Why Do Daytime Soaps Look Different from Primetime Dramas and Big Budget Movies? The Surprising Answer

Thorsten Kaye, Denise Richards, The Bold and the Beautiful

If you’ve ever watched a daytime soap opera you’ve probably noticed how different the shows can appear depending on the network broadcasting them, as well as the difference in production values depending on the overall budget the series receives to remain operational. But have you ever truly wondered why soaps have such a distinctive look to them when compared to a primetime drama or of films?

In a comparison video produced by Cheddar, the pop culture brand takes a look at the supposed “dreamlike, hyper-realistic, or soft” look that soaps are well known for and traces its origins to a money-saving technique established in the 1960s that remains in use today. And, we also learn that a setting on your television could be turned off to remove the “soap opera” look forever for all programming you watch on your screen, but not for soap operas themselves.

The explanation video features an insider’s perspective from director Steven Williford (“The Young and the Restless”) and lighting director Vince Steib (“Days of our Lives”).

Watch Cheddar‘s explanation video below and tell us what you think in the comments.