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Disney/ABC Television Chief Anne Sweeney To Leave Her Position To Become A Director!

Photo Credit: HutchinsPhoto.com

Photo Credit: HutchinsPhoto.com

Now this came as quite the shocker today, not necessarily because Anne Sweeney would be leaving her post at some point, but because of the reason that was cited!

Today, Variety learned that ABC Television Chief Anne Sweeney will be exiting her position come January to pursue her new career path as a director!  Some speculate the move allows for a graceful exit for the executive, who has been with Disney since 1996, rising through the ranks from running Disney Channel to TV chief in 2004.

According to Variety also, it’s understood within Disney that “Sweeney was not seen as a contender to replace Bob Iger as Disney CEO when his contract ends in 2016. With no more room to advance, Sweeney has clearly opted to take a left-turn career-wise.  In a lengthy statement, Sweeney asserted that Iger had offered her a long-term contract but she declined. There have been persistent rumors that the two have had chilly relations in recent years.”

Sweeney currently oversees all Disney TV (other than ESPN), so just how things will shake out with her departure will be interesting to follow.  She is currently co-chair of Disney Media Networks and president of Disney/ABC Television Group, in charge of ABC, ABC Family, Disney Channel, Disney Junior and ABC News.   And as soap fans know, Brian Frons reported to Anne Sweeney when he was in charge of ABC Daytime!

Here is Anne Sweeney’s statement:  “The past 18 years at Disney have been the highlight of my executive career. I’ve been a part of an amazing evolution in our business and our industry, and have achieved far more than I ever thought possible. But as wonderful as the experience has been, there has always been a nagging voice in the back of my head pushing me to step out of the comfort zone of the executive ranks and more directly into the creative arena that enticed me to TV in the first place. I finally listened to that voice and thought, ‘if not now, when?’ I know my decision to step back from all of this to learn the art of directing may seem surprising, but to me it’s a long realized dream. I am so thankful to Bob Iger for his leadership, guidance and his friendship over the years, and am grateful not only for his offer to remain with the company for many years to come, but his understanding and support of my decision to make this change. I’m excited to spend the remainder of this year positioning the TV Group for even greater success.”

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So, what do you think about Anne leaving Disney/ABC to pursue a career in directing?  Weigh-in below!

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Laurel Twist
Laurel Twist

It’s always good to go pursue a dream! Good for her!

louisa
louisa

Not sure how I feel about this. She was in charge of Frons–but she also fired him.

I hope her replacement brings back OLTL and AMC and makes ABC the dominate soap channel once again!

su0000
su0000

Good riddance ,,

If Anne Sweeney and Brian Frons had left years ago we’d most likely still have AMC and OLTL, or at the least one of them..
It was Her and Frons who killed them ..

Helen
Helen

I also got my wish, thank god one life to live and all my children got cancelled. cbs soaps and general are the best soaps right now. days of our lives is great too.

Christine
Christine

I am in total agreement with you. Another beast bites the dust!

Christine
Christine

I am very sorry that AMC and OLTL were cancelled. They were my favorites but the others on CBS and NBC are good as well. I just wish they would bring the shows back with the original characters but I doubt that will ever happen. I have boycotted ABC programming since the cancellations with the exception of GH.

Tammy Kreiss
Tammy Kreiss

Ok The Witch & the Warlock gone, but wish it had been before they disregarded what their fans wanted.

DAVID
DAVID

Abc will cancel general hospital next year, I still don’t trust abc. They will replace gh, with a new talk show. Abc wants out of the soap business.

Beth CP
Beth CP

This woman was a wrecking ball to the soap genre and gave Frons the original order to axe GH, AMC, and OLTL. And we all know what has happened since then. I echo su0000 in saying “Good riddance”. When she exits out of her comfy, cozy executive office I hope the door smacks her in the a** on the way out.

JustSaying
JustSaying

What’s there to direct – reality tv?
“Creative arena” doesn’t exist anymore.

Llanviewer717
Llanviewer717

What a wonderful piece of news!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! First that hateful scum BF and now her. I sincerely hope the local affiliates and stockholders keep raising hell about the loss of revenue until all the top brass of the alphabet network and the mouse company are gone. They have shown no respect for their loyal viewers and no respect for their employees. Why is she sticking around until January? She can go now. Good riddance!!!!!!!!!!

brian
brian

Bye Bye

jimh(leave it to beaver)
jimh(leave it to beaver)

Hope her exit is worse than Robins…Its her free choice to leave and direct…maybe she can come back 5 to 6 months a year when time permits…but i doubt she’s smart enough to find a cure for those two who are most likely truely sincerely dead: AMC and OLTL…lmao!!! (hope you get my joking here!!!)

Lisa Z.
Lisa Z.

Unfortunately, her departure is several years too late for OLTL and AMC fans. She championed their cancellation and welcomed the ultra-expensive Katie talk show! We all know how well that went. Maybe this is part of the fallout from that huge blunder – only insiders know the real reason for her departure.

Mary SF
Mary SF

It would be the height of irony if the only show willing to teach her the ropes about directing was a soap. LOL.

But seriously, as a woman in corporate America there is still a glass ceiling that many cannot crack. If a man had been in her position he would have been offered the CEO job in a heartbeat. I don’t blame her for leaving after an insult like that, if she wants to spin it as a chance to pursue her “dream” well I don’t begrudge her that, but in reality I bet her decision to move on was more about being passed over for promotion than a burning desire to direct.

Pat
Pat

I wish we were saying good bye to her and all of abc/disney and any other of there projects out there and there are many..

I still boycott the station for having no consideration for the viewers of 40+ yrs watching OLTL/AMC….
what do they have now that is not a soap and over 40 yr. going strong?
I do not wish her or them well.

janet
janet

Hey don’t let the door hit ya where the good Lord split ya.. Sounds like sour grapes to me. But what do I know I watch soaps.

boes
boes

With any luck, the only directing she’ll be doing is telling Brian Frons what to do in their joint baked potato stand on the Santa Monica Pier.

KateA
KateA

Doesn’t matter. The destruction has been done. I will always boycott ABC.

Michael
Michael

Wish she left before she killed ago One Life and All My Kids. G’ riddance soap killer.

Jared
Jared

Bu-bye! Don’t let the door hit you on the way out.

mgb357
mgb357

could it be that abc is cleaning house so that they can start producing shows again that people are willing to watch?

hint – continuous stories that appeal to viewers!!!

or just repeat cancelled soaps – it would be a ratings boon!

Dina Vargia
Dina Vargia

No tears for her leaving. She was never a friend of the soap genre, and just like Frons, she did a lot of damage to ABC daytime, and then leaves. Even with these 2 gone, I doubt ABC will ever bring our soaps back. ABC daytime has never recovered it`s ratings after canceling OLTL & AMC.

All My Children

TODAY: John Callahan ‘iHub Radio’ Tribute With AMC Stars: Julia Barr, Walt Willey, Bobbie Eakes and More Guests

Saturday morning at 10amPST/1PMEST on Palm Springs iHub Radio, there will be a special hour tribute to the late soap veteran John Callahan who passed away last week at 66.

Callahan hosted his own show on the station, and to honor him the stations owner John McMullen, along with several of Callahan’s former All My Children co-stars including: Bobbie Eakes (Ex-Krystal), Walt Willey (Ex-Jack) , and Julia Barr (Ex-Brooke)  will also be part of the live broadcast special event, along with LIVE magazine TV host Melissa Neiderman, and other longtime friends and colleagues of Callahan’s.

As some know, John Callahan was a longtime resident of the Coachella Valley. From 2018 on he continued to be a part of the station with his weekly show all the way up until his death.

John’s soap resume was impressive, not only from his time as All My Children;s Edmund Grey, but also as General Hospital’s Leo Russell, Santa Barbara’s Craig Hunt, and Days of our Lives, Dr. Baker, plus his primetime roles including on Falcon Crest.

Following iHub Radio’s special broadcast, the tribute program will be available as an on-demand show via the iHubRadio.com home page.

So, let us know if you will be listening or caught the special broadcast honoring John today in the comment section below.

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All My Children

Kelly Ripa Shares Her Grief and Remembrances of John Callahan on ‘Live with Kelly and Ryan’

There was always something special about the wonderful actors and the cast pictured here from ABC’s All My Children.  After all, this is where Kelly Ripa (Ex-Hayley) met her husband, Mark Consuelos (Ex-Mateo) and where Eva LaRue (Ex-Maria) met her ex-husband John Callahan (Ex-Edmund).

Then, over this past weekend this family picture from Pine Valley was forever changed, when the soap world was rocked by the news that John Callahan passed away at only 66/

Heartbreaking remembrances poured in on social media …. and none more so than from Eva LaRue, who also shares a daughter with John, named Kaya.  Eva and Kaya rushed to John’s bedside where he has been put on life-support following a reported massive stroke.

Now on Monday’s episode of Live with Kelly and Ryan, which is being done remotely from the hosts individual hosts due to the coronavirus pandemic, Kelly Ripa shared her grief over the loss of her dear friend John Callahan with Ryan.

Kelly said “I had a really a bad weekend this weekend.  A very dear friend of mine for many, many years, almost 30 years, passed away over the weekend. He was a great actor, a really good friend. One of the funniest people I’ve ever met. He was the ex-husband of my first-born son’s godmother, Eva LaRue. His name was John Callahan. He was 66 years old—way too young to be taken from us.”

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Ripa went on to to tell her co-host: “A gentleman of, I mean, Ryan, you two would have loved each other. He would say the funniest things and we were all going through our brains about all of the funny, like the funny ‘Callahan-isms’ over the years. He was just one of these guys and you know and he just died way too soon. His daughter and my daughter are good friends, they’re the same age and I just want everyone to know, Eva and Kaya, that we are thinking of you and we are just so sad and so devastated. So, I apologize in advance if I seem out of it. I really actually am, I’m terribly out of it. You know, forgive me for it.”

Watch Kelly discuss the death of John Callahan with Ryan Seacrest below.  Then share your thoughts on what Ripa had to share and more on the loss of John Callahan via the comment section.

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All My Children

Soap Vet and All My Children Alum John Callahan Dead At 66

Absolutely heartbreaking news this Saturday afternoon.  John Callahan, best known to soap fans for his role as Edmund Grey on All My Children has passed away after suffering a massive stroke.  The stroke happened on Friday, March 27th when paramedics responded to a call at his home in Palm Desert, California. He was 66-years-old.

According to reports, Callahan was rushed to Eisenhower Medical Center in Rancho Mirage, CA, where he was put on life support.  John’s daughter Kaya, and his former wife, and AMC co-star Eva LaRue (Ex-Maria) rushed to the hospital to be by his side from Los Angeles.  John died Saturday morning.

Photo: JPI

In a statement, Eva La Rue shared: “We are extremely saddened and distraught over the loss of John. He was my great friend, co-parent and amazing father to Kaya. The absence of his bigger than life, gregarious personality will leave a hole in our hearts forever. Words cannot express the shock and devastation we are feeling at this time. The Yankees just lost one of their greatest fans.” 

John played Edmund on All My Children from 1992-2005.  He also appeared throughout his soap career on: Santa Barbara, Days of our Lives, General Hospital, The Bay and primetime’s Falcon Crest and Desperate Housewives; in addition to many more television appearances.

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Michael Fairman TV will continue to follow this breaking story as remembrances are shared by John’s former co-stars throughout the day and night.

Below is LaRue’s touching tribute to John  via Instagram:

 

View this post on Instagram

 

May Flights of Angels Wing You to Your Rest my Dear Friend. Your bigger than life, gregarious personality will leave a hole in our hearts forever. We are devastated-My great friend, co parent partner, and loving father to Kaya. That big belly laugh, bear hugs, bad puns, ability to harmonize to any song, great kitchen table singing-fests, and two steppin bad ass! “Johnny Numbers”, my All My Children soap stud, the great time keeper, Beatles fanatic ( I wish to God we could go back to “Yesterday”)… Kaya and I are beyond broken hearted, so stunned, sorry that my thoughts are a mess. You gave the best most beautifully written tributes, and I am at a complete loss for words right now for you. I hope Heaven has baseball and that your team always wins! The Yankees has just lost their biggest Fan. ♥️♥️♥️♥️♥️🙏🏼🙏🏼🙏🏼🙏🏼

A post shared by Eva LaRue (@evalarue) on

Please share your condolences with Kaya and Eva and the Callahan family below, and let us know your thoughts on this heartbreaking loss on the death of John Callahan via the comment section.

 

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