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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
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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

GH’s Kathleen Gati on Liesl Learning Britt is Sick: “This Was the Most Painful and Profound Episode I Have Filmed in 10 Years”

This week in a preview of a heartbreaking episode of General Hospital, Liesl (Kathleen Gati) will learn her daughter, Britt (Kelly Thiebaud), now has developed symptoms of Huntington’s Disease and its progression is making Dr. Westbourne very sick.

In story, look for Britt to confide in her mother, noting that that the disease is beginning to overtake her body.

Liesl’s portrayer, Kathleen Gati shared with Soap Opera Digest (in their latest issue on newsstand now), just how mutter will react to the news.

Gati expressed: “I have to say this is the most painful and profound episode I have filmed in 10 years.”  Kathleen has played the role of Dr, Liesl Obrecht since 2012.

She goes on to say, “Liesl puts her doctors hat on to give hope to herself and to Britta, encouraging her that they are both well-trained doctors and can find a way to help Britta.”

However, that’s not what Britt wants to hear.  She needs her mother, and the support and comfort from her, at this devastating time in her life.

Kathleen shares it’s at that point that Liesl realizes she needs to stop all the medical talk and just be there for her daughter.

So, are you looking forward to the scenes between Britt and Liesl?  Share your thoughts in the comment section below.

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General Hospital

GH’s Marcus Coloma Reveals COVID Kept Him Out of Episodes But Returns On-Air Next Week

Viewers who have been watching this week’s episodes of General Hospital have seen Adam Huss stepping-in for a second for Marcus Coloma in the role of Nikolas Cassadine.

Many fans wanted to know what caused the temporary switcheroo.  Now, Coloma has taken to his Instagram doing a little dance and revealing the nature of why he was away and when he will be back.

Marcus shared in the video: “Why Aren’t You GH?  Got Covid a month ago.  I’m coming back for you, baby. Next Week”

In the accompanying post, the actor expressed: “So here’s the deal.  Thank you for all the lovely love.  I should be back on the screen next week.”

Coloma has played the role of Nikolas Cassadine since October 31st, 2019.

Glad to know Marcus is feeling better and on his way back to Port Charles? Comment below.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Marcus Coloma (@marcuscoloma)

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General Hospital

Robin Mattson Shares Why She Didn’t Return as GH’s Heather Webber

In late October, General Hospital fans were in for a shock when the character of Heather Webber returned to the canvas, in the form of ex-B&B star, Alley Mills.  Many viewers wondered why the previous Heather, soap vet Robin Mattson, did not return to tape new episodes.

Late last week, Mattson shared via her Facebook page an explantation as to why she was unable and unavailable to reprise her signature role on the ABC daytime drama series.  Robin revealed she is recovering from knee surgery and will soon undergo hip replacement surgery.

Mattson’s full post expressed: “As nice as is to be missed and so many of you have wondered what happened to me, I just want to let you know that I’ve been recovering from my knee surgery and today I’m going to have hip replacement surgery. Thank you all for your love and support! Looking forward to a fast recovery! Love Robin ❤”

Robin is the third actress to play the role of Heather.  She came on to GH back in 1980.  Later, she exited to play Gina on Santa Barbara and Janet on All My Children, and also had stints as B&B’s Sugar, ATWT’s Cheri, DAYS Lee Michaels, and even Delia on Ryan’s Hope.  The actress also continued to play GH’s Heather on and off through 2016.

So, glad to hear from Robin? Enjoying Alley Mills as Heather? Send your well-wishes and a speedy recovery to Robin via the comment section below.

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