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Are Daytime Soaps Finally Getting Any Respect?

Courtesy/ABC

In a new post from blogger, Jeremy Helligar in his Pump Up The Volume posts on  the True/Slant beta version website, he looks at the move of many big-name motion picture and primetime television stars doing guest appearances on daytine soaps, and if indeed, it is making a dent in the ratings of the industry.  Here are a few excerpts ,which starts with James Franco’s recent second stint at GH!

Helligar writes, “Not that it seems to matter to Franco (the actor and the character) — or GH’s suits. On June 30, they brought Franco back to GH for an encore, and this time Oscar nominee Bruce Davison (Longtime Companion) is along for the ride in a three-episode stint as Franco’s art dealer. (Davison debuted on July 9.) Meanwhile, four-time Emmy winner and former The Waltons star Michael Learned has been appearing on GH since April in the recurring role of terminal cancer patient Shirley Smith. (Poor Learned. She played a similar bed-ridden recurring role on Scrubs. It would be nice to see 71-year-old Olivia Walton up and about in a guest-starring stint for a change.)

Over at Days of Our Lives, Learned’s former Waltons husband and two-time Emmy nominee Ralph Waite has been appearing on and off as Father Matt since February of last year. In a possibly unintended coincidence, on one of last week’s GH episodes, Shirley was detailing her romantic history, and the name of one of her exes happend to be… Ralph. Also crossing over to daytime is Sean Young (on The Young and the Restless) and Flashdance star Michael Nouri, who recently appeared on the FX cable series Damages and in the 2009 Sandra Bullock hit The Proposal. He’s currently on contract on All My Children as Erica Kane’s soon-to-be love interest Caleb Cooney.

I’m not sure how I feel about all of this stunt casting. Most of daytime’s crossover stars still work regularly on prime time and in film, so in a sense, they are taking jobs from out-of-work actors all over New York and L.A., where the six remaining soaps are based. (After 54 years on TV, As the World Turns will air for the final time on September 17.) Plus the ratings of the daytime dramas continue to drop, so there has been no discernible positive affect from a business stand point. As for the characters themselves, most of them haven’t been fan favorites and are expendable.”

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All My Children

Justin Hartley, Judith Light, Finn Wittrock Score 24th Annual Critics’ Choice Award Nominations

This morning, nominations were announced in the fields of motion picture and television for the 24th annual Critics’ Choice Awards given out by the Broadcast Film Critics Association, and the Broadcast Television Journalists Association.  The kudofest will be held on January 13th on the CW airing at 7PMET/PT.

Leading the pack in the TV field was the final season of The Americans and limited series Escape at Dannemora and The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story with five nominations.

This Is Us as with the Golden Globes did not come up with a Drama Series nod, however at the Critics’ Choice Awards two if its stars:  Milo Ventimiglia and Justin Hartley were nominated.

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

For Hartley, the former Y&R star received an nod in the Best Supporting Actor in a Drama Series category,  While Ventimigilia, who plays Justin’s on-screen dad, is vying the Lead Actor Drama category.

Judith Light, the former two-time Daytime Emmy winner from One Life to Live, received a nomination in the Best Supporting Actress in a Limited Series Or Motion Picture Made For Television category for her performance in The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story.

While yet, another former daytime, Finn Wittrock (Ex-All My Children) in the Supporting Actor in a Limited Series or Motion Picture Made For Television category also for “Versace”.

Photo Credit: HutchinsPhoto.com

To view the complete list in all motion picture and TV categories click here.

Now, let us know if you are happy to hear that Justin, Judith, and Finn received nominations for their work? Comment below!

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All My Children

Former Executive Producer & Director of All My Children, Jorn Winther Dead Following Two-Vehicle Collision

Very sad news to report.  Renowned director, Jorn Winther, who served as executive producer and director at All My Children has died at the age of 88.

Winther was actually killed on November 9th when in an automobile accident in front of Palm Desert High School outside Palm Springs.

According to the Desert Sun, “Jorn was killed in a two-vehicle collision at Cook Street and Santa Fe Trail in Palm Desert. The Riverside County Sheriff’s Department said a vehicle was moving south on Cook Street when its driver suddenly entered the northbound lanes and collided with an oncoming vehicle,  Winther was pronounced dead shortly after noon Friday, according to the Riverside County Coroner’s office. His wife of 31 years, Claire Winther, confirmed that her husband drove the vehicle that entered oncoming traffic. Why he did so remains a mystery.”

The famous director was best known for for the landmark David Frost-Richard Nixon interviews in 1977,  The Sonny & Cher Hour, and was also known for producing rock performances for TV including: California Jam II, featuring performances by Aerosmith, Foreigner, Heart, Santana and more.

In the world of soaps, Jorn had been the EP and director for ABC”s All My Children for five and half years, and had been with the series from 1981 to 2005.  He also directed on: One Life to Live, Generations, Santa Barbara and Rituals.

Born in Denmark, Winther studied speech and drama at the University of Copenhagen and continued his education at the Royal Theater in Copenhagen, where his mother had danced as a prima ballerina. He also studied at the Stratford Shakespearean Theater in Ontario, Canada, and at Stanford.

Most recently, Winther directed and produced the independent film Do It or Die!, about the 1979 kidnapping of socialite Elaine Chaddick. It screened at the 2017 Palm Springs International Film Festival.

Winther’s daughter, Lisa has been a stage manager on the soaps most recently working at The Bold and the Beautiful.

Share your thoughts on the passing of Jorn Winther as we offer our thoughts, condolences, and prayers to his family, via the comment section below.

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All My Children

Kelly Ripa To Guest Star On CW’s Riverdale

Here’s a fun bit of casting news!  Live with Kelly and Ryan and former All My Children star, Kelly Ripa  (Ex-Hayley) is joining her real-life husband, Mark Consuelos (Ex-Mateo, AMC) on the hit CW soapy drama Riverdale.

Consuelos already plays the the role of Hiram Lodge, and now Ripa will plays his mistress, Mrs. Mulwray.

Kelly shared the inspired-casting choice on Instagram relating: “It’s a family affair …23 years of auditioning for a role i was born to play. Coming soon to the CW;s Riverdale.”’

The CW released a statement on the casting of Ripa, adding: “Kelly Ripa will guest star on Riverdale as Mrs. Mulwray. Confident and tough, she is Hiram Lodge’s alleged mistress. She’s a beautiful, icy, femme fatale who gets caught up in a conspiracy that’s much bigger than she initially realized.”

Film buffs take note!  Ripa’s character name is borrowed from Faye Dunaway’s Oscar-nominated role in Chinatown (1974), Evelyn Mulwray.   Those who saw Chinatown know that Evelyn was a femme fatale as well caught up in a conspiracy!

And there is more “All in the Consuleos Family” casting.  The couple’s son Michael is portraying the teen-aged version of Hiram on tonight’s all-new episode.

Riverdale airs Wednesdays at 8 p.m. ET/PT

So, will you be checking out Kelly on Riverdale? Comment below.

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GH icon Genie Francis chats with Michael Fairman about her return to the soap as Laura after being taken off-contract earlier this year. Leave A Comment

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