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44th Annual Daytime Emmys To Be Live-Streamed; Presenters Announced!

Courtesy/NATAS

The answer to the question that fans have wanted to know has finally arrived by NATAS on Thursday.  The National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences announced that this year’s 44th Annual Daytime Emmys will be live-streamed via two platforms, Facebook Live and  Twitter-Periscope Producer starting 8PMEST/5PMPST on Sunday night, April 30th. The ceremonies will be held live at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium in Pasadena, California.

“The National Academy is thrilled to be streaming this year’s Daytime Emmy Awards to the world,” said Bob Mauro, President, NATAS. “Add the great list of presenters we have for both our signature shows and I think the fans and Daytime community are in for a real treat!”

Those presenters Mauro talks about include:  Larry King (Larry King Now), Jane Pauley (CBS Sunday Morning), Susan Lucci, Harry Connick, Jr. (Harry), Margaret Cho, Tim Allen, Blair Underwood, (GIVE, Quanico), Trisha Yearwood (Trisha’s Southern Kitchen), Nancy O’Dell and Kevin Frazier (ET), Natalie Morales, (The Today Show, Access Hollywood), Sara Gilbert, Sharon Osbourne and Aisha Tyler (The Talk), Dr. Mehmet Oz (Dr. Oz), Vanna White (Wheel of Fortune), Mark Steines & Debbie Matenopoulos (Home & Family), Chris Hansen (Crime Watch Daily with Chris Hansen), as well as Tamera Mowry-Housley, Loni Love, Jeannie Mae, and Adrienne Houghton (The Real) and Ross Mathews & Garcelle Beauvais (Hollywood Today Live). Also presenting are cast members from the four daytime soaps, including Bryton James and Mishael Morgan (The Young & the Restless), Kelly Monaco and Dominic Zamprogna (General Hospital), Katherine Kelly Lang and John McCook (The Bold and the Beautiful), Billy Flynn and Marci Miller (Days of Our Lives).  Special musical performance by Max Ehrich (The Young & the Restless, Under the Dome). Additional appearances by Karla Mosley, Reign Edwards and Jacob Young (The Bold & the Beautiful), Sonya Eddy and Robert Palmer Watkins (General Hospital), Nadia Bjorlin and Eric Martsoff (Days of Our Lives) and Tristan Lake Leabu (The Young & the Restless).  Music provided by Caleb Nelson and The Remotes.

Extra’s Mario Lopez and The Talk’s Sheryl Underwood were previously announced as hosts for the daytime-fest.  “I am over-the-moon to be able to bring the Daytime Emmy Awards to all our fans,” said David Michaels, SVP, Daytime. “With Mario Lopez and Sheryl Underwood as our hosts and so many wonderful presenters, it’s going to be a great evening for Daytime!” 

The line-up of presenters for the Friday, April 28th at the Creative Arts Daytime Emmys include: Alex Trebek (Jeopardy!), Pat Sajak (Wheel of Fortune), Loni Love, (The Real), Judge Greg Mathis (Judge Mathis), Chris Hansen (Crime Watch Daily with Chris Hansen), Vivian Howard, (A Chef’s Life), JD Roberto (Daily Burn 365), Karla Cavalli (Planet Primetime), Anna Cathcart, Millie Davis, Isaac Kragten, (Odd Squad), Danny Jacobs (All Hail King Julien), Eric Darnell (Antz, Madagascar), Carolyn Hennesy (General Hospital/The Bay), Kristos Andrews (The Bay), Anthony Anderson (Anacostia), Anthony Wilkinson (Tainted Dreams), Reign Edwards, Courtney Hope, (The Bold and The Beautiful), Lauren Koslow, Thaao Penghlis (Days of our Lives), Chloe Lanier, Chad Duell (General Hospital), Christian Le Blanc and Melissa Ordway (The Young and the Restless).

So, what do you think about the Daytime Emmys being live-streamed via Facebook and Twitter? Excited to know that there is way to see the show  streamed live? Comment below!

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Beverly Levy
Guest
Beverly Levy

I am glad we will see the Daytimr Emmys. I think the daytime genre is treated very unfair. The daytime population have a lot of fans that respect and care about them

April Graham
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April Graham

I agree completely. I feel like Daytime shows, the stars, creators, writers, etc & the fans of daytime shows are being disrespected by the Daytime Emmys not being aired on tv. There are still alot of us out here who greatly enjoy oyr daytime shows.

Patricia Sanderson
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Patricia Sanderson

It is a travesty the way they treat the Daytime Soap Operas. I have watched the Soap Operas for 56 years. All Daytime Emmy’s on TV for years until recent ones.. The actors and people behind of the shows deserve so much more. Day time Actors work so hard,,,Ask any Big Screen Actor, many, many were Soap Opera actors and say how little they work the Big Screen compared to the many pages of scrip and work in a Soap Opera. We have tons of music shows and Screen shows. The Daytime actors deserve a show of their own. I… Read more »

rebeccaCali
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rebeccaCali

I agree. I felt disrespected as a viewer not to have the 2017 daytime emmy’s aired on live television. I would have enjoyed watching the winners accepting their awards, listening to their acceptance speaches. The sponsor’s of these shows should be scratching their heads.

Jenny
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Jenny

Whoa!!! What an all-star, has-been, never-was roster!! Lol. Best keep that off television!!

Moneca
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Moneca

This is a great idea!

Noreen cunningham
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Noreen cunningham

I was really hoping it would be televised, but I will try and pick it up. Love my GH and would love to see my favorites there.

April Graham
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April Graham

There ought to be a way to get the” PTB” to start airing the Daytime Emmys on tv again. The daytime community & we, the fans of daytime deserve that.

Tammy Kreiss
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Tammy Kreiss

Happy for those with a phone that can do live stream. My phones all are too slow. :'(

Lou piikes
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Lou piikes

You don’t have a laptop red or desk top computer?

Tammy Kreiss
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Tammy Kreiss

Haven’t used a desktop in yrs! Laptop was full & needed to transfer files to a hard drive. Way too busy to address it. I barely have a second to blink! Haven’t been on there in yrs either.

James R. Poissant
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James R. Poissant

I guess if we at least get to see the Emmys, it is something. Of course i would have preferred the show being broadcast on live TV but I’ll still get to see the statues being handed out as opposed to reading about it in Soap Opera digest.

Max Daddee
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Max Daddee

I am disappointed that it won’t be on live TV. I’d a hoped someone like Oprah would have cared to pick it up on OWN. Might help get ratings up on her network.

Lou piikes
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Lou piikes

Why would Oprah broadcast a program that barely gets over a 1 million viewers?

Tony Daniels
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Tony Daniels

GH all the way.
Now, date and time?

Shirley
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Shirley

I am so thrilled about this news,thanks to all that had a hand in this

Mo
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Mo

The fans are not “in for a real treat”. I won’t be watching. Let me know when it’s back on TV. Show some respect to the daytime community and their fans by putting it on TV!

April Graham
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April Graham

I agree completely. Daytime shows, the stars, creators, writers, etc & we the fans of these shows deserve the respect that other awards shows get by being aired on tv.

Bertha Rodriguez
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Bertha Rodriguez

Still not happy as many other all other awards are shown on televised but no longer for the Daytime Emmy Awards it’s not fair. We the fans we should be able to see this live. It’s just not fair some of us might not be able to see it on Facebook or Twitter because of the different hours we work. Not happy.

Joan Faist
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Joan Faist

Just sorry it won’t be on TV.

Lou piikes
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Lou piikes

Not on Television again!!!!!! Is anyone going to save this once thriving genre??????

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

i will just wait to see who wins and printed here…i no longer bother with facebook or twitter!!!

Mary SF
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Mary SF

Live steamed is better than nothing, yet I remembered the last time it was live streamed it was horrible– no way to edit out drunken slurs, the whole thing lacked the polish of a professionally produced broadcast—also there are many fans who are not into social media, don’t follow either Facebook or Twitter because they don’t know how or they simply don’t want to– it would have been nice if a major network would show some class and support this award show — I mean if a major network is willing to air The People’ s Choice Award where the… Read more »

Lou piikes
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Lou piikes

If fans don’t follow Facebook or Twitter or social media in general; no wonder the genre is dying. The vast majority of viewers can’t be bothered with or don’t know how to use social media spells doom for daytime soaps.

Mary SF
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Mary SF

Well that is a lot of horsefeathers– the majority of daytime dramas died out long before social media even became a thing and if the genre dies it will be BECAUSE of INTERNET which is basically replacing ALL network television in general– also the WWW gave rise to everyone having a shorten attention span and stealing a whole generation of younger folks if they didn’t have social media they might have checked out daytime drama—- but I do agree the future of entertainment consumption in on the Internet or through the internet on demand — so just like in the… Read more »

Ray
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Ray

I would love to see you do the pre-show.

davlestev1
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davlestev1

so little respect to a much loved genre is mind boggling to me. what the heck is a periscope and facebook live..facebook is a platform that makes my skin crawl..talk about phonies trying to act like joined at the hip friends when its obviously designed to give an im better than you outlook on life. AUGHHHHHHHH..WONT BE WATCHING!!!

davlestev1
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davlestev1

That man sounds like Donald Trump..it will be a beautiful thing trust me..deluded moron.

Matthew
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Matthew

Exactly! I’m surprised he didn’t say he found a television network to air the awards and Mexico is paying for it.

rebecca1
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rebecca1

LOL, Matthew! They’d probably pay for the show sooner than the wall!

davlestev1
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davlestev1

LMAO..IKR

su0000
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su0000

The DayTime Emmy’s for the Soaps is mostly a fashion show. The judges are not all soap fans and make decisions that are rushed just getting through the entries. Actually the time when people actually gave a ding about soap opera awards has long long long ago passed. And why on earth would anyone care if a cooking show hosts would get an award , I mean to sit through the whole daytime to get to the soaps is annoyingly boring. I watched one, just one, daytime emmy and never watched once since.. After the awards are given the soap… Read more »

James
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James

While it is a shame that it won’t get televised, the show will still be broadcast online, which is better than nothing at all, and hopefully, with Facebook Live (streaming through Youtube would have been much better IMHO), the show will also accessible outside the United States. The key for a successful online broadcast is the same as with any live show, it has to be well-produced and polished for viewers to appreciate, and that is something I thought the producers of the show last year needed and were able to learn when they did this the second time last… Read more »

Keri A
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Keri A

It’s a shame a bunch of nonsense is broadcast everyday all day. Why can’t some producers once year televise this show? A few years ago the head of CBS said that he love to help the Daytime Emmys get back on the air. Considering CBS says it’s #1 in daytime TV across the board. It’s a sham they can’t honor the shows. Daytime has always had the most loyal fans amd not to have The Emmys broadcasted on TV again is shameful. I much rather watch “my stories” (lol) then any so called reality based TV shows aired ad nauseam… Read more »

JK
Guest
JK

I AGREE WITH YOU 100%……COULD SAY SO MUCH MORE BUT BETTER I DONT….

April Graham
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April Graham

I agree. There are still many, many loyal daytime fsns that would still love to be able to watch the Daytime Emmys on television. We, the stars, writets, etc of daytime deserve thr respect of the Daytime Emmys being on tv. Not to mention that some of us are only sble to get internet on our phones. I don’t pretend to speak for for everyone, but I have talked to several friends & family members who refuse to try to watch any show on a phone. It’s just not as enjoyable.

Matthew
Guest
Matthew

Can a Facebook “Livestream” be replayed? I won’t be home that night until the awards ceremony is over. Damn, I wish the Emmy were airing on tv so I could record it with my DVR.

Lou piikes
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Lou piikes

Livestream can be replayed as many times as you like whether you watch live or not.

Matthew
Guest
Matthew

Awesome! Thanks Lou!

Judith
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Judith

Nice for savy people I guess, but wish for the rest of us it were on TV. Really miss it. So many award shows, but this is the only one that counts for me and my friends. Will miss it again.

April Graham
Guest
April Graham

There ought to be a way to get someone or some group of people to air it on tv again. Besides myself, I know several people that greatly miss getting to watch it & that’s just people I know in “real” life, not to mention the people I’ve met on facebook, twitter, that also feel the same way.

Barbara from Atlanta
Guest
Barbara from Atlanta

I think it is time to either (1) scale the entire Daytime Emmy Awards ceremony back to a nice, low-key lunch where the awards are given or (2) end the affair completely. I have been a soap opera fan for 50 years and am not advocating for the demise of the industry. However, when this ceremony can’t even find a network (traditional or cable) to broadcast it out of the roughly 50 options that would be available, it is time to reconsider the approach. It is degrading this ceremony has been reduced to on-line streaming. (No offense to this site… Read more »

JK
Guest
JK

RIGHT ON-BARBARA!!!!

davlestev1
Guest
davlestev1

Isn’t it the truth. .they act like streaming is the HOLY GRAIL of viewership. .IT’S NOT! When it comes to these awards fans want the luxury and pride of watching a TELEVISED event. Back in the day you even got a well produced nighttime episode of one of the networks daytime dramas the Emmys aired on. Well and truly over it. It’s probably a chore to them to even have to bother at all. I’m with you on the luncheon. .they’d probably do it at hometown buffet the JERKS.

James
Guest
James

Streaming offers a real-time accessibility that a television set cannot fully duplicate. Think of it as an evolution of what has been started off with radio.

davlestev1
Guest
davlestev1

Real time access meaning wonky camera angles…a flash shot of the carpet and a table leg…making you feel as if the camera man stumbled…a forehead shot…et.al…I hear Ya.

James
Guest
James

If you watched last year’s Daytime Emmy’s, it’s anything but what you described. It was basically a live television broadcast except it was not shown on TV with the added plus of no commercial interruption even if it sucks that the awarding ceremony have no sponsors to offset the costs of production.

davlestev1
Guest
davlestev1

JAMES i tried to watch just like i tried when POP forever made up execs minds cable and network just aren’t viable for these shows. Explaining myself would be like trying to convince a MAGA enthusiast why TRUMP is ALL TYPES OF WRONG..YOU CAN’T. That being said EVERY cable and network drama ALL use the daytime story telling mode to prolong their existence in prime time TV. It’s a proven and written about fact. If ANY genre deserves respect it’s the hallowed halls of daytime. Relegating these awards to a steaming platform-albeit at the last possible moment no less-is wrong..stomach… Read more »

davlestev1
Guest
davlestev1

And if you want to know why DAYS is failing AMAZON has a preview of Ted Cordays novel Ladies of the Lake…I’m an avid reader and love a good book. I recently finished Out of the Dark and am now well into FootFall and the saga of the Fithps..I was not amused to say the least. Just bad.

James
Guest
James

davlestev1: The UK has a TV viewing population that is a fraction of that of the US, and their daily soap operas air on both daytime and primetime, including soaps imported from Australia so more or less soaps across the pond have equal footing as primetime scripted shows and that is reflective on their award shows.

You can’t really compare two widely different TV markets.

Mary SF
Guest
Mary SF

Actually the Emmy Awards– well in fact most long running award shows started out as private industry awards– somewhere along the lines, some network suit realized there was money to be made by televising these industry awards and making them essentially a three hour commercial promoting networks or studios shows and films. So I totally agree, these industry awards, given for and by those who work within the same field should be private affairs– that includes all them, film, television, theater and music–

davlestev1
Guest
davlestev1

RIGHT!! Even Knickelodian televises a freaking kids choice awards. You can even tune into the best dog in show awards..it’s a travesty.

Judy
Guest
Judy

I would like to know why nbc abc and cbs wont show it

Steve
Guest
Steve

It’s a money losing proposition for whatever network would do it. The production costs and low ratings combine to make it not worthwhile for any network. Back in the day, all 3 networks had multiple shows to nominate. Nowadays, CBS would be the only one that might have a slight interest (with 2 soaps, 2 game shows and 1 talk show).

NATAS should make it available on their own website – unless FB and Tw are paying some production costs.

JK
Guest
JK

THEY DO NOT CARE……THESE NETWORKS DONT CARE ABOUT SOAP FANS = ONLY CARE ABOUT THE MONEY THAT GOES IN THEIR POCKETS…..SHAMEFUL!

Lou piikes
Guest
Lou piikes

Soaps are a business and networks don’t produce shows for charity.

rebecca1
Guest
rebecca1

JK…no network “cares” about fans. Like Lou piikes said…it’s a business. If they don’t find it cost-effective it’s not happening.

Gia
Guest
Gia

I understand that fans do not count and that this is a ” business”.

All three major networks has a soap opera. GH (ABC) DOOL (NBC) and CBS (Y&R and B &B).

Why don’t the 3 networks split the cost ?

I see that they are streaming on social media which I do not partake in so I guess I will miss this year 🙁

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.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Ali Sweeney (@alisweeney)

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Days Of Our Lives

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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Breaking News

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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Y&R’s Joshua Morrow, Amelie Heinle, Mark Grossman, Hunter King and Melissa Ordway chat with Michael Fairman about being a part of and portraying the Newman Children as the show celebrates its 48th anniversary.Leave A Comment

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