(SoapOperaNetwork.com) — Daytime Emmy Award winning television and stage director, actor, and teacher David Pressman died of natural causes on Monday in New York City at the age of 97. Pressman is best remembered by soap fans for his three decades of directing daytime dramas, including “Another World” and “One Life to Live.”
According to Variety, Pressman began his long career as child after receiving a scholarship to the Neighborhood Playhouse School of the Theater, where he studied acting alongside Sanford Mesiner. It was during this time that Pressman made his acting debut in 1941 in a stage production of “Brooklyn, U.S.A.” He later also appeared on stage in “The Eve of St. Mark” and “Dream Girl.”
After graduating, Mesiner asked him to return as his teaching assistant, where he mentored several young actors, including Marlon Brando, Gregory Peck and Tony Randall.
After serving in World War II, where he earned two Purple Hearts, Pressman pursued a career in the new medium of television. In the early 1950s he won a Peabody for his work directing a live action “Actors Studio” TV program. Before directing the series, Pressman starred in the first episode opposite Jessica Tandy, in an adaptation of the Tennessee Williams play “Portrait of a Madonna.” He then earned widespread recognition for his work directing Molnar’s “The Swan” as a segment on “Studio One in Hollywood” starring Grace Kelly in 1951, which later remade into a feature film.
Blacklisted during the 1950s for being a member of the Communist Party, the Soviet-born Pressman founded the acting department at Boston University, where he a number of future Hollywood stars, including Olympia Dukakis. From there, he moved to Broadway, where he directed a number of stage productions, including “The Disenchanted,” “Roman Candle,” and “Summertree.” He then returned to the Neighborhood Playhouse, where he took over the school for the next decade.
By the 1960s, Pressman returned to television, and directed episodes of the primetime dramas “The Defenders,” “The Doctors and the Nurses,” and “N.Y.P.D.,” including a 1968 episode featuring future Hollywood icons Al Pacino and Jill Claybaugh. After a stint of directing on the NBC soap “Another World,” Pressman joined rival ABC soap “One Life to Live” in 1970 at the request of then Executive Producer Doris Quinlin. After directing countless episodes of “OLTL” during the next twenty-eight years, and earning several Daytime Emmy nominations (winning in 1976, 1983, and 1984), Pressman retired from the show in 1998. However, he was soon asked to return for a time to help train the soap’s younger actors.
Also in 1998, Pressman returned to his acting roots when he played the Shakespeare-quoting homeless man Bernie Hopper on “OLTL.” He later reprised the role in 2003. In 2004 he was interviewed as part of the Archive of American Television’s TV Legends Series, which you can watch here.
Pressman is survived by his wife, two sons, five grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren.
(SoapOperaNetwork.com) — A quick peek into what’s happening in Port Charles this September.
GENERAL HOSPITAL: SEPTEMBER PREVIEW
The road to Sam and Jason’s wedding is paved with both minor and major challenges.
Shawn and Carly find themselves in a sexy situation.
Lucky fights to get his life together and fix the huge mess he’s created.
Kristina’s family and friends struggle to cope in the wake her diagnosis.
Two Port Charles residents make their long-awaited returns.
(SoapOperaNetwork.com) — A quick peek into what’s happening in Llanview this September.
ONE LIFE TO LIVE: SEPTEMBER PREVIEW
Clint thinks he has the answer to Kim’s troubles.
An arrest is made in Victor’s murder, but is the right person behind bars?
Todd tries to reach out to Jack, only to be shocked by his actions.
Aubrey and Cutter make a surprising discovery regarding a murder suspect.
Rex’s two moms go to great lengths to protect their son, but will their efforts be in vain?
(SoapOperaNetwork.com) — A quick peek into what’s happening in Pine Valley this September.
ALL MY CHILDREN: SEPTEMBER PREVIEW
JR hits rock bottom. Can anybody save him from himself?
Erica decides whether or not to pursue her past or leave it buried.
Jake and Amanda make a profound decision about their future.
Cara shocks David.
Angie and Maya both make difficult decisions that could forever change their future.
Zach surprises Kendall.
On it’s final week on ABC (September 19 to 23), look for many returns as “All My Children” celebrates the rich history and legacy of Pine Valley’s favorite families including the Kane family, the Hubbard family, the Martin family and the Chandlers. Creator Agnes Nixon promises a cliffhanger ending that will have the audience excited for the next chapter of her 41-year old sudser.
(SoapOperaNetwork.com) — The “One Life to Live” revolving door will stay busy during the month of September as several new and familiar faces make their presence known in Llanview.
As we previously reported, “Guiding Light” alum Wendy Moniz has been tapped to take over as Llanview’s new mayor following the resignation of Dorian Lord (Robin Strasser), who left town after being appointed a U.S. Senator. On Friday, September 16, look for the former deputy mayor to start exercising her newfound authority around town.
With visions of Gigi (Farah Fath) still fresh on Rex’s (John-Paul Lavoisier) mind, Lea DeLaria again reprises her role as Llanview’s favorite physic Madame Delphina beginning Wednesday, September 14, when she tries to help Rex make sense of what he has been seeing. However, Rex isn’t the only Balsom Delphina will come into contact with.
Apparently porn doesn’t pay the bills. As the calendar turns to September look for X-rated film producer Rick Powers (Austin Peck) to resurface following his attempt to make a name for himself by substituting the film “VickerMan” with his own creation “Hold the Diploma” in late July. Only this time it isn’t smut that he’s peddling. As Rick branches out career-wise, expect him to get tangled up in another storyline playing out on the canvas.
After going MIA since saving his Aunt Dorian while dressed as a pint-sized Spiderman, the youngest Manning child Sam (Patrick Gibbons, Jr.) returns again this month. But how will the recent developments in his family affect the little guy?
Barbara Rhoades will continue to air as Irene Manning through the month of September.
It appears as if Mandy Evans, who made her debut as “Uncanny Annie,” a pole dancer at the Spotted Pony strip club in Kentucky on August 19, may be making another appearance on the show. Evans, who taped her first scenes on July 11, posted the following on her website on August 8: “Recurring Under 5 as Uncanny Annie on One Life To Live.”
Paul Rolfes returns as Dr. Jay Gangemi on Wednesday, August 31, along with a few dayplayer nurses, EMTS, and cops. In the same episode, Helmar Augustus Cooper is back as homeless man Louie, who interacts with several Llanview residents. And on the same date, Frankie Faison also airs again as Destiny’s grandad Richard Evans.
Rumors continue to swirl that Terrell Tilford will be returning to Llanview as Destiny’s (Shenell Edmonds) dad and Shaun (Sean Ringgold) brother Greg Evans this fall. Tilford himself has added to the speculation with this video message to his former “OLTL” fans on his Facebook fan page, teasing about a possible return to the show. However, while it remains to be seen if the actor is actually returning or not, Greg’s name will be mentioned more than once by his loved ones in the coming weeks.
Edmonds tweeted on August 24 that it was a “Good day at #OLTL, one day break and back again to close out the week.” Also be sure to check out her Twitter page to read her earlier tweets from some of Destiny’s scenes from the August 5 episode.
Check out this tweet from Hillary B. Smith from earlier this month: “I would love to do ‘Dancing with the Stars.’ But ABC doesn’t promote us on ‘OLTL.’” She also responds to a fan who asked her on August 22, “Yet, you all are the number one rated soap on their schedule! Word!,” with “we sure are!!! Not their plan! But aren’t we grand!!!” Earlier in the month she commented on slap Phylicia gave Nora recently, saying “The slap was acted. I don’t think my head would have stayed attached if Tonye [Phylicia Evans] connected. She was awesome!”
Robin Strasser tweeted on August 30 that “GROUND TURKEY E COLI RECALL? didn’t know- ate turkey burgers with gusto. SICK unto death-gotta get better help.Thank you for prayers.” On August 26 she tweeted that “Yes, I was able to watch the ‘last show”. I LUV Erika Slezak, Kassie DePaiva, Kristen Alderson, Gina Tognoni. I’ll miss working with them. Soap Central really cheered me UP. I’m in hospital- 2nd time in 2 weeks for a blood infection (wuh?) Hoping for meds I’m not allergic to.”
A fan commented to Kristen Alderson on Twitter on August 30, saying “LOVED when Starr said Brown Chicken Brown Cow today!tweeting”I added that in cause Kassie always says it hahah.”
And speaking of Shaun, fans can expect to see more of him in September, along with a few of Llanview’s other infrequently used supporting characters like Nigel (Peter Bartlett), Shane (Austin Williams), Echo (Kim Zimmer), Phylicia (Tonye Patano), Roxy (Ilene Kristen), and a certain prized possession of the eccentric hairdresser.
(SoapOperaNetwork.com) — “All My Children” Episode Recap – Tuesday, August 30, 2011.
IT HAPPENED TODAY…
Cara tells David she’s starting to worry about him Griffin.
Zach asks Kendall if she trusts him enough to keep a secret. Cara tells Tad she isn’t going to the immigration interview.
Angie asks what happened to her baby.
On the Next All My Children…
(SoapOperaNetwork.com) — “One Life to Live” Episode Recap – Tuesday, August 30, 2011.
Jack warns Victor that Todd has a gun, but Victor reassures him that he won’t be intimidated. Blair reports the theft of the gun to Brody. Blair visits Victor and warns him about Todd, but Victor continues to be unconcerned. Nonetheless, Blair takes Jack home.
At EOD, an intruder enters Victor’s home. Tomas finds Téa at The Sun and reiterates his desire to get Victor away from her and Danielle.
Starr and James find time for a little romance. Starr plays James the demo tape Baz made of her singing.
Nora returns from a visit to Matthew and after catching up on Llanview matters, Nora asks Bo how he’d feel about raising Matthew and Destiny’s child with her. Bo tells her he would consider it an honor.
Someone is shot in cold blood.
On the Next One Life to Live…
(SoapOperaNetwork.com) — “General Hospital” Episode Recap – Tuesday, August 30, 2011.
IT HAPPENED TODAY…
Sam, overcome with emotion, prays Jason will return to her so they can get married.
Alexis confronts Sonny about Jax.
Kristina blows up at her father but there’s something is very wrong with her.
Lulu overhears Dante and Lucky discussing his recent drug encounter. Dante gets much needed advice from his mother about Lulu, as Lulu and Tracy discuss their relationships. Later, Olivia has loving words with Lulu.
On the Next General Hospital…
(SoapOperaNetwork.com) — Just another abnormal week for “One Life to Live.”
Last week was an example of just how quickly things can go wrong in Llanview, both intentionally and unintentionally. Two weeks ago the show was riding high on the fallout over the revelation of the real Todd Manning. However, just days later it was as if “One Life to Live” was cursed when a series of unforeseen mishaps and errors disrupted the continuity of the storylines and left viewers scratching their heads and screaming at their TV screens.
First there were the “breaking news” pre-emptions by both the network and local ABC stations covering topics such as the civil unrest in Libya, the East Coast earthquake, and the looming threat of Hurricane Irene. For the most part, each of those interruptions were relatively brief and understandable, although still nonetheless frustrating to “OLTL” fans who believe (rightly so) that news only seems to happen during the 2:00 pm ET hour on weekday afternoons.
Next was the so-called technical glitch that plagued last Thursday’s episode, which just so happened to be Robin Strasser‘s last airdate as the legendary Dorian Lord. As confusing and disprectful to Strasser and the character of Dorian as it drew attention away from what should have been a tearful farewell for her, I have to admit that the situation a little comical. At one commercial break, Viki and Dorian had just realized they were locked in her office together. But a few minutes later when the show returned after a commercial Dorian was setting at a table in the same office enjoying some cake with her Cramer girls (from the previous day’s episode). Then another commercial break, and suddenly Dorian and Viki were back to being locked in her office together.
Which brings me to my next issue. Whether you are a “spoiler whore” like me and have a rough idea of what is going to take place in each day’s episode, or you wish to remain spoiler free, you could not deny that there has just been something really off regarding the past four or five episodes of “One Life to Live.” The editing has been atrocious and choppy in the past few episodes, leading many viewers to wonder what exactly is going on. Rewrites of some of the storylines would be a good assumption, however, most of the things that were already spoiled to happen are still taking place on screen, but just in different episodes than originally planned. And to further compound matters, some scenes seem out of place and out of sync with how things ended in the previous episode. For example, last Thursday’s episode ended with Natalie talking with Clint in the library at Llanfair about his ex-wife Kim returning to town. On Friday, however, Natalie was shown in the cemetery with Rex, who was showing her how the death date on Gigi’s tombstone had been scratched out. But then the next episode (on Monday) picked up where Thursday’s show left off with Natalie and Clint back at Llanfair talking about Kim again.
To add to the confusion, random unrelated scenes have been popping up in places they shouldn’t be in some of the same episodes as well. Like a quick shot of Kim at the cemetery watching Gigi’s grave being exhumed sandwiched in between scenes of Victor and Todd arguing at his office at The Sun, or a short scene of Rex and Shane arguing in the middle of Monday’s episode even though neither of them were seen elsewhere in the episode (outside of last second shot of Rex holding a gun at the end of the show). These are just a few examples of the rushed, sloppy editing that is making this show disjointed, choppy, and rather hard to follow.
And it doesn’t help matters that the writers have begun dropping major storylines for days a time to focus on unpopular plots, characters, and pairings. What ends a cliffhanger one day may not be resulted or shown again for maybe two or three more episodes, adding to viewer frustration. This, combined with unnecessary and poorly defined “newbies” helps make this show its own worst enemy. The cast remains bloated and we forget about half of the characters on the canvas the majority of the time because they are rarely seen or drawn into a storyline. Take Cristian for example, outside of his occasional scenes recently with Shaun and Rama, what purpose does he really serve? The same for James, Nate, Deanna, Baz, and several others. There are too many characters right now (contract, recurring, and dayplayers), and the scenes are often too short for fans to really become invested in any particular characters or storylines, not to mention the fact that the tales are becoming increasingly stupid and idiotic, and long-time legacy characters are turned into nothing more than props and plot points. But yet, I suppose it is still more believable and entertaining than “All My Children,” which has a crazy doctor who has somehow kept most of town’s deceased residents alive and well.
After watching “One Life to Live” all last week with all its interruptions and editing issues, it made me realize that this show never fails to surprise me, whether it be for better or for worse. There is never a dull moment when it comes to Llanview, and finding something to do an article about for SON. Take this column for example. A week ago I had no idea what aspect of the show I was going to write about this go around, and then the show gave me plenty of inspiration and material to work with as I sat down late this evening (as usual) to hammer out a (hopefully) somewhat decent column only hours before my “deadline.” As noted earlier, there is never a dull moment while reporting on “OLTL,” whether it means I am writing about HD cameras and equipment, MMA fights (i.e. Mark Lawson), prom dresses, or High School Musical themed episodes. There always seems to be something to talk about, whether I like what is happening or not. Remember that, just because I write an article about something or someone pertaining to the show, it does not mean that I agree with the decision. I am simply the messenger, so don’t shoot…haha.
Moving on, no one guessed (either correctly or incorrectly) the answers to my trivia questions from last time….although I gave everyone a second chance, so here are the answers:
So here are your questions again: 1. What connection did Lee Patterson (ex-Joe Riley and Tom Dennison) have to legendary comedian Jack Benny? Answer: He was his golf caddy at one time. 2. Tonja Walker is cousins with what famous country music star? Answer: Billy Ray Cyrus. 3. James DePaiva (ex-Max) is a descendant of what former U.S. President? Answer: Andrew Johnson.
So now, let’s try some new trivia questions. 1. What current “OLTL” cast member was the youngest soap star ever placed on contract with a daytime drama back in 2001? 2. In college, what subject did Ted King get his undergraduate degree in and from what school? 3. What foreign language did Erika Slezak grow up speaking before learning English at five-years-old? I’ll have the answers in the September 15 edition of My View of Llanview.
Now, before I wrap up this column, I’m going to look into my crystal ball and give you a quick sneak peek at a few things coming up a few weeks down the road. Someone is forced to part with something very dear to them. An unexpected person becomes the voice of reason for a troubled individual. Two old flames revisit their past. And one person in particular demands justice be served.
Well that’s concludes yet another column. Have a great week everyone!
Take care, and until next time remember, we only have “One Life to Live”…
(SoapOperaNetwork.com) — This evening, ABC confirmed the list of contestants for the 13th season of “Dancing with the Stars.” The list leaked earlier today on Twitter proved to be accurate. Both lists included actor J.R. Martinez, 28, from “All My Children.” Martinez is a veteran of the Iraq war and a highly sought-after motivational speaker for the causes that effect his fellow veterans. He joined the 41-year old ABC soap as Brot Monroe in November of 2008. Martinez follows in the foot steps of former “DWTS” winner Kelly Monaco (Sam, “General Hospital”) and his “AMC” co-stars and former “DWTS” contestants Cameron Mathison (Ryan) Susan Lucci (Erica) and Aiden Turner (ex-Aidan).
Joining Martinez will be a slew of figures from the entertainment (actors, reality stars, commentators, and musicians) and sports world including:
The professional dancers scheduled to partner with these performers include Cheryl Burke, Kym Johnson, Karina Smirnoff, Lacey Schwimmer, Anna Trebunskaya, Tony Dovolani, Derek Hough, Mark Ballas, Maksim Chmerkoviskiy, Val Chmerkoviskiy and Tristan MacManus.