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LGBT beat Soaps: DAYS Adds a Splash of Gay as AMC Gals Bid Adieu!

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

In the latest issue of Frontiers IN LA Magazine spotlighting Fall Entertainment out today, there is a brand new piece from On-Air On-Soaps Michael Fairman in the publication and on its website of the current LGBT beat on daytime soaps.

The feature titled: Days Add a Dash of Gay as AMC Gals Bid Adieu takes a look at Days of our Lives approach to their storytelling and bringing on the first gay character in the shows history in Sonny Kiriakis, played by Freddie Smith.  With interviews with Smith, DAYS co-executive producer, Greg Meng, and Sonny’s on-screen mom, Daytime Emmy winner, Judi Evans, the NBC soaps tells how they making Sonny fit into the canvas, and what could be a big surprise come fall!

Plus, All My Children’s, Christina Bennett Lind and Sarah Glendening are interviewed, as it is almost time for Bianca and Marissa swansong as the show is soon to go off network television come September 23rd. The actresses discuss how they would like to see their story wrap-up on ABC, and the importance of their roles.  Here are a few excerpts below!

Greg Meng on the careful execution of telling Sonny’s story and integrating a gay character into the Salem canvas for the first time: “This has been discussed for a long time with a lot of thought. And yes, there were concerns, but it’s like, ‘Wow. Who are we? What are we thinking? It is time!’ We didn’t want to do some gay love story, or just go off on some extreme ripped-from-the-headlines political story, just to be telling a ‘gay story.’ We are looking at a long-term, longtime beloved characters type of situation for Sonny. It is about a character who is now on the show, and who by the way, is gay!”

© JPI Studios

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Greg Meng on if the show received much pushback for trying to bring in a gay character or story: “There have been rumors that certain affiliates might pull out if we pursue this. We feel strongly about including a gay character or more on our show. It is part of life. We have the full support of the storyline all the way to the top at NBC, and all the way to the top at Sony. They know the challenges and obstacles we have, but they are extremely supportive, and in fact the comment has been, ‘Well, it’s about time.’

Freddie Smith on waiting to find out who Sonny’s love interest will eventually be! “I am excited to see who my love interest is going to be because that has been all the hype for the last four months. We’ve got Chad, Will and “T” as possibilities, unless I am going to go with an older man! [Laughs] You never know. If they picked an older character that would really mix it up. I legitimately don’t know who it’s going to be. I did for a minute, now it’s gone! They have to just go for it. Having Sonny have a love interest and another story going on for him, and mixing that together, makes him a three-dimensional character. Everyone on the show has a boy or a girl, and I am like the fifth wheel!” (Laughs)

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TODAY: John Callahan 'iHub Radio' Tribute With AMC Stars: Julia Barr, Walt Willey, Bobbie Eakes and More Guests

Make sure to visit frontiersla.com to read the entire feature by clicking here!



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Bambi
Bambi

I’m already 100% in love with the character of Sonny.

Torrey
Torrey

It’s nice to see a show approach a gay storyline that is not all about flash…..you know just trying to get some quick media attention. I don’t watch Days, but I think it’s great that they are invested in showing diversity among their stories.

Cath
Cath

I already love Sonny too and I think that Freddie Smith brings charisma to the role. I wouldn’t have expected anything less for the awesome biochild of an awesome supercouple (Justin & Adrienne) and who was named after another awesome character (Sonny is a nickname for Jackson and was named after Adrienne’s brother Jack Deveraux, who I’m psyched to see coming back to the canvas in September).

All My Children

TODAY: John Callahan ‘iHub Radio’ Tribute With AMC Stars: Julia Barr, Walt Willey, Bobbie Eakes and More Guests

Saturday morning at 10amPST/1PMEST on Palm Springs iHub Radio, there will be a special hour tribute to the late soap veteran John Callahan who passed away last week at 66.

Callahan hosted his own show on the station, and to honor him the stations owner John McMullen, along with several of Callahan’s former All My Children co-stars including: Bobbie Eakes (Ex-Krystal), Walt Willey (Ex-Jack) , and Julia Barr (Ex-Brooke)  will also be part of the live broadcast special event, along with LIVE magazine TV host Melissa Neiderman, and other longtime friends and colleagues of Callahan’s.

As some know, John Callahan was a longtime resident of the Coachella Valley. From 2018 on he continued to be a part of the station with his weekly show all the way up until his death.

John’s soap resume was impressive, not only from his time as All My Children;s Edmund Grey, but also as General Hospital’s Leo Russell, Santa Barbara’s Craig Hunt, and Days of our Lives, Dr. Baker, plus his primetime roles including on Falcon Crest.

Following iHub Radio’s special broadcast, the tribute program will be available as an on-demand show via the iHubRadio.com home page.

So, let us know if you will be listening or caught the special broadcast honoring John today in the comment section below.

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All My Children

Kelly Ripa Shares Her Grief and Remembrances of John Callahan on ‘Live with Kelly and Ryan’

There was always something special about the wonderful actors and the cast pictured here from ABC’s All My Children.  After all, this is where Kelly Ripa (Ex-Hayley) met her husband, Mark Consuelos (Ex-Mateo) and where Eva LaRue (Ex-Maria) met her ex-husband John Callahan (Ex-Edmund).

Then, over this past weekend this family picture from Pine Valley was forever changed, when the soap world was rocked by the news that John Callahan passed away at only 66/

Heartbreaking remembrances poured in on social media …. and none more so than from Eva LaRue, who also shares a daughter with John, named Kaya.  Eva and Kaya rushed to John’s bedside where he has been put on life-support following a reported massive stroke.

Now on Monday’s episode of Live with Kelly and Ryan, which is being done remotely from the hosts individual hosts due to the coronavirus pandemic, Kelly Ripa shared her grief over the loss of her dear friend John Callahan with Ryan.

Kelly said “I had a really a bad weekend this weekend.  A very dear friend of mine for many, many years, almost 30 years, passed away over the weekend. He was a great actor, a really good friend. One of the funniest people I’ve ever met. He was the ex-husband of my first-born son’s godmother, Eva LaRue. His name was John Callahan. He was 66 years old—way too young to be taken from us.”

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Ripa went on to to tell her co-host: “A gentleman of, I mean, Ryan, you two would have loved each other. He would say the funniest things and we were all going through our brains about all of the funny, like the funny ‘Callahan-isms’ over the years. He was just one of these guys and you know and he just died way too soon. His daughter and my daughter are good friends, they’re the same age and I just want everyone to know, Eva and Kaya, that we are thinking of you and we are just so sad and so devastated. So, I apologize in advance if I seem out of it. I really actually am, I’m terribly out of it. You know, forgive me for it.”

Watch Kelly discuss the death of John Callahan with Ryan Seacrest below.  Then share your thoughts on what Ripa had to share and more on the loss of John Callahan via the comment section.

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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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