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OLTL's Ilene Kristen on Upcoming Special Episode, Fraternity Row & Prospect Park!

Courtesy/ABC

Courtesy/ABC

Ilene Kristen is proving once again why she is one of the most valuable player in soaps! Currently, Kristen is knocking it out of the park during the final weeks of One Life to Live, as her Roxy Balsom is spearheading the campaign to save Llanview’s favorite soap opera “Fraternity Row” which has just been canceled.

However, in real life Kristen is trying to deal with the cancellation of the 43-year-old One Life to Live which air its final episode on January 13th on ABC and Prospect Park’s failure to resurrect the show online.

And, in this new interview with TV Guide, Kristen discusses this coming Monday, December 19th’s very special episode in which Roxy faints while visiting the set of “Fraternity Row” and then wakes up as Lorraine, the leading character on the soap!

Here are some excerpts!

Kristen on her special episode: “I think the fans are gonna love it. This whole cancellation of Fraternity Row is a really brilliant way for our writers to comment on all the hell we’re going through at OLTL. It’s really great because I totally represent the fan base, all the wonderful fans who fought so hard to keep OLTL on the air. I represent the fans who showed up at the ABC upfront last May and booed (former ABC Daytime chief) Brian Frons when he walked into the building. And I’m proud to do so! They’re a fervent group of people. In the episode, Roxy falls unconscious and the next thing she knows she’s the star. And everyone else in Llanview is in the show, too. Lorraine is married to David Vickers. Viki and Clint are her maid and butler.  It’s hysterical and a real valentine to our audience.”

Kristen on Prospect Park’s failure to bring OLTL online:  “Who knows what really went on there with Prospect Park? I’d like to know the real story someday. I was a little concerned when I heard the name of their (web platform) was going to be the Online Network. I thought, that’s a little… dry. They needed a dazzling, great name. I don’t know what was going on in their hearts and minds. I’d like to think they had good intentions, but a lot of people think it was all a ruse to keep the fans from being upset. Their reputation as a company is a little soiled at the moment. Our union, AFTRA, was only too anxious to speak with them, and the same goes for the Writers Guild. They cancelled a lot of appointments with the unions and I don’t think that’s been represented correctly in the press. The fans need to know the unions wanted to make this happen. I was on the AFTRA committee for this whole project and we did a lot of work — meetings, lots of correspondence — and it never really ever got down to the particulars. It’s like they weren’t serious. Prospect Park hardly went to any of the cast members at AMC, and yet they were claiming that the actors there were demanding this and that. And that was so not true. It’s very enigmatic.”

Kristen on her sadness over OLTL coming to its conclusion: “Not that I ever wanted Ryan’s Hope to be over, but I’m sadder about OLTL going away. I had left Ryan’s two different times and had such a strange history with them, but my last four or five years there were great. But I also knew I wouldn’t get to play another great character if that show didn’t go off the air. Roxy has been the most fun you can have doing something legal. I’ve been able to do some amazing things on this show. Why would I look for another part when Prospect Park said we were continuing? If you can still play Roxy, you don’t look elsewhere.”

What do you think about what Ilene had to say? And, are you enjoying Roxy getting the chance to take center stage with this ingenious storyline that mirrors all OLTL and soap fans sentiments?

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0 Comments

  1. david

    December 15, 2011 at 2:26 am

    Ilene said, “If only I could get my goddammed set from Foxy Roxy’s Hair Haven and set it up somewhere and start my own show — Ask Roxy! We could do it real cheap like the old-time Soupy Sales Show. We could bring on all the stars of OLTL. It could be, like, OLTL 2012: After the Apocalypse!”

    Even with a poor imitation of Foxy Roxy’s Hair Haven set, I would watch. Ilene, you and Roxy are irresistible.

    • gloria

      December 15, 2011 at 9:24 pm

      So funny-wouldn’t it be great?

      • lisa

        December 17, 2011 at 6:59 am

        Love it – absolutely love it !!!

    • Barb

      December 17, 2011 at 10:37 am

      I would definitely watch it!!!!! May even help tie up the loose ends we would have when OLTL is off the air! Awesome idea. Who knows, maybe some visits from the rest of the crew! What an awesome idea! I just love Roxy!!!! She is definitely a star in many ways!!! xx You GO GIRL!!!!

    • Jan

      December 18, 2011 at 6:47 am

      she’s hoot.

    • 1loveabcsoaps

      December 19, 2011 at 11:03 pm

      You funny!

  2. Deb

    December 15, 2011 at 4:55 am

    I love that she is the VOICE behind the scenes for all the actors who were looking forwrd to PP.
    I also love her honesty about PP. Without actually bashing them, she spoke the truth. PP was really never going to happen. At least not in reality.

  3. Jim

    December 15, 2011 at 6:59 am

    Awesome interview. Ilene’s Roxy is an amazing character and part of what makes OLTL OLTL. She mentions RH–ironic that both soaps will share the same end date (January 13)–RH in 1989 and OLTL in 2012

  4. Heather

    December 15, 2011 at 8:16 am

    Prospect Park has turned the legacy of OLTL into a big farce. If no cable network is gonna pick up OLTL, then let it rest in peace. But either way, don’t let Prospect Park approach this jewel.

  5. Robert in Jersey City

    December 15, 2011 at 9:19 am

    She’ll always be Delia Reid Ryan to me. I bumped into Ilene outside the Riveria Cafe on 7th a couple of years ago, she is fabulous.

  6. Blake

    December 15, 2011 at 11:01 am

    Love her! I’d love the show to continue especially for more Roxy! They didn’t show her much the past few years but now there’s a lot of her towards the end thank goodness!

    • gloria

      December 15, 2011 at 8:07 pm

      When you think of Roxy when she first started, ugh, remember how awful she was? Drunk & lying all the time-it took forever to get to bottom of Natalie & Rex’s parentage but I have always loved how they kept her around & acknowledged that she raised Nat & Rex. The scene on the staircase at Llanview with Rox & Viki when Liam was missing just about killed me-classic OLTL moment-every day I get laughs & tears from this show. I love the boarding house thing she runs and the scenes at her beauty shop. Just great. I also loved Roxy & Echo-they were really funny together trying to protect Rex & hiding the gun etc., what great things they could do if we had the time.

      • Deb

        December 16, 2011 at 5:35 am

        I didn’t care for Roxie at all for a long time!

  7. Deb

    December 15, 2011 at 1:58 pm

    OMG!
    Franco James from Southwest Hospital???
    Could you die over this storyline right now??>

    • gloria

      December 15, 2011 at 7:56 pm

      I was falling off my chair laughing at this! This storyline is right on, I think or have said to someone everything Roxie says/does!

    • Jan

      December 18, 2011 at 6:49 am

      i died ( laughing ) when i heard that…think gh is next to go.

      • Deb

        December 18, 2011 at 9:41 am

        GH: Not So Fast!
        Posted by ghhshirley on Friday, December 16, 2011
        Rumorville: Carolyn Hinsey, longtime soap opera editor/columnist and author, had the following to say on her facebook page:

        “WARNING: Anyone who posts here that another soap is being cancelled will be blocked. Trust me: Frank [Valentini] and Ron [Carvilati] are not uprooting their lives to move to LA without a long term promise and the time they need to fix General Hospital. I know a LOT more than you do. So save it, losers.”

        I am NOT giving up anymore! lol

  8. Deb

    December 15, 2011 at 2:02 pm

    And then (I forgot) her references to past storylines with Karen & Marco!! Oyyyyyyy is this show a JEWEL.

    • gloria

      December 15, 2011 at 7:58 pm

      This too was hilarious. What about when Nigel said “oh the irony” and Roxie said “Forget about the ironing, we gotta save our show!” Why does this show have to get better every day when the Black Friday is so near? I wish it was horrible & I wouldn’t care if it was gone but that’s not the case. I am sick every minute over this.

      • Deb

        December 16, 2011 at 5:34 am

        Roxie is better than reality TV! She is the ‘real thing’.
        I am a big ‘fast forward’ person. For me to sit thru a show, and then hit the rewind button like I have been lately, says alot for this show.

        Did you see that new petition that was started? I doln’t know what good it could do at this point, but there is a group of people taking petitions to networks about these shows. Let me know if you want the link. All it takes is 5 seconds of your time……..

    • gloria

      December 16, 2011 at 9:36 pm

      Yes, I want the link! I haven’t seen the newest petition but I have been obsessed since April 14 with saving this show. Thought we were safe in early July with the PP news, then the horrible news Nov. 23-ruined Thanksgiving for me. Up & down. I definitely feel like Roxie-I am emotionally exhausted from this but don’t want to let go.

      • Deb

        December 17, 2011 at 7:46 am

        I just posted it! Let me know if you have any problems accessing it

      • Gloria

        December 19, 2011 at 9:27 am

        Where is it???

  9. Brian Greene

    December 15, 2011 at 2:54 pm

    I Love You, Ilene–Yay!! 😀 😀

  10. Torrey

    December 15, 2011 at 4:23 pm

    I have loved Roxy from day one….and I am so glad that she is in the spotlight, as OLTL comes to an end.

  11. Gail

    December 15, 2011 at 9:15 pm

    When I was about 14, I wrote a fan letter to Ilene when she was on Ryan’s Hope. And she answered me with the longest, sweetest letter I’ve ever received! While I loved her as Delia, she’ll always be Roxy to me! And I love what she is doing for the fans and for the show. She is just the best! I am still praying for a miracle….

  12. Alley

    December 16, 2011 at 9:11 pm

    I loved to hate Delia on Ryan’s Hope and I adore Roxy. And that’s all because of Ilene Kristen’s amazing gift. I’m going to miss Roxy and OLTL more than I can say. An era is ending…never thought I’d see the day.

    • 1loveabcsoaps

      December 19, 2011 at 11:00 pm

      they are going on line., watch

      • Alley

        December 20, 2011 at 7:39 pm

        I hope you’re right!

  13. Doe

    December 16, 2011 at 11:06 pm

    Wow! Ilene has just hit it out of the park. She is one of the most creative actors ever to grace our screens. The writers have done a fantastic job with this story line. I just want it to go on and on. When Roxy fainted and came to as Lorraine with David mustache and all, I couldn’t stop laughing. That is as good as it gets. Tuc is irrepressable. He is no slouch when hamming it up. Loved it! Can’t wait for tomorrow….

  14. lisa

    December 17, 2011 at 7:05 am

    Can’t wait for Monday’s show…it’s gonna be great !!
    I remember Ilene as Delia Reid Ryan Ryan Colridge .
    Another show I lamented with disbelief when it went off the air.

  15. liz

    December 17, 2011 at 9:02 am

    I love Ilene Kristen!! She is really getting my dander up about Frat Row. Thank you for representing the fans. I know you feel our pain. We feel your pain too. You truly are a treasure and “That’s the dog’s honest truth” 🙂

  16. bob

    December 19, 2011 at 12:17 pm

    when ryans hope went off the air everyone seemed to get over it. watching it on soapnet reruns it seems justified. also watch amc for 35 years but don’t miss it. it ended and that’s it. (will never watch the chew however). oltl was much better in recent years but they are tired of overpaying all these actors apparently. viewership has dropped dramatically and i see their point. finally i will be able to get a day job after 35 years and not feel i’m missing something. you will all recover from this believe me. it is not healthy to get hooked on a soap opera. entertaining as they are, you will be better off.

    • 1loveabcsoaps

      December 19, 2011 at 10:59 pm

      Gee Bob: You have a point. Gosh, do you. Anyway, I am surprised to find that a man has been watching for this long. No judgement. BC the truth you have spoken so clearly as the soaps have interferred with my ambitions as well at times. Once they went on line, that helped more so.

  17. Robert in Jersey City

    December 19, 2011 at 7:58 pm

    OMG. That was fabulous. I can’t believe they put Niles in drag! What an homage to Dorian!!! That ending was so sad. This was our real final episode. So sad.

  18. 1loveabcsoaps

    December 19, 2011 at 10:41 pm

    Robert, what are you talking about? What homage to Dorian? What ending was so sad? I must of missed something that you saw. This was not our real final episode, what it was, was an irony of how the actor’s would feel on their last day, and what we wouldn’t see in terms of their emotions on the last day. I dont get what U means when U say, that was our real final episode.

  19. 1loveabcsoaps

    December 19, 2011 at 10:42 pm

    Oh, this is your likewise Jersey City friend.

  20. 1loveabcsoaps

    December 19, 2011 at 10:54 pm

    This is a fabulous effort. I am warmed by how hard people are fighting to save THESE soaps! All the ABC soaps, but esp….OLTL. When the other soaps where cancelled, (from different networks) THIS KIND OF FUSS WAS NOT MADE. But, OLTL caught everyone by surprise. Everyone thought it would be AMC, (the one that would cause all the Rukus over the two soaps) MAINLY bc of Lucci, and Agnes Nixons visual ties to the show and to Lucci. But no, OLTL and the fans, are putting up a Hellava Fight, and I am proud of the fans. Let’s keep fighting. I have driven people to THIS website at abc.com, WHO didn’t know about it (plus told others of it), This is a great site, and everyone doesn’t know about it, bc I just found it myself. So wherever U log on and talk about what’s happening to OLTL, mention this site. This site is “What’s happening” and very upto date.

    God Bless the Actor’s (and the fans) and let’s keep fighting.

    • Heather

      December 20, 2011 at 10:10 pm

      “When the other soaps where cancelled, (from different networks) THIS KIND OF FUSS WAS NOT MADE”

      That’s because OLTL and AMC had higher ratings than the soaps that were cancelled before. That has absolutely nothing to do because they are ABC soaps. I can guarantee you that if CBS decide to cancel The Young and The Restless, the protests it will generate from fans will make the fuss over OLTL’s cancellation look like a picnic.

      • 1loveabcsoaps

        December 21, 2011 at 11:53 am

        No doubt Heather, I cant argue with you about that where Young and Reckless is concerned. But I will add AMC took people by surprise because of…. the Name Brands on the show. Lucci, Cameron, and Rebecca.

  21. Heather

    December 22, 2011 at 10:40 am

    What I found sad is all this competition that exist among soap opera fans. Everybody thinks about its own little soap and could care less if the soap next door dies. Sure, that formula was the way to go in the 70s, 80, and 90s. But this can no longer be the case in 2012, not with the way the genre is dying. As Cady McClain (Dixie from AMC) pointed out, the only way the save the four last soap operas is for ALL soap opera fans to unify and support them ALL. Solidarity within the whole soap opera community is now essential to prevent the genre from going into extinction.

    Because once the axe falls on a soap opera, it is not coming back (no matter how OLTL fans wants to believe that their soap will somehow ressurect in some form or shape).

  22. Medina Conley

    December 26, 2011 at 12:32 pm

    Bottom Line. I don’t want them to take this show off!!!!!!!!. I love this soap. Started watching it after they took GL and ATWT off. And I fell in love with it. PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE keep it on.

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