(SoapOperaNetwork.com) — As we first reported last night, thanks to a tweet from a “One Life to Live” crew member, it was looking as if Amanda Setton, who currently plays Penelope Shafai on “Gossip Girl,” was making her way back to Llanview as the former stripper and Buchanan wife Kimberly Andrews. This afternoon, both Soap Opera Digest and ABC Soaps in Depth confirmed the news, stating that the actress was indeed returning to Llanview.
The tweet in question came from Julia Davis (of Julia Jovone Beauty), who has been a make-up artist on “OLTL” since October 2005. On June 13, she tweeted that she had “Just finished getting @amandasetton into character for ‘One Life to Live.’ Love her features.”
“I am thrilled to be returning to ‘One Life to Live.’ I had such a great time working with everyone at ‘OLTL’ and I am looking forward to the trouble that Kim will get into once she is back in town,” the actress said in a statement.
However, Setton’s first airdate, as well as the length of her stay on “One Life,” are unknown at this time. But with her taping scenes earlier this month, she should first appear on screen sometime in August.
Setton made her “One Life” debut as Kimberly Andrews on August 14, 2009. She left the role on April 2, 2010 after rejecting an offer by the show to place her on contract, in order to return to her primetime roots.
So what brings Kimberly back to Llanview? Revenge on David Vickers after he blackmailed her into leaving town? Looking to reunite with her sugar daddy Clint Buchanan? Or could it be something more? Here’s your chance to sound off!
(SoapOperaNetwork.com) — After fifteen years of working in various positions on the “One Life to Live” writing staff, including serving as the show’s head scribe for the last three years, ABC has announced that Ron Carlivati will be joining “General Hospital” as a script writer. The move will fulfill the remainder of the three-year contract Carlivati signed with the network last September. A similar two-year deal was hammered out at the time with “One Life” Executive Producer Frank Valentini.
Despite the timing of the news, “OLTL” fans breath a sigh of relief, however, since Carlivati is not expected to begin his new duties until after the show wraps production sometime in mid-November. “One Life to Live” will air its final episode on January 20, 2012.
Carlivati echoed the sentiment in a press release, saying that “I remain fully committed to Frank Valentini and ‘One Life to Live’ as the show’s Headwriter until the series concludes in January of 2012. It has been my distinct honor to write for Agnes Nixon’s groundbreaking soap opera for the past fifteen years, and it will be with a heavy heart that I, along with my incredibly talented team, pen its finale. At that time, I am happy to announce that I will then be joining the writing team of ‘General Hospital,’ and am thrilled to be working once again with Executive Producer Jill Phelps as well as new Headwriter Garin Wolf.”
Wolf was just named “GH” headwriter last month by Brian Frons, President, Daytime, Disney/ABC Television Group, upon the firing of the show’s former head scribe Robert Guza, Jr.
The news of Carlivati’s move to the L.A.-based “Hospital,” was broken Thursday by “One Life’s” soon-to-be-departing leading lady Robin Strasser, who tweeted that ” JUST TOLD but NOT told it wuz SECRET: Ron CARLIVATI to #GH as script writer-hopes 2 b co-head writer? Yo,I’m taking heat for leaving early?” Strasser, as we previously reported, is leaving “OLTL” this summer to have back surgery. Her final tape date is Friday, July 1.
Carlivati, along with his writing staff, won a Daytime Emmy in 2008 for their work on “One Life to Live.” He began his daytime career on the soap as a Writer’s Assistant from 1996-1998, before being promoted the the position of Script Writer. In 2001 he was again promoted, this time to the job of Breakdown Writer. In May 2007, he was appointed Co-Head Writer (along with Dena Higley). In September of that year, he was named the show’s sole Head Writer following the network’s dismissal of Higley, where he has continued to serve (minus a brief hiatus during the 2008 Writer’s Strike) in the same capacity.
Click here to read an interview Soap Opera Network did with Carlivati in March of this year, one month before ABC announced the cancellation of “One Life to Live” and sister soap “All My Children.”
After a week of unconfirmed (by the show) firings of numerous actors, NBC’s “Days of our Lives” has now fired its co-executive producer, Gary Tomlin. The news was first reported by TV Guide Canada‘s Nelson Branco on Twitter. News of Tomlin’s firing comes on the heels of last months firing of head writer Dena Higley and the recent firings of actors Crystal Chappell (Carly Manning), Louise Sorel (Vivian Alamain), Bren Foster (Quinn Hudson), Nadia Bjorlin (Chloe Lane), and Tamara Braun (Taylor Walker).
It was in August 2008 when Executive Producer Ken Corday announced the hiring of Tomlin after confirming the ouster of Ed Scott.
“I have decided that it’s in the best interest of the show’s future to make this change in order to improve ‘Days’ both visually and emotionally,” said Corday at the time. “We at ‘Days’ are grateful to Ed Scott for all of his contributions and amazing energy over the past year. Gary Tomlin brings a long successful history of being an actor’s producer and a writer’s producer to our cast and crew and I know the viewers will see the immediate results of this change for the better.” Unfortunately for Tomlin his services were deemed no longer necessary.
At this time no replacement had been named nor was it clear whether or not Corday would take on all executive producer responsibilities himself.
Prior to joining “DAYS,” Tomlin began his career in daytime in 1973, when he was cast in the contract role of Bruce Carson on “Search for Tomorrow.” He later appeared as Morgan Simpson on NBC’s “Another World” in 1979. From 1980-1981, he was co-head writer of “DAYS” with Michelle Poteet-Lisanti. Later, he went on to co-head write at his old stomping ground, “Another World” for two years starting in 1984. In the late 1980′s/early 1990′s, Tomlin began writing scripts for “Santa Barbara” and directing episodes for both “Another World” and “One Life to Live.” In 1995 he joined “All My Children” as a producer. Upon the debut of NBC’s “Sunset Beach” in 1997 through its last airing in 1999, Tomlin was credited as the shows Executive Producer. He served as a director at NBC’s “Passions” from 2000-2001 and again from April 25, 2003 – April 2, 2008. He joined “One Life to Live” as its Executive Producer in November 2000, but his first credited episodes did not air until January 2001. He left the ABC soap in August 2003. He was immediately replaced by current “One Life” Executive Producer, Frank Valentini. Tomlin won the soap its one and only Outstanding Drama Series Daytime Emmy Award in 2003.
Due to its advanced filming schedule, Tomlin will be credited as EP until episodes scheduled to air in late August/early September.
A “Days of our Lives” representative was unavailable for comment at press time.
After news broke today that ABC would be bumping “General Hospital” from its long time 3:00 PM ET/2:00 PM PT timeslot beginning in September 2012 in favor of a new Katie Couric talk show, the network was forced to calm the nerves of fans who are still reeling from the cancellations of “All My Children” and “One Life to Live.” Unfortunately, the network is just delaying the inevitable to placate fans from believing that their favorite soap could be next.
“As you’ll note, we went out of our way to state that we continue to support the show,” Disney-ABC Television spokesman Kevin Brockman told CNN. “We have a long time between now and fall of 2012, so fans should be encouraged to continue watching and supporting.”
Brockman’s statement was echoed by Jori Petersen, Vice President, Publicity, ABC Daytime/SOAPnet. “The announcement does not mean the inevitable cancellation of ‘General Hospital,’” said Petersen. “Rather it means that in September 2012, we will program our daytime block with our three strongest shows. We’ll have options for the daytime daypart just like with do each year with prime-time. We believe in all of our shows and the ones that our viewers want will be the ones that continue. There are many options that could happen … only time will tell. We are simply giving ourselves options for the future, which is a smart way to do business. The best way to ensure a favorite show stays on the air is to watch it.”
If you read the statements clearly, no where does it state that “General Hospital” is indeed safe. Petersen’s “we will program our daytime block with our three strongest shows” means that if “The Revolution” and “The Chew” are successful and “General Hospital” is canceled, they will join “The View” as the “three strongest shows” on ABC Daytime. Let’s reminds ourselves that ABC is giving back the fourth hour of its daytime schedule to affiliates beginning in September 2012 with the understanding that while Couric’s show will air in syndication (ie. not just ABC affiliated stations), it will air solely in the 3:00 PM ET/2:00 PM PT timeslot as Oprah Winfrey did in the 4:00 PM ET/3:00 PM PT over the course of her 25-years hosting “The Oprah Winfrey Show.” This will be the deal breaker the Disney/ABC Television Group will make with affiliates looking for programming to air beginning in fall 2012.
Will “General Hospital” indeed be canceled? No one is saying that either, but unless “The Chew” or “The Revolution” flat out bomb and the network loses money, odds are “GH” will end in September 2012 to make room for Katie Couric.
Side Note: While we understand that Oprah’s show did not air at 4:00 PM ET/3:00 PM PT in all parts of the country, the majority of stations airing her show were contracted to air the program during those hours.
(SoapOperaNetwork.com) — Agnes Nixon, creator of the recently cancelled ABC daytime soap operas “All My Children” and “One Life to Live,” makes a generous donation to the University of Pennsylvania’s Annenberg School for Communication (ASC), to ensure that both shows, along with the defunct soap “Loving” (another of her creations), will never be forgotten.
Since first donating countless scripts from the early years of all three daytime dramas back in the ’80s, Nixon has helped add to the school’s collection over the years, handing over additional scripts as recently as 2009. “The Annenberg School is very well-known, and I believe Penn wanted the scripts as a piece of history,” she tells the university’s newspaper, The Penn Current, which reports that the school is in possession of “virtually every script” of “AMC” and “OLTL.”
Among the many scripts housed at the ASC include Erica Kane fighting a bear and the reunion of Jesse and Angie on “AMC,” as well as Viki and Dorian’s most memorable showdowns, and Todd and Blair’s rocky romance on “OLTL,” just to name a few.
The 83-year-old Nixon also commented on both shows’ cancellations, saying “there had been great rumors that the cost factor had become an issue. People watch more things during the day now, and that means less income from the advertisers for daytime dramas. Meanwhile the cost of creating the shows doesn’t change. The unions don’t reduce their fees. You have to pay the actors and writers. Bottom line, it’s money.”
She also reveals that will be working with the writers of each show to help pen their final episodes later this year. “We’re ending them but we aren’t ending them, if you know what I mean. It’s possible that some other network might pick them up, so we are ending them with a tune-in-tomorrow attitude. But fans should expect to see long-lost characters return to Pine Valley and Llanview during the final episodes. We’ll have situations that will bring them back.”
And what if the there are no takers for either show? Nixon admits she has prepared herself the possibility, stating “I worked very hard and I’m proud of what we did. I feel sorry for the people who will be without jobs because of cancellations, but that is life, and 41 years was a good run.”
Often dubbed the “Queen of the Modern Soap,” Nixon is remembered for tackling numerous controversial issues on her soaps over the years, including interracial relationships, drug abuse, abortion, AIDS, anti-war protests, homosexuality, and gay rights. She was awarded with a Lifetime Acquirement Award at the 2010 Daytime Emmys.
“All My Children” is expected to wrap up production in August and air its final episode on September 23, after a 41-year-run, while “One Life to Live” will stop taping in November, and broadcast its final episode on January 20, 2012, after 43 years on the air.
Long before ABC’s Upfront presentation got underway at around 3:45 PM on Tuesday, May 17, when invited guests began scuttling into the Avery Fisher Hall, the National Broadcasting Company (NBC) looked to take attention off of the American Broadcasting Company (ABC) by promoting its new fall programming with a rotation of more than a dozen Grayline and CitySearch NYC buses that were filled with wide open spaces or a lack of passengers in this case. While the seats may have been empty, no one could miss the colorful brand making its presence known while its competitor seeks a piece of the $9.2 billion pie during a crucial television season that lies ahead for the Disney/ABC Television Group. Insert the NBC peacock now featured on billboards in newly stylized glossy graphics.
On Tuesday, May 17, fans of ABC’s recently canceled “All My Children” and “One Life to Live” protested outside of the Avery Fisher Hall at Lincoln Center in New York City as the ABC Television Network presented its 2011-2012 broadcast television schedule to its owned & operated stations, affiliates, advertising partners, and the dozens of press outlets gobbling up everything said during the networks upfront presentation. Joining protesting fans were Colleen Zenk (ex-Barbara Ryan, “As The World Turns”), Mimi Torchin (founding Editor in Chief of Soap Opera Weekly), and “One Life to Live’s” Ilene Kristen (Roxy Balsom). Also making their presence known was the Broadcast Television Union NABET CWA Local 16.
(SoapOperaNetwork.com) — “One Life to Live” goes behind-the-scenes to ask some of Llanview’s leading residents their thoughts on one of the town’s most infamous characters — Todd Manning, only to learn that “he’s a bit misunderstood.” But will they spill on just who is really playing Todd — Trevor St. John or Roger Howarth? You’ll have to watch to find out!
Watch as Joey (Tom Degnan), Cutter (Josh Kelly), Clint (Jerry verDorn), Rex (John-Paul Lavoisier), Bo (Robert S. Woods), Kelly (Gina Tognoni), Blair (Kassie DePaiva), Nate (Lenny Platt), Dani (Kelley Missal), Jack (Andrew Trischitta), and Starr (Kristen Alderson) all talk about the man is Todd Manning and what he has become…with a little surprise at the end.
As we all know, four weeks ago Brian Frons, President, Daytime, Disney/ABC Television Group, visited the set of ABC’s “All My Children” to announce the cancellation of the 41-year-old soap live and in person to cast members while also canceling “AMC’s” sister soap “One Life to Live,” whose cast members learned via video feed of the 42-year-old daytime dramas fate. According to Frons, with “The Chew” and “The Revolution” the network will be saving between 30-40% a week on programming costs. It’s easy to see why as Soap Opera Network has your exclusive first look at the new programming that falls under the networks “It’s a Brand New Day” promotional campaign. Materials for the campaign will be sent out to advertisers and press outlets beginning next week as the network presents its 2011-2012 daytime and primetime schedule to Madison Avenue’s elite buyers at the Avery Fisher Hall in Lincoln Center in New York City on Tuesday, May 17. Soap fans are scheduled to protest outside the event from 2:00 – 6:00 PM.
(SoapOperaNetwork.com) — While “All My Children” and “One Life to Live” were receiving worldwide attention after it was announced that ABC had decided be cancel both series on the afternoon of what is now known as Black Thursday (April 14), magazine publisher Source Interlink quietly made noise of its own that very morning when it announced it would be laying off more than half of its employees working on popular magazines Soap Opera Digest and Soap Opera Weekly. Now comes word that the company, which handed over editorial, advertising, marketing and distribution control of the magazine’s to American Media, which runs such rags as The National Enquirer, has officially laid off the affected individuals.
In announcing the deal last month, David J. Pecker, Chairman, President and CEO of American Media, Inc. (AMI) said, “This agreement is ideal for American Media as both soap opera titles fit strategically into our entertainment group, which includes Star, National Enquirer, Country Weekly and TV Guide, reaching an audience of 37 million people. Advertising clients will benefit immensely as we will now deliver the most efficient ad buy in the celebrity category for consumers.”
“This transaction will allow our media company to focus on the continued growth and investment in our core enthusiast brands, while positioning our sales and services company, to focus on its long-term vision of fully capitalizing on the vertical integration of our wholesale magazine distribution assets,” noted Michael L. Sullivan, President & CEO, Source Interlink Companies. “American Media understands and values our history and commitment to the entertainment category, through our soap titles. Given the synergies in their demographic audience, this license agreement will allow AMI to support these titles moving forward where they will continue to provide an exciting and relevant product for our dedicated consumers. We are pleased to have identified the right partner and are confident that our soap titles are in good hands.”
While there is no word yet on who the magazines were forced to lay off, Soap Opera Network has learned that the announcement was made earlier this week. Just another sign that the economy is a bust. We wish those affected good luck in all their future endeavors.