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DAYS Executive Producer Ken Corday Talks with SOD On: Cast Changes, Focus On Romance & Plans For 50th Anniversary!

Photo Credit: Kathy Hutchins

Photo Credit: Kathy Hutchins

In an in-depth interview in the latest issue of Soap Opera Digest on newsstands now, Editorial Director Stephanie Sloane chatted with Days of our Lives executive producer, Ken Corday on the big plans for DAYS 50th anniversary kicking off this fall.

Corday explains his decision to change head writers from Gary Tomlin and Chris Whitesell to Dena Higley and Josh Griffith, as well as the renewed focus on the fan favorite returns, storyline change-ups, cast shake-ups, and his plans to save the ratings struggle of the long-running NBC soap opera.

When discussing what was number one of his listed of changes that he wanted to implement, Corday related:  “I needed to, first of all, change the cast.  The cast on the show was no longer recognizable to me and those that were recognizable were doing nothing.  So we had to flip that. We had to jettison stories that were not going over well with the audience and we had to give characters on the show that were recognizable and powerful more story.”

Corday also confirmed that romance will be a main factor in the 50th anniversary and with the new writing regime relating: “Romance is the basis for where the story starts.  This is how Dena and Josh approach their storytelling with me and with the producers:  Who is the couple I want to die for here?  Who are the couples we want to root for? Let’s isolate three or four of them and build great story around their high, romantic stakes. Every one of their stories is based on romance.  And a little bit of psychosis, but that is also dramatic.”

Make sure to pick-up the latest edition of Soap Opera Digest on sale now to read the entire interview.

What do you think of Ken Corday’s comments on changing the cast, and what will happen in the romance department? Are you encouraged for the future of DAYS?  Share your thoughts below!

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Gmbenet
Guest
Gmbenet

I want to know about the shocking deaths! Who dies? Also, the problem with the show is not always the characters, but what the writers do with the characters. When the writers have the characters do stupid stuff (i.e. Eve sleeps with JJ; Nicole and Sami and Abigail going from man to man), it takes some of the enjoyment out of watching the show. It is not the characters that iritate but what the writers have the characters doing. Some of their actions are over the top or immature. For long time characters what makes it especially irritating is knowing… Read more »

blake
Guest
blake

I’m sure Clydee will be killed off before the anniversary to make room for the vets. I will be soooo glad to see him gone!

4ever DAYS
Guest
4ever DAYS

It would seem to be “True” that heads roll during big anniversaries!

john
Guest
john

So the yearly edition of SOD’s Plan to Save Days is here.
It sounds good, but like I said, it’s not the first time.

Mary SF
Guest
Mary SF

I honestly think Mr Cordy abandoned the ship and it ran off course, then he finally noticed that and decided to get hands on again and make the changes needed to save the ship before it sank. Whether he would have done that if the 50th wasn’t on the horizon I don’t know, all I know, by the sounds of it, Days might become my favorite soap again come fall.

Newc11
Guest
Newc11

It is refreshing to know that he recognizes that the show, while still good, is nowhere near where it could and should be. Getting back to the show’s roots is exactly what is needed. We’ve suffered through too many years of watching these “B” and “C” characters and families. Focusing on the Horton, Brady, Dimera and Kiriakis family is a great start. I truly believe they need to alter their production schedule so when a story is not working, they can respond. Recording 5 or 6 months ahead of the airdate is detrimental. Also, a small change they could make… Read more »

Joel
Guest
Joel

I agree about story happening in the park. So sickening! If I never see that park again, I’d be thrilled beyond words.

Sally
Guest
Sally

I agree, recording the show so far in advance is a HUGE hindrance! We have to suffer through months of what’s *not working* even after we’ve rejoiced that an actor/character has been let go. How did they ever get on this stupid schedule in the first place? Give everyone 3-4 months off and GET CURRENT! And the sets…they are the absolute worst in ALL of television! When I started watching this show 3-4 years ago, I couldn’t get over how terrible and out-dated they were. And don’t even get me started on the wardrobe department! Do they even have a… Read more »

Rodd
Guest
Rodd

Newc11, I agree with what you’ve written; especially about the filming so far in advance and the sets. I started watching DOOL when I was in grammar school and then stopped when the show started looking cheap and the story lines bored me. I watch occasionally now, hoping that something will draw me back into to regular viewing and nothing does. The sense of family is not there for me anymore and the sets look so cheap they might as well just hang a curtain. I hope it improves and hooks me back in the coming months. DOOL has a… Read more »

TMJ
Guest
TMJ

The thing they need to work on is the length in time between filming and airing. There is something wrong when General Hospital shoots 6-8 weeks ahead, and Days shoots 6-8 months ahead. A lot of the problems with these current storylines is that they can’t be corrected quickly because of the absurdly long gap in time before they can get any viewer reaction.

4ever DAYS
Guest
4ever DAYS

DAYS shoots five months ahead. The others shoot 2 months ahead. 3 months is not a big difference…and before someone says it wouldn’t take as long to make corrections with storylines if they weren’t so far ahead, then where are all the storyline corrections for the messes that the other soaps make?

Jake from NJ
Guest
Jake from NJ

I agree…the only way to correct a casting mistake or a storyline is to get insync with a 6-8 week advance schedule. I am so glad mr Corday finally listen to the fans to bring back fan favorites…so looking 4ward 2 it.

Sally
Guest
Sally

Actually, I believe the other shows shoot 4-5 WEEKS in advance, so that is a huge difference!

blake
Guest
blake

Yeah I know they say it helps with the budget but it’s not helping the show at all. Hell Eileen Davidson might return more as Kristen if they did that, she was burned out from the filming before.

Me
Guest
Me

I think by now DAYS is shooting 7-8 months ahead which is beyond ridiculous! But 7-8 months or 7-8 weeks wouldn’t change anything or save the show. For whatever reason, Corday has clearly ignored the viewers for the last couple of years.

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

Days lacks humour for starters…bring back Jack…have Jack and Jen be the next Tom and Alice but in a more comical way…tackle some real life subjects…maybe Caroline could be acting strange and hasnt allowed vistors to see her…the family worries her Alzheimers is progressing quickly but one day Roman visits he discovers Carolines apartment above the Brady pub is one big mess…Caroline is a hoarder…move forward away from the Eve/JJ/Paige…4EverDAYS mentioned Rafe’s father is also Paige’s daddy so lets move on to that…lets have Doug and Julie relive their first kiss…then have Lee Dumonde(Robin Strasser) show up and interupt Doug… Read more »

maddiehayes
Guest
maddiehayes

FINALLY, someone GETS it! ROMANCE is what we want to see, why oh why has it taken DAYS this long to figure that out? This is an audience full of WOMEN! Do they think we tune in to see who’s sleeping with who THIS week? Sure, some do, but most of us want at least ONE couple we can ROOT for! Eric&Nicole was that couple for me. I haven’t been watching much since their breakup, but I will tune in when the new writers’ stuff airs in August. I’m expecting a big turnaround from the depressing plots we’ve been getting… Read more »

4ever DAYS
Guest
4ever DAYS

There’s been a lot of Ericole in the last few weeks. If you didn’t see those episodes, you should.

Allen saint james
Guest
Allen saint james

Action adventure romance please!!

Rj
Guest
Rj

First, I want to start off that I have tremendous respect for Mr. Corday because I think it is phenomenal how he has kept the show going for 50 years despite many obstacles and challenges. I know there are armchair critics, but anyone who has ever run anything knows this is no small feat! Congrats and Kudos! The basis for the soap opera genre is romance, and I am glad that he is going to make that the foundation of every storyline and then build the drama around that. The relationships pull you in, you become invested in the couples,… Read more »

liz
Guest
liz

I hate to be a spoil sport but I don’t think bringing back the vets is going to save Days. They tried it before during the last big anniversary celebration and what happened? After the Young and the Restless, Days has got to have the most veteran cast on daytime. Some of these cast members have been on the show for 20 or 30 years and the ratings still tanked. It doesn’t mean bringing back the vets wont provide a short term ratings fix but in the end its the writing and the willingness to take chances that will either… Read more »

Rj
Guest
Rj

Liz I totally agree with you. They have to have creative storylines not recycle old ones. . Bringing back vets is not enough. Also they have to have appropriate storylines for the vets since time has moved on.

Jaime
Guest
Jaime

Always loved our Patch man. Just hope these writers do him justice. Gary Tomlin treated beloved characters horribly in order to justify his onslaught of Passions people. Tomlin just has zero respect for the history and the theme of Days. I hope these writers get it right.

Steph
Guest
Steph

Looking at the cover — what about Mathew Ashford? We watched him die. Please don’t bring a dead Jack back!

…..but. Remember after EJ’s death they had that split second scene of someone injecting him with something? That has to go somewhere eventually.

CeeCee
Guest
CeeCee

Out of context….I think Nicole will be pregnant! Who’s the baby daddy? Eric or Daniel…hmmmm.
Such a cliché!

Rose9
Guest
Rose9

Well he is saying all the right things, and I hope they are true. Unfortunately, their are so many things about this soap that have disappointing me for a lot of years now. Like the fact the show works over time on false red herrings and then goes nowhere with the actual story. Plus I’m so sick of this particular soap working so hard to preach at me about characters, actions, consequences or lack there of. Can’t I just watch and enjoy? No, I have to watch cheating stories and then be lectured about how the one cheated on was… Read more »

Becky
Guest
Becky

Please please bring Molly Burnett back; when Sammantha and EJ left she was the one thing that let me come back to watching show! How acting is impeccable and she makes you love her and what’s going on in her life! Please she 100 times better then Theresa poor poor acting. Don’t want to see another day with her!

Alice Reed
Guest
Alice Reed

I love days. But more than ever, when Marlena and John are happy together. Can’t she have some psychological input, for a recovering dope addict, or teenage bullies, or abusive parents, or deposed monarch? Especially important are the popular terms and definitions for the “nut-cakes” of the world. And touch on the well known facts of the day, ie: marajana cannot hurt you. It helps people deal with pain. Doctors and Nurses are hooked on perscription drugs. People don’t know how to stop a baby from crying. By the way I do. The point is, let her sit behind a… Read more »

Days Of Our Lives

Mike Manning On His DAYS Departure: “Thank You to NBC, to Everyone Involved, and Most of All to the Fans That Were Along for the Ride With This Crazy Character.”

Now it’s the end of the line for Charlie on Days of our Lives, his portrayer Mike Manning took to his Instagram for some parting words of his time in Salem playing this very bad dude.

As Days fans know, many people wanted Charlie dead, and now he is! Thus begins a good old fashioned soap murder mystery on the long-running NBC soap opera, the question now is, who ultimately did the deed?

Photo: JPI

After getting a copy of the latest Soap Opera Digest on newsstand now, which features, “Who Killed Charlie?” on the cover, Manning shared in a post on Friday: Everybody has a motive to want this guy dead.” 😂 Not exactly how I pictured my first soap magazine cover, but at least we’re having a good time with it. It’s been fun Salem. I’ll love you all forever. ✌🏼💙. Thank you to NBC, to everyone involved, and most of all to the fans that were along for the ride w/ this crazy character. You’re amazing. I’ll always be grateful for you.  Excited to share what’s next as soon as I can.   Arrivederci. -Charlie/Mike”

So place your bets on who will turn out to be the murderer via the comment section below and let us know what you thoughts on Mike’s run on DAYS!

 

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A post shared by Mike Manning (@mikecmanning)

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Days Of Our Lives

WATCH: Jackée Harry Comes to Days of our Lives Promo

Next week on March 1st look for the arrival of Jackée Harry to NBC’s Days of our Lives.

Harry is coming to the long-running soap in the new role of Paulina, who is connected to the Carver family.

In the newly-released promo heralding her upcoming DAYS debut, the actress shares, “I’ve got three good reasons you should watch me on Days of our Lives … I’m bold … I’m fabulous .. and you know I’m going to stir up trouble.  Let’s do this!”

Harry is best known for her roles in the sitcoms 227, Sister, Sister and numerous roles on television and motion pictures.

Watch the NBC promo featuring Jackée below.

What kind of trouble do you think Harry’s Paulina will stir up in Salem? Share your thoughts in the comment section.

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Days Of Our Lives

DAYS OF OUR LIVES: Cady McClain Ends Her Great Run as Jennifer; But Not Before A ‘Wink-Wink’ Nudge-Nudge’ to AMC’s Dixie ‘Poison Pancake’ Debacle

Wednesday’s episode featured another solid performance by two-time Daytime Emmy-winner, Cady McClain as Jennifer Horton Devereux as it was the day of her mother, Laura’s (Jaime Lyn Bauer) funeral.

Last week, longtime viewers were saddened that the character of Dr. Laura Horton was killed-off.  The question remains did she fall accidentally and hit her head in a struggle with Gwen (Emily O’Brien), or did Gwen intentionally kill Laura?

Yesterday was also the final episode of McClain in the role of Jennifer – as far as we know for now.   In story, following Laura’s funeral, Jennifer was heading to Boston to be with her brother Mike, to settle their mother’s estate and go through her belongings, etc.

Cady had taken over the role of Jennifer from Melissa Reeves, who chose to stay in Nashville during the Covid-19 pandemic.  As part of her departure, head writer, Ron Carlivati and the writing team, delivered a little wink-wink nudge-nudge to soap viewers and those of McClain’s time as Dixie Cooney Martin on All My Children.

In one of the most controversial soap death scenes of all-time, and one that was not kind to McClain, Dixie was killed-off the ABC daytime drama series after eating poison peanut butter pancakes. Fast-forward to 2021, and in an attempt to make DAYS Jennifer feel better, Julie (Susan Seaforth Hayes) whips up some banana pancakes with extra peanut butter!  When Jennifer declines them, Julie says she thought she liked them, to which Jennifer replied, “I used to.  But I had a bad experience with them once.  Now I can’t even look at them.”  Julie questions, “Bad experience?”  Then Jennifer says, “I’d rather not talk about it.”

In our books, McClain got the last laugh here getting to do a nod to the audience, who has followed her soap career for decades including the the 2007 killing of Dixie … by pancakes.

Previously, Cady shared in a 2020 interview with EW.com about the subject: “It was a dig at me by one of the writers that very much wanted to put me in my place. I had stepped out of line and they wanted to put me back in line, and I was going to eat those pancakes and I was going to learn my lesson, and I certainly did.”

So, what did you think of the mention of the ‘pancakes”? Will you miss Cady as Jennifer? Comment below.

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