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Lee Phillip Bell, Legendary Co-Creator Of Y&R and B&B, Passes Away

Photo: JPI

The entire soap world and daytime community is saddened today with the news of the passing of a true icon and TV pioneer, Lee Phillip Bell.

According to her children, William James Bell, Brad Bell (EP and head writer, B&B) and Lauralee Bell Martin (Christine, Y&R), Lee passed away on February 25th at the age of 91.

Photo: JPI

They shared: “Our mother was a loving and supportive wife, mother and grandmother.  Gracious and kind, she enriched the lives of all who knew her. We will miss her tremendously.”

Born in Chicago, Illinois on June 9, 1928, Bell was co-creator, along with her late husband William J. Bell, of two of daytime television’s most successful dramas: The Young and the Restless (Y&R), and The Bold and the Beautiful (B&B).

Bell’s career as a broadcast journalist began in Chicago, where she hosted and produced her own show, The Lee Phillip Show, for CBS TV for over 30 years. A pioneer in the evolution of the afternoon talk show format, Bell was a trailblazer in the exploration of timely social issues and concerns.  Additionally she produced and narrated numerous award-winning specials and documentaries covering social concerns such as foster children, the subject of rape, children and divorce, and babies born to women in prison, to name a few.. Bell interviewed heads of state such as Presidents Gerald Ford and Ronald Regan; film actors Judy Garland, Clint Eastwood and Jerry Lewis; musicians such as The Rolling Stones and The Beatles; television and stage stars such as Lucille Ball, Jack Benny and Oprah Winfrey; and many other politicians, authors, journalists, fashion designers and rock stars.

Photo: JPI

She was awarded 16 regional (Chicago) Emmy awards and numerous Golden Mike awards. Bell is also the recipient of the Alfred I. Dupont/Columbia University Award for the special The Rape of Paulette, the first program in Chicago to explore the issue.  In 1977, she was the first woman to receive the coveted Governors Award from the Chicago chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences.  In 1980, she was named “Person of the Year” by the Broadcast Advertising Club of Chicago and the “Outstanding Woman in Communications” by the Chicago YMCA.  She also received the Salvation Army’s William Booth Award for her distinguished career in communications and social service. Bell won the Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Drama Series as co-creator of The Young and the Restless in 1975 and was recipient of the Daytime Emmys’ Lifetime Achievement Award in 2007.

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In addition to her children, Lee Phillip Bell is survived by her daughters-in-law Maria Arena Bell and Ambassador Colleen Bell, her son-in-law Scott Martin and eight grandchildren.

Since the news of Lee’s death, many stars from daytime have been sharing their remembrances and condolences of this great woman and what she meant to them.  We will share more on this story later today.

For now, share your condolences for the Bell family and your thoughts on the passing of this icon, Lee Phillip Bell in the comment section below.

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Violet Lemm2JimhKayLew S.Rodd Recent comment authors
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Jimh
Jimh

The Bells were great/…MR Bell had written Days Of Our Lives best stories and the show ended up on the cover of Time Magazine-with BIll Hayes and Susan Seaforth…daytime will never see that greatest ever again!!!

Kay
Kay

No they won’t it’s very sad they knew how to write relationships then ! When I was in college we would schedule our classes around the soaps so we could run to the dorm and get our fix ! Now days I run to the door screaming how awful how cheesy ! Thank you gracious lady you will be missed but now you are with your man at peace!

Jimh
Jimh

They also become dark and gloomy…British soaps too

Michael
Michael

She lived a full and beautiful life. May she RIP.

Momo
Momo

Well, Colleen Bell is no longer an ambassador.

Condolences to her family. Her legacy lives on.

Rodd
Rodd

How wonderful that she was able to do so many wonderful things during her life and we are all the better for it. Rest in Peace.

Lew S.
Lew S.

The last of the great ones! RIP

Violet Lemm2
Violet Lemm2

As a mother of two young children, we loved watching her Lee Phillip Show back in the 60’s when living in the Chicago area. Condolences to the family, so much talent there.

All My Children

Soap Vet and All My Children Alum John Callahan Dead At 66

Absolutely heartbreaking news this Saturday afternoon.  John Callahan, best known to soap fans for his role as Edmund Grey on All My Children has passed away after suffering a massive stroke.  The stroke happened on Friday, March 27th when paramedics responded to a call at his home in Palm Desert, California. He was 66-years-old.

According to reports, Callahan was rushed to Eisenhower Medical Center in Rancho Mirage, CA, where he was put on life support.  John’s daughter Kaya, and his former wife, and AMC co-star Eva LaRue (Ex-Maria) rushed to the hospital to be by his side from Los Angeles.  John died Saturday morning.

Photo: JPI

In a statement, Eva La Rue shared: “We are extremely saddened and distraught over the loss of John. He was my great friend, co-parent and amazing father to Kaya. The absence of his bigger than life, gregarious personality will leave a hole in our hearts forever. Words cannot express the shock and devastation we are feeling at this time. The Yankees just lost one of their greatest fans.” 

John played Edmund on All My Children from 1992-2005.  He also appeared throughout his soap career on: Santa Barbara, Days of our Lives, General Hospital, The Bay and primetime’s Falcon Crest and Desperate Housewives; in addition to many more television appearances.

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Michael Fairman TV will continue to follow this breaking story as remembrances are shared by John’s former co-stars throughout the day and night.

Below is LaRue’s touching tribute to John  via Instagram:

 

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May Flights of Angels Wing You to Your Rest my Dear Friend. Your bigger than life, gregarious personality will leave a hole in our hearts forever. We are devastated-My great friend, co parent partner, and loving father to Kaya. That big belly laugh, bear hugs, bad puns, ability to harmonize to any song, great kitchen table singing-fests, and two steppin bad ass! “Johnny Numbers”, my All My Children soap stud, the great time keeper, Beatles fanatic ( I wish to God we could go back to “Yesterday”)… Kaya and I are beyond broken hearted, so stunned, sorry that my thoughts are a mess. You gave the best most beautifully written tributes, and I am at a complete loss for words right now for you. I hope Heaven has baseball and that your team always wins! The Yankees has just lost their biggest Fan. ♥️♥️♥️♥️♥️🙏🏼🙏🏼🙏🏼🙏🏼

A post shared by Eva LaRue (@evalarue) on

Please share your condolences with Kaya and Eva and the Callahan family below, and let us know your thoughts on this heartbreaking loss on the death of John Callahan via the comment section.

 

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Breaking News

47th Annual Daytime Emmy Ceremonies Canceled Due To Coronavirus Pandemic

There won’t be any “And the Enmy goes to _” come this June, where NATAS had originally scheduled three nights of award presentations honoring the best in daytime programming at the 47th Annual Daytime Emmys.   The three-day event was slated for June 12-14th, at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium in Pasadena. California.  Deadline broke the story of the decision to postpone daytime’s biggest night, for now.

NATAS president and CEO Adam Sharp said of today’s decision: “These were extremely difficult decisions to make, but at the end of the day the health and safety of our event attendees and staff must remain our paramount concern,” NATAS president and CEO Adam Sharp said of today’s decision. “We are closely monitoring public heath authorities’ guidance, seeking feedback from our awards communities, and evaluating the flexibility of our venue and production partners as we plan for the future in this unprecedented context.”

 NATAS chairman Terry O’Reilly said on the change” “Given our concerns over the COVID-19 pandemic, we have decided that we will not be staging the 47th Annual Daytime Emmy Awards in Pasadena this coming June.  As there are so many unknowns right now with the flow of information changing on a daily, almost hourly, basis, it would simply be irresponsible to move forward with our annual celebration of excellence in daytime television at this time.”

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Daytime Emmy Awards executive director Brent Stanton, who is involved in the judging of the competition that was well-under way before the cancellation, shared “Judging continues, and we look forward to announcing our incredibly talented nominees later this spring. We are working on some interesting alternative ideas for how to best recognize the honorees later this year and will share more details in the weeks ahead.”

So, what do you think of the cancellation of the Daytime Emmys? Comment below.

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Breaking News

General Hospital Officially Shuts Down Production Temporarily Due To Coronavirus

GH is the first soap to suspend production due to safety precautions and concerns for the Coronavirus pandemic and is set to shut down from March 16 to April 10.

According to Deadline who announced the production suspension along with halt to Jimmy Kimmel Live, a network rep for GH stated: “We don’t anticipate an interruption in the broadcast of original episodes.”

We anticipate more official word from the other network soaps shortly as to their plans during the health crisis with production halts or schedules over the next month.

Let us know what you think of GH shutting down production at this time and if you hope all the other soaps follow suit for the safety of all their production talents and employees via the comment section below.

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