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ATI's Romanovich talks Daytime Emmy Telecast: Celine Dion to Perform! Genie Francis OUT as presenter!

Associated Television International’s, top executive, Jim Romanovich, chatted with On-Air On-Soaps to give us a preview and some exclusive news on what  soap fans can expect come Emmy night this Sunday, June 19th from Las Vegas.  ATI is again producing the telecast for the third year in a row, and a second time emanating from The Las Vegas Hilton.

Romanovich tells us exclusively that Grammy winner, Celine Dion is set for a spectacular performance! In addition, we learn that Y&R’s Genie Francis, who was previously announced as a presenter with her new on-screen son, Daniel Goddard, is now off the list due to some last minute conflict. Always a friend to the soap industry, Romanovich answers some questions as to the future of the Daytime Emmy Telecast, how and if AMC and OLTL will be saluted, and much more. Read what Jim had to say in our now annual Daytime Emmy Preview conversation below!

Is there any exclusive news on who may be presenting, performing, or any last-minute changes? There always seems to be some unforeseen changes when putting together a show of this magnitude.

JIM: We have got Celine Dion who is going to be performing! That is a great honor for us. We had Carol Burnett, and unfortunately she had to back out due to some family matters. We are planning to do something AMC-ish in the show, and not in tribute way, but a fun way. Carol Burnett was going to be a part of it, but we are going to do something and it will involve the character of Erica Kane, and of course, Susan Lucci.  Susan will be there and is a good friend of the show. Gladys Knight will be performing and she is legend! Genie Francis was going to go to Vegas and be a presenter, but she had some other conflicts at the last second, so she cannot make it, unfortunately.  So now Christel Khalil (Lily) will be presenting with Daniel Goddard (Cane) and representing Y&R.

When we last heard; there were no tributes planned for AMC and OLTL.  Is that still holding true?  I think that should not be till next year, anyway.

JIM: There will be no tribute to All My Children and One Life to Live this year. AMC is not off the air till September and OLTL not until January of 2012. So it would really be more apropos to come back next year and do something nice for both those shows.   So that was really our plan for it and CBS felt the same. They do have a lot of decision making power.  We don’t want this Emmys to be a wake, and all we want to do is celebrate daytime.  For me especially with the soaps; I have been a guy behind the soaps and supporting them and being a good proponent for the soaps themselves. The actors, producers, and behind the scenes personnel of all the shows work really hard and it’s a tough, tough gig. When you are in a situation right now where you are not sure what is going to be happening with your life that you need to plan for, and after the hard work you put in, why not have a night where you just celebrate everything.  That is really how the Vegas-theme came about last year, and even more so this year. It’s not, “Hey, it’s a Vegas show and some daytime.” This is Vegas paying tribute to daytime.

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What do you think will be some entertaining high points on the telecast?

JIM: You are going to see Penn and Teller do something with how they reveal the winner in the category they are going to present, and they will probably do it in a very lethal manner! (Laughs) We are doing something with The Oprah Winfrey Show. At this particular moment, we don’t think Oprah will be there, but that question is still open. We are prepared if we find out at the very last second she will be attending, but she did tape something for us just in case she cannot make it. But it will still be a very moving segment for all Oprah fans, who will love it.  I think with Wayne Brady as our host, we wanted to try something different. I know we did have planned a big singing and dancing number, but we ran out of time, and after all we do have some awards to present!

Do you think ATI will continue their partnership with the Daytime Emmy Telecast after this year, in light of the new revamped daytime line-up come 2012?

JIM: Our plan is to hopefully do another Emmy telecast next year and it is not entirely up to us, meaning CBS and NATAS have their say.  Obviously, we would love to continue with the Emmys and we have some ideas for next year that may take it out of Vegas, or may take it elsewhere in Vegas.  As long as NATAS has control of the Daytime Emmys, there will be a Daytime Emmys. Perhaps it might become just a dinner, if it is not televised. And honestly if we are not involved, I don’t see another entity like us willing to go out and produce it, especially with all the cancellations happening. So I feel if the Daytime Emmys don’t have a televised event for 2012, it will still be an event, probably in L.A. as a big dinner.

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Any predictions in the Daytime Drama categories as a fellow soap aficionado?

JIM: I cannot say who my favorites are (laughs)…but B&B could very well take the three-peat this year! They did very well with the homeless storyline and it was beautifully shot, and I loved Susan Flannery (Stephanie) and Katherine Kelly Lang (Brook) in that story together.

What do you want to make sure the legions of soap fans who tune-in know or understand about the telecast?

JIM: 85% of the Daytime Emmys are about the soaps, even though they make up less than 5% of daytime and that is a very strong statement that I want to make clear.  I don’t want the fans to feel they are being short-changed, because they are not.  We just want to make an entertaining show that will maintain the ratings, or make improvements on them as we saw last year. If it doesn’t, it doesn’t. There is nothing we can do about it.  We know we are doing a great show and we brought it in, and from our standpoint, that is what is really important to us.

Make sure to tune-in this Sunday for the 38th Annual Daytime Emmy ceremonies at 8PMEST/7PMCST, tape delayed on the west coast, only on CBS!

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kay killgore
kay killgore

Best show, I know I am going to catch flack but the homeless storyline was an infomercial. I know this is how they do it but I feel it should be the body of the work for the year! I just am tired of this left wing propeganda taking the spotlight leave politics for goodness sakes out of something! They made a mockery out of cancer patients Stephanie was sick for what 2 months, I was insulted.

Sharon
Sharon

It sounds like it will be another Vegas informercial like last year instead of the Daytime Emmy’s that we all want! What a huge disappointment!!!

Dan
Dan

I didn’t care for all the Vegas stuff last year, either. The awards felt like such an after thought. Unfortunately, it’s either that or no Emmy show at all.

I would be able to tolerate some of the nonsense a little more, if the producers could at least give us soap fans simple things like showing clips of all the nominees, and showing the nominees in the audience. Simple moments that you expect to see on any awards show. I don’t think that’s too much to ask.

Eder
Eder

Adoro Celine, vou ver por causa delaQ

Sean
Sean

I posted this last year, but I felt the B&B stuff was a cheap attempt to win an Emmy. While it was getting critical acclaim for its social awareness, I knew what was hidden behind the mask.

All My Children

Cameron Mathison Reveals Cancer Diagnosis and Shares Heartfelt Message

One of our the best guys we know, Cameron Mathison (co-host, Home & Family and Ex-Ryan Lavery, All My Children), revealed over the last 24 hours that he has been diagnosed with Renal Cell Carcinoma – kidney cancer, but treatment for him will be underway and the prognosis is good.

Cameron first shared the news on Monday’s Home & Family in a special announcement enlightening viewers on his health condition (watch video below) and later took to his Instagram and social media to share more details.   Of note: Mathison’s healthy lifestyle has indeed helped, and shown, that his cancer has not spread.

In addition, Mathison wrote: “About a month ago, I had an MRI for some gut issues I’ve been having, and during that MRI they fd a tumor on my right kidney. It’s consistent with Renal Cell Carcinoma … or kidney cancer. The good news is that it hasn’t spread to any other organs🙏🏼 They say my healthy lifestyle and diet has no doubt helped keep it from growing and spreading to other areas, as doctors think it’s been growing in me for minimum 10 years🙏🏼. I am extremely lucky that we found it early.” He thanked his doctor and his family, saying, “[wife] Vanessa, [kids] Lucas and Leila have been absolutely amazing with their love and support… as have my mom, dad, brother, and everyone at Home and Family, Hallmark, and ET❤️ My surgery is scheduled on September 12th, I was hoping to receive positive thoughts, prayers, or whatever you feel comfortable with, on 9/12 (my surgery is at 1pm PST) 🙏🏼.” He concluded, “Feeling very grateful and optimistic!”

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Send positive vibes Cameron’s way as he goes through his medical procedure this week, share your comments below.

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All My Children

8 Years To The Day Of All My Children & One Life to Live Being Canceled; Still Considered By Many Worst Move For Daytime

It’s hard to believe that 8 years ago today on April 14th, 2011, the soap world, its fans, and the cast members, learned of the heartbreaking news that ABC, in one swift move, decimated its daytime line-up when they announced the cancellations of long running series, All My Children (which would end at its 41st year), and One Life to Live (which would ends its run in its 43rd year).

At the time, ABC announced it would move to more lifestyle/entertainment series to replace these dramas.  In its place came The Chew and The Revolution, neither show is still on the air today.  Executives at that time pointed to research saying that times are changing and that their decision was “guided by extensive research into what today’s daytime viewers want,” and blame, in part, “the changing viewing patterns of the audience” for the axing of AMC and OLTL

Then ABC Daytime President, Brian Frons had joked to Deadline about the big announcement that he: “Pre-entered the witness protection program prior to today’s events.”  He added that “The demise of the two venerable soaps was actually a year in the making.  A year ago, we started to look at our projections where the ratings for the soaps would go.  When those projections came in pretty discouraging, the network began to aggressively develop replacement shows, 15 of them.  Four of the 15 were picked up to pilot: The Chew and The Revolution and two others, a talk show and a dating show. Originally, the idea was to cancel only one daytime drama.  The way the ratings developed and the pilots turned out, the ratings developed negatively and pilots developed positively, so we decided to make a bigger shift.”  Of note is that when it went off the air, One Life to Live was in third place among its competitors in the ratings.

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The press release that came with the cancellations stated: “To honor the core, passionate audience and their rich history both shows will conclude in a manner that respects their legacies and the longstanding hopes of many of their viewers.”

Following the cancellations daytime reeled. The mainstream was sure it meant the endings of the soaps, period.  However, four shows illustrated that is not true at all.  For Days of our Lives, General Hospital, The Bold and the Beautiful and The Young and the Restless all remain, and still whether they are up or down in their numbers/ratings, they remain relevant and important to the enduring daytime viewing audience.

Sadly, as with any shows, the end of ABC’s AMC and OLTL meant loss of jobs for so many working in front of the camera and behind the scenes. One Life was the last soap opera in production in New York at the time.  AMC was already being shot in LA to cut costs to save it.

Still in 2019, if you venture on to social media, especially Twitter, you see fans constantly missing its stars and the towns of Llanview and Pine Valley, wanting this wrong rectified.  Although Prospect Park tried to revive the show with their online versions, eventually after legal battles that went on for a few years, ABC now retains the right to these properties,

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The good news is that many favorites from AMC and OLTL have found success and been hired on other soap operas, bringing their followings with them, whether it be on-screen, or in the writing, producing, directing or crew departments.

So, do you think the loss of AMC and OLTL consolidated daytime and made the remaining shows stronger so they would not be touched or canceled?  Do you think ABC should try to mount a resurrected AMC and OLTL or an amalgamation of the two?  Do you remember where you were when you learned the two soaps were cancelled? Was this the worst misstep of all-time for daytime? Share your thoughts and theories via the comment section below.

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All My Children

George R. R. Martin’s “Leak” Of New Hulu Series WILD CARDS Featuring Eden Riegel, Thorsten Kaye. and Greg Rikkart

April Fool’s Day started off with a bang today when Eden Riegel (Ex-Bianca, AMC) posted a photo of herself with Thorsten Kaye (Ridge, B&B) and Greg Rikaart (Ex-Leo, DAYS)  in a very intriguing image.  See above pic!  As it turns out, it’s said to be from behind the scenes from some leaked footage of the upcoming Hulu series, Wild Cards.

The premise of Wild Cards is based on the sci-fi anthology series edited by George R. R, Martin, best known for writing the “Song of Ice and Fire” novels, on which HBO’s Game of Thrones is based.  Riegel’s husband, Andrew Miller is the showrunner attached to the upcoming series.

On Martin’s website he teases the set-up of the “leaked” video clip:  “This was not supposed to go public.. Everybody (Well, everybody that has been paying attention knows that we are developing two Wild Cards as a series for Hulu  Andrew Miller has taken the reins as showrunner, a writing staff has been hired, and they have been hard at work for months.  What was NOT supposed to be known is how far they’ve come.  Not only have some scripts been finished, but the first show has gone into production and has been shooting.  That was supposed to be a deep dark secret, however.   We wanted to surprise the world. It’s hard to keep secrets in Hollyweird, however.  And now it appears that some of the rough footage has been leaked by person or persons unknown”

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Meanwhile, Riegel sent out a series of tweets: “Hooo boy…cat’s out of the bag! Fans, please don’t judge our show based on these leaked videos!! The effects are going to knock your socks off. And my costars, and , are doing the best work of their lives!”  That was followed by, T”hank you for the chance to work with you on your first foray into soaps! I am humbled and honored. We won’t let you down.” And then, “I’m probably not allowed to share this with all the NDAs I signed, but damnit I’m just so proud of the team!  think we are breaking new ground for soaps. So proud to work with you!”

Now below, check out the Wild Cards “leaked footage” and let us know if you think of the …. um … drama! Comment below.  And one more thing … Happy April Fool’s!

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