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DAYS Celebrates Turning 50! EP Ken Corday Notes: "We Made Some Changes With Writers And Producers And Decided To Raise The Bar …”

Photo Credit: Kathy Hutchins

Photo Credit: Kathy Hutchins

The weekend is here and it’s time to get ready to celebrate with the accomplishments of NBC’s Days of our Lives who celebrates its 50th anniversary on Sunday, November 8th, with the Monday the 9th episode, it’s anniversary episode.

The series longtime executive producer, Ken Corday and other DAYS notables including: co-head writer Josh Griffith,  series stars: Kristian Alfonso (Hope), Thaao Penghlis (Andre), James Reynolds (Abe) Stephen Nichols (Patch), as well as Sony executive Steve Kent, and NBC Entertainment executive Jennifer Salke, all weighed-in on the series success, and the changes afoot as it heads into it’s golden anniversary and beyond in a feature out in Variety.

Corday stated on the recent moves in Salem: “We made some changes with writers and producers and decided to raise the bar with the look of the show, the performance aspect of the show, and where we’re going with the stories and characters.”

Courtesy/CBS

Griffiths elaborated on how when he and Dena Higley took over the reins of writing the iconic show. that their first move was giving some underused longtime characters better stories and bringing back iconic characters, including Bo Brady (Peter Reckell), Steve “Patch” Johnson (Stephen Nichols) and Andre DiMera (Thaao Penghlis).

Josh added: “I’m trying to keep the focus on the characters the audience loves, while creating the next generation of characters. The next generation needs to be integrally tied to the iconic generation so they’re not coming out of leftfield.  It’s keeping it connected to history.”

Penghlis, who has had more than nine lives on DAYS said about his return this time: “I’ve never seen a team this complete. I’ve never seen writers who blend in with the actors, study their personalities, and then go back and write about them. I’ve never seen producers who are as hands-on like Albert Alarr is.”

So, what did you think of the comments about the state of DAYS from Corday, Griffith, Penghlis, and the others?  Has DAYS improved ? Are you exciting by what you are seeing?  Clearly over the last few months, the show has picked up its pace, brought back favorites, and has been developing stories, as others are coming to a conclusion or  ending their first leg of it.  Share your thoughts in the comment section below!

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Sheila
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Sheila

I feel like a traitor having watched this show from the very beginning. I am not impressed with the storylines……again with the exception of Ben/Abby/Chad. The onscreen events are like watching the Keystone cops. The actions and reactions of Bo and Caroline are comedic. I won’t go on because as I said I feel like a traitor after 50 years. I just expected a different approach to the 50th, Bo’s return and the brief re-introduction of former beloved characters.

Patrick
Guest
Patrick

traitor is a strong word I’ve posted about mine… that i’m “critiquing” too much LOL… I tip my hat to “Ray” it’s Salem’ites TURN to cause celebre it’s a tearful time… a giddy time… our time… the best of the best show is in town ie: why did it have to take near 3 months for Bo to come home? had it been any sooner … would have lessened all of Caroline “visions” LOL… I laud this lady nevertheless… for helming the Brady clan… evenso watching the mother/daughter duo of Caroline and Kayla Caroline… riveting! ie: in this day and… Read more »

Mary
Guest
Mary

I cringe at the thought of how the writers are going to deal with Peter Reckell leaving Days once again. He only agreed to return for a short period time to bring final closure to Bo and Hope. I read somewhere that the Reckell family has moved to Oregon. So unless Ken Corday is able to convince Peter to stay longer and commute from Oregon he will be leaving again permanently.

Patrick
Guest
Patrick

i’m wondering how they are going to deal with this as well…

from what I’ve seen up to this point

he had … ??? 2 times passed out… ???? losing consciousness

when he was shackled up with Steve
the 2nd being when he was by himself with the motorcycle

even tho it’s been near 3 months… getting him home
just watching “Bo” on our screens is something

can’t help but marvel at his presence

Carolina
Guest
Carolina

I know how you feel. I started watching in the late-1970’s and just loved it then.

By around 1989 or 1990, after losing Deidre Hall, Gloria Loring, Peter Reckell, Kristian Alfonso, etc. the show started going in a really bad direction: Tasteless story lines revolving around teenagers became the norm. Some of the stories began resembling episodes of “The Jerry Springer Show.”

I think that’s when the show got it’s nickname “The Poor Man’s Soap Opera.”

Mary SF
Guest
Mary SF

Well I do appreciate they improved the look of the show– the lighting has been a thing of beauty to behold the way they light various scenes. I like the use of different camera angles and adding some variety to their sets and bringing back extras to populate the town at bit more. But I still find the storytelling a bit uneven– some episodes are jammed packed with content, almost too much to take in, then we have episodes that are long and drawn out fillers. I still think it was a mistake to kill Will. The character was popular… Read more »

holly
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holly

I am loving DOOL right now; its great! Maybe these writers should pull double duty and fix Y&R!

4ever DAYS
Guest
4ever DAYS

Who needs a fire (Y&R) when you’re on fire (DAYS)?

Y&R has burning buildings while our DAYS have burning desires!!!!!

‘Days of our Lives’ anniversary week begins Monday!

#Days50

Michael
Guest
Michael

I think they’re doing a great job! I have been a fan for many years since the early 80’s and speratically in the 70’s. Aweaome aeeing some veterans back on the ahow again!

Michael
Guest
Michael

*Awesome seeing

James R. Poissant
Guest
James R. Poissant

I am with you on this, Michael—the show is so good that I can’t wait to see what happens next.

MeganLA
Guest
MeganLA

Yeah, and as always the gay legacy character that earned 3 Emmys and one of the most successful storylines ever – the gay storyline – isn’t even mentioned a single time. It’s a shame that no one in the soap industry is speaking out against the new regime’s blatant homophobia. Everyone I know is DONE with Griffith’s and Higley’s outdated vision of Days, and the key demo ratings are speaking volumes. Tomsell were drawing way better ratings in women 18-49 in the months before they were fired (and even this summer) than we’re seeing now, despite the unprecedented pimping campaign… Read more »

Tim
Guest
Tim

I agree, Will and Sonny’s storyline wasn’t even mentioned, I think that Higley and Griffith gave Will and Sonny the boot way too soon. Such a cop out as far as I am concerned. Higley wrote for OLTL, and as we remember from there, the ratings went straight to the basement because of her. And, as we also know there was a gay storyline there too… and, it was just starting out until Higley gave it the boot.. I had an idea that this sort of thing would happen.. Sighhhhhhh

4ever DAYS
Guest
4ever DAYS

Tomsell almost drove DAYS into the ground, which may have been the impetus for putting Will in the ground. Writing regimes don’t have full control of what’s written. The writing is often scrutinized by several factions. NBC, Sony, Ken Corday, Greg Meng and many others bare some responsibility for what is written… But wait! Doesn’t Sony’s employees consist of people of different sexual orientations? I would also assume NBC has some gay employees. I’m sure Ken Corday has a relative or two who is gay. And isn’t DAYS’ very own co-executive producer Greg Meng gay? The gay storyline was featured… Read more »

Rosa
Guest
Rosa

The complaint and the speaking out against haters and bullies is important. It is a shame that more people aren’t upset by the blatant exclusion of a group that has done nothing but served the show well. The fact that this epic and beautiful love story and ratings gold is being ignored is beyond shameful. I don’t want to turn my television on and see stories and actors that represent the lgbtq community be ignored and disrespected for no reason whatsoever. The show has been so busy cleaning the house and disregarding the multi Emmy winner story and it’s actors.… Read more »

4ever DAYS
Guest
4ever DAYS

@Rosa and others,

It is important to speak out against hate…and that’s what DAYS has done for four years!

It’s important for me to tell all of you how rude you are to claim DAYS is homophobic and should be canceled!

Happy 50th anniversary, DAYS!!!!!

lulu
Guest
lulu

@ 4 ever Days,I hope that those that are angry with the gay characters being written off this show will continue to complain. If it hurts your delicate constitution to read the” rants” don’t read them.I like how you think that those of us who complain about just having just the happy heterosexual couples should be satisfied because the writers focused close to 4 years of Will coming out and being a couple with Sonny.Out of 20-30 characters who were all straight we got 3 characters that were gay. Sonny is gone, Will is six feet under, and Paul is… Read more »

Dibbee
Guest
Dibbee

And what a great job they have done with this show. It was really getting boring and drawn out but now it is so exciting. in fact, today, 11-6, is about the most thrilling episode I have seen and I started watching in 1966. Please, please, please, keep up the great stories!

4ever DAYS
Guest
4ever DAYS

I’ll never forget the horror and sadness on Hope’s face and in her voice when she unmasked Aiden, Dibbee. For a second, Hope reached out to comfort Aiden and then snapped back into reality.

The show is must see TV five DAYS per week. I’ve been rewatching most episodes each day…IT’S THAT GOOD!!!!!

Next week is DAYS’ anniversary week, which should start out with Bo opening a can of whoop-ass on Aiden!

Ray
Guest
Ray

First of all, all of the fans should be thankful DOOL is still on the air after is seemed to become trendy to cancel daytime dramas a few years back. This has been a true celebration of the show. It is thrilling to see so many fans writing about the show again. Since the day of Serena’s death, the show has been “can’t miss.” There have been some missed opportunities (Kate not being called immediately when Will died, Eve not calling Theresa after learning of Paige’s death) and also some things that seem slightly uneven (Aiden’s sudden gambling backstory, Andre… Read more »

code85
Guest
code85

Right own. I agreed with you.

Cindy
Guest
Cindy

Sorry. If you don’t suggest Bryan Datillo, I cannot take your seriously.

Ray
Guest
Ray

I forgot Bryan for the list. Take me serious! 🙂

Mary
Guest
Mary

I more than disagree. Best Supporting Actor belongs to James Read.

Patrick
Guest
Patrick

Days…. could… potentially “win” in every column

I’ll hold out on the lead actress win for Kristian Alfonso… She will get a nomination

Jimh(leave it to beaver)
Guest
Jimh(leave it to beaver)

Days is good so far…lets see if it can stay that way…i remember the changes back in 1980 when many fans like me stopped watching because it was a daysaster..i came back but my late aunt never did…i know some said with the present day changes they will stop watching because of Will being killed off which i have mixed feelings but thats the fault of many viewers who disliked GW in the role…yep, they couldve recast or simply have him leave with Sonny or say he is alive but in a coma …the difference now compared with 1980 is… Read more »

Jimh(leave it to beaver)
Guest
Jimh(leave it to beaver)

Well folks, there are only four left…like just one or all lets keep watching or there will be no tuning in tomorrow!

MBmomof3
Guest
MBmomof3

Agree!

Patrick
Guest
Patrick

“…one complaint: Patch hasnt changed his clothes since the 1980s…lol ”

too funny

Scoma60
Guest
Scoma60

I left Days many years ago but returned 2 months ago. I returned for Steve/Kayla and Bo/Hope. Days is so good right now. In my opinion it’s the best soap on the air. They’re using the vets we love, showing friends and family, honoring history, playing romance as well as suspense. It’s just straight up classic soap. Bravo!

mrfixit
Guest
mrfixit

I can not see that much of an improvement. I don’t like with one swipe no more men kissing or any thing like ok fans you got it no more to make some happy and now we did not even see Paul. They did not have to kill Will off also they could of recast Sonny the what ever it was between the three of them could of been wrote better or even fixed by the new writers

Rosa
Guest
Rosa

That’s what I hoped they would do. Write better for Freddie, Guy and Christopher and give them the opportunity to shine. Instead, they wiped the story line that earned the show loads of publicity, accolades and multiple awards like it never existed. Epic Fail that I think should be the end for the show!

4ever DAYS
Guest
4ever DAYS

I think comments like yours could and should prevent any future gay storylines!

Happy 50th anniversary, DAYS!!!!!

Glendene48
Guest
Glendene48

It’s amazing to me when ppl like you 4everDays seem to think you have the monopoly on expressing an opinion. There is a whole demographic of fans who are upset and angry at the treatment of the WilSon storyline. And why shouldn’t they be? The WilSon story included a community that finally were represented with a story that touched and helped many gay fans. What, so now that Days have gone backwards to boost ratings we must all rejoice. I hope Days does have a new s/l in the future that. If not then shame on them for bowing down… Read more »

lulu
Guest
lulu

@ 4ever, yeah I’m sure comments saying we’re upset that gay characters are no longer on DOOL will mean no more gay characters will be written on the show. Not the comments by the narrow minded, homophobic, viewers who complained and threw a fit because they couldn’t stand to see gay men on their small screen. You must love living in opposite world.

Mister Media
Guest
Mister Media

Although GH is still my sentimental favorite, Days is currently the best written and produced of the existing soaps. Mission accomplished!

code85
Guest
code85

Thanks for comments. GH is making a comeback as well.

kay
Guest
kay

I would like to know why they decided to kill the legacy character of Will Horton? He was a Horton and a Brady. He was connected to many families in Salem. He had a husband and was raising a young child. They had him murdered for what purpose? It was a senseless killing and so random. All because Ben Weston was obsessed with Abigail and her friendship with Chad DiMera. So Ben murdered Will and two women to set up Chad so he would no longer be a “problem” for Ben and his obsessive behavior. I would rather have Ben… Read more »

Ellen Martin
Guest
Ellen Martin

I love the new stories but I hate that you took off the old Ciarra. She added so much to the show. The new one takes away from the show . It was too much of a time jump to all of us who watch it faithfully every day !! It destroys the suspension of belief in your story!!!!

4ever DAYS
Guest
4ever DAYS

I’ve been watching DAYS faithfully for over 31 years, Ellen, and the aging of the youngsters is not too much for me.

Five years aged in three weeks time, turning eleven year olds to sixteen year olds is important for storyline progression.

In a perfect world we would see the kids grow up naturally, but who’s to say those performers would want to stay that long (up to 16 and beyond)? Plus, if the show waited for five more years, there might not be a show left.

The aging will give the show more possibilities to work with.

gloria
Guest
gloria

Agree! I knew when I saw the new Chase that Ciara would be next. That little girl who played her was adorable. She’d been on for years & I was so excited to see her reaction to Bo coming home. This new girl is too old-I mean she seems like a peer for Gabby & in scenes with Rafe the other day you could imagine them together! Wrong! There is nothing wrong with having some kids on the show-I am not ready to go through all the teen problems with these new kids.

Carolina
Guest
Carolina

I actually tuned in today for the first time in a good 20 years or so and loved seeing Peter Reckell and Kristian Alfonso.

I watched the show from around 1975 to 1992 (when it was ridiculously good) but stopped watching when it became trashy.

Would be nice if it would stay the way it is but am sure it’s just a temporary situation.

JoAnn Marie
Guest
JoAnn Marie

I am loving Days again! I am coming home and watching it the minute that I walk in the door! I haven’t done that in years. I believe that this is all because of the return of Peter Reckell! My all time favorite on Days. I’m also loving the return of Stephen Nicols! Thank you for bringing THE BOYS back to Salem!

Chris
Guest
Chris

I hated the way Will Horton was killed. I loved the character, but the writing was very poor for him. They had the character turn into Sami, cheating, Plotting, secrets ect…….. Ending the gay story line like this was horrible. I have no idea who Patch, Bo or Andrea are and I don’t like them. I loved the Wilson story line and want it back. Bring Back Will Horton As a recast. Bring back Sonny. Days looks Homophobic, like Killing off Will was a signal to old fans that the gay story line was over for good.

Cindy
Guest
Cindy

Okay, I hate that Will was killed, too. That said, if you come on here and say you have no idea who Path, Bo, or Andrea are, you are not a days fan. You’re an agenda fan, and to me? You do not count.

Glendene48
Guest
Glendene48

That has to be one of the most insulting comments on here. “You do not count” what the hell is that? So if you don’t happen to like a s/l or particular characters you’re not a fan of Days. There are viewers who don’t know the history of days but came on board for the WilSon s/l. Is that a crime. Long term viewers have such arrogance towards new viewers. So bloody what if you know every character whaddya want, a medal. This is why US soaps will always be stuck in the past and be inferior to European soaps.… Read more »

Chris
Guest
Chris

Really? I only started watching in 2010, so yeah no idea who these old time characters are. I liked the character of Will Horton, he was a 21st century character. I have NO problem with the gay story line, but is seems from your agenda remark you do. Also its not the Cindy show, and MY opinion does count. Days looks like it caved to homophobic fans who hated the Gay story line. Why else kill Will off but to send a signal that the story line is over for good.

mark
Guest
mark

LOVE YOU DAYS HAPPY ANNIVERSARY!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Libby
Guest
Libby

I have been disappointed in the overall pace since the change was announced. Some real pluses came in late August on production. But the serial killer arc was filler and waste of time. The use of Peter Reckell has been painfully slow. Now, we hear he and Jason Cook will be gone in Jan 2016. Love seeing Andre back but there were several script editing issues related to when and why he returned. Days has some of the all time best script writers: Cuillitons, Mel Salmons.. always superb. But I have been disappointed and only interested in small portion of… Read more »

nancy dillingham
Guest
nancy dillingham

Days is splendid! Thanks, Ken Corday and the writers! Yes, you have certainly raised the bars. I hadn’t watched Days for years, but now I can’t wait to see it–just like to good old days with favorite characters like Patch and Kayla, Julie and Doug returning.
I loved seeing Jennifer’s album (missed Bill and Laura’s pic)–and I love the story with Chad and Abby–such great set-ups, great suspense. Wow, I’m impressed with your setting the bar higher and writing romance, suspense, and mystery. Thanks so much!

Kimberlee Davis
Guest
Kimberlee Davis

I really love the fact that you are bringing back the iconic characters and that the writers are improving their story lines. However, how long will these veterans stay and what happens after they leave? I was very disappointed with the way Will and Sonny’s (Guy and Freddie) love story ended . The writers did such a beautiful job in the coming out story but ruined the love story they worked so hard to achieve. I worry that viewers won’t be as interested in the show when the veterans leave.

maddiehayes
Guest
maddiehayes

Yes, I am excited by what I am seeing! DAYS is “must-see TV” for me again, I’m riveted to (almost) every scene. The vets are given their chance to shine, and that’s as it should be. I love the teens, too. They are actually interesting! Love that they didn’t “forget” Theo is autistic. The young man who plays him did a great job. I like New Ciara and Joey. New Chase is kinda dull, hopefully he’s gonna get his chance to show his acting chops when he finds out about his dad! AND, while bringing back so many Supercouples of… Read more »

Nick D.
Guest
Nick D.

Good article. While there is still maybe some room for improvement, Albert Alarr’s version of the production is leaps and bounds better than Lisa de Cazotte’s. He makes more of the budget and gives the show a much professional and watchable look and feel. He really deserves a lot of credit.

Melador
Guest
Melador

Definitely brought back the must see tv feel. Suzanne Rogers is being underused and is a long time favorite. Peggy McKay (Caroline) after the cure had the resemblance of a good actress but she is now back to sounding like a bumbling buffoon. Stories are faster paced but choppy ie Monday has a set group of characters tues is a different set and they don’t mesh the stories as well. With the 50th would have been great to see Louis Sorrel (Vivian) return for John Blacks storyline. New Shoplifting Sierra needs to go boring. Where is Abigail she was kidnapped… Read more »

Tim Welles
Guest
Tim Welles

I did not like Will being “killed off” the way he was, wasn’t HE an important character? No, I’m not accusing anyone of being homophobic so please don’t attack me but it does seem that suddenly Will is off the canvas, Sonny as left town, who knows what happened to Derrick, for all we know he got a job at another Hotel, and Paul is left adrift with really, very little to do. What happened with the cologne ad he was supposed to be doing? I know they are concentrating on the classic characters right now, that’s okay and fine,… Read more »

Jimh(leave it to beaver)
Guest
Jimh(leave it to beaver)

They could still bring Will back…all they have to say is off camera they found a pulse or whatever but he is in a coma and was sent to a clinic…they faked the funeral so the killer/Ben and others think he is dead to protect him…very few know Will is alive and being treated in a different town…months later new actors playing both Sonny and Will return to Salem…i kind of like Paul…it was nice seeing an asian character…someone said he is doing Hawaii-5-O so maybe when he is done with that he might show up more…im straight and liked… Read more »

MBmomof3
Guest
MBmomof3

I miss Nick Fallon too.

Kaylie15
Guest
Kaylie15

I hated the killing of Will and the cruel destruction of his family as part of their 50th “celebration” – it was awful.

I also hated that they killed off Nick Fallon, another legacy and Horton, and did not chose to redeem him.

maddiehayes
Guest
maddiehayes

LOL, Caroline wearing the drapes from the living room, that cracked me up .. yep, that’s one ugly dress. 😛

4ever DAYS
Guest
4ever DAYS

She saw them in the window and just had to buy them. LOL!

Sue Evans
Guest
Sue Evans

i absolutely love what they have done with my favorite and only soap, i have watched Days for a long time and im enjoying every single minute of my show. keep up all the good work, i look forward to everyday something new, love it!

su0000
Guest
su0000

ok-
Days, made changes with writers and producers..
I wonder;
IF DOOL had brought in Jean Passanante and Shelly Altman as its’ head writers
if Day’s would be doing as well as it has been under the new team of Josh Griffith Dena Higley?

code85
Guest
code85

Good question.

tp
Guest
tp

DAYS is by far the best soap on right now! I can’t wait to see what happens every day. It feels like what soaps use to be in the 80’s & 90’s when they were great!

TRISH J
Guest
TRISH J

I have watched since 1972 when I was 8 with my Grandmother during the Summer and school breaks. I loved the 80’s and taped on my VCR. Now my daughter watches with me on DVR. I love the 50th anniversary, the characters they have brought back and the exciting storylines!

Dee
Guest
Dee

Please keep Peter on as Bo. If he can’t. Recast Bo

tim S
Guest
tim S

Days is great right now… I am happy with everything right now.. I have been very critical of Days for the last 5 years, but it is great now and I am back watching it.. In the real world… iconic actors have to die.. I am not upset that Will is gone… Just like Game of Thrones… but def that actor as not as good as any of those actors….. Great Job Days and it was a great week watching it… Some good surprises I did not see coming.. it was awesome seeing Hope tear off the mask and see… Read more »

Steven M Webb
Guest
Steven M Webb

As a long time fan of Days of our Lives, I am honored to see its fiftieth celebration. I began watching the show in 1970 when I was six years old with my grandma. I love what the writers are doing for not only our favorite characters, but for the new ones, too. You definitely have a viewer here in Pensacola who will be watching faithfully.

Patrick
Guest
Patrick

Ken Corday : you have to know… the outright mishandle misapropriate misguided miss Will and Sonny…. w/Paul… Derrick mishandled that fan outcry is what it is… a huge let that will not go away misapropriate of Paul… what is his status… ? is a new leading man in his future misguided behind the scenes and production miscalculation… YES! glaring ommision MISS : lives left out I sincerely appreciate and laud… fan posts regarding this piece of the pie that carried this show is there something on the horizon… in our future.. to look forward? I cried … because my life… Read more »

Kaylie15
Guest
Kaylie15

The killing of Will was nothing more than homophobic pandering to the hateful audience that didn’t want to see gay romance and gay families and wanted to see a gay man suffer,, and yes…they welcomed back bigots with open arms for their 50th celebration. Sonny sat in the second row of his own husband’s funeral, abandoned his daughter and then lined up his next relationship while standing on his husband’s grave. All of this played into the worst stereotypes about gay men and gay families – that they are less than straights.

Good luck getting those GLAAD awards now, Day.

Jackie
Guest
Jackie

Happy Anniversary indeed DOOL. I am truly loving what the new writers are doing. I say to the people who don’t like it, change the station. Keep up the good work.

Kim J.
Guest
Kim J.

I think Days made a huge mistake in refocusing on older characters at the expense of some newer fantastic stories. No matter how much you try, you can’t bring back the 80’s. That was a very different time. You have neglected the current Days fans and catered to a former audience who can’t sustain the show. Hope is an example of an 80s character wglho has evolved beautufully. What Ken has done to Haiden is disturbing and shows that he is not in tune with the current audience. Trying to bring in a teen audience is ludicrous. Teens barely watch… Read more »

Kaylie15
Guest
Kaylie15

I am so upset about the death of Will and the total destruction of the Wilson family as part of their gross “celebration” that I can’t even watch. To turn on the gay and ally audience so viciously was unnecessary. The audience cannot forgive Will but Gabi’s murder of Nick is totally forgotten by Julie? Just terrible and homophobic and awful. What was done to Daniel Cosgrove was mean-spirited and did the character of Hope no favors. An intelligent love triangle would have been so welcome – and it wouldn’t have pissed off Haiden fans. All of this so we… Read more »

Anna
Guest
Anna

I love bringing back Bo and Steve. Need to pay to keep them . I did not like making Cierra, Chase, Joey, and Theo teenagers don’t see the purpose of that. Need to keep Sami on the show and bring back EJ . I did not like killing off Will as he has been a big part of the show. Please don’t take Daniel off the show he is one of my favorites.

gloria
Guest
gloria

Agree with every word. You said it.

jj
Guest
jj

I’ve watched DOOL for 30 years. I’m shocked that so many people are complimenting it. It is the absolute worse that it has ever been. Even the characters that were brought back (Steve, Bo, Shaun Douglas) are all acting so weird…plus they won’t stay. So we’re getting rid of the best characters right now…Eve and Will to make room for temporary characters. It’s just sad how low the show has gone. Get rid of the boring instead of giving them more screen time (Jennifer)!

Belle
Guest
Belle

I’m enjoying the show ; however , I feel the same as the others who have a problem with bringing back vets who aren’t staying long. Plus, getting rid of Ciara and Theo brothers me . Maybe , a different person to play Ciara would make the aging more acceptable. Oh, yes, I love Chad with Abby ; however, Abby is too weepy.
I wish Days could have hired Ron , the ex-writer , from G.H.

Jennifer
Guest
Jennifer

I thought I’d never watch Days again, and I certainly never thought I’d look forward to it every day like I used to. Not only do I love the characters that I grew up with being together again and feeling like family, but the newly Sorased teens look promising. And I’m on Team Chabby. 🙂 Keep going writers!

Chris
Guest
Chris

I still have no idea who these old 80s characters are. I started watching the show when Chandler first come on. I loved the Wilson story line and even liked Guy Wilson as Will. The story line was great until they changed his character into a winy version of Sami. Why can’t they bring Will back! Soaps do it all the time. A lot of fans hated seeing Will being killed off, and want him back. Come on Days give the Wilson fans Will Horton and Sonny back.

lena bayer
Guest
lena bayer

To Ken corday shame on you for killing off bo after all he went through to get back to hope. Bad call on your part

Camie
Guest
Camie

I’ve been with DOOL’s, for many years. I’ve grew up with the show and been very dedicated to the show. I’ve missed our Bo/Hope, Steve/Kayla in the pass very much. We need to keep that next older generation, in the show. It’s about family and if you bypass this it would not be the same. It’s like NOT having a Marlena/John, Roman, the Horton’s, Victor/Maggie, Shawn/Julia, Bo’s mom, the cafe. REALLY, they carry on the the Bill/Alice legacy, this is DOOL’s. LOL, even Stefano, the DiMera’s. (Missing Sami and EJ), great couple. As for Ciera and Chase, well, that was… Read more »

Becky Williams
Guest
Becky Williams

I don’t know where to start. I started watching dool when I was 10yrs. old, I’m now 55! The last several years I haven’t been that into the show since all the new characters and story line. I could remember back in the day when I couldn’t miss an episode so I recorded it on VHS. I was addicted! For many years I had lost interest. Since the 50th anniversary started and little by little old characters were coming back I found myself so engrossed once again. Then Bo returned! OMG. I have looked so forward to seeing the next… Read more »

Days Of Our Lives

DAYS Alison Sweeney on Working with Bryan Dattilo: “28 Years Later, Some Things Never Change. Still Laughing Between Takes and Grateful to Have Such a Talented Supportive Co-Star”

This week, Days of our Lives viewers have witnessed that Sami Brady DiMera (Alison Sweeney) and Lucas Horton (Bryan Dattilo) hit the sheets, and Lumi fans everywhere rejoiced!

On and off, for almost three decades. Alison Sweeney and Bryan Dattilo have played the relationship between these two exes who share children together to the hilt, because Sami and Lucas’ history is well … complicated.

But, what will happen if and when EJ finds out that Sami had sex with her ex? Stay tuned.

In the meantime, Alison took to her Instagram and shared her thoughts alongside photos of her and Bryan, then and now.

Over the years, Bryan had remained one of Alison’s good friends.

Sweeney expressed: “I have always had such fun working with @bryan.dattilo !! 28 years later, some things never change. Still laughing between takes and grateful to have such a talented, supportive costar. Thanks @nbc for this great archive photo! And so grateful to @nbcdays for the incredible opportunity to play Sami.”

What did you think of the scenes where Sami and Lucas slept together and its aftermath thus far? Comment below.

 

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Days Of Our Lives

Kevin Spirtas Talks ‘After Forever’s’ Digital Special ‘Riley’s Unforgettable School Project’, The Loss of Michael Slade, and a Chance to Reprise DAYS Craig Wesley

The coronavirus pandemic has put to the test many content creators on just how they would keep their projects moving forward in ways they never dreamed of. However, out of that situation has come some of the most compelling, unique series, specials, and features currently streaming for viewers. One of which is Riley’s Unforgettable School Project, brought to you by the team from the six-time Daytime Emmy Award-winning series, After Forever.

Former Days of our Lives star, Kevin Spirtas (Ex-Craig Wesley) has starred in and created the first two seasons of what has become the most honored Emmy-awarded LGBTQ-themed drama series on any platform.  Along with his ‘After Forever’ writing/producing partner, the late Michael Slade (DAYS, OLTL, Passions, Another World), the two also conceptualized and delivered this latest documentary-style offering now on Amazon Prime Video.

What makes Riley’s Unforgettable School Project so noteworthy is not just how they were able to execute the series based on fictional 11-year-old Riley’s virtual school project and utilize its cast, which includes: Spirtas, Cady Huffman, Jamison Stern, Lenny Wolpe, Erin Cherry, Anita Gillette, Christopher J. Hanke, and Finn Douglas, but that it was made while Slade was succumbing to his battle with cancer, and that this special marks the final script from this talented writer.

 

Michael Fairman TV spoke with Spirtas about making the special during Covid-19, how the death of Michael Slade has made a lasting impact on his life, what After Forever has personally meant to him, and how an official third season is still in the works, and … if he would consider a return to Salem and Days of our Lives, should they come a-calling.  Here’s what Kevin had to say about it all.

Photo: AfterForever

I think the entire story of this digital special has become even more meaningful with Michael Slade’s passing. What was the genesis of the concept? You wanted to continue the telling of the story of After Forever … but we are all in the middle of a pandemic?

KEVIN:  Yes and… when we filmed season 2, we had the scripts for season 3 already completed. It was our hope and desire to film them at the same time, back-to-back, so that we would have had all of our cast and crew together, and we could have gotten through it because we’ve always imagined this story being told in a trilogy so to speak – a beginning, middle, and end to Brian (Spirtas) and Jason, (Mitchell Anderson) and Brian’s healing or his steps towards healing through grief.  Schedules turned out that they couldn’t really work out for us to hold all the people and hold all of the sets for that amount of time.  So, we thought, “We’ve got the scripts for season 3 ready.  We’ll come back to it in the following year,” and that was always the intention, and then the pandemic hit.  So, it was shut down immediately that we weren’t going to do anything, but we wanted to stay current, and instead of going back in and telling the third installment of After Forever as a Covid-19 story as well, Michael and I sat down and looked at a way of staying relevant and current with a story within COVID, and there was born the idea to do this documentary style story/special about the characters of After Forever told through the lens of the character of Riley, the 11-year-old boy, who is now being homeschooled during the pandemic. He gets an assignment to do a project about the most unforgettable person he has ever met, and he, of course, chooses his best friend, the late Jason Adams, and he enlists all of Jason’s friends and family to join in.  Michael actually said, “What if we tell a story about Riley being homeschooled?” And, not only is Riley a technical genius at 11-years-old in the story, but Finn Douglas, who plays Riley, is a technical genius.

And didn’t Finn perform and write the song “Forever There” contained within the special?

KEVIN. Yes. He is this incredible musician.  Michael thought, “What would it be like if we asked to have the character of Finn sing a song for Jason?”  I said, “Well, what kind of song would we have him sing?”  Finn could play anything, I’m sure, because he’s self-taught, he plays by ear – guitar, piano, and drums.  Michael said, “What if we ask him to see if he could write a song?” and when we heard this song, we all called each other and we all got on Zoom and went, “Can you believe this song?  Can you believe this came out of this 11-year-old?”  It’s pretty incredible.  Michael did a gorgeous job of weaving the stories in and out and how they just sort of dove-tailed into each other, and then it was framed by Riley opening the project and ending the project.  During the Zoom reading we wanted to hear the song out loud.  We said to Finn, “Would you want to sing the song?”  We all just watched everybody on that Zoom call just fall apart.  It was just so beautiful. He’s an amazing talent.

Where is your character within this?

KEVIN:  I still stand in the center of the story of Jason because my character, Brian, was married to Jason, and it sort of connects us all, and through Riley’s understanding of how we all connect to Jason, is how we are all sort of spread out throughout the story.  Michael jokingly said, “You know, you’re not going to be the star of this special,” and I said, “I don’t think it’s about being the star.  It’s really about the storytelling.”  The beauty of Riley’s Unforgettable School Project is that we get to see moments of each person’s relationship with Jason, which Riley sets out to say, “Answer these three questions: What did you like most about Jason?  What did you like least about Jason? And what’s your favorite memory?”  Those three things, cut back and forth is where we all kind of fit in.  Nobody has more of a story than the next person, and it’s all telling honest portrayals of how they’re dealing with their loss of their good friend, or their child, or partner.

It’s a very inventive idea during Covid-19 to continue it in a way where you weren’t having to go shoot a full season of episodes.

KEVIN:  Well, we couldn’t. I have to say, Allison Vanore, who not only produced this special, but she also stepped up saying, “I’d love to direct this,” and I said, “Yes, please!”  She knows the characters.  She understands the story because she’s been a part of it for the last two seasons.  Allison also has this extraordinary amount of knowledge and expertise with the camera and what was needed for a remote shoot, and to also be able to organize filming 13 people in 2 different countries and 5 different cities… that’s just the technical side of it, but having that in our back pocket, knowing that it was a remote shoot, we had to send the camera, the computer, the ring light, and the microphone to each person’s house.  We had to location scout over Zoom.  We had to do wardrobe over Zoom.  It was all this big puzzle putting it together, and once you look at that board of storytelling and how we were going to do it, it kind of fell into place.  I feel blessed that a) we still had Michael with us, at that point, and b) Allison had the know-how to do this.  We all feel that at least this pandemic didn’t keep us from doing what we love.

Photo: AfterForever

In terms of the contribution of Michael Slade in this special, was it the construction of the story, and how was he able to work and write this during his illness?

KEVIN:  Michael’s contribution to the special was no less than the contribution to season 1 and season 2, and the future of season 3, because the scripts are written.  We did everything on Zoom, and we worked around his schedule of treatment.  We scheduled 2 people per day, and we spread them out over two weeks.  He was very present, and when there would be a day where he would say, “I’m going to be an hour late, let’s just push that call time,” I would ask, “Is this too much right now?  We can shelve it; we can stop it.” He’d then say, “Absolutely not, otherwise cancer will win.”  He was determined to stay focused and to stay active because it took his mind off of what was happening to him.

Photo: AfterForever

It would be lovely moment if you both were to win a Daytime Emmy for this project. 

KEVIN:  It’s our last collaboration together as a team, as I said, season 3 has been scripted, and it is on the calendar to get made.  We are just waiting for the COVID restrictions to lift a little bit and everyone to get vaccinated.  Michael was really hit hard with cancer – to stay healthy was so challenging for him.  Sadly, he didn’t make it to see the final edit of the special, and he died four days before we launched, but he had seen the cuts before that and was very approving of it, and had made some decisions, and offered some suggestions, and if God gives him an Emmy for this, it’s not because he died.  It’s because it’s great work.  It just happens to be that the work that was involved in this particular special was very tricky.  It brought up everything, like life itself to have to deal with.  Here we are dealing with the loss of a colleague, the loss of a friend, someone’s brother, someone’s son, this is life imitating art, imitating art imitating life. I can’t tell you the darkness that I went through just experiencing the need to stay focused on getting everything edited, and everything ready, and everything aligned for a release of this project that we had put into motion.  On top of it, our editor lost his mother just before Michael passed, and Allison’s mom was sick at the time, as well.  It took a lot of heavy deep breaths with Michael’s death, and the pandemic, and the loss has, for me, on a personal level, sent me back to really questioning my spiritual muscle and to help remind me that we have to come out of this better than we went into this.  I had many dark nights of the soul this last year, and December was probably the darkest.  I feel like I’m just kind of coming out of it now with the spring revealing itself.

Photo: AfterForever

It must have been extraordinarily difficult for you to also go to New York during a pandemic and also knowing Michael did not have much time left.

KEVIN:  I will say this: I am grateful that I was able to stay in touch with my heart and my instinct and go out to New York to let that be my remote location.  Yes, maybe there was some risk involved.  I wore my mask; I was Covid-19 negative, and I was determined to be fine.  Once I got to New York, I would visit him very protectively with our masks and our gloves, and I’d sit across the room, and then I’d go back to the house I was at.  It was a gift that I was able to see him at that time.  We had some good talks then about how he was feeling, and I think he was still being optimistic, and then once we got the project in the can there was maybe this psychic letting go. That’s when everything really started to reveal itself as this could be the end.  I did go back to see him when he was in hospice.  I think I was there the last two days that he really was able to really stay coherent.  He would close his eyes and be at peace and quiet for a minute, and he would finish a conversation and sort of close his eyes, not to sleep and not to go away, but I remember watching him going, “Look how peaceful he is,” and then he’d open his eyes and he’d remember that he is in this body that has been given a time limit of life, and he’s on his way out.  I’d watch the fear go back in his eyes.  At one point, he did say, “I’m so scared,” and I just held his hand, and I said, “I’m scared too.  Let’s be scared through this together.”  I don’t know how to navigate grief like that.  We are all going to be in a position at some point where we are going to be on the other side of the hand holding.  The wonderful thing is that we were able to have honest communication about our feelings.  I thanked him for everything that he has done for me and how he believed in my talent and creativity and our partnership.  I will always take that with me.  I waved my finger at him, and I said, “Listen.  Now, we wrote a series about a man talking to his deceased husband.  You’d better talk to me!”  So, we laughed about that.

Photo: AfterForever

You’ve done a lot of things in your career from Broadway to television, and of course, daytime fans know you best as Dr. Craig Wesley on DAYS.  How does the entire After Forever project stack up to you within all that you have done?

KEVIN:  Former DAYS casting director Fran Bascom, sought me out and offered me this 2-day role on Days of Our Lives, and those 2 days turned into 8 years, and unbeknownst to me at the time, the final 3 months of that contract of those 8 years, Michael Slade was brought in to write.  We didn’t cross paths at that point, but years later, when we did cross paths in New York, and then After Forever was born, that was that universal crossing point.  I am most proud of the fact that we were able create something fresh, and real, and personal to ourselves that we didn’t have to cater to any “powers that be” that had their vision and their tinkering, that they thought that it could be better in this way or that way.  Then for After Forever to gain such recognition, within the film festivals, and the Emmys, and then, just after Michael died, we won the GLAAD award for Special Recognition this year.  We don’t even fit into one of their categories!  They found a way to acknowledge this project.  If another Emmy happens again, that might be another one to put up on the shelf for After Forever that would be beautiful, and I couldn’t have done it without Michael.

For the Daytime Emmys this year, what category have you entered Riley’s Unforgettable School Project?

KEVIN:  We are not a series this year, we are a daytime fiction special, and the “Daytime Fiction Special” category is a special class.  It’s anything that’s digital in the construct of less than 40 minutes.  NATAS (National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences) is being bombarded with so much content, they’re trying to find ways to put categories together.

Photo: JPI

So, now, when we last saw Days of Lives’ Dr. Craig Wesley, where was he? (Laughs)

KEVIN: (Laughs) He was in a flash from the past or something in the DOOL app’s Last Blast Reunion series. I had a fun time working with Patrika Darbo (Nancy) and Nadia Bjorlin (Chloe), once again.

So, if they were to want Craig to come back to DAYS, would you be all for it?

KEVIN:  Hell yes!

Photo: JPI

Now, what story would you want to be told involving Craig? 

KEVIN:  When Craig was first on the canvas in Salem, there was a lot of mustache twirling and a lot of hand wringing.  He was always plotting; most of the time with Nancy.  It was kind of this high drama, evil villain storyline being told, but when the writers created an opportunity for us to be on after those first three months by bringing on Chloe without a father, there was something real about it.  It may have been told under the construct of soap opera storytelling, but there was a reality-based story about, “You have a daughter, and we are just now finding out about it?”  Then, finding a cure to her health was another realistic story, and finding out that Craig was her real father.  Anything that’s reality based is what I’m getting to.  I would welcome any job that brings me back and gives me an opportunity to dive into something real.

Photo: JPI

Would you welcome the opportunity to play a gay character on daytime; in a medium where there are very few represented in storylines?

KEVIN:  I’d have no problem with that.  Do you know anybody who is starting that?  Let’s do it!  (Laughs) First of all, there’s nothing to hide anymore.  There’s nothing to pretend you’re not anymore.  I would think that bringing in a storyline that deals with anything outside the norm that we are used to seeing would be interesting.  How many times can you retell a story?  How many times can you set the same story up with another couple?  So, why not be diverse and have a stylized story being told through the lens of a gay person.

Photo: AfterForever

In closing, so many go through life without acknowledging people who had an impact them.  We don’t give pats on the back, often enough, and especially in Hollywood, where people can be very self-involved.  You have already paid tribute to Michael Slade in our discussion, but what gift from him is your personal takeaway?

KEVIN:  The gift that Michael really gave to me is to remember to be kind to myself and to others, and to acknowledge and salute the person who is in front of us, because we don’t know when we will have, or if we will have, another moment to do that.

Now below, check out the trailer for Riley’s Unforgettable School Project.  Then let us know, what do you think of its concept? Kevin’s thoughts on the passing of his collaborator on the project, Michael Slade? And, do you hope DAYS brings back Dr. Craig Wesley? Share your thoughts via the comment section.

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Breaking News

REPORT: Dan Feuerriegel is DAYS New EJ DiMera

Could Days of our Lives finally found their new EJ? Rumors have been circulating on the internet for weeks that the character of EJ DiMera may finally have a new face and a new actor portraying and heading back to Salem, especially since Sami (Alison Sweeney) is back on the canvas.

The role was previously played by longtime fan favorite James Scott, who had made it very clear he would never return to Days of our Lives.

Photo: DFeuerriegelIG

Now according to Daytime Confidential and their report from setside sources, the new EJ will actually be played by former Spartacus actor Dan Feuerriegel.

The Australian-born actor has been seen in Starz’ Spartacus franchise in the role of Agron.

According to the report, look for the new EJ to make his debut sometime this summer.

DAYS fans know that in story, EJ was brought back form the dead, from the serum from Dr. Rolf, but then was injured in an explosion and had reunited with Sami and had been recovery in Europe.

So, if this reports turns out to be true, what do you think of the new EJ? Comment below.

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Y&R’s Joshua Morrow, Amelie Heinle, Mark Grossman, Hunter King and Melissa Ordway chat with Michael Fairman about being a part of and portraying the Newman Children as the show celebrates its 48th anniversary.Leave A Comment

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