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REPORT: What Kind Of Deal is Prospect Park Structuring For Performers To Join AMC & OLTL Reboot?

Courtesy/ABC

Courtesy/ABC

For those who may be skeptical about Prospect Park’s ability to nab some big names and performers to appear on their proposed reboot’s of All My Children and One Life to Live, the production companies latest round of SAG-AFTRA negotiations  (the actors union) looks increasingly viable.

In the latest issue of Soap Opera Digest on newsstands now, the publication spoke to several industry insiders who offered up the following comments on the actors pay scale situation, after the failed attempt with the union the last go-round of Prospect Park trying to get the beloved soaps online.

“It’s a much more humane deal and will expire in one year,” said one source.  “If this works, if it’s successful, that can only be good for the actors,” says SOD’s source of the short length of the agreement, adding that while the base bay for performers in the contract is union scale.   “None of us worked for scale when we were on ABC. And in this contract, there is room for them to negotiate the pay scale for individual actors just as before,” commented the source.

Talent Manager Michael Bruno added, ” I don’t have solid numbers yet, but I don’t think the pay is going to be that bad. I was concerned it would be a $100 a day and it’s not that.”

So soapers, who do you think Prospect Park should have on their top hit list of performers from AMC and OLTL?  Do you believe Prospect Park plans to revive the soaps is going to work? Weigh-in!

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Maxine
Maxine

I really hope they go to cable!!!!!!!

susan M.
susan M.

Me TOO! I prefer cable than on line. But I will watch my soaps either way..

Patrick
Patrick

AMC!!!! I too, hope it’s on cable…..

I’m sure most have that cable package…. cable/phone/internet… it’s up the ying yang per month as it is…

Paua
Paua

i agree w/patrick, but if its gonna be on line i hope ill be able tro get it, and itd be awesome to combine both shows together, but if theyre on their own id still watch them

Janice
Janice

I hope it is on Cable cause i live in Canada and can’t watch certain sites cause they are in the states and i can’t view them in my area

Bonnie
Bonnie

Someone has posted that it is going to be on Hulu not sure where that came from

Patrick
Patrick

Bonnie – Hulu Plus is $7.99 a month… etc… i know people who have this… and they like it… it’s like TV without commercials… and, yes, it’s on the internet….

Michelle
Michelle

From OLTL, would love to see Erika Slezak, Jerry VerDorn, Hillary B. Smith, Kassie DePaiva, Melissa Archer, Trevor St. John, and J.P. Lavosier. Would love others, of course, but that’s a good start.

susan M.
susan M.

I agree with you 100%…………..

cheryl
cheryl

For OLTL Kassie DePaiva Robin Strasser Erika Slezak Hillary B Smith Robert S Woods Jerry verDorn

susan M.
susan M.

OLTL: There should be on are: Erika Slezak (heart&soul of OLTL),Robert Woods,Hillary
B.Smith,Catherine Hickland(Lindsay),Kassie Depaiva,Robin Strasser(Dorian),Victor,Jessica,Natalie,Clint,GiGi ,Rex,Roxy,david Vickers,Tea,John etc…Amc wouldn’t be the same without Susan Lucci….

BTripp
BTripp

For AMC they need the heavy hitters of Eden Riegel, Alicia Minshew, Thorsten Kaye, Susan Lucci, Walt Willey, David Canary, Julia Barr, Debbi Morgan, Darnell Williams, Michael Knight, and Cady McClain! I know Darnell is on contract with Y&R but he isn’t being used so they should cut him. On OLTL they need Bob Woods, Jerry verDorn, Robin Strasser, Erika Slezak, Kassie DePaiva, Hillary Smith, Melissa Archer, Ilene Kristen, Tuc Watkins, Flo Lazono, and Ted King. I also think they need Michael Easton but can leave Roger Howarth and Kristen Alderson on GH because I enjoy their characters 100 times more on GH. I hope they can figure this all out because it is has potential to be awesome. This would be ground breaking on many levels because no one has saved a daytime soap like this before.

Mia
Mia

I agree they need Michael Easton on OLTL. He was better on there. Todd & Starr
have been GREAT on GH, but have family on OLTL.

brian
brian

Hoping that all goes well and that OLTL makes it back. I will be watching everyday if it does, not to mention I check this site at least five times a day of updates on this story.

Robert
Robert

Better news everyday, starting breathe a little bit better now! 🙂

CTwildheart
CTwildheart

I understand they are used to making a good salary…but for Michael Bruno to say he was worried it was only going to be $100 is like a slap in the face to me. Myself (and so many others) work for less than that all the time.

BUT I am glad to hear more bits of information coming out – still not doing the happy dance yet. When I see it…

Bonnie
Bonnie

Several years ago scale was 250.00 a day.

Lori
Lori

I will watch AMC & OLTL where ever they may be. I think on toln.com with PP and Hulu would be fantastic!! If one day they are back on a TV channel that is great as well. I have missed them both very much and just want them both back into production to enjoy again as it should have always been. Long Live All My Children and One Life To Live!! 🙂

Kelly
Kelly

Whatever the rate is (let’s say $500 a day) is only for the days the actor actually works. They don’t work every day. And considering that they are to start production in a month, why have only 2 actors been hired? What about the writers? My big concern is that this will be a failed experiment and they will ruin the legacy of the shows by creating some off the track storylines and leaving these shows in worst shape than when they ended.

Blake
Blake

Yeah I’m wondering about that also, with it being next month and only two actors from just ONE show hired? Unless they are just in negotiations with a lot of the other actors for a while now and it will be close? I hope so!

Blake
Blake

I would love for OLTL to have Erika, Clint, Dorian, David, Victor, Sam, Blair, Tea, Natalie, Jessica (with one of the previous actresses playing her), Lindsey, Roxie, Gigi, Rex, Shane, Vimal. I wish they could get Todd and Starr from GH but I’m sure that will be hard since they are paid much more on GH and are front burner.

With AMC I’d like to see Erica, Dixie, Tad, Jack, Bianca (played by Eden), Kendall, Patrick from OLTL, I forget his name on AMC right now, Greenlee, JR (get him from B&B please! He was great on AMC!), Opal, Angie, Darrell (forget his character’s name right now).

Anthony
Anthony

We may get screwed again but at least this attempt seems more realistic to me. Filming in CT as opposed to NY or CA. Half-hour shows instead of an hour and only 4-days a week with a Friday recap. Smart Smart Smart. And this seems logical to me from a “start-up” business stand-point. This is an experiment – a noble venture for sure, but it’s still an experiment and these guys should continue with small steps. As one of many – I really hope this works. Now as an avid OLTL fan – when I hear from Erika Slezak and Kassie DePaiva that they have been contacted and have again accepted a contract with PP, I will drink a little more of the kool-aid. Until then … this is just a very nice offering of intent.

Gerardo Ramirez
Gerardo Ramirez

Normally,I would prefer cable BUT 2 systems-Comcast in Bucks County & RCN in NYC dropped SOAPNET.I would be happy to see ANY AMC & OLTL actors return!

Robert Coplin
Robert Coplin

Comcast dropped SOAPNET in a lot of markets that they have cable service as i live in Sacramento and Comcast removed SOAPNET almost 10 months ago.

Beth
Beth

I have cancelled Comcast, and switched to Verizon. They still have Sopanet. (I also live in Bucks County.)

Gerardo Ramirez
Gerardo Ramirez

Thank you,Beth.My fear is that verizon might also cancel it.I can’t understand with all the available cable channels,soapnet is dropped!

Pav
Pav

My biggest wish is that Thorsten Kaye and Alisha Minshew will join the show. The Slaters need to be a core family. Other than that, Erica, Jackson, Adam and Brooke, Tad and Dixie, David and Cara, Jesse and Angie. The list is actually bigger, but these are all characters who made AMC. I understand that David Canary might not be interested, since he actually retired. Core families, with dramatic stories. And Zen. Yumm!

Lynn
Lynn

I’d like to see at least most of the leads like Clint, Viki, Bo, Nora, Natalie, Blair, Tea, Jessica, and John, I know they have John on GH but I think he is out of place there and needs to come home to OLTL, I think John was on OLTL 9yrs and became a big part of the show and is needed…..I did watch AMC for like years so I can’t coment on that. I so hope this is true!

Mia
Mia

I would like to McBain back on OLTL. He hasn’t had a decent storyline on GH & is barely on the air. They actually used him on OLTL and he was more social on there.

Tali Smith
Tali Smith

I’m concerned about the fact that some main characters haved moved to the West Coast. If they (PP) had gotten their act together last year, OLTL would have gone fluiditly into production, now I just don’t know, it really depends on how well the writers know the characters and which original actors/actresses sign on! If OLTL gets a reprieve, please let it be as good as the original!!

TnT 2.0 Forever
TnT 2.0 Forever

OLTL: Has many talented vets but I watch only to see Trevor St. John and Florencia Lozano onscreen together.

AMC: So many of my favorite actors, Susan Lucci, Alicia Minshew, Rebecca Budig, Chrishell Stause, Ricky Paull Goldin, Debbie Morgan, and of course Vincent Irizarry.

Linda
Linda

Didn’t anyone notice the big “if” attached to this. Please don’t get your hopes up. We have been played and disappointed by PP and ABC/D before.

Nancy
Nancy

I don’t know how but you can watch Hulu on your tv. Hulu regular is free but hulu plus is only $7.99 per month. Completely worth it. I just hope people will watch so that it will last longer than talked about. It is all up to the fans that have fought like crazy to have this happen. What I don’t understand is why Guiding Light and As the World Turns did not do this? Why can’t all the new soaps be on soapnet? Oh well I am extremely happy. Watched both since day 1. They are my people and my family.

EDNA BAREFOOT
EDNA BAREFOOT

OLTL has to have ERIKA SLEZAK & JERRY-CLINT, TODD & FAMILY. I cannot imagine OLTL without Viki & Clint. We also need Dorian. OLTL isn’t right without Viki & Dorian against each other. AMC I really don’t know except Tad. There are lots of others but OLTL is my favorite soap. I hope PP isn’t lying again.

MBmomof3
MBmomof3

I really hope this works. I especially miss OLTL. I WILL support this “experiment” with my viewership if it comes to fruition. I watched OLTL online daily after the cancellation was announced, hoping TPTB would see online viewership is a viable option. When the PP deal was announced, and then failed I was so disappointed. I will also support AMC. I loved that show back in the day. I believe both shows have so much potential and a continued fan following.

Fingers crossed!

Paula Kate Prince-Meserole
Paula Kate Prince-Meserole

I certainly hope that OLTL and AMC will be brought back into production and will return to our daily lives again no matter what media they come through.. However we the soap fans have been through all of this before.

If Prospect Park is indeed able to actually pull it off this time, then given the heck that broke loose when ABC cancelled our beloved soaps and the boycott that ensued in the aftermath, it would be the kind of historical ground-breaking news that would most likely be reported on the National as well as local news programs and Prospect Park would no doubt buy commercial time on ABC to make announcements during General Hospital.

As I said at the outset, our beloved soaps’ return would be wonderful…..However unless and until Prospect Park themselves makes a formal public announcement on when and where to tune in, I won’t be getting my hopes up again.

d.w.
d.w.

OLTL must-haves: Erika Skezak, Robin Strasser, Jerry Ver Dorn, Robert S Woods, Hilary B Smith, Kassie De Paiva, James De Paiva, Ilene Kristen, Dan Gauthier, the character of Joey Buchanan (be it Tom Degnan, Chris Mckenna or a recast), Melissa Archer, Brett Claywell (would love to have Scott Evans too but that may not be possible right now). If she’s available, Andrea Evans with John Lopriano ushering in Sarah/CJ (who could be a new love interest for Kyle if SE can’t make it…even if he can via a triangle) back in Llanview. Roger Howarth can join eventually but the wrapup with the GH stories should be done organically. Michael Easton i actually think works BETTER on GH and Natalie should move on from John. Not “must haves” but still really should be there: Patricia Elliot, Tonja Walker, Laura Koffman, Catherine Hickland and Pamela Payton-Wright. Not as essential but i’d like to see the Gannons back. David Chisum would also make a nice add as it’s odd how his character never came back in the wake of the last Mitch returns.

A great way to kick off the series and (re)introduce the characters/stories would be Viki narrating a letter to an old friend like Wanda or Larry Wolk.

mcbam
mcbam

Is Michael Easton going over there too?

Gee,I hope not, is Kelly Monaco going over there?

And if he is to g o to the new regime, who will the writers

put Sam Mcall with? Will be her old flame Jax (Ing Radamacher)

Remember, Jason took here away from Sonny&Jax way back in

2004, I hope Michael Easton does stay on GH,and they bring his

child Liam for John and Sam to raise…..

willy garza ( partywill )
willy garza ( partywill )

I am very excited for this new info ..Also I am hoping it returns
on cable , if its just online ..thats good too ..I am over the moon our favorite
Soaps are rising from the ashes !
This is an awesome bday gift worth waiting for.

Iakovos
Iakovos

We shall see. If it is a half-hour soap run Mondays-Thursdays, as I have heard, I would not expect large casts or expensive shoots with many extras. This will be taut storytelling. And I would think with the time passed, we may not see our favorite actors to their signature roles. But our stories will go on. Wouldn’t that be nice?!?!

Nancy
Nancy

I don’t mean to be negative but I still don’t believe it after last time. I still have a hard time believing they will get anyone to trust them and they are still being to hush hush.

moshane58
moshane58

All we are hearing is rumors.Where are the facts.PP did this the last time no statements until Sorry No Go.I still cannot shake the feeling the timing is strange.ABC was running out of time about the rights and here we go again.I hope I’m wrong and do want them back but I cannot shake this feeling its another put us off nd if they do at least one show then they can say they have the rights for ten years.Kiss them bye for good.Another don’t believe very many heavy hitters will be hired.JMO

Debbie Hamilton
Debbie Hamilton

I’m almost afraid to get my hopes up on this nxt go around. I don’t mind the 30 min shows 4 days a wk. Thats ok really; but what I am wondering about is how many of the regular actors will be willing to sign on? Or will we have maybe one or two of the ones we knew and the rest newbies. Alot of questions hanging in the air. I guess time will tell.
I hope and pray everything will wrork out for the best.
Plus is this something we will have to pay to view ?

Debbie Hamilton
Debbie Hamilton

Has anyone heard what the soaps will be shown on if and when it goes into production?
Personally, I hope its Dish Network Satillite.

Joan Norris Brigham
Joan Norris Brigham

I would prefer cable. And for the actors, ALL of them! Any and all, large and small, please, please ALL!!!

SoapQueen
SoapQueen

IMO, PP was forced to continue working on these shows “underground” due to the negative response from fans (ie saying they’d only watch if they’re on cable, won’t watch if certain actors aren’t on, etc etc etc etc. Believe it or not, that kind of negative response can impact investors. Fans have forced PP to be “hush hush” because of all their complaining, demands and conspiracy theories. Can anyone really blame them? PP is working hard to bring these shows back. It’s time to leave the negativity at the door and support the actors and PP . Would it make any sense at all for PP to go thru negotiations with the unions, approach the actors/crew (and sign some), spend $ on licensing rights, studio space, sets, etc if they weren’t serious?? If they plan to begin production in Feb., they must be confident several actors will sign.

Troy Turner
Troy Turner

Sorry-no soap here. Until PP makes a public announcement-this isn’t going to happen. The other shoe is about to drop-mark my words

Pat
Pat

OLTL I’ve watched for over 40 yrs. and will watch as long as I live.
I hope most of the actors return, and I hope for a cable station . I will watch online if that’s what is all we have. Please bring our shows back!!!!!!!! I have boycotted ABC
since they took the soaps off the air.
Thanks,
Old viewer and ready for something new.

Rose Gencarelli
Rose Gencarelli

I think they should bring Sean ringgold David Gregory kassie Depaiva Florencia Tom Degnan Kelley missal Andrew Trischitta illene Kristen shenelle Edmonds Patrick gibbons as many as the one life cast possible all if possible if AMC actors can be combined into one life show that works too just make it happen

Patrick
Patrick

If the writing is good this will be a successful endeavor! We need Ron!

SZima
SZima

I would like to see these shows on cable too. And it would be good if they were on an established cable channel.
Even if they were on OWN, they would enhance that channel by helping it get regular viewers.

Torrey
Torrey

I want it to go to cable for one big reason…..I want them to come back on a cable network, so that when they have the Daytime Emmy’s the following year, they can stick it to ABC. That would be the icing on the cake…LOL

Dave
Dave

For both OLTL and AMC to sucseed they have to be profitable for Prospect Park. Advertising and subscription fees may not be enough to keep them going.
For the shows to continue, PP needs a second outlet such as one of the 500+ cable networks.
Come on I am so sick of all that real housewife bull.

Robert Seganti
Robert Seganti

The key to success is in the story-the writing.One Life to Live was beautifully crafted but All MyChildren was destroyed by hack writing and a totally wrong headed approach from inappropriate costuming to an urban sensibility.Getting back to solid storytelling (free from the interference of network morons and hack writers) and it may succeed. Trevor St. John and Florencia Lozano are major talents and one can only hope that they along with Erika Slezak,Kassie dePaiva and Jerry verDorn will be involved.

Torrey
Torrey

Totally agree with you. I really hope to find OLTL & AMC on a cable network. Lord knows there’s plenty of room for it, somewhere out there. And all the players listed, are key to the success of the show. If they can’t pull in a good number of heavy hitters, it’ll be harder to get the fans to tune in.

Robert Seganti
Robert Seganti

I agree with you that a cable outlet would be key to getting the traditional audience on board.

Brie
Brie

All I have to say is that if they take Roger away from GH, heads will roll. My stomach hurts at the thought of it. I adore him. And I’m not watching internet TV.

Phyllis Corley
Phyllis Corley

I can’t wait to see these 2 soaps again, especially One Life to Live. I prefer them to be on cable, but I will watch online is that’s the only way.

For OLTL, I’d love to see Erica Sleazak, Jerry Van Dorn, Bob Woods, Hilary B. Smith, Melissa Archer, Kassie Depaiva, Bree Williamson,Robin Strasser, Florencia Lozano, Brian Kerwin, and last, but definitely not least, Trevor St. John. I think Roger Jowarth should remain on GH as I really like him with Carly, but I think he should do some crossing over on a regular basis. A Todd/Victor/Blar/Tea/Carly storyline could be dynamite,

For AMC, I’d love to see Cameron mathison, Ted Knight, Vincent Irizarry, Susan Lucci, Jacob Young, David Canary, Thorsten Kaye, Bobbie Eakes, Rebecca Budig, Walt Willey, Aiden Turner, Debbi Morgan, and Ricky Paul Goldin. The person I’m most interested in seeing return is Vincent Irizarry, and I understand that he has already agreed to return.

I really hope this happens and I can’t wait.

Lisa Postles
Lisa Postles

Erica Slezak and Robin Strasser for sure. Blair, David, Antonio, Clint, Bo, Nora for sure.

Mart
Mart

For sure! Wouldn’t be the same without any of them.

Lynne
Lynne

Well, I sure hope this is true, because I surely have missed both of those soaps. I just can’t wait till this happens. I’m looking forward to it soooooooooo much.

Janice
Janice

My husband and I both miss All My Children. I got him hooked on it also I started watching it frm the first day when I was pragnent for my daughter who is 42 years old now. She has been watching it all her life. We always recorded it while at work and watched it at night. WE MISS IT TERRIBLY. We REFUSE to watch the chew hoping they take it off the air and put back ALL MY CHILDREN. That was the only soap opera I watched. I also watched ANOTHER WORLD another good one they took off.

I’ve Tried to watch THE BOLD AND THE BEAUTIFUL because JR from ALL MY CHILDREN is in it but We just can’t get into it. PLEASE BRING ALL MY CHILDREN back.

Amy
Amy

I hope they put on cable i dont have online tv .

Josh
Josh

I prefer cable too, And hurry up and bring back Victor Lord Jr. I’m tired of this Todd shit.

Mart
Mart

I’d rather have it online if it would be on soapnet, becasue I don’t get soapnet. If they pick a neutral cable channel, like USA or TNT, and such, then it would be fine for cable. Not everyone gets all the cable channels. They just aren’t available to everyone. As for the net, there’s no problem with anyone not getting a channel there.
And bring back all the regulars. Hate replacements.

Gigi
Gigi

Yes, hurrah, do bring back All My Children Gang♥♥

Jon
Jon

If OLTL chooses to use new actors instead of the originals i won’t be watching and i am quite sure it will flop. They should dump the AMC reboot and use the money to ensure the originals can be paid enough to want to come back to OLTL.

Kathy
Kathy

Can’t wait for AMC! I never cry but I cried when AMC ended and I cried when PP backed away from the reboot and now I am crying because it is coming back. Yea!!!!

Kay
Kay

Most of the cast of OLTL have already signed on, so they have a great start. RH is set to reprise his role temporarily on OLTL before going back to GH. No word on KA or ME yet, but I don’t see them staying on long if they do go back to OLTL. KA wasn’t going to do the reboot in the first place and ME likes being on GH.
AMC is more likely in danger of using new actors. Very few of the big names have signed on and some haven’t even been contacted.

All My Children

Eva LaRue Talks On Her Daytime Emmy Nomination, And Opens Up About The Loss Of John Callahan

For Eva LaRue, the past two months have been some of the most emotionally gut-wrenching and challenging of her life, following the passing of her ex-husband, father of her child, and dearest friend, John Callahan (Ex-Edmund, All My Children). The outpouring of support she has received not only from her former AMC cast mates, but the soap world in general illustrates just how dear Eva is to all of us, and how many people had special memories of their time with John.

While mourning the loss of Callahan along with their daughter, Kaya, there was some heartwarming and re-affirming news that any actress would love to hear. Eva was nominated for a Daytime Emmy in the Outstanding Guest Performer in a Drama Series for her work as Celeste Rosales on CBS’ The Young and the Restless, and she is great company as her former AMC co-star Michael E. Knight (Ex-Tad) is also nominated along with her for his work on General Hospital.

The coronavirus pandemic has hit our country and world hard, but through it All My Children virtual reunions emerged as fans were engaged by the content, transported to happier times that brought them back to familiar faces in Pine Valley in which Eva participated along with her good friends, Kelly Ripa, Mark Consuelos and so many more, thanks to the EW. com weeklong event which concluded on Friday.

Michael Fairman TV talked with Eva in this very candid, at times heartbreaking, and open conversation where she shares details into the final days of her beloved John, her last moments with him, and how she tried to plan a memorial in his honor during the COVID-19 pandemic.

For so many of us, 2020 has certainly seen more lows then highs, but in the end for Eva, to receive a nomination now (an award she was last nominated for back in 1997 as Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series for her work as Dr Maria Santos on All My Children) couldn’t have come at a better time. Here now is our conversation with Eva.

Photo: JPI

I’ve been thinking so much about you.  I’m glad we could do this, and in the midst of the tragedy of losing John Callahan, and then receiving a Daytime Emmy nomination.  What was your reaction when you learned you were nominated in a category with none other than your former AMC castmate and good friend, Michael E. Knight (Ex-Tad, AMC, now Martin, GH)?

EVA:  Oh, I know!  He’s the first person I texted!  I was like, “Congratulations, Michael!  Did you ever in a million years think that you and I would be in the same category of anything?”  Then I said, “And when you win this, can I just borrow it for the weekend just to dress it up and take pictures with it… just want to borrow it, just babysit the trophy for a weekend, please?” (Laughs)

Photo: JPI

What did you end up submitting that landed you the nomination for your role as Celeste on Y&R?

EVA: I submitted a scene with Peter Bergman (Jack, Y&R), who I have been friends for 30 years, if not more, and in all that time we had never worked together.  I met him when I was married to John O’Hurley (Ex- Dr. James Grainger) because John was over at The Young and the Restless at the time.  I went to a Christmas party with John to Peter and Mariellen’s house, and do you know who else was there?  Lisa Rinna (Ex-Billie, Days), and it was before she had gotten Days of Our Lives. She was dating Peter Barton (Ex-Scott Grainger, Y&R) at the time. We both ended up on soaps at the same time.  So, I submitted a scene with Peter, who is amazing, warm and open and such a great actor. Then I submitted a scene with my on-screen daughter Sasha Calle (Lola, Y&R) – I love that girl, and another one with Michelle Stafford (Phyllis, Y&R) who has also been my great friend for a couple of decades. The other scene I put on my reel was with me and Jordi Vilasuso (Rey, Y&R) who I also adore.  He is awesome and such a sweetheart.  I only had two months worth of material to draw upon.  So, I just submitted the scenes that I liked the best, and they all were within story, and all made sense.

Photo: Getty Images

Where is Celeste supposed to be now?

EVA:  She went back to Florida, and that was that. I would never say never to anything, but it was always supposed to be a short stint, and it was great.

So not only is it you and Michael E. Knight, but Jeffery Vincent Parise, Chrishell Stause, and Elissa Kapneck. This Guest Performer category is loaded!

EVA:  I know! I know and love, Chrishell (Ex-Amanda) because we worked together on All My Children, too, right before I left, and she is a doll.  She just might be the sweetest, kindest, girl on the planet.  She literally might be the sweetest person who ever lived!  I don’t know the other two nominees personally.  So, I’m excited for them too.  It’s such a diverse category.  It’s just really fun to be nominated with all of them.

Photo: Hallmark Channel

You were nominated before, though, for your work as Maria on All My Chldren during the emotional baby switch storyline; working opposite Susan Lucci (Ex-Erica) for a lot in it.

EVA:  Yes.  I was nominated for Best Supporting Actress for All My Children, and I was nominated for Best Original Song.  I wrote a song when Maria came ‘back from the dead’ to All My Children, with a producer friend of mine from Miami Sound Machine.

Photo: Live with Kelly Ryan

So, you’ve been doing all of these All My Children virtual reunions, which is so interesting that in this pandemic, people are looking for content, and they dip back into these beloved shows.  Was it fun doing the EW.com Santos Family reunion with everybody?

EVA:  Oh yeah, it was really, really fun.  I only saw in the big picture everybody else’s photo who was a part of it, and the people who I actually do hang out with the most, and see the most, and talk to the most, are Kelly Ripa (Ex-Hayley), Mark Consuelos (Ex-Mateo), and Sydney Penny (Ex-Julia).  I don’t see Sydney as much, but I do see her probably once every two years at least, but Sarah Michelle Geller (ExKendall) I see all the time and talk to all the time.  Kelly, Mark, and Sarah are the ones who walked me through that first week when John Callahan passed.  They literally were on the phone with me, the three of them, almost every day, but I got beautiful outreach, from what seemed like everyone.  This is when no matter how many years have passed since you have been in daytime, that the daytime family as a group – there used to be fifteen shows, now there are four – and people have bounced around and they are on other shows- – but the entire soap opera community reached out,   I cannot even tell you how much that meant to me.  It was overwhelming, and it was really, spectacularly beautiful.

Photo: JPI

I hope it was some solace to you knowing how much people loved John, and also that they love and care so deeply for you.

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EVA:  I mean, people who did not even work with John reached out.  Every soap was represented by getting a hold of me, sending a text or a phone call, or if they didn’t have my personal information, they tweeted, or whatever it was… literally from every reach of soapdom.  It was amazing.

And your relationship with John was amazing with all of the ups and downs you went through; that you remained such dear friends.

EVA:  We remained really great friends all the way.

Photo: JPI

I so remember when the two of you first got together and it was this storybook real life soap couple romance.  John was always so sweet to me.  I was so, so sad, and you know, my heart just broke for you.

EVA:  I think it was just such a shock.  I don’t think anybody, and even Kaya were talking about it, because she graduated this week, and her dad is not here.  We’re not having a graduation, because of COVID-19, which sucks on top of it, but we were just kind of talking through the feelings of it.  She said, “You know what’s weird?  I guess I never pictured dad getting old, and I always wondered why, and now I know.”  When I would get on John about his heart or his health, he used to always say, ‘Oh, don’t worry Evala, (he always called me “Evala”).  I’m going to be here.  I’m going to be here a long time.  I’m fine.  I’m going to be here to walk Kaya down the aisle and see her kids and all that.  Stop worrying,” Every time he said it to me, something in my gut said, “I don’t think he is.  I don’t think he is,” but I always just dismissed that.  But never in my wildest dreams did I think John wouldn’t make it to her high school graduation.  He was only 66.

Photo: JPI

I had heard you ended up running to Palm Springs to be near John.  I can’t even imagine what that must have been like.

EVA:  The only good thing about this pandemic is that we had been shut down for only two weeks at that point.  Kaya and I got in the car.  John had some heart procedures the day before, on a Thursday.  I called him in the morning before he went in for the procedure.  I said, “Call me as soon as you get out of there.  Call me as soon as you come-to again, and you’re good,” and he said, “Okay, I will.”  I said, “I’m going to send Kaya out to you on Friday for the weekend, just so you have somebody to hang out and watch you, and I might come out too,” And then, I said, “Maybe, I’ll come down too in case you are feeling weak, just to watch out for you for the weekend.”   So, he called me after the procedure.   I said, “I cannot believe they sent you home! You just had some major heart stuff done.”  He said, “Oh no, they said I’m fine.  It was just run-of-the-mill heart stuff, angiogram…”  I was like, “Are you sure?”  He said, “Yeah, I’m fine.  I’m just tired.  I’m going to go to sleep.”  I said, “Do you want me to send Kaya out tonight?” and he was like, “No, no, no.  Send her tomorrow.”  So, in the morning, I called him at 9:00am.  No answer.  I texted him.  He always texted me like Johnny on the spot, and then texts me immediately back.  So, I call him again at 10.  Nothing.  His best friend calls me about a half-hour later, “Hey, I talked to John at about 8:00 this morning.  He said he was feeling really, really shitty and was going to go back to the hospital, and then, I texted him again at like 8:30 to just tell him something, and he hasn’t texted me back, and he always texts me immediately back.”  I said, “Oh my, God, I’ve been trying to get a hold of him for two hours; he hasn’t texted me back,”   I said, “You know what, I’ll call you back.”  So, I called his friend who lives down the street from John, and I said, “Go to his house, please right this second, knock on the door, jump the fence, knock on his bedroom, he might be asleep, I don’t know.”  So, he gets there, nobody is answering.  I said, “Break into the house please.  So, he did, and John was collapsed in the bathroom.  They called the paramedics, and as soon as they called me back and said, “John is unresponsive in the bathroom,” Kaya and I threw everything in the car, and what usually takes us two and a half hours without traffic, we made it down there from Los Angeles in an hour and forty-five minutes.

Photo: JPI

I don’t know how you made it down there in one piece. Thank, God!

EVA:  I drove so fast, like literally broke all land speed records and thank God because we got there just in time.  He was in emergency.  He hadn’t been put up in ICU yet, where we wouldn’t have been able to see him.  They weren’t going to let us in the hospital.  Thank God the person answering the door was an All My Children fan.  She was the one saying, “Sorry, no one is allowed in the hospital, no one can come in,” and I was like, “No, no, no, my ex-husband just came in.”  She said, “Was it Edmund?” and I said, “Yes, it was Edmund!”  She said, “Okay, follow me.”  Thank God for All My Children.  Thank God.  So, we followed this woman secretly, and we get to spend a half-hour with him in Emergency.  He was already on life-support, totally unresponsive, but we got to play John his favorite music, we got to just sit there and hold his hand and talk to him, and tell him how much we loved him.  Sarah Michelle Gellar called right when we were in the hospital in Emergency, and she said, “Put the phone by his ear,” so I put the phone by his ear, and she talked to John too, and she told him how much she loved him.  She used to always call him “GP”, which was short of grandpa, because she came on the show when she was 15, and she didn’t have a dad, and John acted like a dad to her – but she used to always call him “grandpa”, and he hated “grandpa”, so he was like, “You can call me “GP”, but not grandpa,” so she always called him GP.  I just put the phone by John’s ear, and what was crazy is that when she talked to him, his feet started twitching.  He started moving his feet.  Then, when Kaya was talking to him about Yankee season, he started moving his feet.  We were kind of hopeful that something was changing for the better.  We had about a half-hour with him, and then, they took him up to ICU, and then, we knew we couldn’t see him again.  They called us later that night that he had passed.

Photo: JPI

I am just so thankful that you got to see John one last time.

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EVA:  I thank God every day that we got to say goodbye, because if we hadn’t gotten there in time to say goodbye, I just don’t know.

It’s very rare that a couple after a divorce, who have a child, and went from romance to dear friends, end up maintaining that relationship so many years later in their lives.  I know so many people who were together at one point in their lives, for years, and they don’t even talk to each other now.

EVA:  Well, you know, like any divorce, the first four years afterwards were super contentious but then, by year five, we kind of had this major breakthrough, and from then on, he was one of my closest friends, and one of the things we always kept alive for each other was we loved to  dance together. We fell in love, I think, dancing because originally our characters on AMC met at this country-western bar, and we had to take country line dancing lessons on the show.  They hired a choreographer for us so that during those scenes where we were falling in love, we would actually be able to do a two-step! So, we went out and practiced at Denim and Diamonds, which was a big country-western place in New York City at the time.  We used to go out with a whole group of us.  It was me, and Teresa Blake (Ex-Gloria) and Kelly Ripa, and her boyfriend at the time, Winsor Harmon (Ex-Del), sometimes Walt Willey (Ex-Jack); we just had a whole crew of us who would go out country dancing.  John and I also loved singing together.  He had the most amazing gravely kind of rockstar voice, but his real talent was harmonizing.  He could harmonize to anything.  So, when he would come over, we would sit in the kitchen and sing, and sing, and sing until the late hours because that’s what we loved to do, and that’s what he loved to do.  That’s one of my favorite last memories of us.  He was just over the month before, and Kaya’s bedroom is near the kitchen, so she came out and was like, “Can you two shut up?”  It was like two in the morning and we were still singing in the kitchen. (Laughs)  John was my dear friend and my confidant.

Photo: ABC

Were you able to have some kind of service during this stay-at-home pandemic we are all dealing with, in order to mourn the loss of John?

EVA:  It’s been so crazy.  We couldn’t even have a funeral.  That’s what made it all the more heartbreaking.  There were less than twenty of us, and we just got on a Zoom call and memorialized John.   I thought we were going to do a big Zoom memorial, but it seemed so overwhelming and so impersonal, it just was rubbing us wrong in every way.  Every way we were looking at it, we were like, “Oh my, God, we just can’t.”  We wanted to invite everybody he had ever worked with, and we were like, “No, we want to do that when everything can open back up again, and invite every person, and have a party” because John was always the life of every party.  Maybe we can do that in the fall or next year.  I kept trying to write something for the small memorial we did do for three days.  I kept coming back to this one song, because John was always the consummate bartender, too.  I sang a song that Bette Midler sang on the very last episode of Johnny Carson.  It was “One for My Baby (and One More for the Road)” and it’s about a bartender who has got a big personality and a lot to say.   I changed some of the words around a bit just to reflect who John was, and so, I ended up singing for it instead of speaking.  We always talked about that last episode of Carson; how stunningly emotional it was when Bette sang that song to kind of sing Johnny off for of all of his years on the air.  So, that’s what I did and because we loved to sing together, it just made sense.

Photo: HutchinsPhoto

I do think you touched upon something, earlier, too.  I don’t think any other genre would have that kind of unbridled camaraderie.  It’s such a family, like you said.  I don’t think you would find that quite like this; certainly in show business. 

EVA:  I really don’t think you can. Even though there is always a good amount of competition in the soaps as well; between the soaps it’s like they are any sports team, but there is always a level of respect, love, and familial connection within the community.  I think that is why they have stood the test of time.  I really do think that is what hooks our audience, that is what keeps them there after all of these years, even though unfortunately the genre is antiquated looking, there is something about it that is nostalgic, familial, and comfortable for people.

Photo: JPI

Every time I talk about All My Children, why do you think everybody go ga-ga for it, when it’s been off the air for several years now?

EVA:  It speaks to people’s childhoods.  It speaks to how we grew up.  You can’t undo nostalgia.  You can’t.  It’s in the way we grew up, the things we loved, the things that we scheduled our lives around, the people we fell in love with on the shows that we watched, who we cared about and loved their storylines. I grew up watching All My Children, General Hospital, and Days of Our Lives.

It must have been a spectacular moment for you when you realized you were actually in Pine Valley and a member of the cast of All My Children then?

EVA:  It was amazing.  I was a fan when I got the show.  I was a straight up fan.  I fangirled walking through that dressing room hallway for the first time! I was trying to keep it in check, but you know … (Laughs)

Photo: JPI

So, in closing, you would say, “Thrilled to be nominated”?

EVA:  Yes.  So fun.  It has really been a rollercoaster of a couple of months here.  That nomination was literally the bright, shining spot in all of this.

So, happy to hear Eva is in the running for a Daytime Emmy? Were you moved by Eva’s sentiments she shared on her relationship with the late John Callahan? Do you miss Pine Valley’s Dr. Maria Santos? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.

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All My Children

All My Children Reunion with Josh Duhamel, Ricky Paull Goldin, Cameron Mathison and More; Later Debbi Morgan Live

It’s a big finale of the weeklong virtual celebration of the iconic All My Children.  On tap today in EW’s series to benefit Feeding America during the COVID-19, some major names from the history of Pine Valley and who had story with each other participating in the chat, premiering at 10 a. m. EST.

Taking part in the walk down memory lane are none other than Josh Duhamel (Ex-Leo), Ricky Paull Goldin (Ex-Jake), Chrishell Stause (Ex-Amanda), Cameron Mathison (Ex-Ryan), Rebecca Budig (Ex-Greenelee) and Melissa Claire Egan (Ex-Annie).

But that’s not all folks! Daytime Emmy winner, Debbi Morgan will participate in a live virtual chat with EW.com today beginning at 3 p.m. EST/12 p. m. PST.  Now will be your chance to hear from the one and only Angie Hubbard from the beloved ABC daytime drama series.

Over the week, EW.com has posted other virtual conversations with notables from Pine Valley, you can check them out here.

So, will you be checking out today’s one-two punch of AMC favorites? Comment below.

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All My Children

All My Children Weeklong Virtual Reunions Kick-Off With Ripa, Consuelos, LaRue and Penny

Beginning this morning, Tuesday, May 26th, a weeklong virtual celebration with the cast of All My Children is on tap for fans of the beloved ABC daytime drama series, featuring a “Who’s Who of Pine Valley”.

The weeklong event is brought to you by EW.com and PEOPLETV.com and starts at 10 am EST/PST.   You can watch it right here.

Featured in the first installments are  the Santos family which includes: real-life marrieds, who met on All My Children, Kelly Ripa (Ex-Hayley) and Mark Consuelos (Ex-Mateo), as well as Eva LaRue (Maria) and Sydney Penny (Julia).

Episode 2 coming up on Wednesday will feature: Michael E. Knight (Tad Martin), Cady McClain (Dixie Cooney Martin), Jennifer Bassey (Marian Colby Chandler), Jill Larson (Opal Cortlandt), and Darnell Williams (Jesse Hubbard).

The weeklong event is in support of Feeding America helping those in need during the COVID-19 pandemic.

For more information and how you can make a donation visit ew.com/allmychildrenreunion

So, let us know what you think of the first installment featuring the Santos clan from Pine Valley as they reunite for a good cause via the comment section below.

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