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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.”

News

‘This Is Us’ Season 6 to have Midseason Premiere and 18 Episode Order as It Concludes

The beloved Pearson family drama This Is Us will end after its sixth and final season, and news today from NBC executives Susan Rovner and Frances Berwick revealed that when the show returns for its last run, it will have a midseason, not a fall, premiere date.

Add to that, the fact that the show will wrap with an 18-episode order.  The execs shared to TV reporters and outlets including Deadline: “We know that saying goodbye to the Pearsons is going to be hard enough. So what we wanted to do is honor the fans and get them as close to an uninterrupted run as we could, which is only possible in midseason,” said Berwick.

Susan Rovner expressed: That by starting the story midseason, it will help make the send-off “a great event for the fans to enjoy.” She went on to say, “I think in Dan’s (Fogelman) hands, it’s going to be fantastic.”

For the past five season the cast has featured: Milo Ventimiglia, Mandy Moore, Sterling K. Brown,Chrissy Metz, Justin Hartley, Susan Kelechi Watson and Chris Sullivan, and there are still two more episodes of the current season, until the season finale on May 25th in a special time 10 p.m. ET/PT.

So, are you ready to say goodbye to the story of Randall, Kevin, and Kate and the rest of the family? Comment below.

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Days Of Our Lives

DAYS Jackée Harry Joins Freeform Comedy Pilot ‘Everything’s Trash’ in Recurring Role

Jackée Harry is one busy actress in Hollywood!  On the heels of learning that Harry has signed on more full-time on Days of our Lives in her role as Paulina, comes this bit of casting news.

Harry will join the cast of the Freeform comedy pilot, Everything’s Trash along with another notable actor, George Wallace.  Both will have recurring roles in the show should it go to series.

In story, Everything’s Trash follows Phoebe (Phoebe Robinson), a 30-something podcast star navigating her messy life. When her younger brother Jayden emerges as a leading politician, she’s forced to grow up, so she relies on her friends and close-knit family to help her figure out adulthood, since she doesn’t seem to have a clue. The series is inspired by Robinson’s book, “Everything’s Trash But It’s Okay.”

According to Variety, “Harry will star as Zora, Phoebe and Jayden’s mother. She and her husband are mid-Western transplants, but they have made a home in NY . They love and support their children equally, but truth be known, Zora acts (and dresses) younger than she is and straddles the line between “I’m my daughter’s mother” and “I’m my daughter’s best friend.”  Meanwhile, Wallace will play the role of Abraham, Phoebe and Jayden’s father and husband to Zora.

So, looking forward to hopefully seeing Jackée on a half-comedy sitcom at night, and doing her role on Days of our Lives? Comment below.

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General Hospital

GH’s Rebecca Herbst Thanks Fans for the Birthday Love

She is not often on social media, but when she does show up, it delights so many of her enduring fans. General Hospital’s Rebecca Herbst (Elizabeth), who yesterday celebrated her birthday on May 12th, took to Twitter to share warm ‘thank you’s’ to a few fan factions who sent her some lovely gifts in honor and support of their favorite soap star.

Herbst expressed: “Yesterday was such a beautiful day! THANK YOU for all your sweet Birthday messages! #Friz & #Liason showered me with the most gorgeous flowers, cakes & goodies. And #Friz donated $2500 to #SmileTrain.  I felt very loved. I’m so grateful for each & every one of you. …XO”

Of course, the Friz fans loved Liz with Franco (Roger Howarth) and the Liason fans are those who love Liz with Jason (Steve Burton).

Now with Roger Howarth returning to the show – in what is at this juncture still a mystery as who he will play – will Rebecca be paired with Roger in story again, or not this time?  Do you think Liz might end up romantically with Finn (Michael Easton), or is there still a chance that down the line Liz and Jason could get back together, or could Liz meet someone new? Only time will tell!

For now, Herbst was thankful for the money donated to the Smile Train charity and all the wonderful gifts and messages that came her way.

So, what did you think of Becky’s thank you message?  Who are you hoping Liz winds up with romantically in the future?  Share your thoughts in the comment section.

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