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As The World Turns

ATWT's Eileen Fulton on end of soap: "It'a a hell of an XMAS Present"!

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

This evening The Associate Press posted a feature story on today’s cancellation of As the World Turns.  They did manage to get a quote from one of the shows longest running stars, Eileen Fulton ( Lisa).

From the AP….Procter & Gamble, the company responsible for the phrase “soap operas,” is out of the daytime drama business after 76 years now that CBS is making As the World Turns stop spinning.

The network announced the cancellation on Tuesday, the day As the World Turns broadcast its 13,661st episode. Its last episode will air next September, CBS said.

It’s the second daytime drama CBS has canceled in a year, after Guiding Light. They were the last two produced by a subsidiary of Procter & Gamble, the company for which the term “soap operas” was created because it used the shows to hawk products like Ivory soap and Duz laundry detergent.

The cancellation will leave CBS with only two daytime dramas: The Young and the Restless and The Bold and Beautiful. ABC has three soaps left and NBC one.

Through the years, actors Marisa Tomei, Meg Ryan, Parker Posey and James Earl Jones have appeared on As the World Turns. The show follows families in the Illinois town of Oakdale.

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“It’s a hell of a Christmas present,” said actress Eileen Fulton, who will mark 50 years playing the character Lisa Grimaldi on the show. Her character has been through nine marriages and Fulton was hoping for a 10th before the signoff.

“I’m just very sad,” she said. “I’m sad for all of the people who work out there in Brooklyn (where the show is filmed). We’re a family. I hate to be split up. It’s like a divorce.”

Brian Cahill, senior vice president and managing director of the P&G subsidiary TeleNext Media Inc., said the company is actively seeking a new outlet to carry the show.

TeleNext said the same thing about Guiding Light, which went off the air in September, but has been unable to find a new home. Keeping the show alive online has been discussed, but that’s an alternative where cost may prove prohibitive.

CBS’ move was not entirely unexpected, said Carolyn Hinsey, columnist for Soap Opera Digest. The network and Procter & Gamble were facing pressure to make cheaper shows, but how producers decided to spend their money — instead of just how much — contributed to the show’s demise, she said.

Specifically, actress Martha Byrne left  As the World Turns last year in a contract dispute. Byrne had played Lily Snyder from 1985 to 1989, then rejoined the cast in that role in 1993; she also played Lily’s long-lost identical twin sister from 2000 to 2003.

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That was a particularly damaging loss, Hinsey said.

“You lose the heart of the show and people walk,” she said.

ABC seems most committed to the genre’s future, she said. It is moving  All My Children to a new studio in California and is investing in high-definition photography, she said.

Procter & Gamble first began producing soap operas in 1933 with the radio show Ma Perkins, and has made a total of 20 such programs in its history.

As The World Turns

WATCH The Replay: ‘As the World Turns’ Reunion With Maura West, Michael Park, Martha Byrne, Don Hastings & Kelley Menighan

Earlier today in a very special You Tube live-stream none other than former cast members from As the World Turns gathered together via Zoom, during the COVID-19 pandemic, to share some screen time with each other and walk down memory lane during their time in Oakdale.

As soap fans know, yesterday was the anniversary of ATWT as it first aired back on April 2, 1956 and ran through September 17th, 2010.

Photo” YoUTube

Former publicist for As the World Turns and Guiding Light, Alan Locher, presided and hosted the live-stream and came up with the idea to bringing together this talented group, with the potential for more of these down the road.

Participating were longtime ATWT favorites: Martha Byrne (Ex-Lily), Don Hastings (Ex-Bob). Maura West (Ex-Carly), Michael Park (Ex-Jack) and Kelley Menighen (Ex-Emily). During the one hour plus show, first days, screen-tests. favorite moments and more were bantered about.

Check out the replay here.

Then let us know what you thought of it and seeing everyone chatting together and discussing life on ATWT and more via the comment section.

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As The World Turns

Remembering ATWT On Its Anniversary: Who Was Your Favorite Oakdale Duo?

One of the greatest soap operas of them all, and one that was number-one for quite some time, As the World Turns, debuted on this date back on April 2nd in 1956,.

The CBS daytime drama series was beloved by viewers who were fascinated by the town of Oakdale.

Photo: JPI

The series aired it final episode on September 17th, 2010.  The photo that is the header of this post is from the last day of shooting with all of the cast, and crew taking part in one last look at Oakdale and their time together.

Photo: JPI

The series was created by soap icon, Ira Phllips and ATWT had many firsts in the genre.  It was the first show to expand to 30 minutes and it was the first soap to expand to one hour in 1975 and at that time ATWT was number one, as it had from 1958 all the way through 1978.

Photo: JPI

As the World Turns gave career starts to so many actors including Meg Ryan, Julianne Moore, and Marisa Tomei, and it certainly had its share of memorable couples through the years from: Nancy and Chris Hughes, to Ellen and David Stewart, to Holden and Lily Snyder, to Carly and Jack Snyder, to Noah Mayer and Luke Snyder, to Lucinda and John Dixon, and so many others.

Photo: JPI

As we remember ATWT on this day, cast your vote for your favorite all-time Oakdale duo in our poll below! Then in the comment section, let us know what couple you chose and why.  

 

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As The World Turns

Final Season of ‘EastSiders’ Starring Kit Williamson and Van Hansis Gets Premiere Date on Netflix

The fourth and final season of the much heralded LGBTQ series, EastSiders now has a premiere date of December 1st on Netflix, and fans of the show will see how things will play out for the Silver Lake duo of Cal  and Thom, who have gone through quite a lot in their relationship over the last three seasons.

EastSiders stars series creator, Kit Williamson (Cal) along with As the World Turns favorite, Van Hansis (Thom).  The last six-episodes that comprise season four will tackle questions such as… what does commitment really look like in a long-term relationship? And what unique challenges does a “gay marriage” present?

In story, Cal and Thom are back home in Los Angeles following season three’s cross-country road trip.  The guys are still trying to figure out if they are just best friends with benefits, or more, or less, than that.

Elsewhere, Douglas (Willam Belli) and Quincy (Stephen Guarino) are engaged to be married, but with very different ideas about what a gay wedding should be. Hillary (Brianna Brown) and Ian (John Halbach) are cohabiting peacefully; and Jeremy (Matthew McKelligon) and Derrick (Leith M. Burke) have taken a huge step in their relationship by fostering a child.

Deadline broke the news of the premiere date and the many special guest stars from primetime and more to look forward to this season.

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Will you be watching the final season of EastSiders? If you follow the series, how do you hope the relationship between Cal and Thom resolves itself? Do they stay together, or move on from each other once and for all? Share your thoughts via the comment section below.

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