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Claire Labine, Co-Creator Of Ryan's Hope & General Hospital's Most Heartbreaking Stories, Dies At 82

Photo: Getty Images

Photo: WGA East

Seems like we have lost several creative geniuses over the last several months in the daytime soap community, and Friday night the soap world is once again in mourning learning of the passing of another giant of the genre, Claire Labine.  Her cause of death is unknown as this time, but she was 82-years-old.

The news broke from current The Bold and the Beautiful and The Bay writer, Michele Val Jean who worked with Labine at GH when she took to her facebook page with the news.  Michele wrote:  “As if this week couldn’t get any worse, just found out Claire Labine died.  I’m heartbroken. She was a genius and a warm, loving person. It was my honor to write with her and learn from her. Rest in power, dear Claire. I will always carry what you gave me.”

Labine created magic with the Daytime Emmy winning Ryan’s Hope, a half-hour soap opera on ABC that told the story of a large Irish  family which featured the likes of Kate Mulgrew, Michael Levin, Ilene Kristen, and the incomparable Helen Gallagher.  Claire served as the co-creator of the series with Paul Avila Mayer.  She won multiple WGA Awards for Ryan’s Hope, as well.   But pre-Ryan’s Hope, Labine got her start as a script writer on CBS soaps, Where the Heart Is, and Love of Life.

But it was in 1993, when Labine was brought on to General Hospital where she teamed with former EP Wendy Riche for some of the greatest hankie-inducing, beautiful and most heartbreaking storylines in the annals of soapsThe Robin and Stone love story and the HIV/AIDS storyline, the B. J, heart transplant storyline, and Monica’s breast cancer were some of her finest storyline moments.  Claire also created the character of Sonny Corinthos (Maurice Benard) and the iconic Brenda and Sonny romance.  While at GH, Labine wrote a spinoff soap featuring the characters of Ned and Lois to be set in Brooklyn called Heart and Soul, only the network decided to go with Port Charles instead.  Eventually in the late 90’s and early 200o’s, Labine spent time at both One Life to Live and Guiding Light as the series head writer.

Colleagues of Labine’s and actors have taken to social media tonight to pay tribute to this talented woman:

Wendy Riche expressed:  “I am one of the very fortunate people who had the privilege of working with the great Claire Labine. Her extraordinary talent and joy of writing was exhilarating and illuminating. I learned something in every conversation we had, every day. She is loved and respected not only by me, but by an entire community of writers, actors producers and crew .  Rest in Peace, Claire.”

Maurice Benard posted: “Claire LaBine you will be missed you gave me a chance to play a character that had so many levels when no one else would so grateful to you.”

Vanessa Marcil shared: “Claire LaBine healed my soul & millions of others hearts through her art. She always stepped away if things became inauthentic” #BadassChicks

Kassie DePaiva tweeted: “Soap Headwriter Claire Labine was one of the best! Rest In Peace dear gifted lady.

Wally Kurth posted via facebook:  “What a gift it was to tell her stories. The best of my career.”

On-Air On-Soaps will have more on this developing story and more condolences and remembrances as they are shared on social media in the hours and over the weekend.  Now, take a look below at some of the most memorable scenes from Claire Labine’s GH stories, the first episode of Ryan’s Hope, and then share your thoughts on the passing of this brilliant writer in the comment section below.


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Sad…one of soapdoms greatest soap writers of all time-you just cant get these types of writers for soaps anymore!!!…like Bill Bell, Agnes Nixon,Harding Lemay. Henry Slezar and Doug Marland plus several others-they were at the best!!!

I hear you a Jim. I was watching a few episodes of Ryan’s Hope, and as the saying goes, they don’t make them like they use to. Today’s soaps (what’s left of them) can’t even hold a candle to soaps of the mid sixties to the early eighties. I never watched Ryan’s Hope when it originally aired, but a few years back I got hooked when it aired on Soap Net. That was soap opera at its best in my opinion. All the good writers and shows are gone. I hope an end of an era isn’t slowly approaching. I won’t say to much more, I don’t want to jinx anything. Take care.

So right Jimh!!

Jimh, so totally agree 100%…Oh I so miss the good days of the soaps/daytime dramas…I am looking forward to Sally and Kay to return to Y&R for something to look forward too… Claire stories were among the best for GH…

Michael, Claire Labine did not create the character of Sonny Corinthos! The character was actually created by writer Bill Levinson, who was the head writer of GH from January to August 1993 (Sonny debuted on August 13, 1993). The characters that Claire Labine created on GH were Kevin Collins, Serena Baldwin (Scotty Baldwin’s daughter with his late wife Dominique), Katherine Bell (played by “Days of our Lives” cast member mary Beth Evans), Jasper “Jax” Jacks, Stone Cates, Mike Corbin (Sonny’s biological father), Lily Rivera (Sonny’s late first wife), Lois Cerullo, and the Ward family.

She also created the character of Carly Corinthos, too!

Mostly right. But Serena was created well before Claire arrived.

Bill Levinson only introduced him. Claire Labine gave Sonny his complexity and layers through the Sonny & Brenda/Carly romances and the groundbreaking story of Stone and Robin. Her stories represented great periods for every soap she wrote for. She was at the top of the soap writer game, IMO.

Very sad, Claire Labine was such a brilliant writer. She was the head writer for GH when I started watching, and I was immediately drawn in by the drama and human emotion that her stories portrayed. Some of the best storylines in soap opera history.

The Robin/Stone story, oh my god, I still get emotional just thinking about it all these years later. That touched me like no other storyline I’ve ever seen. The BJ heart transplant story is right up there. That scene when Tony puts his ear to Maxie’s chest and hears BJ’s heart beating, they just don’t make them like that anymore. They won a lot of Emmys during that era, and rightfully so. GH was on another level at that point, and a lot of it had to do with Claire Labine’s writing.

RIP Claire, thanks for your wonderful stories that got me hooked on GH all those years ago. 23 years later, I’m still a loyal viewer and I always will be. Say hi to John Beradino, Anna Lee, John Ingle, and all the other GH icons we’ve lost over the years.

Ditto from me, Dan!

My experience with RH comes from SoapNet and now You Tube. That first episode was so perfectly written – idenifying the characters and their relationships. They told real stories and such incredible acting. I could not take my eyes off Delia when she was on screen. What a show!

R.I.P. Claire Labine many an afternoon spent soaking up your gripping brilliant stories.

Such sad news. I most definitely remember her wonderful stories on General Hospital and One Life to Live. May she rest in peace.

Now this is sad!! I was too young to appreciate Ryan’s Hope but Claire Labine’s reign at GH was utter perfection!! It was THE hallmark of what soaps should be and could be. No soap in history can match the 2.5 years of brilliance she laid out. I also have a personal connection to her. When she was at One Life to Live, I sent her a writing sample and expressed a desire to break into soap writing. As an aspiring writer…..those types of things do not usually garner a response unless you have an agent or are an established writer. However…she not only sent me a hand written letter on her own personalized stationary…she also called me at home! In both the call and the letter, she said she loved my writing and that I definitely had talent and should pursue it vigorously! To hear that from Claire Labine?!?!? One of the highlights of my life!! She explained what I already knew….that soaps were no longer doing Writer Development….or taking chances on any new talent and that she had no real power to bring new writers in. The fact such an esteemed writer took time out of her life….to call me…and write me a personal letter remains an affirmation that my writing was worthy of attention, and to always chase your dream no matter how far it may seem. Just like the lady herself, her GH was filled with heart and humanity. There was a sense of community and home and family. General Hospital was never more HOSPITAL than when Claire was writing. For 20 years, I have imagined her return to GH. Alas…that won’t happen now. And writers of her caliber just do not exist in the daytime world anymore. God Bless Claire and her family.

She was so great on so many shows I read once that the idea for ryans hope came from a sequence she wrote at love of life. I wish love of life was on YouTube I need to check on that.

Lost another one of the greats. Rest in peace.

Claire Labine – ( taken from Wiki )

Positions held[edit]

Where the Heart Is
Co-head writer: 1971–1973
Script writer: 1970–1971

Love of Life
Co-head writer 1973–1975

Ryan’s Hope
Executive Producer: July 1975 – June 1982
Head writer: July 1975 – June 1982, January 1983 – November 1983, February 1987 – January 1989

General Hospital
Head writer: September 1993 – March 1996

One Life to Live
Head writer: December 1996 – April 1998

Guiding Light
Head writer: August 2000 – July 2001

Daytime Emmy[edit]
9 Wins
(1995; Outstanding Writing; General Hospital)
(1977, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1983 & 1984, Outstanding Writing, Ryan’s Hope)
(1977, 1979 Outstanding Drama Series, Ryan’s Hope)
12 nominations
(1978, 1981 & 1982, Outstanding Drama Series, Ryan’s Hope)

General Hospital

Bryan Craig Wishes General Hospital’s Maurice Benard ‘Happy Father’s Day’; Is He Trolling Us … or is This the Ultimate Return Tease?

Sunday is Father’s Day, and it’s the time when many soap stars and celebrities take to social media to give love and shout outs to their dads.

In an another post that got General Hospital fans to take notice, two-time Daytime Emmy-winner Bryan Craig (ex-Morgan Corinthos) dropped a blast from the past photo of himself alongside Maurice Benard (Sonny). Accompanying the photo, Bryan wrote: ‘Happy Father’s Day” Maurice Benard.

The post on X comes on the heels of a previous response by Craig to a post on Frank Valentini’s (executive producer, General Hospital) comment to On the Red Carpet, where he revealed that this summer, “A former cast member is coming back. And I think that the audience will go crazy for HIM.” In response, Craig teased, “Who could it be…”

Photo: ABC

Now on Sunday responses to Craig’s post were met with varied responses from GH fans from “Stop playing with us” to “Now you’re just trolling us, lol. We really need you back right now.”  Still others took it as a potential confirmation that Craig is the mystery man on his way back to General Hospital stating, “I hope you’re going to back to GH!” to “Can’t wait!”

Craig last appeared on GH from 2013-2016 and made a brief return in 2018. Since departing GH, Bryan has appeared in numerous TV and film projects including: Freeform’s Good Trouble and ABC’s Grand Hotel.

So, is Bryan Craig yanking GH viewers chain, or is he slyly teasing us, because he knows he is the one returning to the ABC soap opera? Weigh-in on your theories below.

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Days Of Our Lives

(WATCH) 51st Annual Daytime Emmys Red Carpet Interviews

A week ago, at the 51st annual Daytime Emmy Awards, many of your favorite soap opera stars took to the red carpet prior to the telecast on CBS and streaming on Paramount + and posed for pictures for the paparazzi and several spoke to the media before going inside and taking in the ceremonies and rooting on their castmates and shows.

While on the red carpet, Michael Fairman TV interviewed those who stopped performers who stopped by and those we could catch on the action-packed bustling arrivals. All of the video interviews are now posted and complete on You Tube’s Michael Fairman Channel.

Look for conversations with Days of our Lives, Tamara Braun (Ava), Suzanne Rogers (Maggie) with Rob Scott Wilson (Alex) and Paul Telfer (Xander), Dan Feuerriegel (EJ), Greg Rikaart (Leo), and Eric Martsolf (Brady) with wife Lisa and their twin sons, Chase and Mason.

Photo: JPI

Stopping by to chat from General Hospital were Maura West (Ava) and Finola Hughes (Anna), and from The Bold and the Beautiful, Thorsten Kaye (Ridge) and his daughter, McKenna, Annika Noelle (Hope), Kimberlin Brown (Sheila) and John McCook (Eric) and his wife, Laurette.

Photo: JPI

From The Young and the Restless, Peter Bergman (Jack), Courtney Hope (Sally), Christian LeBlanc and Tracey Bregman (Michael and Lauren), Melissa Claire Egan (Chelsea), Michael Mealor (Kyle), Melissa Ordway (Abby), Kate Linder (Esther) and Bryton James (Devon), and making their first appearance on a Daytime Emmy red carpet were Neighbours stars: Stefan Dennis, Annie Jones and Georgie Stone.

Photo: JPI

Below is the complete playlist of 2024 Daytime Emmy Red Carpet interviews. Make sure to check them out. Then let us know who you loved seeing and hearing from the most via the comment section below.


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General Hospital

GH’s Evan Hofer Talks Life for Dex After Sonny’s Beatdown, Giovanni Mazza, and If Josslyn is Love Endgame

General Hospital’s Dex Heller (Evan Hofer) has been at the epicenter of Sonny Corinthos’ (Maurice Benard) paranoia, which led to the beatdown of Sonny’s former right hand man.

Now, Dex is licking his wounds, and trying to move on with his life after joining the PCPD; following attempting to move away from working for the mob and under Sonny’s thumb. Problem is, Dex has a soft spot for Sonny. Meanwhile, looks like there still may be a future for Dex and Josslyn (Eden McCoy) as the two are trying to mend their once-fractured relationship.

Michael Fairman TV caught up with Evan Hofer at the 51st annual Daytime Creative Arts and Lifestyle Emmys (in which Hofer was a presenter during the ceremonies), to discuss the current life and times of his Port Charles alter-ego.

Photo: DHoferIG

Evan has now gotten to see and feel first-hand what is like working in soaps and television, when you have to wear prosthetics on your face after Sonny accosted Dex at Brook Lynn and Chase’s wedding reception.

Hofer recalled the experience. “Our makeup team is incredible. Priscilla, my makeup artist is just so talented. She layered silicone every day so she could control the swelling, so that way, she would have control over how it looked as it progressed and, you know, decreased, increased,” Hofer revealed. “She was incredible and very, very detailed.”

Paying a nod to actors who have to take on TV or movie roles where they have to wear complete facial prosthetics, Evan shared, “I do not envy people who wear full face prosthetics. I think my longest tape day was probably seven hours in it. I got a little claustrophobic. It does cause you to have a lack of of depth perception, which is a rough one.”

Photo: ABC

Hofer weighed-in on if he thinks Dex will ever turn in Sonny and press charges against him for his character’s recent beatdown. “I hope he doesn’t. It’s hard though, because he loves him (Sonny) and that’s the problem,” stated Evan. “That’s what we do with people we love. It’s almost an abusive parent relationship, isn’t it? I have this theory that Dex almost feels like he deserves these things.”

Now might be the time for the GH writers to explore more of Dex’s backstory which could include a backstory of abuse. “I really would love them to. I think it’d be incredible,” hoped Evan. However, he added, “I’m just grateful for whatever I get to do every day and excited for whatever story we get to tell.  Something like The Departed – undercover with the mob- would be cool (for a storyline), and then everybody’s wondering which side I’m on the whole time.”

Photo: ABC

Is there hope for Dex and Josslyn fans that they will still may be each other’s love endgame? Hofer teased, “I think they start spending a little more time together, but who knows what’ll happen. You never know on a soap opera. Maybe Dex’s evil twin will show up and steal Josslyn away.”

Photo: ABC

A few months back, Evan shared some major scenes with the one and only Finola Hughes (Anna). In story, Dex admits he was going to kill Cyrus on Sonny’s orders. Hofer shared it was a big moment for him since his time being on GH. “What an honor to get to do those scenes with Finola. I had only worked with her once before and that was when Dex broke her out of prison and he got shot the first time,” recalls Hofer. “She’s all about working the scenes ahead of time, which I am, too. We got to get a lot of reps in and when we get up there on stage, she’s incredibly affecting. I’ll kind of have an idea of maybe of how the scene will go, and then I’ll just look in her eyes and suddenly I am just so in a different space that she’s pulled me into. In those scenes, having Dex feel like someone cares about him was really beautiful.”

Photo: ABC

Recently, Giovanni Mazza premiered as Gio. In Hofer’s first on-screen scenes with Mazza, the two talk about Gio’s dad having been in the military and Dex’s experience in the Army and serving in Afghanistan.

This raised some GH viewers eyebrows to what if the two characters could somehow be related? Perhaps, brothers? Evan responded to those inquiring minds, “Oh, I don’t know. We look pretty alike. There is the military connection. I think it’ll be interesting. Those first scenes we had together were incredible. I was so excited to work with Geo. He couldn’t be any nicer really. He’s an incredible person. He’s so easy to be around. We hang out outside of work all the time, already.”

Photo: JPI

Does Evan think there will come a day where Jason (Steve Burton), Dex and Sonny will all be working together on the same side, and thus, Sonny will have both his former henchman at his disposal?  While Hofer doesn’t know what’s coming down the pike, he expressed, “It’s been incredible to have Steve around. He’s a really wonderful man. I’d only met him on Zoom previously to him coming back.  I hope we get to work together more. We got one batch of scenes together and I hope we get to do more soon.”

Photo: ABC

As to what GH viewers should be on the lookout for in the weeks ahead, Evan teased, “We’ll see what Joss and Dex get into, and we’ll see what happens within the police department.”

So, are you rooting for Dex and Joss? Do you want Dex back working for Sonny, or hope he stays with the PCPD? Would you want to see more of Dex’s backstory explored? Comment below.

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