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ATI's Romanovich speaks out on Daytime Emmy Telecast content decisions!

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

ATI’s, Jim Romanovich spoke to TV Guide Canada’s, Soapgeist, Nelson Branco,  on this year’s Daytime Emmy Telecast.  And while fans were upset over the lack of airtime for soaps, clips of the nominees, and the ATWT’s tribute, plus the insertion of an commercial for the Las Vegas Hilton inside the telecast itself, Romanovich told Branco why it all had to be done this way.  Many industry insiders apparently offered their kudos f on this show being the best telecast in years.  Here are a few excerpts:

Romanovich on saving the Emmys: “Perhaps what many genuine soap fans don’t realize is that the Daytime Emmys were allowed back on TV in spite of the soaps, not because of them. Had we not had a 20-minute tribute to Bandstand (which according to the ratings on the quarter hour was the spike that won the two-time period and the night for CBS) and the Las Vegas Hilton, we would have never had CBS. It would have been over. Therefore, the Daytime Emmys would have been a dinner at the Beverly Hilton. For the daytime community, that’s not a bad thing. It’s still a good, fun night for them. But what the Daytime Emmys represent by being on television is the strength of the content of daytime television. If the soaps have a chance in hell at being looked at as relevant in mainstream America, it has to be [related with what the general public considers] mainstream.  As a soap fan, I’m telling you the sad facts, which is why I have worked so hard to keep the Daytime Emmys on television. The facts are that networks really have lost interest in their soaps. They are not the financial boons they used to be. What’s sadder is that if you poll most television viewers and ask them who Oprah, Judge Judy and Jerry Springer are, they know. Ask them again who Agnes Nixon, Susan Flannery and Maura West are and they don’t know. The soap opera fan alone cannot sustain the Daytime Emmys. Like all awards shows, you need entertainment as that wide net to capture as many fish as possible. If I can do that with some magic and music, while still maintain about an 80 per cent weight to the soaps, then we all win. What I’m hoping to do with the Emmys is prolong their relevance so that these six remaining shows can have a life beyond daytime TV when the Internet and à la carte television options presented to us in the near future is our only way of watching TV. That’s what I tried to do with Guiding Light.

Romanovich on ATI and CBS’s plan to make the show relevant in 2010: “If we never came forward and produced the Daytime Emmys in ‘09, what message would that have sent to the broadcast networks? Everything we did for the Daytime Emmys had a grand plan and last weekend was it — to make it big, on a top network, and relevant. Was it the same as 20 years ago? No, because the soaps aren’t the same (or as plentiful) as 20 years ago. As one who is doing everything for soaps I can, I will feature Lion Kings, Kabuki dancers and the roster of Motown if that’s what it takes to keep them on TV.”

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Geoffrey-Martin Cyr
Geoffrey-Martin Cyr

Am I the only person out here that feels a disconnect when listening to Mr. Romanovich’s claims of having the greater good of daytime television in mind when producing these past two years of Daytime Emmy telecasts? Really? Is his goal to represent the best in daytime television or is his goal to simply “air” the Daytime Emmys; because to me, he seems more concerned with the latter than with doing anything substanitive to honor those supposedly gathered.

How does he feel his telecasts represent the “strength of the content of daytime television” when a simple element as viewers aren’t even shown clips of why people are nominated leading into the awards presentation? How does he feel he “still maintains about an 80 per cent weight to the soaps” when the fact that three legendary actors (Mitchell, Reid and Wagner) passed away this year and their combined 129 years of service did not warrent a mention, yet somehow America just couldn’t live without a tour of the penthouse of the Las Vegas Hilton or an extended infomercial on Feed the Children? (People tuning-in weren’t expecting a heavy-handed public service announcement, they were expecting to see the daytime celebrated!) How does he feel “Lion Kings, Kabuki dancers and the roster of Motown” are “what it takes to keep them on TV”? If ‘them’ mean the Emmy Telecasts, that’s one thing that he definitely seems focused on … but the man ain’t ‘saving’ daytime or respecting it’s audience by green-lighting a two-minute GL tribute and a one-minute ATWT tribute! While trying to attract your ‘mainstream’ audience, you seem to be alienating your ‘core’ audience; how exactly is that good production business?

When he asks “if we never came forward and produced the Daytime Emmys in ‘09, what message would that have sent to the broadcast networks?”, it would say exactly what he already thinks: that America doesn’t consider soaps mainstream and that the networks have lost interest and it’s time to stop airing the telecasts. I say quit while you’re ahead, stop trying to produce a spectacle and return to a nice dinner/awards ceremony for the people that should be honored, produced by someone that will place a higher importance on daytime rather than trying to be all things to all people, and ending-up disappointing instead of inspiring.

Sharon
Sharon

Mr. Romanovich’s claims are a big pile of BS!!! I totally agree with the previous writer that they should quit while they’re ahead and go back to the nice dinner/awards ceremony where the people of DAYTIME can be honored and we’re not forced to watch an infomercial of Vegas and a hotel suite and a bunch of Vegas acts that I couldn’t care less about! Using the title DAYTIME EMMY’S as an excuse to air a Vergas informercial is a joke only it’s not funny at all!!! He has his numbers confused because Vegas took up 80%+ of the time with maybe 20% given over to daytime! And no red carpet, no Emmy reels, rushed and confused presenters, 30 second acceptance speechs, no views of the actors/nominees as their names were called and no MEMORIAL!!! SHAMEFUL AND RIDICULOUS AND A VERY POOR EXCUSE FOR WHAT THEY CALLED THE DAYTIME EMMY’S BUT CLEARLY THESE WERE NOT THE DAYTIME EMMY’S!!! This was the worse Daytime Emmy’s EVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Jussie Smollett Scenes Cut From ‘Empire’ In Light Of Attack Investigation

As of Tuesday, the production of Fox’s hit series, Empire has slashed Jussie Smollett’s upcoming scenes following reports that the suspicion is now on him for allegedly staging the “hate” attack he reported to the Chicago PD back on January 29th.

According to production sources viaTMZ: Jussie was supposed to have nine scenes and a big musical performance in the second-to-last episode of Season 5,  Now, five scenes and the musical number have been axed.  Smollett’s character is also no longer the focus of his remaining four scenes, which will now feature an ensemble of characters.

The actor/singer who portrays Jamal Lyon will be working Friday and possibly Thursday but won’t be rehearsing.

The Empire writers are said to have been scrambling over the last 24 hours to revise this season’s scripts.

All of this despite despite strongly expressed renewed support by Empire showrunner Brett Mahoney on February 17th.  The goal now is said to be to reduce Smollett’s role both in dramatic stints and musical performances.

Empire returns for the remainder of its fifth season on March 13.

Smollett claims he was the victim of a racist and homophobic attack near his Chicago apartment, but things took a turn when he may have paid two friends to help stage the assault.

This case is said to be going before a Grand Jury as early as today.

What are your thoughts on the latest developments in the Smollett case and Empire reducing his appearances for the remainder of the season? Comment below.

 

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TODAY: Y&R’s Melody Thomas Scott Visits ‘The Talk’ As Her 40th Anniversary Week As Nikki Newman Kicks-Off

On today’s broadcast of the CBS afternoon series, The Talk, the ladies welcome Y&R icon, Melody Thomas Scott, who this week celebrates her incredible 40th anniversary with the show as Nikki Newman.

During her segment, Melody chats on Wednesday’s upcoming standalone episode where Nikki is in jail reflecting on her life.  Wednesday is also the exact date of Thomas Scott’s 40th anniversary with the CBS Daytime drama series.

During the segment Melody fills the ladies in on the “All About Nikki” episode, as she relates:  “I was so thrilled that they did this. It’s truly, really the life of Nikki in the entirety of the episode. It’s all about Nikki. And she’s in jail. She’s writing a letter to her grandchildren so that she can explain who she really is, how she got to where she is.  I have to narrate it, I’ve got a voice-over, a long voice-over. And then, as I’m thinking about all these different times in my life, I can’t believe I’m referring to me as her, her life, then we see the flashbacks. And for the longtime viewers, even current viewers, it is such a trip down memory lane. I mean, you are on that train and you’re not getting off…all of the clips have not been seen since they were first aired.”

Photo: CBS

In addition, Melody addresses the passing of her longtime co-star and friend, Kristoff St. John relating:  “I adored him. We all adored him. There was something very unique and magical about him. He would just draw you into his wonderful world. And all of his bear hugs, I can’t believe I’ll never get a bear hug. Going to any kind of event, any party, the first thing I said when I got there was ‘Where’s Kristoff?’ I want to find Kristoff, I want to be with him, I want to be in his air space. Because that’s the kind of guy he was, and I think that came through on camera. I think everybody sensed that, I mean everybody adored him.”

So, will you be checking out Melody on today’s episode of The Talk (2PMEST and 1PM PST) today? Comment below.

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General Hospital Writing Team Wins WGA Award In Daytime Drama Category

In duel ceremonies currently underway in both Los Angeles and New York, the Writers Guild of America is handing out the 71st annual WGA Awards for excellence in writing in the fields of motion picture and television at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills, Calif. and at the Edison Ballroom in New York City.

Already given out and announced was the winner in the Daytime Drama category and the winning writing team was ABCs General Hospital which bested the only other nominees in the category, Days of our Lives.

The team consisting of head writers: Shelly Altman, Christopher Van Etten; Writers: Barbara Bloom, Anna Theresa Cascio, Suzanne Flynn, Charlotte Gibson, Lucky Gold, Kate Hall, Elizabeth Korte, Daniel James O’Connor, Donny Sheldon, Scott Sickles, took home the prestigious honor.

This win for GH marks the fifth win in a row for the ABC series, which make its a record-breaker for the Daytime Drama category at the WGA Awards.

For a complete list of winners click here.

Congratulations to the team from Port Charles and General Hospital on their WGA Award win.  So, what do you think of GH besting DAYS?  Glad the ABC daytime drama won? Share your thoughts via the comment section below.

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