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George Gaynes, General Hospital's Original Mob Boss Frank Smith, Dies At 98

Courtesy/ABC

Courtesy/ABC

When General Hospital’s Luke (Anthony Geary) and Laura (Genie Francis) went on the run in the 80′s from the mob boss who caused so much trouble for the duo throughout their lives, actor George Gaynes was playing the despicable villain.

It was one of the most pivotal story arcs in the history of the iconic soap opera.  On Monday, Gaynes passed away at 98 in North Bend, Washington. When Gaynes left the show in 1980, Smith had been sent to prison, but as viewers know the character returned a few times over the next decades played by different actors.

It was Smith who originally hired Luke to run the Campus Disco as a money-laundering operation. Luke was always under the thumb of the notorious crime lord until he managed a way to break free. However, Smith even resurfaced in 2015 and one more time tried to destroy Luke and his family.

Gaynes, who was not only a character actor but a baritone singer, made hundreds of appearances both on TV comedies and dramas, as well as 35 films (counting both features and made-for-TV movies) and many plays, musical comedies and even operas in the U.S. and Europe.

After leaving General Hospital in 1990, Gaynes went on to appear in one of the most notable roles in his career in Tootsie, as the actor with a crush on Dustin Hoffman’s, female alter ego, Dorothy Michaels.

Gaynes, also played the absentminded Commandant Eric Lassard in all seven Police Academy films, and became well- known for his performance as Henry Warnimont on the NBC series Punky Brewster.  The actor also appeared on the soap, Search for Tomorrow.

In addition to his wife, Gaynes is survived by a daughter; one granddaughter; and two great-granddaughters. His son, Matthew, died in a 1989 car crash.

Share your thoughts on the passing of Gaynes in the comment section below, and if you watched him as the original Frank Smith on GH during the heyday of Luke and Laura’s story?

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Softjohn
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Softjohn

That’s harsh, even for him. I would have been cool if he reprised his role for Anthony Geary’s farewell episodes.

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

Back in January Meg Mundy who played Mona Aldrich Croft from the 70s to the 80s on The Doctors passed away at the age of 101…in Nov. 2015 Fred J. Scolly who was an original cast member on The Doctors in the 60s and later appeared as Charlie Hobson-the fourth husband of Rachels mother Ada on Another World from 1977 to 1980 passed away at 92…now sadly, here is George Gaynes who played Frank Smith on GH when i was soooooooooooo young has passed away…so many good actors we have lost .

blake
Guest
blake

I know what you mean, yesterday I saw a commercial with Florence Henderson and even though she looks great her voice was definitely off. I was like nooooooooooooooo!

nancy dillingham
Guest
nancy dillingham

The perfect mob boss–suave, underplayed, Frank Smith was much more effective than an over-the-top protrayal. George Gaynes was a GREAT villain–soft-spoken but sinister at the same time. LOVED his acting. Unforgettable performance–played to perfection. RIP.

BTW, I did find it so ironic that the talk shows made NO MENTION OF HIS PLAYING on a soap opera. What is that about? Playing mobster Frank Smith on Genral Hospital was one of his most iconic roles.

Rose
Guest
Rose

Nancy…not just soap backgrounds. Talk shows never seem to acknowledge actor’s roles in the sci-fi genre where they also built up a big following if they have gone “legit.” And the actors never mention it. Two come to mind…Nathan Fillian (Mal on Firefly/Serenity as well as Joey on OLTL) or Jessica Alba (Max on Dark Angel). And I bet we could make a list of other actors this has happened to. It seems soaps and sci-fi are orphan genres as far as respect or career builders.

vintage GH
Guest
vintage GH

So true Nancy. He was just as instrumental in the whole “Luke and Laura” machine as Kin Shriner. Luke and Scottie represented Laura’s conflict. Scottie and Frank represented Luke’s conflicts.

Rose
Guest
Rose

MF…thanks for reminding us of George Gaynes whose Frank Smith character gave us some great Luke and Laura storylines. Coincidentally I watched Tootsie over Valentine weekend on a movie channel. Always thought George/Dr. Van Horn looked familiar. Now I know why. And I loved it when he serenaded Dorothy/ Dustin in his baritone voice. One of my favorite movies along with Soapdish. Wonder how true they are to the real inside world of soaps.

Timmm
Guest
Timmm

Rose, it didnt even click the “Frank Smith” was on “Punky Brewster!”

MBmomof3
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MBmomof3

I was in high school and would watch GH with my older sisters during the original Frank Smith saga. Great memories of a great period in American TV history.

R.I.P. Mr. Gaynes. Thank you for the fond memories. Condolences to his loved ones.

Timmm
Guest
Timmm

Rest Mr. Gaynes! Sorry to see you go and sorry you had to witness the revival of your character in 2015! That was as bad as Evil “lil” Jake returning from the dead! I just watched one of the “Police Academy’s” recently. He was great in all them and will be missed!

Mo
Guest
Mo

I liked him in Tootsie and Police Academy. RIP

blake
Guest
blake

Tootsie, another great one he was in.

Bill
Guest
Bill

Only one of the FS recasts was worth his salt … Mitchell Ryan. But Gaynes was the MAN! So smooth! R.I.P.

Dean_Morgan
Guest
Dean_Morgan

One of those actors who cared more about his craft than being a star. He was committed to all of his work and will certainly be missed. May he RIP.

nicholas
Guest
nicholas

I saw him in the 50 th anniversary GH specials online . However Gaynes will always be remembered for the part he played on Punky Brewster by me and many others . Punky was my childhood ! Of course we also remember him on Police Academy but he moved me and he touched me in Punky Brewster .

Llanviewer717
Guest
Llanviewer717

I certainly remember and loved him as Frank Smith. I have enjoyed his many other performances too. May he RIP.

blake
Guest
blake

Oh man, I liked him as Henry on Punky Brewster and the Police Academy movies. He was in so many thing. And to live to 98! Wow!

Andy G.
Guest
Andy G.

He was also great in one of my all-time favorite series, “The Days & Nights of Molly Dodd.”

gloria
Guest
gloria

He was 98? Makes me feel old as dirt & I am 55-was a teen when he was on GH (or not far from being a teen, ha) The good old days.

vintage GH
Guest
vintage GH

Awww….may he rest in peace. I was in elementary school during his Frank Smith portrayal when soap history was made. The 1980 Frank Smith story was the first time a soap left the studio and did location shoots. Last year I re-watched the Frank Smith 1980 storyline on youtube. It really holds up. He was a very gifted, understated actor. I loved his Frank Smith portrayal because it didn’t really pander to mafia stereotypes. His Frank Smith was a low-key villain and was incredibly gentlemanly on the surface. His portrayal wasn’t as a womanizer. His portrayal wasn’t as a narcissist.… Read more »

Joe
Guest
Joe

I watched him when he was on GH. He was forcing Luke to marry his daughter, Jennifer, played by Lisa Marie. He’s the one who hired Hutch to kill Luke and Laura when they went on the run after that great fight scene on the boat between Scotty and Luke. Happened right after Scotty found the letter Laura wrote to Luke, admitting he raped her. Those were truly the best days of GH. George Gaines was always Frank Smith to me. RIP, Mr Gaines!

General Hospital

General Hospital’s Halloween Week Promo Touts Wicked Surprises

Looks like everyone will be on edge this week as Halloween comes to Port Charles.  In the newly-released ABC promo for General Hospital, it reveals that this spooky week of episodes will be a rollercoaster ride, featuring wicked surprises, and killer costumes.

After Epiphany (Sonya Eddy) scolds Franco (Roger Howarth) for having his hand in the candy jar, Anna (Finola Hughes) or is it? … is donning a black witches hat. Jackie (Kim Delaney) is seen opening her door, juxtaposed with Valentin (James Patrick Stuart) saying “trick or treat”. But, is he actually at the door of someone else?

Nikolas (Marcus Coloma) asks Ava (Maura West), “Darling, what are you holding behind your back?” That is revealed to be a knife, but is it Ava who truly has the knife?

 

Meanwhile, Jason (Steve Burton) is looking around in the dark.  Elsewhere, Peter is jumpy.  So much so that Spinelli (Bradford Anderson) utters, “Looks like you’ve seen a ghost.”

Add all that to last Friday’s episode of GH where Carly(Laura Wright) thinks she saw Nelle’s (Chloe Lanier) hand come out of her grave and attack her! Is Nelle (Chloe Lanier) going to be proven to be alive? And if so, will she pop up on Halloween and scare the hell out of Carly?

Watch the promo below, then let us know what you think will happen this week on General Hospital via the comment section.

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General Hospital

ABC Previews General Hospital’s Halloween Episode

Fight Night will definitely have an impact on the lives of the citizens of Port Charles, on the upcoming Thursday, October 29th episode of the ABC daytime drama series.

Announced by ABC today, along with primetime’s Dancing with the Stars, The Conners, Supermarket Sweep, and America’s Funniest Home Videos, GH is having some ghoulish goings-on for the trick or treat holiday.

According to the GH preview: “As an impending storm approaches Port Charles, Trina and Joss decide to meet up with Cameron and Dev at Charlies before heading off to a Halloween party for the night. Unbeknownst to them, Julian notices the kids are being watched a little too closely by a masked individual. Uneasy and unable to shake the feeling that something is off, Julian confronts the man. Meanwhile, Carly is stunned when Cyrus brings a familiar acquaintance to dinner at the Metro Court. And elsewhere, Finn and Anna’s plans to take Violet trick-or-treating are hampered when Finn is called back to GH, leaving Anna alone, unaware that a particularly evil threat awaits her.”

So, excited to see what goes down on Halloween on GH? Comment below.

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General Hospital

GH’s Ingo Rademacher Shares Insight With His Son On Parenting & Anger On Maurice Benard’s “State of Mind”

Maurice Benard has brought his State of Mind  to You Tube, and his guest for this week is none other than Sonny Corinthos’ longtime nemesis Jasper Jacks, Ingo Rademacher.

Rademacher decided to appear on State of Mind along with his son, Peanut, to talk about the incidents of parenting and anger when raising his children, and the effects discipline can have on the kids.

There are some very emotional moments within the segment, as Peanut opens up about his feelings when his dad was upset with him and how he dealt with  it

Ingo also shares how over the past few years his relationship with his son has approved, while Maurice offers key moments from his past with his father and his own son.

Per Maurice on the concept behind the show and his ongoing website: “State of Mind to me means being 100% present, feeling completely at peace inside of you, not letting your thoughts control your life and always looking for ways to be the best that you can be.”

Watch Ingo, Maurice and Peanut below and then let us know what you thought about this heartfelt conversation via the comment section below.

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