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43rd Annual Daytime Emmy Pre-Nomination Performer Voting Has Begun!

Courtesy/NATAS

Courtesy/NATAS

The  race is on!  NATAS has opened the voting in the Pre-Nomination round for this year’s 43rd Annual Daytime Emmy Awards.   Voting began on Monday, January 11th and will continue through till January 25th.  The results of which of your favorite daytime drama performers move on to the Blue-Ribbon round will be announced by the academy on January 27th.  This year, there are a record number of entries across all categories, which is great news for the annual competition.

And now some of the rules:  Ten performers will move forward to the Blue-Ribbon round, unless their is a tie.  However, NATAS  is aiming for ten in every category.  Those categories include: Outstanding Lead Actor and Actress and Outstanding Supporting Actor and Actress in a Drama Series.  For the Pre-Nom round, actors were allowed to choose material from up to 2 episodes not to exceed 4 minutes for judging.

The Pre-Nom Emmy system will not allow the voters to submit their choices  unless they have viewed all the entries within a category.  Actors can vote for themselves only in the Pre-Nom round.

Those entered in the Younger Actor and Actress, Guest performer, and Actors and Actress in a Digital Drama Series will move forward to the Blue-Ribbon round automatically.  Those entered in Guest Performance in a Drama Series must have appeared in a limited number of episodes, and a must be a character that was created in 2015.   Therefore, someone who returned to the series such as GH’s Jonathan Jackson (Lucky), would not be allowed in the category as a “Guest” performer.

DMichaels Courtesy/NATAS

One of the exciting major changes this year for the Blue-Ribbon round of voting is that actors can submit appearances from two episodes not to exceed 20 minutes in their reel, thus giving them the opportunity to show more variations to the character they play, and their talent.   Those who go on to the Blue-Ribbon round from the Guest Performer, or Digital Drama Series actors will submit only one episode for contention.

On-Air On-Soaps spoke exclusively with David Michaels, Senior VP of The Daytime Emmy Awards and Events for NATAS who noted: “Since I am the only one that has seen the Pre-Noms, I can tell you that the judges have a real treat in store, because the work is outstanding.  The support from the daytime drama world is overwhelming.  It would be a much shorter answer if you asked who did not enter as opposed to who did.  It’s a very exciting time, and NATAS is looking to unveiling who is the running come January 27th.”

So, who do you hope gets a Pre-Nom from your favorite daytime dramas in the top acting categories? What do you think of some of the rules and a few of the changes this year?   Share your thoughts in the comment section below!

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JoAnn Marie
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JoAnn Marie

Peter Reckell better be up there! His performance as Bo Brady had me crying for a week. Actually, I’m still crying LOL

Susan
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Susan

Yes please!! Peter Reckell should be nominated then go on to win.

Timmm
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Timmm

I’ll just wait until the nominations are official and then comment. I just PRAY they use ONE character from each of the FOUR soaps and let them host! Enough of this Kathy Griffith crap and putting it online! Either have a show with awards, music and lengthy clips or dont bother!

Shelley
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Shelley

They would love too… But a network has to pick it up. It isn’t just something the show can DEMAND.

Timmm
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Timmm

I hear you.

GB
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GB

why don’t you try to write to ABC, CBS and NBC and tell them to pick it up. see what they say.

Timmm
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Timmm

GB, if I’ve learned anything and I’ve learned a couple things, networks, sport teams, Disney, ect do NOTHING that is not in the best interest of making them making MONEY! I wouldnt waste my time.

GB
Guest
GB

that’s exactly what I meant, Timmm. i was being sarcastic. i find talk shows really uncomfortable to watch, but i’m not being cynical when i say that the investment involved in launching a soap is one no network wants any part in

GB
Guest
GB

ooops, sorry, i was replying to somebody else. but the original thought still stands. the networks would laugh in your face. even the primetime emmys have been struggling ratingswise, so imagine how they’d feel about the daytime emmys. i wish it weren’t so

nancy dillingham
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nancy dillingham

i second the emotion!

Jimh(leave it to beaver)
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Jimh(leave it to beaver)

Yes, lets keep it classy for a change…

Timmm
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Timmm

I cannot stand Kathy Griffin BUT my biggest complaint is she has nothing to do with daytime. Lets use people from daytime. It could even be Regis, Kathy Lee and Koda, Matt Laurer, whomever, just not D list celebrities or people not affiliated with daytime.

Elizabeth
Guest
Elizabeth

Rebecca Herbst did an outstanding job in 2015 portraying Elizabeth Webber on GH. Her character’s story lines ranged from giddy romance with Billy Miller as amnesiac Jake, through the shock of finding out his true identity as Jason, and the subsequent months of guilt-ridden angst while she kept the secret and built a family, culminating in the train-wreck wedding at which he was revealed, And of course the break off of the relationship. Rebecca played all of the beats. She is a consummate professional who deserves recognition for her amazing acting skills.

James R. Poissant
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James R. Poissant

Rebecca should win an Emmy every year just for being there—she is always so good to watch.

Soapluv2010
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Soapluv2010

I don’t like the Elizabeth character but, Rebecca has done a fine job this year. For this award, her body of work is irrelevant. It boils down to the reel she submits to the judges. Fortunately, she has some good ones to choose so let’s hope she gets help picking the right one to make her a winner.

Timmm
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Timmm

She is a good actress but she only has a small chance of winning. There are bigger names in the female category that will prevail. Maybe they wouldnt deserve to win over Rebecca but their names roll off tongues quicker than Rebecca’s. Sucks but true.

Tristan
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Tristan

Becky should get the first annual “They Trashed My Character But I Still Sold It” Emmy, for Best Actress in a Character Assassination storyline used to prop a couple with no chemistry (Sam and Ja-borg).

I also gotta say, the scenes with KMc and Ja-borg on the bridge were really special. Kim should get a special “They Begged Me to Try to Get Emotion out of Ja-borg and I Did” Emmy for exceptional service to the daytime industry under trying circumstances.

Ray
Guest
Ray

I am excited to see the 10 in each category. This year has seen some unbelievable performances on “DOOL” and “GH.” I hope we do not have any headscratchers like in previous years. I love Peggy McCay (Caroline, DOOL), but she did not deserve to be in Lead Actress last year. It seems that if you are driving a storyline, you should not be able to submit yourself in the Supporting Actor/Actress category. With that said, I am hoping to see Billy Flynn and Kate Mansi (Chad and Abigail) in the Lead Actor/Actress. I would like to see the following:… Read more »

Ray
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Ray

I forgot to add Jen Lilly and Eric Martsolf

Jimh(leave it to beaver)
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Jimh(leave it to beaver)

perfect choices…

Timmm
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Timmm

Robert Palmer Watkins, to wooden but he will get better and could win down the road but not now.

gloria
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gloria

Agree with all except for Lauren Koslow & Genie Francis. Remind me!

Sue
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Sue

So many great performances from GH Finola Hughes Laura Wright Rebecca Herbst. I used to love watching the daytime Emmy’s not so much anymore. I hate the talk and game shows. It’s not about soaps anymore. I watch to show support but the year they streamed them online was bad.

Shannon
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Shannon

I truly believe that this is Rebecca Herbst’s year! Whether you liked her story & character or not, few will disagree that her work has been incredible!

CeeCee
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CeeCee

I agree, Shannon. Rebecca outdid herself. But, Kassie DePaiva left everyone in her dust. She was that majestic.

nancy smyth myers
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nancy smyth myers

Katherine KELLY LANG
Best soap actress..Bold and the Beautiful

Ghlover
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Ghlover

Love this joke, actually made me laugh. Thank you.

gloria
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gloria

I would love to see that!

Cary Linkswiler
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Cary Linkswiler

Billy Flynn
Kate Mansi
Arianne Zuker

nancy dillingham
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nancy dillingham

As far as I am concerned, DAYS should get their lion’s share of nods–from writing, producing and on down to the actors. Days is a most watchable soap!

Paula
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Paula

Cary Linkswiler I completely agree with the 3 you mentioned.

Steven Thompson
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Steven Thompson

Go day of our lives

michael
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michael

I hope Kelly Monaco submitted a reel….

Dinah
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Dinah

Kristian Alfonso better be the list

Leeanne
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Leeanne

Will the Daytime Emmys be televised on a channel that everyone actually has…..ABC would be a good one!

Iakovos
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Iakovos

I think POP is the outlet for the Daytime Emmys. Cabler is good for showing three of four soaps same day for those of us who cannot see them on original broadcast.

Shelley
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Shelley

Then talk to ABC. The show can’t make them pick it up.

Joan Faist
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Joan Faist

I am sorry that Jonathan Jackson ‘s performance on GH this past summer won’t be considered because of the rules. He came back into a role after at least 2years away and blew it out of the water. Such talent should be rewarded. Kudos to JJ.

Fanny
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Fanny

I’m with you Joan.

Stephanie L
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Stephanie L

Please honor Peter Reckell and Kristian Alfonso for so many years of fabulous performances and Peter for his epic finale

MissTiss
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MissTiss

Rebecca Herbst! She was given a lousy hand last May, but has played the hell out of it.

blake
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blake

C’mon Days, your actors kicked ass this year!

nancy dillingham
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nancy dillingham

Yes, as I say above!

Brittaney P
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Brittaney P

I hope Melissa Archer gets a pre nom for her role as Serena Mason! She is beyond talented and well deserved!

Mary SF
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Mary SF

There were so many outstanding performances in 2015 it would be nearly impossible for me to pick a personal favorite— I say this every year, but the truth is the real winners are the viewers who get to be entertained by so many talented actors, a true embarrassment of riches— good luck to all who submitted a reel— let the games begin and may the odds be ever in your favor.

CC
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CC

This is lovely Mary. I agree wholeheartedly!

CC
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CC

Man, did Rebecca Herbst blow me away this year. She hit every note of that storyline, and did not miss an opportunity to add subtext in subtle and meaningful ways. I hated the story, but I really got a kick out of watching her depth and range.
Finola Hughes is also an absolute powerhouse of an actress, and I’m sure she had many very compelling scenes to submit. Loved them both this year!

Tristan
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Tristan

Finola Hughes and Becky Herbst: these are the two women from GH I also hope receive nominations. Whatever is put before them as story, they make wholly believable. Sentimental hope for Laura Wright as Lena Spencer. She was phenomenal in that performance. And a shout-out to darling Brooklyn Rae Silzer for her astonishingly real performance in the episode where Sam and Patrick broke up. Gut wrenching!

su0000
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su0000

GH will take it.
Black & white 52nd and Tony will get his 9th Emmy for his performance in the B&W..
Laura will bring one home for her performance in the B&W..
And– RC will bring his home. too

Fanny
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Fanny

@Su000…Your positivity is contagious !!!
Laura & Antnony for the 52nd Blk/Wht episode.
Finola for her continually brilliant performances.
And of course RC…..

nancy dillingham
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nancy dillingham

I wholehearted couldn’t DISAGREE more.

Tristan
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Tristan

My preferences for GH are Becky Herbst and Finola Hughes for their work all year, though I am really sentimental over Laura Wright’s one-off as the tragic Lena Spencer. Tony Smoney…I see that award going to Peter Reckell. Even though I do not watch Days the buzz has been relentlessly strong for the power of his performance. He is the sentimental favorite. Let’s not forget our adorable Brooklyn Rae Silzer! Phenomenal and gut wrenching in the Sam/Pat break-up episode. I’d give her an Emmy just for her beaming smile as the little Scrubs family walked out of the house and… Read more »

Timmm
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Timmm

I agree with you about Tony and Laura.

Dara M
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Dara M

There was no one better than Kassie Depaiva this year. Her portrayal of a broken, grieving Eve on Days was heartbreaking and masterful . She deserves to FINALLY win an Emmy for her incredible work.

Patrick
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Patrick

from your post to god’s ear without giving it too much thought….. the two things that come to mind for my viewing habit (s) DAYS and GH the two actors who immediately come to mind Days : Kassie DePaiva GH: Rebecca Herbst I think I could let this rest… if Kassie, won for her portrayal(s) on a personal note: I’d like for some justice …. to see her WIN that best actress award… and see Ken Corday ???? bristle … in his face… fan ROAR… let him know… how remiss his judgment …. there was no reason to let her… Read more »

Jackie
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Jackie

Rebecca Herbst deserves the award this year. It has been a long time coming and she knocked it out of the park with her performance this past year.

Lainey
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Lainey

DAYS got this!!! DAYS stories, actors and actresses were all amazing in 2015. GH was and is still disappointing. GH’s stories are inconsistent and their actors/actresses though have been great years ago did not have the wow factor for 2015.

nancy dillingham
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nancy dillingham

Agree that GH is very inconsistent–and was unwatchable under last regime that dismantled legacies and legacy characters right and left–seemingly with relish and abandon.
“DAYS got this!!”—I agree!

Patrick
Guest
Patrick

DAYS of OUR Lives : Ben / Chad / Abs

when everything… in and around DAYS… was transitioning… the new production team value (s)

Robert Scott Wilson
Billy Flynn
Kate Mansi

took the ball and ran with ALL of it : they goldmined and fine tuned their profession proud

so… right out of the gate

these three FINE young actors… have to be lauded

nancy dillingham
Guest
nancy dillingham

Couldn’t agree more! Production values so great–and the three actors–so great also!

Patrick
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Patrick

I “love” Kassie DePaiva

bring this woman; back to the fold

ps: I never watched OLTL… so… my over the top love for this top draw ignited

She deserves emmy recognition

Stephanie
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Stephanie

Billy Miller and Kelly Monaco better be in there. Also Bryan Craig, Maurice Bernard, Laura Wright, Emme Rylan, Jason Thompson… I’d say even Rebecca Herbst.

Timmm
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Timmm

I only think Rebecca deserves a win on your list.

CeeCee
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CeeCee

Of course, I agree with you, Timmm. Only Rebecca H. deserves recognition from that list. Kelly Monaco? Yes, she should get an Emmy for falling so gracefully (for the umpteenth time) into Billy’s arms after her continuous tripping. Bryan Craig for the worst rendition of bipolar disorder; and Maurice for stuttering and mumbling through his lines. As I said, only Kassie has touched deep, human and raw emotion. Perhaps we should rewind…..go back to those episodes when Paige died. Nothing even comes close to that pain. It is called human struggle. Y&R presented us with a tear-jerker today. The bedside… Read more »

Patrick
Guest
Patrick

WOW ! I can’t believe… I can say… DAYS just rocked in so many ways

the ebb and flow of the staunch devotion…. DOOL FANS ! step up to the plate!

this is OUR time

I’m expecting great returns… unlike any other year…. of recent memory

no more…. crest fallen at the few returns of recognition

heck! DAYS of OUR Lives…. has won (best show)… twice in the last three years…. !!!!

The best REEL of the best genre of this medium

DAYS of OUR Lives

nancy dillingham
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nancy dillingham

Agree with you,Patrick!

Shelley
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Shelley

I hope Hunter King, Melody Thomas Scott, Eric Braeden and Justin Hartley all submit reels.

Timmm
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Timmm

Hunter King? Is this her MOTHER!

Shelley
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Shelley

Absolutely NOT! She has won two years in a row already. Why would you be surprised by her having fans?

Nikki
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Nikki

I agree. It has to be her mother or one of her friends or one he– of a joke. Hunter King is sickening at her best and putrid at her worse.

Nikki
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Nikki

Or her sister. Eric Braeden is a fine actor but he always plays the same old role they need to soften him up a bit. Justin Hartley should win for his Adam reveal.

gloria
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gloria

HILARIOUS Timmm. I was just scrolling thru here & thought to myself nobody from Y&R deserves to be nominated this year. BORING, so repetitive, so predictable at every turn. No big surprises-just same old, same old. Now, I watch it every day (although I cheated last week one day & read the synopsis on Soap Central-didn’t miss a damn thing by not tuning in) I love all soaps & will never quit watching any of them but jeez, Y&R needs an overhaul like nobody’s business, anyone agree with me?

Elpa
Guest
Elpa

Yes y&tr needs an overhaul. I watch it religiously and so have a finger on the pulse. One of the worst performances was Adam’s return. Until very recently, when Victor assured he’d be safe from prison, for a year nearly every sentence this new Adam uttered was followed by a question. In his faux desperation instead of acting the emotion he used questions to portray it. “you know?” “you hear?” “you see?” “oh how?” “oh why?” I was exhausted watching this over-acting. At first I found it unbelievable that it occurred so often, but when it became regular I had… Read more »

Timmm
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Timmm

Its not about having fans its about awarding the best actor or actress. She doesnt qualify. BUT, as you pointed out, she has won before AND thats why I take ALL these award shows with a grain of salt! I GUARANTEE you if the fans voted she would not win. BUT, if your a fan of her work, thats okay to.

Shelley
Guest
Shelley

Because some how YOU think you’re an expert? She’s a celebrated, 2 time Emmy winner with a lead role on daytime’s #1 drama, a recurring role on a prime time show and just had a lead role in a movie. Do you think YOUR opinion is more accurate than that of daytime casting directors, prime time casting directors and big screen directors?

She’s OBVIOUSLY good enough to be loved and supported by professionals in HER industry. Perhaps you should take THAT into consideration.

Timmm
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Timmm

You are full of anger. You are on the wrong website dear. We all share opinions here and many times we do not agree, but we dont lash out and strongly suggest what one SHOULD do. A lot of fans on this site dont like Hunter King. Its a fact if you follow the posts day in and day out. But thats beside the point, I stated at the end of my last reply to you that if you are a fan of Hunter’s, and obviously you are, thats okay. Have a better day, Timmm.

Paula
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Paula

There are too many others more deserving than Hunter besides you barely see her anymore. She certainly hasn’t been top burner.

Ali W
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Ali W

Its impossible for me to pick who I want , to win for the daytime Emmy’s this year. Because everyone deserves one. Because i believe the top actors/actresses who had the top besf performances on a soap. Goes to at number 1.) Days of our lives:the awards deserves goes to Peggy who plays Caroline / Arianne (Nicole) / Kristen (Hope)/ Peter(Bo)/Stephan( Patch)/ John (Victor)/ Joe(Stefano)/ Billy(Chad)/ Kate (Abigail)/ Robert(Ben). And at number 2.) General Hospital: Billy M(Jason)/ Rebecca H (Liz)/ Kelly M(Sam)/ Maurice B(Sonny)/ Laura W(Lena Spencer/Carly)/ Anthony G( Tim Spencer/Luke)/ Chad( Michael Quatermaine)/Byran (Morgan)/Jason T(Patrick)/ Finola H(Anna)/ Michelle (… Read more »

Vicky
Guest
Vicky

FREDDIE SMITH

DD
Guest
DD

Finola Hughes has been exceptional. As has Becky Herbst. Male actor should be Jsson Thompson. Not a popularity contest. Kassie was incredible on Days.

Sandy
Guest
Sandy

Laura Wright! She plays a wide range of emotions that I really enjoy watching!

nancy dillingham
Guest
nancy dillingham

Looking toward NEXT YEAR’S noms: GH can save itself by writing a story for Genie Francis worthy of her acting skills and moxie and worthy of her legacy character Laura–and Genie can pick up the award for BEST ACTRESS at NEXT YEAR’s award show.
Jean and Shelly, are you listening?

Tristan
Guest
Tristan

Even if they are not, I AM!!!!! Let’s start a “Free Genie from Meddling Mom Syndrome and Give her a Worthy Storyline” protest movement. I am there with placards!

nancy dillingham
Guest
nancy dillingham

Me too–with an “amen” and a placard!

4ever DAYS
Guest
4ever DAYS

Just hand Kassie DePaiva an Emmy!

Although I didn’t like the previous writers vision for Eve, Kassie’s performances blew me away, especially under the new writers. Eve’s grief for her murdered daughter was a great showcase for Kassie!

I wish Kassie had been brought on as Kristen DiMera or anyone other than Eve.

Chicken Dancing
Guest
Chicken Dancing

Agreed. Although I think Mz. D was the perfect choice for the Eve recast, she was just saddled with a story line that was…well…poorly written and just plain creepy. Unfortunately the new writing team, under pressure of time restraint and tasked with a quick fix, simply chose to get rid of anyone involved in unpopular story lines and unpopular characters. If you noticed every one who was removed from the canvas in Days Neck Tie Killer story were all characters the viewers were very VERY vocal about hating. Eve’s up coming exit, rumored to be a suicide, is part of… Read more »

CeeCee
Guest
CeeCee

If what you say is true, Chicken, how does a ‘ suicide’ exit evince respect? I would think the opposite is true, no?

Jeanette Spencer
Guest
Jeanette Spencer

Justin Hartley(Adam Y&R) & Melissa Claire Egan(Chelsea Y&R) should get the award for Best Actor & Actress in their catergory in my opinion they are the best especially when Adam was revealed to Chelsea.

Shelley
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Shelley

AGREED!

Nikki
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Nikki

YES YES YES I couldn’t agree more.

Chicken Dancing
Guest
Chicken Dancing

I love the fact that the Academy FINALLY is allowing a reel that contains more than one episode. This will allow the award and nominations, somewhat, to be based on sustained performance, and discount episodes that have basically been designed “to win the Emmy”. All four soaps have been at times unwatchable this year, but all four have also been incredible; so it looks like an even race this year. As for the actors, I seem to agree with most of the comments on this thread, “Days of Our Lives” has had some jaw dropping performances, and should get a… Read more »

Karen
Guest
Karen

Becky Herbst and her Liz have been through the ringer this year. I would give her the Emmy right now just for the Nurses Ball reveak. She went through every possible range of emotion in that story.

CeeCee
Guest
CeeCee

You’re right, Karen. Our Miss Lizzie has gone through hell and back; by her own machinations and devises. Methinks she’s still at it! Is the mystery person who broke in another one of her creation to keep Jason glued to her? I find Rebecca’s performance(s) enthralling; deserving of, at least, a nomination.

angie kenyon
Guest
angie kenyon

I’m hoping Jasam will come into their own kind of relationship this year.. But with all the romance, fire, adventure as ever before. I hope Liz and Jake get help after it comes out that Jake is the one doing this nonsense, and Liz will go along with it. I hope Johnny stays, Val, Nathan, Felix can leave Port Chuck, bring Duke back–again– .. Have Robert on more. It’d be nice if Luke could make a cameo, if he doesn’t come back permanently. I hope Mikey takes over the Biz.. Ava n Paul are a good match. I want Sonny… Read more »

Linda Bienias
Guest
Linda Bienias

I Hope Billy Miller gets pre nominated in Blue Ribbon round, Bryan Craig, Laura Wright, Kelly Monoco , Brooklyn Silzer, Jason Thompson, Maurice Bernard and last but not least Roger Howarth from General Hospital. From Y&R Justin Hartley, Mellisa Claire Eagan, Amelia Heinle, Josh Morrow and Peter Bergman are all deserving to name a few.

Steven Thompson
Guest
Steven Thompson

I love Nicole she had everyone in tears xoxo.

Abigail was so good as supporting actress

Eve Larson was a good amazing bitch and had me almost in tears when Paige died

Colleen Szombathelyi
Guest
Colleen Szombathelyi

Billy Flynn and Peter Reckell

sarah
Guest
sarah

I would really like too see all the acotrs/actresses involved in the transgender storyline get official nominations because they really were amazing, Karla Mosley, JacobYoung, Reign Edwards. Anne Marie Horsford and Obba Babatunde were also incredible and also being that they have been put on contract or been made recurring it means they can go out for the supporting categories. I especially want to see Karla Mosley take that step into the lead actress category she really was the leading lady for B&B in 2015 and she more than deserves a nomination if not the win. I also would love… Read more »

Newmanwins
Guest
Newmanwins

Lead actor- the final nominations

Tony Geary
Maurice Benard
Eric Braden
Justin Hartley
Billy Miller

Lead actress- the final nominations

Laura Wright
Maura West
Finola Hughes
Kristen Alfonso
Melissa Claire Egan

Supporting actor- the final nominations

Jacob Young
Tyler Christopher
Chad Duell
Billy Flynn
Obba Babatunde

Supporting actress- the final nominations

Kassie DePavia
Rebecca Herbst
Michelle Stafford
Linsey Godfrey
Karla Mosley

Ray
Guest
Ray

I loved reading all of these comments. I left a lot of people off my suggestions and agree that Finola Hughes and Justin Hartley should be in the Final Five nominations. I don’t understand why one of the three major networks would not air the awards on Friday or Saturday night. Most of the time, it is one of the lower rated nights and usually we see repeats from previously aired programs. This would be a great way of possibly introducing your shows to a new/expanded audience. I have some suggestions to make the awards show better and bring in… Read more »

Steven Thompson
Guest
Steven Thompson

Outstanding lead actor Shawn Christian Daniel Jonas

Outstanding supporting actor ego too Billy Flynn as Chad dimera
Outstanding lead actress Arian Zucker Nichole walker … Hope Brady Kristen Alfonso

Supporting actress is Kate mansi abigal ..kassie depavia eve Larson …Jenn Lilly Theresa Donavan

Outstanding drama of the year goes to Days of our lives

Steven Thompson
Guest
Steven Thompson

God bless tom and Alice Horton

Cat
Guest
Cat

Well I watched all four soaps last year n here are my predictions…best drama will go to y&r for the plane crash and the Newman towers going down…lead actor Tony Geary for Luke realizing he killed his mom by accident/the fluke storyline….lead actress kassie depiva for a grieving eve over paiges death….supporting actor kristoff st John for Neil finding out about Hillary and devons affair…supporting actress Finola Hughes for Anna losing duke younger actor Bryan Craig for Morgan’s bipolar disorder storyline younger actress Hunter king for summer confronting Abby at Austin’s memorial service writing y&r or days… directing y&r

Lauren
Guest
Lauren

Cady McClain playing Crazy Kelly on “The Young and the Restless.”

Days Of Our Lives

DAYS Alison Sweeney on Working with Bryan Dattilo: “28 Years Later, Some Things Never Change. Still Laughing Between Takes and Grateful to Have Such a Talented Supportive Co-Star”

This week, Days of our Lives viewers have witnessed that Sami Brady DiMera (Alison Sweeney) and Lucas Horton (Bryan Dattilo) hit the sheets, and Lumi fans everywhere rejoiced!

On and off, for almost three decades. Alison Sweeney and Bryan Dattilo have played the relationship between these two exes who share children together to the hilt, because Sami and Lucas’ history is well … complicated.

But, what will happen if and when EJ finds out that Sami had sex with her ex? Stay tuned.

In the meantime, Alison took to her Instagram and shared her thoughts alongside photos of her and Bryan, then and now.

Over the years, Bryan had remained one of Alison’s good friends.

Sweeney expressed: “I have always had such fun working with @bryan.dattilo !! 28 years later, some things never change. Still laughing between takes and grateful to have such a talented, supportive costar. Thanks @nbc for this great archive photo! And so grateful to @nbcdays for the incredible opportunity to play Sami.”

What did you think of the scenes where Sami and Lucas slept together and its aftermath thus far? Comment below.

 

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A post shared by Ali Sweeney (@alisweeney)

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Kevin Spirtas Talks ‘After Forever’s’ Digital Special ‘Riley’s Unforgettable School Project’, The Loss of Michael Slade, and a Chance to Reprise DAYS Craig Wesley

The coronavirus pandemic has put to the test many content creators on just how they would keep their projects moving forward in ways they never dreamed of. However, out of that situation has come some of the most compelling, unique series, specials, and features currently streaming for viewers. One of which is Riley’s Unforgettable School Project, brought to you by the team from the six-time Daytime Emmy Award-winning series, After Forever.

Former Days of our Lives star, Kevin Spirtas (Ex-Craig Wesley) has starred in and created the first two seasons of what has become the most honored Emmy-awarded LGBTQ-themed drama series on any platform.  Along with his ‘After Forever’ writing/producing partner, the late Michael Slade (DAYS, OLTL, Passions, Another World), the two also conceptualized and delivered this latest documentary-style offering now on Amazon Prime Video.

What makes Riley’s Unforgettable School Project so noteworthy is not just how they were able to execute the series based on fictional 11-year-old Riley’s virtual school project and utilize its cast, which includes: Spirtas, Cady Huffman, Jamison Stern, Lenny Wolpe, Erin Cherry, Anita Gillette, Christopher J. Hanke, and Finn Douglas, but that it was made while Slade was succumbing to his battle with cancer, and that this special marks the final script from this talented writer.

 

Michael Fairman TV spoke with Spirtas about making the special during Covid-19, how the death of Michael Slade has made a lasting impact on his life, what After Forever has personally meant to him, and how an official third season is still in the works, and … if he would consider a return to Salem and Days of our Lives, should they come a-calling.  Here’s what Kevin had to say about it all.

Photo: AfterForever

I think the entire story of this digital special has become even more meaningful with Michael Slade’s passing. What was the genesis of the concept? You wanted to continue the telling of the story of After Forever … but we are all in the middle of a pandemic?

KEVIN:  Yes and… when we filmed season 2, we had the scripts for season 3 already completed. It was our hope and desire to film them at the same time, back-to-back, so that we would have had all of our cast and crew together, and we could have gotten through it because we’ve always imagined this story being told in a trilogy so to speak – a beginning, middle, and end to Brian (Spirtas) and Jason, (Mitchell Anderson) and Brian’s healing or his steps towards healing through grief.  Schedules turned out that they couldn’t really work out for us to hold all the people and hold all of the sets for that amount of time.  So, we thought, “We’ve got the scripts for season 3 ready.  We’ll come back to it in the following year,” and that was always the intention, and then the pandemic hit.  So, it was shut down immediately that we weren’t going to do anything, but we wanted to stay current, and instead of going back in and telling the third installment of After Forever as a Covid-19 story as well, Michael and I sat down and looked at a way of staying relevant and current with a story within COVID, and there was born the idea to do this documentary style story/special about the characters of After Forever told through the lens of the character of Riley, the 11-year-old boy, who is now being homeschooled during the pandemic. He gets an assignment to do a project about the most unforgettable person he has ever met, and he, of course, chooses his best friend, the late Jason Adams, and he enlists all of Jason’s friends and family to join in.  Michael actually said, “What if we tell a story about Riley being homeschooled?” And, not only is Riley a technical genius at 11-years-old in the story, but Finn Douglas, who plays Riley, is a technical genius.

And didn’t Finn perform and write the song “Forever There” contained within the special?

KEVIN. Yes. He is this incredible musician.  Michael thought, “What would it be like if we asked to have the character of Finn sing a song for Jason?”  I said, “Well, what kind of song would we have him sing?”  Finn could play anything, I’m sure, because he’s self-taught, he plays by ear – guitar, piano, and drums.  Michael said, “What if we ask him to see if he could write a song?” and when we heard this song, we all called each other and we all got on Zoom and went, “Can you believe this song?  Can you believe this came out of this 11-year-old?”  It’s pretty incredible.  Michael did a gorgeous job of weaving the stories in and out and how they just sort of dove-tailed into each other, and then it was framed by Riley opening the project and ending the project.  During the Zoom reading we wanted to hear the song out loud.  We said to Finn, “Would you want to sing the song?”  We all just watched everybody on that Zoom call just fall apart.  It was just so beautiful. He’s an amazing talent.

Where is your character within this?

KEVIN:  I still stand in the center of the story of Jason because my character, Brian, was married to Jason, and it sort of connects us all, and through Riley’s understanding of how we all connect to Jason, is how we are all sort of spread out throughout the story.  Michael jokingly said, “You know, you’re not going to be the star of this special,” and I said, “I don’t think it’s about being the star.  It’s really about the storytelling.”  The beauty of Riley’s Unforgettable School Project is that we get to see moments of each person’s relationship with Jason, which Riley sets out to say, “Answer these three questions: What did you like most about Jason?  What did you like least about Jason? And what’s your favorite memory?”  Those three things, cut back and forth is where we all kind of fit in.  Nobody has more of a story than the next person, and it’s all telling honest portrayals of how they’re dealing with their loss of their good friend, or their child, or partner.

It’s a very inventive idea during Covid-19 to continue it in a way where you weren’t having to go shoot a full season of episodes.

KEVIN:  Well, we couldn’t. I have to say, Allison Vanore, who not only produced this special, but she also stepped up saying, “I’d love to direct this,” and I said, “Yes, please!”  She knows the characters.  She understands the story because she’s been a part of it for the last two seasons.  Allison also has this extraordinary amount of knowledge and expertise with the camera and what was needed for a remote shoot, and to also be able to organize filming 13 people in 2 different countries and 5 different cities… that’s just the technical side of it, but having that in our back pocket, knowing that it was a remote shoot, we had to send the camera, the computer, the ring light, and the microphone to each person’s house.  We had to location scout over Zoom.  We had to do wardrobe over Zoom.  It was all this big puzzle putting it together, and once you look at that board of storytelling and how we were going to do it, it kind of fell into place.  I feel blessed that a) we still had Michael with us, at that point, and b) Allison had the know-how to do this.  We all feel that at least this pandemic didn’t keep us from doing what we love.

Photo: AfterForever

In terms of the contribution of Michael Slade in this special, was it the construction of the story, and how was he able to work and write this during his illness?

KEVIN:  Michael’s contribution to the special was no less than the contribution to season 1 and season 2, and the future of season 3, because the scripts are written.  We did everything on Zoom, and we worked around his schedule of treatment.  We scheduled 2 people per day, and we spread them out over two weeks.  He was very present, and when there would be a day where he would say, “I’m going to be an hour late, let’s just push that call time,” I would ask, “Is this too much right now?  We can shelve it; we can stop it.” He’d then say, “Absolutely not, otherwise cancer will win.”  He was determined to stay focused and to stay active because it took his mind off of what was happening to him.

Photo: AfterForever

It would be lovely moment if you both were to win a Daytime Emmy for this project. 

KEVIN:  It’s our last collaboration together as a team, as I said, season 3 has been scripted, and it is on the calendar to get made.  We are just waiting for the COVID restrictions to lift a little bit and everyone to get vaccinated.  Michael was really hit hard with cancer – to stay healthy was so challenging for him.  Sadly, he didn’t make it to see the final edit of the special, and he died four days before we launched, but he had seen the cuts before that and was very approving of it, and had made some decisions, and offered some suggestions, and if God gives him an Emmy for this, it’s not because he died.  It’s because it’s great work.  It just happens to be that the work that was involved in this particular special was very tricky.  It brought up everything, like life itself to have to deal with.  Here we are dealing with the loss of a colleague, the loss of a friend, someone’s brother, someone’s son, this is life imitating art, imitating art imitating life. I can’t tell you the darkness that I went through just experiencing the need to stay focused on getting everything edited, and everything ready, and everything aligned for a release of this project that we had put into motion.  On top of it, our editor lost his mother just before Michael passed, and Allison’s mom was sick at the time, as well.  It took a lot of heavy deep breaths with Michael’s death, and the pandemic, and the loss has, for me, on a personal level, sent me back to really questioning my spiritual muscle and to help remind me that we have to come out of this better than we went into this.  I had many dark nights of the soul this last year, and December was probably the darkest.  I feel like I’m just kind of coming out of it now with the spring revealing itself.

Photo: AfterForever

It must have been extraordinarily difficult for you to also go to New York during a pandemic and also knowing Michael did not have much time left.

KEVIN:  I will say this: I am grateful that I was able to stay in touch with my heart and my instinct and go out to New York to let that be my remote location.  Yes, maybe there was some risk involved.  I wore my mask; I was Covid-19 negative, and I was determined to be fine.  Once I got to New York, I would visit him very protectively with our masks and our gloves, and I’d sit across the room, and then I’d go back to the house I was at.  It was a gift that I was able to see him at that time.  We had some good talks then about how he was feeling, and I think he was still being optimistic, and then once we got the project in the can there was maybe this psychic letting go. That’s when everything really started to reveal itself as this could be the end.  I did go back to see him when he was in hospice.  I think I was there the last two days that he really was able to really stay coherent.  He would close his eyes and be at peace and quiet for a minute, and he would finish a conversation and sort of close his eyes, not to sleep and not to go away, but I remember watching him going, “Look how peaceful he is,” and then he’d open his eyes and he’d remember that he is in this body that has been given a time limit of life, and he’s on his way out.  I’d watch the fear go back in his eyes.  At one point, he did say, “I’m so scared,” and I just held his hand, and I said, “I’m scared too.  Let’s be scared through this together.”  I don’t know how to navigate grief like that.  We are all going to be in a position at some point where we are going to be on the other side of the hand holding.  The wonderful thing is that we were able to have honest communication about our feelings.  I thanked him for everything that he has done for me and how he believed in my talent and creativity and our partnership.  I will always take that with me.  I waved my finger at him, and I said, “Listen.  Now, we wrote a series about a man talking to his deceased husband.  You’d better talk to me!”  So, we laughed about that.

Photo: AfterForever

You’ve done a lot of things in your career from Broadway to television, and of course, daytime fans know you best as Dr. Craig Wesley on DAYS.  How does the entire After Forever project stack up to you within all that you have done?

KEVIN:  Former DAYS casting director Fran Bascom, sought me out and offered me this 2-day role on Days of Our Lives, and those 2 days turned into 8 years, and unbeknownst to me at the time, the final 3 months of that contract of those 8 years, Michael Slade was brought in to write.  We didn’t cross paths at that point, but years later, when we did cross paths in New York, and then After Forever was born, that was that universal crossing point.  I am most proud of the fact that we were able create something fresh, and real, and personal to ourselves that we didn’t have to cater to any “powers that be” that had their vision and their tinkering, that they thought that it could be better in this way or that way.  Then for After Forever to gain such recognition, within the film festivals, and the Emmys, and then, just after Michael died, we won the GLAAD award for Special Recognition this year.  We don’t even fit into one of their categories!  They found a way to acknowledge this project.  If another Emmy happens again, that might be another one to put up on the shelf for After Forever that would be beautiful, and I couldn’t have done it without Michael.

For the Daytime Emmys this year, what category have you entered Riley’s Unforgettable School Project?

KEVIN:  We are not a series this year, we are a daytime fiction special, and the “Daytime Fiction Special” category is a special class.  It’s anything that’s digital in the construct of less than 40 minutes.  NATAS (National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences) is being bombarded with so much content, they’re trying to find ways to put categories together.

Photo: JPI

So, now, when we last saw Days of Lives’ Dr. Craig Wesley, where was he? (Laughs)

KEVIN: (Laughs) He was in a flash from the past or something in the DOOL app’s Last Blast Reunion series. I had a fun time working with Patrika Darbo (Nancy) and Nadia Bjorlin (Chloe), once again.

So, if they were to want Craig to come back to DAYS, would you be all for it?

KEVIN:  Hell yes!

Photo: JPI

Now, what story would you want to be told involving Craig? 

KEVIN:  When Craig was first on the canvas in Salem, there was a lot of mustache twirling and a lot of hand wringing.  He was always plotting; most of the time with Nancy.  It was kind of this high drama, evil villain storyline being told, but when the writers created an opportunity for us to be on after those first three months by bringing on Chloe without a father, there was something real about it.  It may have been told under the construct of soap opera storytelling, but there was a reality-based story about, “You have a daughter, and we are just now finding out about it?”  Then, finding a cure to her health was another realistic story, and finding out that Craig was her real father.  Anything that’s reality based is what I’m getting to.  I would welcome any job that brings me back and gives me an opportunity to dive into something real.

Photo: JPI

Would you welcome the opportunity to play a gay character on daytime; in a medium where there are very few represented in storylines?

KEVIN:  I’d have no problem with that.  Do you know anybody who is starting that?  Let’s do it!  (Laughs) First of all, there’s nothing to hide anymore.  There’s nothing to pretend you’re not anymore.  I would think that bringing in a storyline that deals with anything outside the norm that we are used to seeing would be interesting.  How many times can you retell a story?  How many times can you set the same story up with another couple?  So, why not be diverse and have a stylized story being told through the lens of a gay person.

Photo: AfterForever

In closing, so many go through life without acknowledging people who had an impact them.  We don’t give pats on the back, often enough, and especially in Hollywood, where people can be very self-involved.  You have already paid tribute to Michael Slade in our discussion, but what gift from him is your personal takeaway?

KEVIN:  The gift that Michael really gave to me is to remember to be kind to myself and to others, and to acknowledge and salute the person who is in front of us, because we don’t know when we will have, or if we will have, another moment to do that.

Now below, check out the trailer for Riley’s Unforgettable School Project.  Then let us know, what do you think of its concept? Kevin’s thoughts on the passing of his collaborator on the project, Michael Slade? And, do you hope DAYS brings back Dr. Craig Wesley? Share your thoughts via the comment section.

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REPORT: Dan Feuerriegel is DAYS New EJ DiMera

Could Days of our Lives finally found their new EJ? Rumors have been circulating on the internet for weeks that the character of EJ DiMera may finally have a new face and a new actor portraying and heading back to Salem, especially since Sami (Alison Sweeney) is back on the canvas.

The role was previously played by longtime fan favorite James Scott, who had made it very clear he would never return to Days of our Lives.

Photo: DFeuerriegelIG

Now according to Daytime Confidential and their report from setside sources, the new EJ will actually be played by former Spartacus actor Dan Feuerriegel.

The Australian-born actor has been seen in Starz’ Spartacus franchise in the role of Agron.

According to the report, look for the new EJ to make his debut sometime this summer.

DAYS fans know that in story, EJ was brought back form the dead, from the serum from Dr. Rolf, but then was injured in an explosion and had reunited with Sami and had been recovery in Europe.

So, if this reports turns out to be true, what do you think of the new EJ? Comment below.

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