How WATCH ABC Changes Will Affect Viewing of 'GH,' 'The View' and 'The Chew'; Shows Also on Hulu Plus

How WATCH ABC Changes Will Affect Viewing of ‘GH,’ ‘The View’ and ‘The Chew’; Shows Also on Hulu Plus

 
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Sunday, May 30, 2010 at 2:39 PM ET by Errol Lewis


Photo: JPI Studios

(SoapOperaNetwork.com) — In a not so surprising development, SoapCentral.com is reporting that CBS’ “The Bold and the Beautiful” has dropped veteran actor Winsor Harmon (Thorne Forrester) to recurring status.

Harmon, who joined the cast of the drama series in December 1996, has had relatively nothing to do on the soap since his character’s relationship with Katherine Kelly Lang‘s Brooke Forrester fizzled some years back, which was expected as Brooke’s world always revolved around Thorne’s older brother Ridge Forrester (Ronn Moss) anyway.

Prior to joining the cast of “The Bold and the Beautiful,” Harmon enjoyed a successful run on the ABC soap “All My Children” as Del Henry, Dixie Cooney’s (Cady McClain) brother, from 1994-1995. The actor exited along-side Sarah Michelle Gellar, who originated the role of Kendall Hart, when she left the soap in order to pursue a career in primetime and movies. Gellar got her big break courtesy of a little show on The WB called “Buffy the Vampire Slayer.”

A “B&B” representative had “no comment” when questioned for this article.

“The Bold and the Beautiful” airs Weekdays on CBS. Anytime on CBS.com.

  • The Bold and the Beautiful
  • All My Children
  • Cady McClain
  • CBS
  • CBS.com
  • Winsor Harmon
  • Katherine Kelly Lang
  • Ronn Moss
  • Sarah Michelle Gellar
  • B&B


    Friday, May 28, 2010 at 10:15 PM ET by Errol Lewis


    Photo: SOAPnet

    (SoapOperaNetwork.com) — The year 2012 isn’t just the end of the Mayan calendar, it is the end of an era for soap operas as well.

    When SOAPnet launched on January 20, 2000, it was always assumed that it would be where many soaps would transition to as the broadcast networks decided that soaps no longer fit their brand. Unfortunately, on May 26, 2010, it was announced that that wouldn’t be the case for “All My Children,” “Days of our Lives,” “General Hospital,” “One Life to Live,” or “The Young and the Restless” as the network that airs same day episodes of each becomes no more. SOAPnet, which just achieved carriage in 75 million cable homes earlier this year, will be replaced by Disney Junior, the 3rd American iteration of the popular Disney Channel cable network, in 2012.

    Anne Sweeney, co-chair, Disney Media Networks and president, Disney/ABC Television Group, released a statement Wednesday stating that “SOAPnet was created in 2000 to give daytime viewers the ability to watch time-shifted soaps, before multiplatform viewing and DVRs were part of our vocabulary. But today, as technology and our businesses evolve, it makes more sense to align this distribution with a preschool channel that builds on the core strengths of our company.”

    Failure to Launch

    Since its creation 10 years ago, SOAPnet had been unable to achieve the great success its sister cable networks such as ABC Family and Disney XD had received after the two re-branded to cater to a more direct and mass appealing audience. Lifetime, which the Disney/ABC Television Group holds a 42.5% stake in (with Hearst Corporation holding another 42.5% and NBC Universal holding the remaining 15%), is already airing programming that would fit the typical audience suited for SOAPnet, that being Women 18-49. In order to compete, SOAPnet began airing acquired films from Sony Pictures Television in 2008 as part of its Sunday Night Movie programming block. This decision ultimately disbanded the “Days of our Lives” weekly marathon, which to this day is no longer part of the networks program schedule, thus leaving viewers with few opportunities to catch up on the soap. In 2009, SOAPnet began airing films from the Disney/ABC Television Group and 20th Century Fox Films in its hope to appeal to a more youthful audience in lieu of the networks acquisitions of such popular programs as “Gilmore Girls,” “The O.C.” and “One Tree Hill,” along with its already acquired rights to “Beverly Hills, 90210.” For many, this was the beginning of the end. While viewership seemed to grow with the networks expanded programming, which included the Canadian import “Being Erica,” the damage done to the networks image was irreversible. Fans, long critical of the network as a whole, saw no desire in watching a network that had so much promise only to see the ball drop right from under them with the lack of steady focus, which some attribute to the promotion of Brian Frons, President, Daytime, Disney/ABC Television Group, which in addition to overseeing the daily operations of SOAPnet included oversight of the ABC Television Network’s daytime programming – “All My Children,” “General Hospital,” “One Life to Live” and “The View.” In an interview with Soap Opera Digest, Frons made it clear that the folding of SOAPnet will have no direct effect on the ABC lineup. In fact, fans shouldn’t be worried at all about the lineup as the executive sees the decision as somewhat of a blessing.

    “They shouldn’t be worried. Over the years, Disney has made a lot of commitment to the Disney brand. As they looked out in the marketplace, they really felt they needed to be in the preschool space with a full-branded channel. Given the way technology has gone, where you can DVR your soap, watch it on Hulu and abc.com, it was felt that the original purpose of SOAPnet — today’s soaps tonight — could sort of be fulfilled in different ways. Frankly, financially it will be better for us, because if you watch on daytime, we actually make more money than if the same person watches on SOAPnet, just because rates are that different between the network world and the cable world.”

    While pushing aside SOAPnet’s purpose, which was not only “today’s soaps tonight,” but also a safe haven for longtime fans of soap operas as a whole that were looking for their own place in the overcrowded cable market, Frons and those in charge of SOAPnet failed to capitalize on who their audience was and what they wanted. Instead of going the cheap route with such reality series as “Bank of Mom and Dad,” “Southern Belles: Louisville” or “Greg Behrendt’s Wake Up Call,” they should have tried harder in producing original scripted series. Yes, the network did give us “General Hospital: Night Shift,” but there wasn’t anything that could be done with a show that was simply a mini-spinoff of mother ship “General Hospital” and a poor man’s imitation of “Port Charles.” While ABC Family, purchased by the Walt Disney Company in 2001, made major inroads in scripted programming in 2007 courtesy of supernatural series “Kyle XY” and again in 2008 with the series “The Secret Life of the American Teenager,” SOAPnet kept giving viewers more cheaply made acquired imported series such as “MVP” in addition to “Being Erica,” or old and canceled nighttime soaps as “Paper Dolls” and “The Monroe’s” along with the short-lived FOX drama “Skin.” Where was the true originality? It isn’t like the network couldn’t have found top talent (in front of and behind the scenes) from within its corporate cousins at ABC Studios or the Disney/ABC Television Group, which together have helped turn the ABC Television Network around with such hits as “Desperate Housewives” and “Grey’s Anatomy.”

    What Could They Do?

    Why not try and create a new daily scripted soap opera in the vein of MTV’s “Spyder Games?” Yes, the show was cheap and looked cheap, but it was a true guilty pleasure. The soap, which aired in telenovela format from June 2001 through September 2001, starred popular soap opera actresses Christina Chambers (ex-Marty Saybrooke, “One Life to Live”; ex-Maria Torres, “Sunset Beach”) and Shawn Batten (ex-Sara Cummings, “Sunset Beach”). Why not try your hand at original made-for-tv movies starring today’s top soap stars? Susan Lucci sure did wonders for ABC back in the early 1990′s. It has worked for Lifetime, ABC Family and Disney Channel. In fact, Lifetime’s original movie of the month library has done so well that it spawned another cable network in the form of the Lifetime Movie Network, which continues the Lifetime tradition by airing its own original movies, some of which have starred such daytime talent as Vanessa Marcil (ex-Brenda Barrett, “General Hospital”), Rachel Melvin (ex-Chelsea Brady, “Days of our Lives”) and Jamie Luner (Liza Colby, “All My Children”). Where are the re-runs to canceled soaps such as “Sunset Beach,” “Passions,” “Loving” or even “The City?” While MTV is going around promoting its reality-drama of the same name as television’s next big thing, you could have fought back and got audiences to remember there was a show with that name before MTV came out with theirs and it starred “General Hospital’s” Laura Wright (as Ally Alden), Lisa Lo Cicero (as Joselyn Roberts) and Jane Elliott (playing her “GH” character Tracey Quartermaine”), “All My Children’s” Darnell Williams (as Jacob Foster) and Debbi Morgan (playing her “AMC” character Angie Hubbard), “One Life to Live’s” Catherine Hickland (as Tess Wilder) and “The Young and the Restless’” Amelia Heinle (as Steffi Brewster) or even soap veteran Roscoe Born (as Nick Rivers). Before he became Special Agent Anthony DiNozzo on television’s most watched scripted series, CBS’ “NCIS,” Michael Weatherly appeared as Cooper Alden on both “Loving” and “The City.” Promoting his involvement in those soaps would have done wonders for ratings as fans of the actor could see him in a different light from that of his comical charms on “NCIS.” It sure would have been better than airing another edition of “They Started on Soaps,” which felt more like a history book of the celebrities who’ve made it big when they left a soap, and forgot their roots, than a recognition of the talent who made it big on soaps and went on to do bigger things without forgetting where they came from.

    What’s Next?

    Disney Junior. Good job SOAPnet, you have decreased your viewing age to 2-7 year olds. You got what you wanted.

    • All My Children
    • One Life to Live
    • Darnell Williams
    • Susan Lucci
    • The Young and the Restless
    • Days of our Lives
    • SOAPnet
    • Jamie Luner
    • Debbi Morgan
    • General Hospital
    • Passions
    • Rachel Melvin
    • Roscoe Born
    • Laura Wright
    • Vanessa Marcil
    • General Hospital: Night Shift
    • Grey’s Anatomy
    • Loving
    • The City
    • Brian Frons
    • Desperate Housewives
    • Amelia Heinle
    • Disney Junior
    • Anne Sweeney
    • MTV
    • Christina Chambers
    • Shawn Batten
    • Lisa Lo Cicero
    • Jane Elliott
    • Catherine Hickland
    • Michael Weatherly
    • NCIS
    • Skin
    • Kyle XY
    • The Secret Life of the American Teenager
    • Paper Dolls
    • The Monroes
    • Spyder Games


      Friday, May 28, 2010 at 7:30 PM ET by Scotty Gore


      Photo: ABC

      (SoapOperaNetwork.com) — Introducing the latest addition to the cast of “One Life to Live.”

      Soap Opera Network can now put a face with the name of the actor cast in the role of James, the younger brother of sleazy film producer Robert Ford. As we first told you yesterday, daytime newcomer Nicholas Robuck has joined the cast in the contract role. He will first air June 9th. Look for James to cross paths with Starr on several occasions, which will ultimately lead to a summer adventure for the pair, among others. And, from the look of his picture, it’s going to be a long, hot summer in Llanview (click here for a larger view).

      IN OTHER CASTING NEWS…

      Sean J. Cullen returns as Dr. Edward Levin on Friday, June 18th, when Jessica shares her fears with him about her altars and the recent attack on Ford.

      The Best Little Whorehouse in Llanview? The recent audition script for the dayplayer role of ‘Fawn’ (a hooker) comes into play the week of June 14th, when David tries to cheer up his little brother Matthew, who’s having some girl trouble, by taking him out on the town with the pole dancer and one of her friends.

      And “One Life to Live” has released a new casting call for the role of a “Private Investigator.” The scene opens with “Kate” asking the PI if he is looking for her. He tells her that her grandfather hired him to locate her. Kate replies that she had thought her grandpa understood that she just wanted to be left alone. The PI replies that he knows her grandfather, and realizes how considered he was when she stole a car from a dealership and drove off with some boy. Kate states that ditched the boy already. The PI asks if it was before or after she ran the car off the road, and says that he found it abandoned just down the road. Kate confesses that she was involved in an accident but that she’s ok. Relived he tells her that he can take her back to her grandfather then. However, Kate insists on going to her motel room first, much to his reluctance. Kate assures him that it won’t take long, and that, even though he has been working for the family for a long time, she thinks it time they get to know each other a little better. The PI replies that if her grandfather found out, he could kill him. As the scene ends, Kate tells him that he won’t find out unless he hires a PI to track his every more like her grandfather did with her. Remember that the soap frequently changes names in this scripts in an attempt to throw off viewers.

      “One Life to Live” airs Weekdays on ABC. Weeknights on SOAPnet. Anytime on ABC.com and SOAPnet.com. Check local listings.

      • One Life to Live
      • Nicholas Robuck
      • Sean J. Cullen


        Thursday, May 27, 2010 at 3:09 PM by Errol Lewis


        Photo: NBC

        (SoapOperaNetwork.com) — Just when you think only “All My Children” felt the effects of President Obama’s press conference, NBC has pointed out to us that “Days of our Lives” is also now a day behind.

        “Due to special news coverage, ‘Days of our Lives’ is not airing today (5/27). The new episode will instead air tomorrow (5/28). This will push all episodes over one (1) day,” said a Days of our Lives representative.

        We expect to hear from CBS soon at this point…

        “Days of our Lives” airs Weekdays on NBC. Anytime on NBC.com.

        • Days of our Lives
        • President Obama


          Thursday, May 27, 2010 at 2:45 PM by Errol Lewis


          Photo: ABC

          (SoapOperaNetwork.com) — Due to a presidential press conference, “All My Children” is now a day behind.

          ABC has just informed us that due to today’s press conference by President Obama, today’s originally scheduled airing of “All My Children” will now be broadcast tomorrow.

          “All future episodes of ‘All My Children’ will bump forward one day on the schedule accordingly,” said an ABC representative. An encore episode of “The View” will air today to replace “All My Children” in its timeslot in the mountain time zone, while today’s episode of “The View” will air in the pacific time zone.

          The change only effects new episodes of the soap beginning with today’s episode. The May 31, Memorial Day, re-broadcast airing of “All My Children” episode #10331 will remain on schedule according to ABC.

          “All My Children” airs Weekdays on ABC. Anytime on ABC.com.

          • All My Children
          • President Obama


            ‘Soapdish’ Gets a Makeover

            Thursday, May 27, 2010 at 2:00 PM ET by Scotty Gore


            Photo: Paramount Pictures

            (SoapOperaNetwork.com) — Paramount Pictures announces plans to re-make the 1991 satire film about soap operas.

            The comedic spoof poked fun at the behind-the-scenes drama of the daytime serial with the fictional soap “The Sun Also Sets,” and featured an ensemble cast which included Sally Field, Whoopi Goldberg, Kevin Kline, Kathy Najimy, Robert Downy, Jr., Carrie Fisher, Teri Hatcher, Garry Marshall, Paul Johansson, Cathy Moriarty, and Elizabeth Shue. The film was co-produced by the late Aaron Spelling.

            Now, nearly two decades later, the film giant is planning to remake the iconic film in the the form of a telenovela. It will be produced by Rob Reiner and his partner Alan Greisman (who produced the original film). A script for the remake is currently being written. It is unknown if any of the original cast will reprise their roles, or if new characters will be created for the remake.

            • Jr.
            • Whoopi Goldberg
            • Kathy Najimy
            • Sally Field
            • Kevin Kline
            • Robert Downy
            • Carrie Fisher
            • Teri Hatcher
            • Garry Marshall
            • Paul Johansson
            • Cathy Moriarty
            • Elizabeth Shue
            • Aaron Spelling
            • Rob Reiner
            • Alan Greisman
            • Soap Dish
            • Paramount Pictures


              Scott Clifton’s ‘Bold’ New Character

              Thursday, May 27, 2010 at 1:00 PM ET by Scotty Gore


              Photo: ABC

              (SoapOperaNetwork.com) — One week after the former ABC soap star jumped ship to CBS, the name of the character Scott Clifton will play on “The Bold and the Beautiful” is revealed.

              Best known to soap fans for the roles of Dillon Quartermaine on “General Hospital” (2003-2007) and Schuyler Joplin on “One Life to Live” (2009-10), Clifton will makes his “B&B” debut on Monday, July 19th, in the newly created role of Liam Cooper.

              Earlier this month, Clifton was nominated for a Daytime Emmy for Outstanding Younger Actor for his work on “OLTL.” He was also nominated in the same category in 2004, 2005, and 2006, while still on “GH.” And in 2005 he received a Soap Opera Digest Award for the role of Dillon.

              “The Bold and the Beautiful” airs weekdays on CBS. Anytime on CBS.com. Check local listings.



              Llanview Casting Gossip: May 27 Edition

              Photo: Lisa Rosa/JPI

              Thursday, May 27, 2010 3:45 AM ET | By Scotty Gore

              (SoapOperaNetwork.com) — The latest “One Life to Live” comings and goings for the month of June.

              Nicholas Robuck has been cast in the contract role of James, who will cross paths with Starr and be revealed as Ford’s younger brother.  His first airdate is Wednesday, June 9th.  Two days later, a thug (remember the recent audition script for “Bull”) wants to settle the score with the Llanview newcomer. 

              Jessica Leccia debuts as Nate’s mother Inez Sallinger on Friday, June 18th.  Head Writer Ron Carlivati tells Soap Opera Digest that “We’ll see a lot of her” as the summer progresses.  The role is recurring.

              Despite rumors to the contrary, a show rep tells SOD that Matt Walton (Elijah) has not been bumped up to contract status with “OLTL,” and remains a recurring player. 

              Ada Maris returns as Markko’s mother Aurelia Rivera on Wednesday, June 9th when she gives Dorian a verbal smackdown and questions her parenting skills.

              Sean Ringgold continues to air as Shaun Evans into the month of the June as he remains steadfast in his duties of keeping an eye on Kelly and Reed.  In an attempt to get a little alone time with her old flame, however, Kelly asks David to try to keep the big guy distracted.

              While Catherine Hickland is not reprising the role of Lindsay Rappaport next month, look for Bo and Nora to receive a wedding gift from Lindsay on Tuesday, June 8th, in the form of a personalized license plate from Stateville. 

              And don’t look for Robert Krimmer to return as Andrew Carpenter either, even though the character of Andrew will be mentioned late next week.  Turns out, Andrew is a no-show, which prompts David to offer to perform his pa and step-mom’s wedding ceremony.

              In other news…

              Kristen Alderson (Starr) tweeted Wednesday that “I had such a great time in Princeton for our location shoot. Lots of fun stunts, lots of laughs, & really pretty scenery. Love the ‘OLTL’ fam.”

              “One Life to Live” airs Weekdays on ABC. Weeknights on SOAPnet. Anytime on ABC.com and SOAPnet.com. Check local listings.



              BREAKING NEWS: Disney Drops SOAPnet, ABC Broadcast Network Next?

              (SoapOperaNetwork.com) — "Weeknights on SOAPnet" is no more as Disney/ABC has opted to pull the plug on SOAPnet.

              In the biggest shocker to hit daytime since the cancellations of "Guiding Light" and "As The World Turns," Disney/ABC Television Group announced today that they have decided to discontinue SOAPnet, the 24-hour cable network devoted to daytime and primetime soaps. The news was first reported by the New York Times.

              "The launch of Disney Junior in the U.S. is the next step in our global preschool strategy, which began 10 years ago with the premiere of our first dedicated preschool channel in the UK. The decision to ultimately transition SOAPnet to accomplish this was not arrived at lightly," said Anne Sweeney, co-chair, Disney Media Networks and president, Disney/ABC Television Group.

              "SOAPnet was created in 2000 to give daytime viewers the ability to watch time-shifted soaps, before multiplatform viewing and DVRs were part of our vocabulary. But today, as technology and our businesses evolve, it makes more sense to align this distribution with a preschool channel that builds on the core strengths of our company."

              The news of SOAPnet's demise comes right on the heals of reports indicating that The Walt Disney Company was looking to load off the ABC Television Network, which is the primary source of SOAPnet programming, off of its portfolio of networks. The story was later refuted on Deadline.com by a statement from a Disney press release.

              The 24-hour Disney Junior schedule will include 200 new episodes annually of both new series, including "Jake and the Never Land Pirates," and current hits, including "Mickey Mouse Clubhouse," "Handy Manny," "Special Agent Oso," "Imagination Movers" and "Jungle Junction." Disney’s vast array of classic and contemporary movies, including among others "101 Dalmatians," "Aladdin" and "Little Mermaid," will be showcased.

              With Disney Junior launching in 2012 with a target audience base of kids 2-7, SOAPnet will only have eighteen (18) more months left in operation.

              • All My Children
              • The Young and the Restless
              • Days of our Lives
              • SOAPnet
              • ABC
              • General Hospital
              • Disney Junior
              • Anne Sweeney
              • 2012
              • Business


                ‘One Life’ Hits the Road This Summer

                Photo: ABC

                Wednesday, May 26, 2010 3:05 PM ET | By Scotty Gore

                (SoapOperaNetwork.com) – “One Life to Live” travels to Jersey for an exciting summer location shoot. 

                This week, the ABC sudser as started filming on location in and around Hopewell Township in Mercer County, New Jersey.  According to The Trentonian newspaper, “Yesterday’s (Tuesday) action took place at the beautfiul Quarry Swimming club, ‘The Old Swimming Hole since 1928′ at 180 Crusher Road…in a dark leafy glade above the scenic quarry.”

                Today’s filming will take place at Palmer Square in Princeton, followed by a Pennington roadside, which will feature car stunts and fighting scenes.

                “One Life to Live” publicist Lauri Hogan tells the paper that the backdrop to the scenes is that Danielle and Matthew have called it quits (as of the June 7th episode), and that she and Nate admit that they have feelings for one another in the quarry scenes. 

                Pictured: Kelley Missal (Danielle) and Lenny Platt (Nate) rehearse for a scene with “OLTL” stage manager Brendan Higgins courtesy Jackie Schear/The Trentonian

                Hogan also reveals that “We’re introducing a new family this summer.  This story line (Danielle and Nate) has a bit of mystery involved.  ‘Cause he’s not just cheering her up at the quarry.”  But she admits that it may not be what you think, since they soon make a suprising discovery.  “Their discovery, you’ll see that somebody else is looking ofr it, and it’s going to cause a lot of trouble for him (James) when it’s not where he thinks it is.  There are people after him.  There’s going to be a lot of mystery surrounding James from the first minute you meet him.  And he might get Starr into a little bit of trouble.  But that’s all – we don’t to give it all away.”     

                To read the entire article, click here.

                On a related note, Kristen Alderson (Starr) posted a picture of one of the locations from the shoot on her Twitter page.  You can view it here.   And she dispels a rumor about who was cast in the role of James, respoding to a question from a fan on her Twitter page: “A man named Jonathan Grant was not cast to play my love interest?? where did you get that information?”

                “One Life to Live” airs Weekdays on ABC. Weeknights on SOAPnet. Anytime on ABC.com and SOAPnet.com. Check local listings.









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