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Jill Farren Phelps tapped as new EP for groundbreaking telenovela on Nickelodeon! Josh Griffith to write!

Photo Credit: Wenn Photo

Photo Credit: Wenn Photo

The former executive producer of General Hospital, Jill Farren Phelps, (who was let-go  when ABC Daytime brought Frank Valentini to steer the ship in Port Charles) will be at the helm for a brand new soap opera/telenovela for Nickelodeon!  The show, Reach For A Star is an adaptation of the popular Mexican telenovela; Alcanzar Una Estrella!

The new series is set to debut on their Nick At Nite block this summer. The cable outlet has ordered 80 episodes already of the series, which is good news for the show and puts this kind of a series on cable, which could give hope if its successful for others to follow.   Josh Griffith has been named head writer, whose previous soap work as writer and/or producer was with The Young and the Restless, One Life to Live and As the World Turns.

What we do know about Reach For A Star is that it is a single-camera, daily series that will follow Loren, an average high school senior whose life changes completely upon becoming a star and winning the love of her celebrity crush. Casting is currently underway, with production due to start in March.    You can view excerpts from the official Nickelodeon press release after the jump!

PRESS RELEASE: “Nickelodeon, in partnership with Televisa, has ordered 80 episodes of a groundbreaking, original one-hour U.S. adaptation of the popular Mexican telenovela, Reach for a Star (Alcanzar una Estrella) for Nick at Nite, it was announced today by Cyma Zarghami, President of Viacom’s Nickelodeon Group; and Jose Baston President of Television and Content from Televisa. The first telenovela ever adapted for the U.S. audience, Reach for a Star is a single-camera, daily series following a teenage girl whose life changes completely when she becomes a star and wins the love of her teen idol. Reach for a Star will be produced in association with Sony Pictures Television and is set to premiere later this year on Nickelodeon’s nighttime block for families–Nick at Nite. Production begins in March in Los Angeles, Calif.

“We have experienced first-hand the popularity of the daily scripted format with our kid audience through the success of House of Anubis and our teen audience with DeGrassi: The Next Generation,” and our Nick Latin American channel has already had great success in producing telenovela’s with Televisa,” Ms. Zarghami said. “This partnership brings together Televisa’s un-matched leadership in the telenovela genre with our expertise in making content, and we’re looking forward to introducing this first true English-language telenovela to Nick at Nite’s family audience.”

“As part of the steps towards building a strong presence in the Anglo TV market, Televisa is excited to coproduce with Nickelodeon one of the many successful scripts from our library in a daily series format,” said Baston. We are convinced that the daily series will be well received by Nick’s family audiences, and will capture their attention daily as it has happened in different markets in the world where Televisa has exported its production capabilities. The Televisa and Nick alliance will certainly result in a successful formula, and we envision Reach for a Star as the first of many joint projects.

“For more than a decade Viacom International Media Networks (VIMN) and Televisa have been strategically building upon their regional partnership that today encompasses, distribution, consumer products and co-productions,” said Pierluigi Gazzolo, Chief Operating Officer, VIMN. “Reach for a Star marks a dynamic new phase in our partnership and VIMN is incredibly excited to once again be expanding our content portfolio with Televisa.”

Reach for a Star follows Nickelodeon’s success with its live-action serialized series, House of Anubis and Degrassi. Nickelodeon has also experienced tremendous success with the format in Europe and Latin America. The Reach for a Star series is an adaptation of the hit Mexican telenovela, Alcanzar una Estrella, first broadcast on Canal de las Estrellas and Univision in 1990. The success of the series led to a film and sequel telenovela starring Latin American pop sensations, Ricky Martin and Sasha Sokol.

Reach for a Star follows a smart, shy and independent high school senior, Loren, who has ambitions of being a songwriter and secretly sends her song lyrics to her celebrity crush, rock superstar Eddie Wild. Loren’s wildest dreams come true when she not only wins a songwriting competition sponsored by Eddie, but strikes up a friendship with her idol. Eddie sees beyond Loren’s potential as a songwriter and gives her a first break as a singer, and when the truth about his less-than-faithful girlfriend Chloe is revealed, Eddie and Loren’s friendship blossoms.

The series will be co-executive produced by six-time Emmy Award-winner Jill Farren Phelps (General Hospital, One Life to Live) and Hisham Abed (The Hills and The City). Josh Griffith (Young and the Restless, As the World Turns) will serve as head writer.”

So what do you think of the news?  Do you think the show is of interest to you?  How do you feel about Phelps and Griffith’s running the new series? And any soap stars you think Jill and Josh should cast into the new series? Let us know!

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Brandi Bridges
Guest
Brandi Bridges

I’d watch of Erika Slezak has a role in this new show! Someone seriously needs to snatch her up!

Tina Fowble
Guest
Tina Fowble

I would watch for Slezak too

barbara t
Guest
barbara t

whats with all the soaps popping up all over the place and the best one(one life to live)lays in waiting ,whats going on?Why cant everyone get together and save this soap before all the cast is gone ?If i had a couple of million dollars ,Id pitch in.erika slezak is vicki .I miss my landview people ,2 oclock is so boring I cant find anything to watch,seriously someone save one life to live before its to late.

Gloria
Guest
Gloria

You & me both. I told my husband “why can’t you be rich like Donald Trump & buy my damn show for me?” He said I would if I could! I miss OLTL so much. Why can’t someone,somehow save this show?

Enrique Buenrostro
Guest
Enrique Buenrostro

I think Andrew Trischitta or Eddie Alderson should be casted as the teen idol Eddie and I can see either Lexi Ainsworth or Hayley Evans

Monica
Guest
Monica

I was thinking of Eddie Alderson as well, but Andrew Trischitta would also be great. My daughter loves House of Anubis – even I got into it. Its wonderful that Nickelodeon is giving this a go and also fantastic to hear that a younger generation is hungry for scripted dramas.

B. Reese
Guest
B. Reese

I’d love to see Ted King, Erika Slezak, Trevor St.John and “Tea” from OLTL [having a mental block on actress’ name at the moment]. 🙂

Personally, I like all of the behind the scenes people mentioned. Jill is not well liked by some, but I’ve watched her shows for a long time and she does good work in my book. Also Josh Griffith on CBS and ABC.

I’ll be watching to see what they can do on a new network, and wishing them the best.

cathy
Guest
cathy

They can have JFP after how she treated the Robin character. Sick of her favoritism.

barbara t
Guest
barbara t

its not just robin ,that girl will be missed when she leaves ,ron and frank ,please dont let her die,put her in a coma somewhere,Ive watched her grow up since she was a little peanut,and I cant see her dying ,jfp is the one who started that franco stuff,I hope he is dead,I could care less if i ever see a port charles finger painting again.and if he turns out to be the father of sams baby,noooooooooooooooooooooo.didnt she also kill alan and put the quartermaines on the back burner,hell ,there not even on the show ,wheres bobbi ?wheres edward,monica,shes on… Read more »

Torrey
Guest
Torrey

Good to see that Nickelodeon is stepping in, where the Major Networks are failing….They see something that ABC needs to open up their eyes and see. People watch soaps!!! The audience may not be tens of millions, but there is a large audience out there, who enjoy their daily dose of daytime drama. Production & Formatting should have been thoroughly researched at ABC, before they pulled the plug on AMC & OLTL. There could have and should have been better ways to cut cost….other than just canceling both shows.

cathy trinque
Guest
cathy trinque

If greedy ABC/Disney would let Agnes Nixon have the rights to AMC and OLTL back we would see our soaps back in no time. But Iger is too greedy and selfish!

josephine
Guest
josephine

Rick Hearst is my pick. We miss him on GH. Amazing actor, incredible charisma.

Lynn Edwards
Guest
Lynn Edwards

Love the idea of “Reach for a Star”! Would like to see Rick Hearst again. He is very talented and was very under utilized at “Bold & Beautiful.” His portrayal of Ric Lansing on “General Hospital” garnered 2 Emmys. The complicated relationship that he and his brother Sonny had was always one of my favorite storylines!

General Hospital

GENERAL HOSPITAL: Sonny Remembers Carly Just as She Is Marrying Jason

After nine months of being “Mike”, Sonny Corinthos (Maurice Benard) had a major breakthrough as his memory is all coming back to him now (as the Celine Dion song says), and in the process the Tan-O has burned to the ground, signaling the the probable end to the Nixon Falls arc of the story.

As the story picked-up on Thursday, Nina’s (Cynthia Watros) plot to keep Sonny for herself and away from Carly majorly backfired on her.  Not only does Phyllis (Joyce Guy) now know that Nina lied about “Mike’s” identify the entire time, but Peter August (Wes Ramsey) is running wild and free heading back to Port Charles to claim his baby and Maxie (Kirsten Storms), after setting fire to the building.

Courtesy/ABC

Since “Mike” ran in to save Nina and got hit by a beam in the process, he is alone in the burning Tan-O enveloped by flames, but that triggers the beginning of his memory coming back.

Meanwhile, back in Port Charles, Jason (Steve Burton) and Carly (Laura Wright) are at their wedding, with the five family mob bosses present with a plot of their own and everyone wondering if Jarly will say “I do'”.    The two light a candle together for those loved ones no longer with them … ah, Sonny!

Back the burning Tan-O, Sonny is visited by the vision of the real Mike (Max Gail) who tells him it’s time for him to go home now.  A conflicted Sonny tells Mike he is very happy in Nixon Falls with Nina, but Mike tells him he needs to know his past in order to move forward.  When Sonny has flashes of his violent past it frightens him, and he says whatever family he has is better off without him in their lives.

Jax (Ingo Rademacher) tries to text Maxie while still in Nixon Falls with Nina to watch out for Peter, but she is attending and managing Carly and Sonny’s wedding, so she doesn’t pick up the phone!

Inside the Tan-O, Sonny sees a vision of woman, who when she turns and faces him is Carly. While Sonny is lying on the floor and is engulfed in flames and trapped, Mike tells Sonny he can die as “Mike” or live on as the man he truly is, Sonny.  It is then Sonny calls out “Carly!”

So, what did you think of the episode? Do you think Carly and Jason will get married? Will Sonny tells Nina he remembers? What will Nina’s next move be? Are you glad Sonny seems to have his memory back? The episode featured another strong performance by Maurice Benard.  Share your thoughts below.

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General Hospital

Briana Nicole Henry on Her Decision to Exit GH: “I Decided It Was Time to Move On”

On Monday’s episode, GH viewers learned that Jordan will need to start dialysis and treatment at a specialty clinic in Albany from kidney damage and suffering renal failure.  But on Tuesday, fans of the ABC daytime drama series learned that Briana Nicole Henry has left the show, all her decision, according to her post on Instagram.

A Daytime Emmy nominee this year in the Outstanding Supporting Actress category, Briana shared the news on her departure expressing: “I suppose it is that time isn’t it. As I celebrated my third year of being on General Hospital yesterday, I also watched my last episode as Jordan Ashford air. People kept asking me how it felt to have ended my time on the show, and it wasn’t until yesterday that it really sank in, as I watched Jordan’s goodbye to her family and knew the tears you saw were real tears between not just colleagues but friends. I decided it was time for me to move on from @generalhospitalabc and I got nothing but love and support from everyone involved. Not to mention was given the most beautiful send of that left me quite literally shaken.  I’d like to take a second to thank every single person in my @generalhospitalabc family that helped me make GH my home over the last three years, especially @fvalentinigh . From the crew, to my cast mates to our security guard Emma, there were multiple people on any given day that brought such a smile and warmth to my heart.”

Briana finished her post with, “When I started GH it was my first opportunity as a series regular, and to get the opportunity to throw myself into Jordan for the last three years and work with some truly incredible actors has been an honor. Thanks for holding space for me to grow. I am a better actor because of the time I spent within those walls and will forever be grateful for the way the show nurtured and challenged my ability.  To the fans, it took me a while to win you over, but once you saw my heart you made me feel so much love. I hope I brought something unique and honest to your beloved character of Jordan Ashford, she’s one helluva woman. Until next time loves 👋🏾.”

This will be the second Jordan to exit General Hospital.  The role was originated by Vinessa Antoine, and Henry took it over for the last three years.

So, sad to see Briana leave GH? Should the show recast? Comment below.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Briana Nicole Henry (@briananicoleee)

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General Hospital

GENERAL HOSPITAL: Jason asks Carly to Marry Him and She Responds “With All My Heart”

The stage is set now for General Hospital’s Jason/Carly/Sonny/Nina story to explode as things heated up between longtime friends and former lovers, Jason (Steve Burton) and Carly (Laura Wright) just as Jax (Ingo Rademacher) is in Nixon Falls pleading with Nina (Cynthia Watros) to come clean and tell “Mike”(Maurice Benard) that he is indeed, Sonny Corinthos.  Here’s what went down on Friday’s episode …

Back in Port Charles, at the demolished former “Jake’s”, Carly and Jason’s old stomping grounds, Carly and Jason share a kiss. Carly says she can’t believe this is happening after letting him know that all of her old romantic feelings for him are starting to come back. Apparently that is true for Jason too, as the ABC daytime drama series finally reaches back into the history of these two characters who were in love, before Carly slept with Sonny.  Back in the present day, Jason asks Carly to marry him, and she responds, “With all my heart.” But now, Carly is starting to feel more excited about what started off as a business arrangement between the two of them to retain the Corinthos family hold over the five families and the territory in Sonny’s absence.  Carly says she wants their wedding day to be about them, and later they can come to Jake’s just by themselves.

Courtesy/ABC

In Nixon Falls, Jax (Ingo Rademacher) is trying to get through to Nina, who has admitted her duplicity to him and how she has fallen in love with “Mike”.  When Jax informs her that Carly and Jason are getting married, she thinks that’s great then she and “Mike” can have a future together.  Nina wants Jax to just forget this conversation, and seeing Sonny, and do this for her; after all she went through in losing her child, Nelle, and her relationship with him. Then Jax asks her to think about Donna and Avery and Wiley, his children and grandchild, who don’t know he is alive and will never get to know him. Nina cries that Jax has won, and that she will tell “Mike” the truth in private (but something tells us, she is going to make “Mike” walk-in on Jason and Carly’s nuptials, so that she has a shot of keeping him all to herself by the betrayal he will witness).  Jax says he is not leaving Nixon Falls till she tells Sonny the truth, but she somehow she still got him to leave through her pleading to let her do this alone.  As Nina thinks “Mike” is walking in the front door of the Tan-O, in walks Peter (Wes Ramsey)!

Courtesy/ABC

Meanwhile, Jordan (Briana Nicole Henry) is rushed to General Hospital unconscious with Portia (Brook Kerr) not far behind, after being trapped together.  More bad news is revealed when Austin (Roger Howarth) gets the blood results back for Jordan and tells Curtis (Donnell Turner) that Jordan’s levels of carbon monoxide are 58% which is not good for someone with one kidney.  Austin relates that if Jordan’s kidney function doesn’t improve, they’ll have put her on dialysis.  TJ (Tajh Bellow) comes to see his mom, and sits by her bedside in tears.  Later, Curtis breaks down in tears holding Jordan’s hand to come back to him, and she opens her eyes, as Portia walks in on the scene.

Courtesy/ABC

Three of the five families plan to take over Port Charles and split the territory after their secret meeting, where they plan to blow up a warehouse while Carly and Jason are distracted and at their wedding; the families also received a message from Cyrus Renault (Jeff Kober) while in prison.  Who will stop the “hit”?

So, what do you think of Carly and Sonny getting close? What did you think of the performances of Laura Wright, Steve Burton, Cynthia Watros, and Donnell Turner within this episode? Share your thoughts via the comment section below.

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GH’s Kelly Thiebaud (Britt) chats with Michael Fairman about Britt being on the run with Jason, their burgeoning romance, working with Steve Burton and her other co-star and Britt’s diagnosis of Huntington’s Disease. .Leave A Comment

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