can be done in a quick and inexpensive form. Our numbers for the third episode have surpassed our viewership from the second one already." If you haven't read the new We Love Soaps interview with Bell, check it out here.

Cloris Leachman guest stars on Episode #3. Be sure to vote for the show at FunnyorDie.com.

The talented team behind IMAGINARY BITCHES released a special Emmy episode that was hysterical and was filled with current daytime soap references. We Love Soaps made a guest appearance and witness one hell of a catfight between Eden Riegel and Jessalyn Gilsig (who was just brilliant on last week's GLEE). If you haven't watched the Emmy special, check it out here.

EYE OF THE STORM is a radio soap written and produced by J.R. Benight. The show is currently playing Episode #26, "Taking the Reins," and is expected to release the next episode, "Mind Over Matter," soon. If you're a fan of the classic radio soaps but want a fresh take on it, check this one out.

FANTASY OVER REALITY is a web-friendly sitcom that revolves around a group of guys and their fantasy football league. Y&R's Vail Bloom is feartured in the show. Cam Tilton, Bruce Gants, Rudolph Valentini and Winston Sturvitz are among the other stars. Episode #2 is now online.

Season one of Greg Turner and Brian Hewson's EMPIRE has wrapped after ten episodes but another season is on the way in early 2010. Be sure to watch the entire first season on the show's website or on YouTube. The project has a lot of potential so support these indie soap makers! Stay tuned for more information soon.

RELATIONSHIPS delves into the lives of the residents of fictional Parkside USA, where everything seems so idyllic but intrigue, rivalry, jealousy and much, much more lies just below the surface. The show is multi-platform and will be available on conventional TV with exclusive clips inline and an interactive website with a community feel. Watch the trailer here. Look for more details as the show prepares to launch in early 2010.


  1. So, how many soap stars are going to have their own web series? What is the end goal? Web series serve as marketing for a compilation DVD? Besides the love of acting and adding to one's demo reel, folks need to eat and that requires cash.

  2. I think we have some passionate soap stars who know there is a hunger for good soaps and good stories. At some point, someone is going to figure out a profitable model and soaps will be completely reborn.

  3. I think the format and the fact that people are producing home-grown soaps is exciting, and I love it that We Love Soaps has been so supportive of people's efforts. I found out about Empire via We Love Soaps, and I'm so glad I did! The show needs a lot of work but one thing is clear: the people putting together actually GET what serial drama is about and how it works. When dialogue and acting are weak, it can be fixed. But when the actual structure makes n sense, there's no fixing things. Empire is extremely well structured and, given the proper resources, it's pretty clear the people putting it together have what it takes to put together a top-notch soap.

  4. That's how I feel as well, Snapper. Some of these shows are going to have more resources and hype behind them but as long as I feel the producers really care about soaps or have great passion behind their work and have potential, I'm happy to support.

  5. I LOVE it that We Love Soaps is such a supporter of the indie soap movement.
    I also discovered "Empire" via WLS.
    Keep up the GREAT work!

  6. I could not agree more Roger. I am thrilled to support any web series where the producers have passion and care about the genre and the fans.

    Besides Venice I am deeply interested in Gotham, Reality Bytes and Empire but I am watching many more than that. So far I am liking what I see.

  7. Roger, we owe you SO much for getting the word out on EMPIRE! And thank you for continuing to promote the show even in our hiatus. Brian and I are starting to work on Season Two and in fact we have an exciting meeting tomorrow night that I will hopefully be able to tell WLS more about very soon!!