The big news of December 2012 was word that Prospect Park was taking another stab at moving ABC’s “All My Children” and “One Life to Live” to the web in 2013. The news was first reported by Deadline.com‘s Nellie Andreeva. In her initial reporting, Andreeva revealed that Prospect Park had made agreements with the unions SAG-AFTRA (Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists) and the DGA (Directors Guild of America). Previously, while the company had planned on debuting the shows on the web in early 2012, no deals had been signed with either union or the WGA (Writers Guild of America). This hindered the company’s plan to move forward with the shows and resulted in a postponement that was announced in November 2011. In a statement at the time, AFTRA (prior to its merger with SAG) said that they were “deeply disappointed to read that the executives at Prospect Park have decided to suspend their efforts to produce the long-running and popular daytime serials.” Additionally, the union had said that they “remain hopeful that an opportunity to revive these two popular series will emerge in the future, and remain ready to resume discussions should that opportunity arise.” The future took more than a year, but it appears to have finally emerged. However, although a representative from SAG-AFTRA confirmed that an agreement with Prospect Park had been made when pressed for comment from Soap Opera Network early last week, it remains unclear if said agreement had actually been signed. “Not absolutely certain it had been signed but can check that for you,” said the rep. Due to the holidays, we don’t expect a response on that little detail until at least tomorrow, January 2.
(SoapOperaNetwork.com) — As Soap Opera Network reported late last week, Susan Lucci has added a scathing new chapter to “All My Life” scheduled to be included in the paperback release of her memoir on September 13. In the new epilogue, the actress who is known for being too well-mannered uncharacteristically blasts ABC Daytime Chief Brian Frons for what she feels is his mismanagement of ABC Daytime and his general arrogance. Following a weekend of book leaks, ABC released what could only be construed as a biting statement about Lucci’s book addition and conduct. On Tuesday – coincidentally or not – after getting information from an unnamed source, a Deadline.com article held back few jabs after revealing the actress turned down the offer to continue with “All My Children” online.
An epilogue is defined as a piece of writing usually included to conclude a body of work. On Saturday, September 3, as aforementioned, the New York Post not only revealed more juicy tidbits from Lucci’s new memoir epilogue detailing her feelings about the cancellation of the soap she put on the map in 1970, they also included a response from ABC in regard to it. An ABC Daytime spokesperson told the Post “we have all the respect in the world for Susan, and are sorry she felt the need to write this epilogue to an otherwise incredible career.” The negative connotation that statement ends on is hard to miss. Coincidentally on Tuesday, September 6, Deadline.com announced that Lucci officially turned down Prospect Park’s more than fair offer to remain with the show due to trying to “gouge the producers for more money.” According to the article, Lucci was offered the same pay she currently receives at ABC Daytime but demanded a raise and perks including more time off. The article implies that the future of “AMC” is now in jeopardy and “One Life to Live” will become the focus of the new venture due to Lucci’s lack of cooperation with the company that has licensed “AMC” and “OLTL” from ABC. In the same article it was also announced that the production company had secured several “OLTL” stars to continue post-ABC Daytime including Llanview’s main leading lady Erika Slezak.
For her part, despite the addition to the book being written before Lucci learned of the licensing deal with Prospect Park, the Emmy Award winner recently told TV Guide Magazine’s Michael Logan she has no regrets about writing what was on her mind. Just last week, Lucci seemed to be a good bet to continue with Prospect Park. Once again speaking to TV Guide Magazine, she had this to say about the venture at that time: “my heart is there… I think it’s a very, very exciting possibility. I think that Prospect Park, the men involved there, have a wonderful, successful track record.” This leaves fans and the press alike wondering if ABC Daytime’s hurt feelings about Lucci speaking her mind was the real culprit behind this sudden turn of events or at least the negative tone now surrounding her current negotiation stand with Prospect Park. Jamey Giddens, from Daytime Confidential, reports that this may not be the end of talks. “AMC” creator Agnes Nixon is still hoping to help Prospect Park reach an agreement with Lucci.
Whatever the case, on September 23, Lucci is slated to co-host “The View’” for a special tribute to “AMC.” “The View” is a part of ABC Daytime and the talk show’s daily hot topics may become even more heated if any of these topics reach the discussion table.
(SoapOperaNetwork.com) — For the past two and a half weeks, I found myself in unfamiliar territory when it came to running the website as I was based out of Los Angeles. Normally, I run things here in New York. What I found unfamiliar, however, was finding out the true stories behind what many soap fans can’t seem to get enough of – the Disney/ABC and Prospect Park connection as it relates to “All My Children” and “One Life to Live” and even “General Hospital.” So what did I learn that I can share with you? Plenty!
Following months of speculation, the announcement has finally been made official today. ABC has announced plans to cancel two-thirds of their daytime soap line-up. According to reports, “All My Children” will last air in September, while “One Life to Live” will leave the air in January 2012. The move will leave “General Hospital” as the network’s only remaining daytime drama.
Reaction is slowly beginning to trickle in from the cast and crew of both soaps. David A. Gregory (Robert Ford, “OLTL”) posted on Facebook this afternoon that “Oh, guys, it’s with great difficulty I report that at a company meeting today, we were told the ‘OLTL’ will be taping their last episodes in November. Airing Jan. 2012. ‘AMC’ will finish taping in August. Thank you all so much for your support of not only Daytime TV, but the ABC soaps: especially ‘OLTL.’ And the Ford clan!! Love you guys. Frank [Valentini] has promised were goin’ out with a bang so get ready!”
(SoapOperaNetwork.com) — “General Hospital’s” Amber Tamblyn (ex-Emily Quartermaine) has signed on to star along-side James Franco (Franco) in the upcoming film “127 Hours” by “Slumdog Millionaire” Academy Award winning director Danny Boyle.
The film is about Aron Ralston (Franco), a mountain climber who is forced to cut off his arm with a dull knife in order to save his life after being unable to free the lim from under a boulder. According to Deadline.com‘s Nikki Finke, Tamblyn will portray his girlfriend, whose relationship with Aron will be played out in flashbacks which helps him keep going.
Production on the film is scheduled to begin in March in the state of Utah. The film will be distributed by FOX Searchlight Pictures, a division of News Corporation. In addition to directing, Boyle also co-wrote the screenplay along-side “Slumdog” writing partner Simon Beaufoy.
Since leaving “General Hospital” in 2001, Tamblyn has had starring roles in such series as CBS’ “Joan of Arcadia” and ABC’s “The Unusuals.” She’s appeared in such films as “The Sisters of the Traveling Pants” and “The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2,” with co-stars America Ferrera (“Ugly Betty”) and Blake Lively (“Gossip Girl”). She’s also starred in the horror films “The Ring” and “The Grudge 2,” which also starred Sarah Michelle Gellar (ex-Kendall Hart, “All My Children”).
James Franco is best known for playing the role of Harry Osborn in the “Spiderman” series of films. Before hitting it big he co-starred in the short-lived NBC comedy series “Freaks and Geeks.” Since then he has starred in a number of high profile films including “Pineapple Express” and Oscar nominated “Milk” with Sean Penn. He joined the cast of “General Hospital” in role of serial killer Franco in November 2009 for a big story arc that is nearing its completion. His character last appeared in early January, but will return in the next few weeks to close out the storyline.