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Judith Chapman Dishes On Diana On All-New Episode Of “Inside Salem: Days of our Lives Podcast”


Oh, the mother from hell has certainly come to NBC’s Days of our Lives ,now that it has been revealed that Diana Cooper is in actuality none other than Diana Colville, who shared a romantic past with John Black (Drake Hogestyn), and is Leo aka Matthew’s (Greg Rikaart) worst nightmare!

Daytime fan favorite, Judith Chapman is back on Days of our Lives in this delicious new take on Diana, and on the latest installment of Inside Salem: Days of our Lives Podcast.

During her interview with host Michael Fairman, Judith talks about how she was asked to take on the role, and found herself reunited with her former on-screen son from Y&R, Greg Rikaart.  She also teases what is to come in this twisted mother and son relationship, reveals what it has been like working with Deidre Hall and Drake Hogestyn, and talks about her former soap opera roles that included: Natalie Bannon on As the World Turns, Ginny Blake, General Hospital, Charlotte Greer on Ryan’s Hope, Angelica Deveraux on Days and Gloria Fisher Bardwell on Y&R- quite the resume.   When not on TV, Judith can be found in the theatre, where she is currently starring as Tallulah Bankhead in the show, Looped now through February 10th in Palm Springs, California.

Later in the podcast, John Aniston (Victor) stops by Suzanne Rogers  (Maggie) dressing room, where the duo talk about how they work together running scenes, and going through a tape day, and some fun historical anecdotes from Salem, and more.

To get the extended version of this interview with Judith, make sure to download it via iTunes and all major pod platforms.  To listen to the version make sure to click here and enjoy.

Let us know what was your favorite part of our chat with Judith and if you are loving her thus far as Diana on DAYS via the comment section below.

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OH My God… with respect to the higher up

crème de la crème ALIVE ! this is maddening how MUSTER FEAST!

Judith Chapman : for the ages

^^^ “what a resume ” you want to partay .. wine bubbly splash something ON

can’t wait for this weekend ( to listen )

one of – OUR – Grand Dame un momento

OH, yeah, Patrick—a gem has walked onto Salem’s soil….Miss Judith is the femme fatale, shrew, calamity personified–can’t tear myself away….
I didn’t know you spoke Italian, Patrick?!?!?!LOL…. un momento…..
Aside: Why can’t Abbi put two and two together and figure out Jordan took the baby? Ben will find Charlotte and Ciera–
But, will Ciera be lucid enough to defend Ben, once he is accused of the crime?
Furthermore, Patrick….What in Hades are the PTB doing? Why make Jordan nuts? Is it to prove a family trait? Jordan was always the good guy, who cared for her little brother.
Everything was going so well with Days…..I beg ‘ye gods’ not to turn it into mush. ❤️

Celia…youre breakin’ my heart…You obviously know very little of Ron C’s writing. And if I am wrong there, I apologize. He will ruin ANY character….overlook any detail…rewrite anything from the past…as long as it helps him in his ultimate goal of pushing and pimping his “redeemed” bad guys, psychos, and murderers. Any day now, I expect Xander to have blinding headaches and a brain tumour, have it redeemed, and he will be all sunshine and rainbows, rather than the sleazy rapist and murderer he is.

Lets get one thing straight! I love Judith Chapman! Having said that, I now feel compelled to talk about how Ron Carlivati is now pulling the same crap he pulled at GH that led to that show having ALL TIME RECORD LOW RATINGS!! I will start with this Diana debacle and hopefully touch on other areas.

If you never watched Days circa 1987- 1989, you wouldnt know the character of Diana. She was a spunky spitfire 25 year old journalist with a loving heart and a passion for the truth. She was a college friend of Mike Horton’s, and became love interest to John Black, who thought he was Roman at the time.

Fast forward to today…and the character is harsh, bitter, vindictive, and cruel. She is psychotically obsessed with “getting” John. The problem is in the writing, the rewriting of history, and the acting.

Chapman is a fantastic actress, but I always KNOW she is acting. She is a very campy and theatrical actress from the old school of stage and screen. Genie, on the other hand, is a very low key, heartfelt performer who brings a natural and realistic element to her role even if it something outlandish like freezing the world. As a recast, this fails on every level. Chapman is also 11 years older than Francis, and in this particular instance, the age gap is very gaping and apparent. There is absolutely no similarity whatsoever between the two actresses, which makes for a very jarring recast.

Next is the writing, or rather rewriting. This absolutely reeks of a last minute decision!!! I can actually almost hear Ron C. flustered, wondering to himself “How can I weave my sleazy new gay creation Leo more into the canvas and fabric of the show?? I have to look back into history and find a character who could be his parent! It would be great if Judith Chapman could play the part, because they played mother and son on Y and R!” So, he settled on Diana, and has gone about completely trashing and destroying the memory of what was a very enjoyable and pleasant love story. Diana was a character viewers cared about. She was not a one-note, cartoonish, plot twist villainess as she is being rewritten by Ron.

I have ALWAYS hated when soaps bring back a formerly good character as a bad or evil one. It rarely makes sense in the narrative, there is never a good enough reason to justify the drastic change, and it completely ruins the enjoyment and any memories of a good character.

You read it here….this casting decision and future storyline has ALEX NORTH written ALL over it!! Nuff said there!

Much has been said about Greg Rikaart’s character, and how funny and entertaining he is. I find him to be neither! He is a disgusting sexual predator and rapist! He is an annoying little gnat that Victor Kiriakis would have squashed like a bug about 5 seconds after he pranced into the mansion!! He is able to bring mafia don Victor and family to knees because he has pictures of Will and Sonny carrying a rug???? Please!!Greg is playing it WAY over the top. There is nothing funny about a man blackmailing straight men into unwanted sexual relations, and there is nothing funny about grabbing people and pulling them into unwanted kisses. If this was a male character doing this to a female, there would be outrage and outcry. But because its a male doing it to another male and played as comedy, it seems to be all right. Its disgusting and disturbing on many levels!!

I have a feeling they are going to make Leo into John’s son. If so…all I can ask is…is Ron THAT bereft and devoid of creativity??? John JUST found a long lost gay son 5 years ago!! Recycling plots from that recently is not a good sign!! On the other hand, I suspect they might make him Mike Horton’s son…which would unfortunately forever link this completely unnecessary character to the core family and fabric of the show!

This entire story, from creation to casting to concept has seriously ruined my ability to enjoy Days, a show I normally love. At GH, Ron completely gutted the heart and soul out of the show and replaced it with newbies and villains, leaving the show with no one to root for. He is slowly doing the same thing at Days! He brought back serial killer Ben tryong to redeem him as a leading man. Let me ask…would there be any chance of redemption if Ben didnt look like Robert Scott Wilson??

Same thing with Xander. This is a murderer and woman abuser! He takes glee in torturing, tormenting, and abusing women! (Serena, Theresa, Nicole, Sara etc). Just because he looks like Paul Telfer and is good at quippy, witty one liners, doesnt mean he should be more imbedded into the show. Ron LOVES to write for evil characters at the expense of beloved ones we know and root for and care about.

Ted and Hope? For real???? Kristian Alfonso deserves SO much better. For starters, a screen partner who can act!

And what is up with this Sheila character??? She wore out her welcome after about 2 minutes!!! Someone trying to turn her life around and get another chance would NOT have that much attitude and only spew trash talk out of her filthy mouth!! Get a haircut, get an attitude adjustment, and get a muzzle! Then we will talk!!

I was guardedly optimistic when Ron took over writing at Days. I LOATHED his work at GH beyond belief!! His rk is often eerily and disturbingly similar to James Reilly’s, which is a BIG no-no in my books!! Since he took over…there have been moments of brilliance (Theo’s shooting, Marlena’s living will story). But there have also been dreadful, awful, embarrassing stories that just give soaps a bad name (Bonnie and Hattie)!!

It is sad that Ron writes many of his women characters as obsessive, psychotic lunatics who have no other purpose than “getting” a man. Most women are self aware enough to know when a guy just isnt that into them. It does not make for good story when a woman psychotically chases a man who is CLEARLY not interested! It is the most old fashioned, lazy, uninspired, sexist type of writing imaginable! And it is a Ron C staple!!

Theres my rant. Given the completely wrong casting choice, the drastic rewriting of history, the last minute nature of the plot twist, and virtually NO redeemable qualities, this story has already qualified for Worst Recast of 2019, Worst Story, Worst Use of History and several other Worsts!!!

Judith Chapman is doing a WONDERFUL job as Diana on Days. Her Diana and son Leo/Matthew give me life, classic soap acting/delivery!

I am LIVING for Judith Chapman’s appearances on DOOL. I am so glad she has a role she can run with. She is soap opera royalty and we are lucky to watch her brilliance.

I like Chapman very much and appreciate the interview. However, the article employs a HORRIBLE photo of the actress. I’ve always thought Chapman looked good and “holds” her years well until I saw this picture. That photo does her no favors.

I have to listen to this.

Diana is certainly no Gloria. Wow! I wouldn’t want to get on her bad side. Something must have happened to her after she left Salem because I don’t remember her being this bitchy. I guess having a sociopath for a son can change you!

Judith is analogous to the giving tree—–better and better with each scene!! She superseded my expectations….donna magnifica!!

Breaking News

Anne Heche in Her Final TV Performance to Air on ‘All Rise’

It is hard to believe that now one year later, television fans will see the final performance of Daytime Emmy winner, Anne Heche (ex-Vicky/Marley, Another World).  The talented actress passed away from injuries sustained in a car crash back on August 5th, 2022.

Heche was officially declared ‘brain dead’ on August 12th, when her reps shared that Anne was “peacefully taken off life support.”  Before she passed, Anne taped what would be her final TV acting appearance in her recurring role on the legal drama, All Rise.

The series formerly with CBS and now airing on OWN, will air Heche’s last performance this Saturday, September 30th at 9pm ET/8 pm CT.  On All Rise, Heche plays lawyer Corrine Cuthbert.  Since season 2, Heche has taken on the recurring role. She appeared in six episodes.

Photo: JPI

In story, Corrine has had a fraught professional relationship with Judge Lola Carmichael played by Simone Missick.  For her final appearance, Heche’s Corrine shows up as part of a trial case.

All Rise dedicated the episode to Heche. As the hour comes to its conclusion, they express: “In Memory of Anne Heche, Our Friend and Wonderful Artist. You Are Missed.”

After this, Heche will star posthumously in the independent movie feature Wildfire: The Legend of the Cherokee Ghost Horse, slated for release in November.

Will you be watching Anne’s final television performance on All Rise? Share your thoughts via the comment section below. But first, check out a teaser for the episode which also features former Y&R star, Wilson Bethel who stars on the legal drama as Mark Callan.

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Breaking News

Writers Strike Comes to an End; Leadership Votes To Conclude Work Stoppage

It’s over! After 148 days, the 2023 Writers strike will go down as the second longest in WGA union history, only a labor stoppage in 1988 was longer.

The strike will officially come to end on Wednesday at 12:01am PT.  This was due to a vote from the guild’s leadership that now has authorized its over 11,500 members to return to work.

That means: pitching and selling scripts, taking meetings, responding to notes, writers’ rooms opening up again, and more, can now restart.

Photo: JPI

The WGA committee shared that the vote, “Allows writers to return to work during the ratification process, but does not affect the membership’s right to make a final determination on contract approval.” However, WGA East and West voted unanimously to lift the “restraining order” on Tuesday.

As the negotiators shared, the end of the strike doesn’t mean that the tentative agreement that the union reached with producers on Sunday night is a surefire thing: Union members still need to vote to ratify the contract. Union leadership announced on Tuesday that will take place between October 2nd and October 9th.

Photo: JPI

However, SAG-AFTRA still remains on strike. So, even with the writers returning to work, many productions can’t move forward without their principal actors and performers.

So soap fans, how do you feel about this news for your favorite shows? Glad that the head writers and their writing teams will be back at work as soon as this week from Days of our Lives, General Hospital, and The Bold and the Beautiful? Y&R’s Josh Griffith, who previously had gone Fi-Core during the 2008 strike, remained at the top rated show during the last several months.

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Breaking News

WGA and AMPTP Reach Tentative Deal to End Writers Strike

Looks like we are close, very close, to the writing teams at your favorite soap operas returning to their jobs with news on Sunday that finally the WGA and AMPTP have reached a tentative deal. What remains is the fine print, and having the WGA vote to ratify their contracts.

This is welcome news to the television, streaming and motion picture industry that after five months of a strike has put the 2023-2024 TV season in deep water.

In a statement, the Writers Guild shared, “We have reached a tentative agreement on a new 2023 MBA (Minimum Basic Agreement), which is to say an agreement in principle on all deal points, subject to drafting final contract language. We can say, with great pride, that this deal is exceptional — with meaningful gains and protections for writers in every sector of the membership.”

As the deal goes through its final stages, the writers are still technically on strike, but picketing outside studios and shows has now been suspended.

Photo: ABC

Among the writers’ demands that they fought for are: higher residuals from streaming shows, minimum staff sizes to prevent the use of “mini rooms” and protections from the use of AI.  The hope within the entertainment industry is that the new deal for the WGA will move along a new contract for SAG-AFTRA (actors) with the AMPTP.  As of Monday, SAG-AFTRA is still on strike.

Photo: JPI

As for your favorite soap operas, during the strikes, the shows were written by non-union writers or “fi-core” writers who gave up their union benefits in order to continue working.

The next steps in process will see the WGA negotiating committee vote on “whether to recommend the agreement and send it on to the WGAW Board and WGAE Council for approval,” tentatively scheduled for Tuesday.  Another vote by the board and council could lift the strike “restraining order”and allow scribes to “return to work during the ratification vote”.

So, are you happy to know that the writing teams from your favorite soaps are about to return to work and helm the scripts and the vision of the shows? Comment below.

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Peter Reckell returns for a second visit with Michael Fairman following the wrap-up of his recent run as Bo Brady on Days of our Lives.Leave A Comment

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Kim Coles as Whitley

Days of our Lives

Airdate: 7-24- 2023