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Insider Report indicates, SOAPnet not shutting down anytime soon? Kiddie Channel not ready!

Looks like there are not only disgruntled fans all across soapdom, but disgruntled ABC/Disney employees who had to deal with the impending doom of All My Children and One Life to Live, and SOAPnet for quite some time and a murky business strategy! Deadline.com got an inside perspective from someone who has worked within the ABC/Disney company.  In the item, it reveals the confusing and messy decision to change SOAPnet to the Disney Junior Channel and that there is no way the cable channel will be ready by January 2012 to launch the new kiddie platform!  In fact, now it looks like SOAPnet will be on longer with two less soaps thanks to the cancellations of AMC and OLTL!

Here is what the insider stated! “I have worked at ABC Daytime for several years and have experienced a lot of the ups and downs especially since Brian Frons and Kate Nelson took over. With the announcement of the cancellation of All My Children and One Life to Life, I feel that they completely failed all of the people that worked for them.A couple of years ago, they started a project to evolve SOAPNet into a new female network that was code named “Carrie.” Anne Sweeney had told them that they needed to evolve the network for the future, especially as more people had DVRs and just airing soaps at night was not enough.  They pitched an idea to make the network hip and cool for women, basically the type of woman that Carrie was in Sex and the City. We thought that it was a go and then found out that the executives rejected their idea all together. Then they started again to pitch a product called DMDisney Moms. The idea this time was a network that moms would want to watch and their families would watch with them, cooking shows, dancing shows basically everything that is found on other networks. It was part of that project that they started talking about combing All My Children and One Life to Live. They were putting together ideas of what would replace the one soap and were competing against an idea called Good Afternoon America. They failed to convince anyone that their idea was good, they had a pilot with Aisha Tyler that was awful.

At the same time, the Disney Channel team pitched Disney Junior, and when Anne compared DM and Disney Junior, she decided to shutdown SOAPNet and replace it with Disney Junior. They were furious and made some nasty comments about how the Disney Channel team went behind everyone’s back and stole their channel. Over the last 6 months, our entire team has been under the impression that SOAPNet was going to shut down in January 2012 and be replaced with Disney Junior. Over the last few weeks, I have heard comments that Disney Junior is now having problems getting the cable contracts done. So Disney Junior’s launch has been pushed from January to Spring 2012 and now SoapNet is not shutting down in January 2012. Both networks will be run at the same time it could be for several years, Disney Junior will only be in a few homes and a lot of money will be spent keeping both networks up.

So now we are shutting down AMC in September and OLTL in January, and SOAPNet is still going to be on the air, we are going to run a network on General Hospital and some acquired soaps, it is embarrassing to all of us who had cared so much about our work. We are not just angry that they are shutting down AMC and OLTL, but over the last 3-4 years we have been following a leader and his head of strategy who have not been able to do anything right.”

OK, so does anyone know what the game plan is over there?

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Susan
Susan

ABC should have kept Soapnet going in the first place. There’s already too many kids channels on the satellite and cable networks. Soapnet is the only outlet we have other than the networks to watch current episodes of soaps. When Soapnet first started we used to be able to see old episodes of soap operas. I miss those days, Soapnet needs to stay, if networks are no longer filming soaps period,

david
david

It’s very interesting to contrast this report with Michael’s “Brian Frons on the upshot of the decision to end SOAPnet!” from May 26, 2010:
http://e98.637.mwp.accessdomain.com/news/brian-frons-on-the-upshot-of-the-decision-to-end-soapnet/2010/05/26/

Frons was likely considering canceling AMC and OLTL back then when he decided to end SOAPnet. Could he be responsible for the submission of the OLTL musical, mentioned in the article above, which destroyed any chance for OLTL to win the Emmy for Best Daytime Drama in 2011, according to TV Guide?

felicia
felicia

Why don’t they just air AMC and OLTL on Soapnet?

david
david

Frons has been planning to cancel OLTL for years:
http://tvguide.ca/Soaps/Nelson_Ratings/Articles/090928_soapgeist_NB

Scroll down and note at the bottom of the page under “Top 3 Soap Moments To Watch” for: “2. Tuesday [Sept 29, 2009]: One Life welcomes Lionel Ritchie [sic] on the Ultra Violet stage. “Let’s go … and hunt down Brian Frons for even thinking of cancelling this brilliant show,” he sings to Llanview. Later, Ritchie asks, “Is this a gay bar?”

I found video of Richie singing on the 9/29/09 episode of OLTL on YourTube but I couldn’t hear or find the quotes above. Can anyone find these somewhere?

lew
lew

ABC/Disney has kept the Frons for this long. PLEASE tell my why?

Marji
Marji

They could have the best of both worlds. Have Disney Jr during the day and Soapnet at night. Soapnet could air first run episodes of the Soaps each night. That would make viewers happy, and keep revenue as the channel is not free.It is packaged by cable and satellite companies. They could also do some advertising during the shows as well as product placement. They need to make use of the channel anyway, viewers will support this and allows ABC to save face and still air the 2 shows that they want on ABC during the current time slots of AMC and OLTL. Everybody wins…………..Although I doubt the Chew and The Revolution will win regardless. Just not the kind of programming it appears many want in daytime. Including me. The soaps, I will take any day!!!!!!!!!

Susan
Susan

Please keep the Soaps on!! Lots of people still watch them. That includes men. They are timeless. Working women still watch soaps. Anyone who thinks otherwise is wrong. I have had a full-time job for over thirty-five years and was in the AF Reserve and active duty. I still keep up with Y & R and B & B. They are the greatest!! Soapnet is great for catching up. Forget about Disney and buy your kids a bicycle!!

Julie
Julie

I’m sick of abc messing with my soaps now the want soap net. Well this lady for one has stopped watching anything on abc since they took off AMC and OLTL . Why they thought another talk show could replace soaps is beyond me. Soap fans are the greatest I wonder if any network could say they have had any shows with years or in my case decades of viewers watching the same show . The executives running the programming need to wake up and get a life.

All My Children

8 Years To The Day Of All My Children & One Life to Live Being Canceled; Still Considered By Many Worst Move For Daytime

It’s hard to believe that 8 years ago today on April 14th, 2011, the soap world, its fans, and the cast members, learned of the heartbreaking news that ABC, in one swift move, decimated its daytime line-up when they announced the cancellations of long running series, All My Children (which would end at its 41st year), and One Life to Live (which would ends its run in its 43rd year).

At the time, ABC announced it would move to more lifestyle/entertainment series to replace these dramas.  In its place came The Chew and The Revolution, neither show is still on the air today.  Executives at that time pointed to research saying that times are changing and that their decision was “guided by extensive research into what today’s daytime viewers want,” and blame, in part, “the changing viewing patterns of the audience” for the axing of AMC and OLTL

Then ABC Daytime President, Brian Frons had joked to Deadline about the big announcement that he: “Pre-entered the witness protection program prior to today’s events.”  He added that “The demise of the two venerable soaps was actually a year in the making.  A year ago, we started to look at our projections where the ratings for the soaps would go.  When those projections came in pretty discouraging, the network began to aggressively develop replacement shows, 15 of them.  Four of the 15 were picked up to pilot: The Chew and The Revolution and two others, a talk show and a dating show. Originally, the idea was to cancel only one daytime drama.  The way the ratings developed and the pilots turned out, the ratings developed negatively and pilots developed positively, so we decided to make a bigger shift.”  Of note is that when it went off the air, One Life to Live was in third place among its competitors in the ratings.

The press release that came with the cancellations stated: “To honor the core, passionate audience and their rich history both shows will conclude in a manner that respects their legacies and the longstanding hopes of many of their viewers.”

Following the cancellations daytime reeled. The mainstream was sure it meant the endings of the soaps, period.  However, four shows illustrated that is not true at all.  For Days of our Lives, General Hospital, The Bold and the Beautiful and The Young and the Restless all remain, and still whether they are up or down in their numbers/ratings, they remain relevant and important to the enduring daytime viewing audience.

Sadly, as with any shows, the end of ABC’s AMC and OLTL meant loss of jobs for so many working in front of the camera and behind the scenes. One Life was the last soap opera in production in New York at the time.  AMC was already being shot in LA to cut costs to save it.

Still in 2019, if you venture on to social media, especially Twitter, you see fans constantly missing its stars and the towns of Llanview and Pine Valley, wanting this wrong rectified.  Although Prospect Park tried to revive the show with their online versions, eventually after legal battles that went on for a few years, ABC now retains the right to these properties,

The good news is that many favorites from AMC and OLTL have found success and been hired on other soap operas, bringing their followings with them, whether it be on-screen, or in the writing, producing, directing or crew departments.

So, do you think the loss of AMC and OLTL consolidated daytime and made the remaining shows stronger so they would not be touched or canceled?  Do you think ABC should try to mount a resurrected AMC and OLTL or an amalgamation of the two?  Do you remember where you were when you learned the two soaps were cancelled? Was this the worst misstep of all-time for daytime? Share your thoughts and theories via the comment section below.

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All My Children

George R. R. Martin’s “Leak” Of New Hulu Series WILD CARDS Featuring Eden Riegel, Thorsten Kaye. and Greg Rikkart

April Fool’s Day started off with a bang today when Eden Riegel (Ex-Bianca, AMC) posted a photo of herself with Thorsten Kaye (Ridge, B&B) and Greg Rikaart (Ex-Leo, DAYS)  in a very intriguing image.  See above pic!  As it turns out, it’s said to be from behind the scenes from some leaked footage of the upcoming Hulu series, Wild Cards.

The premise of Wild Cards is based on the sci-fi anthology series edited by George R. R, Martin, best known for writing the “Song of Ice and Fire” novels, on which HBO’s Game of Thrones is based.  Riegel’s husband, Andrew Miller is the showrunner attached to the upcoming series.

On Martin’s website he teases the set-up of the “leaked” video clip:  “This was not supposed to go public.. Everybody (Well, everybody that has been paying attention knows that we are developing two Wild Cards as a series for Hulu  Andrew Miller has taken the reins as showrunner, a writing staff has been hired, and they have been hard at work for months.  What was NOT supposed to be known is how far they’ve come.  Not only have some scripts been finished, but the first show has gone into production and has been shooting.  That was supposed to be a deep dark secret, however.   We wanted to surprise the world. It’s hard to keep secrets in Hollyweird, however.  And now it appears that some of the rough footage has been leaked by person or persons unknown”

Meanwhile, Riegel sent out a series of tweets: “Hooo boy…cat’s out of the bag! Fans, please don’t judge our show based on these leaked videos!! The effects are going to knock your socks off. And my costars, and , are doing the best work of their lives!”  That was followed by, T”hank you for the chance to work with you on your first foray into soaps! I am humbled and honored. We won’t let you down.” And then, “I’m probably not allowed to share this with all the NDAs I signed, but damnit I’m just so proud of the team!  think we are breaking new ground for soaps. So proud to work with you!”

Now below, check out the Wild Cards “leaked footage” and let us know if you think of the …. um … drama! Comment below.  And one more thing … Happy April Fool’s!

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All My Children

WATCH: All My Children Reunion On Strahan & Sara

On Monday’s episode of ABC’s Strahan & Sara, the show welcomed several stars of the beloved All My Children for a reunion, of sorts. Joining hosts Michael Strahan and Sara Haines were Susan Lucci (Erica), Walt Willey (Jack), Cady McClain (Dixie), Jacob Young (JR) and Jill Larson (Opal).

While it was wonderful to see the stars from Pine Valley again, it was also a painful reminder that this network, ABC, canceled the show, and had put in its place – The Chew, and now Strahan & Sara – since canning the series.   In fact, as you will see on the clips below, many of the crew who work on this talk show were once the crew for All My Children.

During the segment, Susan Lucci was tested to see if she remembered all of Erica Kane’s wedded names.  Later, Walt Willey and Susan re-created the final scene of the ABC version of All My Children between Erica and Jack, where Jack walks out on her.  However, this time, they have Jack changing his mind and coming back to Erica and sealing their relationship with a kiss – a moment of closure that never happened (since the show moved to online via Prospect Park).

In addition, Cady McClain and Jacob Young re-created the infamous Dixie “dying from eating poison pancakes” scene, as JR watches his mother die, only this time she lives.

It’s always great to see these veteran performers, but Strahan & Sara is trying to capture the soap viewers to put eyeballs on their show by bringing in talent from the show that sadly and wrongly went off the air.

Watch the clips below from the All My Children reunion below.  Then, let us know what you thought of it via the comment section below.

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