Sunday, November 20, 2011

ONE LIFE TO LIVE: Life After 'Life' Is a Mystery

The Wall Street Journal was on the set of ONE LIFE TO LIVE last week as the show wrapped production, at least on the ABC version of the beloved soap. A new article out today includes a number of interesting tidbits and reflections about the show.

Frank Valentini, the show's executive producer, said measures had been taken to reduce overhead in recent years—including voluntary pay cuts for several principal cast members—but acknowledged it may have come too late as ratings plummeted and production costs soared up to $300,000 per episode.

"I think our leaving definitely shallows out every facet of the entertainment business in New York because we keep so many people working at any given time," said Mr. Valentini, who's been with "One Life to Live" for 26 years. "That includes not just our primary cast, but also people who come on in short-term roles. Because we generate so many episodes, we make a lot of money for the city, so this affects everyone, including the local vendors where we buy our props and costumes."

Agnes Nixon, who created both "One Life to Live" and "All My Children" and was on-set for the final taping, agreed. "There was nothing wrong with the story lines or the cast," she said. "It was the cost and nobody could change that. But it's been 42 wonderful years, and how many people have that? I can't complain too much."

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