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Chappell's "Venice" and NY Times coverage spreads to mainstream press outlets!

crystal02.jpgMore great news for the ingenius Crystal Chappell on the heels of her New York Times article on her new web series, “Venice”, such mainstream platforms as The Huffington Post and Entertainment Weekly, and Gawker all ran pieces on Chappell’s new venture and its potential impact on the LGBT market, soaps and her dedication to bring a full-fledged lesbian love story to the web, in a different vehicle than Guiding Light’s Otalia.

On Monday, a brand new article in the New York Times titled: “Love That Dares to Tweet Its Name, From ‘Guiding Light’, Sparks Web Series,” featured Crystal Chappell’s new original project “Venice”.  The article give some good dish on the behind the scenes plans and production model for the show.  It also addresses the lack of kissing time for Otalia, and more.  Below are some excerpts but read the whole feature!

Ms. Chappell said, “Like the audience I hated the idea of letting” the story line go. She will try to keep the spirit of Otalia alive by starting a Web series in November called “Venice.” While it won’t have Olivia and Natalia — those characters are the property of Procter & Gamble — the show will feature Ms. Chappell as a single, gay career woman, and follow other fictional inhabitants of Venice Beach, in Los Angeles. Her leading lady on “Guiding Light,” Ms. Leccia, has agreed to join the cast without pay. One big difference from Otalia: “In the first 30 seconds you see these two women kiss,” Ms. Chappell said.

Producing “Venice” is a labor of love as everyone is working without pay for now. Ms. Chappell recruited as cast mates the actors Hillary B. Smith (“One Life to Live”), Jordan Clarke and Daniel Cosgrove (both from “Guiding Light”), and Elizabeth Keener (“The L Word”). “I can’t pay you anything,” she said she told them. “How’s that for an opening line?” (She’ll cover food and transportation, she said.)

Camera equipment was donated by friends. And her partners in the newly formed Open Book Productions — Kim Turrisi, the writer for “Venice,” and Hope Royaltey, the series’s director — are also donating their services.

Ms. Chappell’s ability to mobilize her online fans will help the promotion of “Venice.” Since setting up a Twitter account in May, she has amassed more than 6,500 followers, robust compared to her soap peers, though minuscule when set against the more than three million people who follow the Twitter veteran Ashton Kutcher or the hundreds of thousands tracking the pop star Lady Gaga.

She also may be able to draw on the support of gay viewers. Bob Witeck, co-founder and chief executive of Witeck-Combs Communications, a marketing firm specializing in lesbian and gay households, stressed these viewers’ loyalty. “It’s hard to find truthful stories about our lives, our families, the people we love,” he said. “And when we do, we give a higher degree of confidence and support to a program that reflects us.”

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Lori Loughlin To Make Holiday Movie For Great American Family

Lori Loughlin (Ex-EON and Full House) will be making a holiday movie for Great American Family. Look for production to start later this year.

The announcement of the upcoming Christas pic follows on the heels of Loughlin’s Fall Into Winter which dropped on January 28th on GAF.

The movie marked Lori’s first romantic comedy screen appearance since serving time in 2020 for her part in the college admissions scandal. She returned to acting after her prison time, and after being let go by the Hallmark Channel in When Hope Calls which was a spinoff of When Calls the Heart.

Bill Abbott, President and CEO of Great American Media had previously shared: “Lori is a genre-defining star that I have had the honor to call a close friend and collaborator for more than 15 years. We have a shared vision for creating meaningful and memorable movies that resonate with our passionate fans, and I look forward to welcoming her back to Great American Family to anchor our 2023 winter programming slate.”

So what do you think of a Lori Loughlin/Great American Family holiday film on the way for later in 2023? Comment below.

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General Hospital

Marcus Coloma On His GH Exit: “I Don’t Know Why That Decision Was Made, But I Don’t Feel Any ill Will and I Didn’t Feel I Got Fired”

This week, GH fans saw Adam Huss returning to the ABC soap opera as Nikolas Cassadine to finish out the rest of the scenes originally intended to be played by Marcus Coloma who ended his three-year run on the show a tad early.

As has been previously reported, Coloma came down with Covid-19 as his final tape days neared, and a decision was made for him to not return to finish off his last run of episodes.

With all the rumors and stances taken by everyone involved, Coloma was the special guest on this week’s episode of the That’s Awesome Podcast hosted by Steve Burton and Bradford Anderson and discussed his departure from the long-running daytime drama series.

Marcus expressed that when he took the role on GH, he was excited to be in that kind of environment (working on a soap opera), and only signed on for three years.  However, as time went by it became more difficult to reconcile leaving when his contract was up, sharing: “You fall in love with the crew and everybody along with it. So, two and a half years in, this decision that was so clear in the beginning is getting complicated.”

The actor added that while, “I knew the end was coming, it wasn’t like GH was saying, ‘Hey, Marcus, we want you to stay.’  There was no negotiation … and all I can say to that is I don’t know why that decision was made, but I don’t feel any ill will and I didn’t feel like I got fired. It just felt like … there was maybe an understanding that I was going to be there for three years. The big surprise is how much it hurt. Even though I knew I was going to leave.”

In the end, Coloma reflected that this may have concluded as it should, adding, “I really do have some big goals and those goals would have never been realized if I would have stayed. That’s not to take anything away from GH because I admire everything about it.”

Watch the episode of That’s Awesome featuring Coloma below.

Then weigh-in, what do you think of Marcus’ thoughts on his exit as GH’s Nikolas Cassadine? Share your thoughts in the comment section.

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News

Sean Kanan’s ‘Studio City’ Scores 13 Indie Series Award Nominations

Nominations were revealed on Wednesday for the upcoming 13th annual Indie Series Awards.  Sean Kanan’s streaming series, Studio City received 13 nominations in various categories.

Studio City’s nominations are fo: Best Drama Series, Sean Kanan, Michel Kanan, and Timothy Woodward, Jr., producers; Best Director in a Drama Series, Timothy Woodward, Jr.; Best Writing in a Drama Series, Michele Kanan, Sean Kanan and Timothy Woodward, Jr., writers; Lead Actor in a Drama Series, Sean Kanan; Lead Actress in a Drama Series, Carolyn Hennesy; Supporting Actor in a Drama Series, Tristan Rogers and Justin Torkildsen; Supporting Actress in a Drama Series, Natalie Burn and Juliet Vega; Guest Performer in a Drama Series, Lilly Melgar; Best Ensemble in a Drama Series, Outstanding Cinematography in a Drama Series, Pablo Diaz, and Outstanding Editing in a Drama Series, Fady Jeanbart.

Courtesy/Studio City

In a statement on Studio City’s 13 nods, Sean Kanan shared: “I am overwhelmed and thankful that our show, which I refer to as the little-engine that could series, has received such support from the Indie Series Awards. Our second season was a collaborative effort of creativity, love of our content, and hard work. We look forward to creating more entertaining series in the future.”

Studio City tells the dramatic and comedic story of Sam Stevens (played by Kanan), a long-time soap opera actor starring in the number two most-watched daytime drama, “Hearts on Fire” as he struggles to keep his top spot on the show, break out of soaps into feature films, and deal with his own complicated life which includes a few dark secrets concerning his past, including an aging step-father, the twisted truth of his paternity, and a daughter that he never knew existed.  Season two consists of six episodes and is available on Amazon Prime.

For the complete list of this year’s Indie Series Award nominations, check them out here.  The Indie Series Awards ceremony will be on Wednesday, April 12th in Burbank, California at The Colony Theatre in Burbank.

What do you think of the nominees from Studio City for the ISA Awards? Let us know in the comment section below.

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