Soap star and theatre regular, Robert Newman, addressed fan inquiries on Facebook earlier today over his possible involvement in either “All My Children” or “One Life to Live,” which are essentially filming in his backyard of Stamford, CT. The inquiries were from fans of the cancelled Proctor & Gamble produced soap “Guiding Light,” which Newman starred off and on for nearly 30 years as Joshua Lewis.
“I do have some interest, but my guess is that, at least at first, they will only be tapping into the incredible talent that have put in their time already on both shows,” Newman said. He added, “Wouldn’t be much of a reunion if you recast any characters or added new ones. But down the road, who knows? They both are stocked with several actors I have great respect for and would love working with. We’ll see.”
Soap Opera Network has learned exclusively that Eric Nelsen has been cast as an aged AJ Chandler, son of JR Chandler (now played by Ryan Bittle) and Babe Chandler. Nelsen, who according to his IMDb was originally cast as Eric van der Woodsen on the CW’s “Gossip Girl” before studio execs felt he was too young for the part, will be tackling the Pine Valley High School teen scene when he debuts on the series later this spring.
As previously reported, “All My Children” has named Marlene McPherson and Elizabeth Snyder as co-head writers. What’s so significant about their hiring is that this marks the first time since 2003 that a daytime soap opera has had two females leading its writing team. The last time was with Ellen Weston and Carolyn Culliton co-head writing CBS’ “Guiding Light.” Prior to that was in 2002, when Millee Taggert and Culliton also co-head wrote for “GL.”
On Monday, February 11, Paos Revolution, the team behind the upcoming “On Air” film starring “All My Children’s” Jordi Vilasuso (Dr. Griffin Castillo) and Alicia Minshew (ex-Kendall Hart) announced the launch of their official website. “The launch of paosrevolution.com is the first step of our plan to connect fans to the soap actors and insiders they love. Founding partners Jordi Vilasuso, Dock (Jeff Dockweiler) and John Homa are committed to creating an interactive actor friendly environment,” said a press release announcing the launch.
Scott Evans, who played Oliver Fish on “One Life to Live,” has pleaded guilty to attempted cocaine possession. From 2008-10 Evans was one half of the show’s popular, yet controversial gay couple nicknamed “Kish,” which also featured Brett Claywell as Fish’s love interest Kyle Lewis. However, according to TMZ, Evans isn’t expected to serve any jail time.
The resurrection of “All My Children” and “One Life to Live” has moved another step closer to reality with published reports that the production company has hired Alison Goodman as casting director for the defunct ABC soaps.
Emily Squires, who was nominated for fifteen Daytime Entertainment Emmy Awards throughout her career based on her work on “As The World Turns,” “Guiding Light,” “Sesame Street” and “Between the Lions,” passed on Wednesday, November 21 at New York’s Mount Sinai Hospital. She was 71 years old.
Squires directed episodes of “Sesame Street” from 1982 to 2007, while also serving on the shows writing team. She also served as a script writer on “ATWT,” “GL,” Search for Tomorrow,” and “The Secret Storm.”
A cause of death has not been determined according to her husband Len Belzer.
On Wednesday, November 14, 2012, the world of soaps lost a true legend in Barbara Esensten, who passed at age 75. Esensten co-created “The City” along with her more than 20 year long writing partner James Harmon Brown. The duo worked together on such shows as “Dynasty,” “All My Children,” “Days of our Lives,” “One Life to Live,” “Port Charles” and “Guiding Light.”
In a posting on Esensten’s facebook page, former “Guiding Light” head writer Jill Lorie Hurst said, “I think you know how much I love you and one of the many reasons is how much YOU loved your wonderful family – Mike, the kids, the grandkids – that great house of yours – and your good old partner Jim Brown. You were such a good boss/girlfriend and you always smelled so good. I miss you already.”
“I wish she’d tell me what she was thinking” are the first spoken words in the teaser trailer for the upcoming film “On Air” by Paos Revolution, a new production company formed by Jordi Vilasuso (“All My Children,” “Guidiing Light”) and acting coaches from “AMC” and “General Hospital.” The film will tell the fictionalized story of life after a popular soap opera gets canceled and how the stars of the program are forced to move on.
In the teaser, Vilasuso is joined by former “AMC” co-star Alicia Minshew, whose character says that she “gave ten years of [her] life to that show. I still can’t believe we got canceled.” While the line provides an unintentional punch to soap fans still reeling from the loss of the ABC drama series as Minshew portrayed Kendall Hart on the program for nearly ten years, it does show that life does go on. While we will no longer be seeing some of our favorite stars portraying some of our all-time favorite characters, the business of soaps will continue in one form or another.
Soap Opera Network wishes “The Young and the Restless” star Christian Jules LeBlanc (Michael Baldwin) a very happy birthday as the three time Daytime Emmy Award winner for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series (2005, 2007, 2009) turns 54 years-old today.
Joining the cast of “Y&R” all the way back in 1991, LeBlanc has enjoyed nearly two decades in Genoa City. Although he departed the role in 1993, LeBlanc returned to the CBS soap in 1997 and has remained there ever since. He brought his character from “Y&R” to “As The World Turns” for a couple of episodes in 2005.
LeBlanc appeared in episodes of “In The Heat of the Night,” “Diagnosis Murder,” and “Cheers.” Along with co-star Jeanne Cooper (Katherine Chancellor), the actor appeared in a 2009 episode of “Guiding Light” just as the series was coming to a close.
Note: Starting Saturday, September 1, 2012, Soap Opera Network will begin providing soap fans with a new database system that will house actor biographies, birthdays, and much more. Be on the look out.