Connect with us

General Hospital

3

Richard Simmons Recalls His Time On General Hospital and Meeting Tony Geary, Genie Francis, Rick Springfield and More

Photo: JPI

Fitness Guru, Richard Simmons has been recently sharing many stories about his time in Hollywood and his career on his X account as he reflects on his life and prepares his biopic.

In a string of posts, containing moments from his time on General Hospital, and meeting many of who would be his co-stars in Port Charles, Simmons opened up about how he landed on the soap in its hey day.

Simmons began by explaining that after an appearing on an ABC local morning show with Regis Philbin, he got a call two days later about GH, and things took off from there.

Photo: JPI

Richard expressed, “I met with the most powerful woman in daytime television. Gloria Monty. I also met with the head writer Pat Falken Smith. These ladies were very smart. They told me their idea. I would teach exercise classes in a disco for all the ladies on the show.” He added, “A week before taping the show the studio asked me if I could drive over and do some promotional photos. In my car I brought with me six jogging suits….My make up…some towels and five pound weights. I still could not believe I was going to be on a soap. lol.”

When he got to GH’s studio, Simmons shared, “The first person that I met was Genie Francis (Laura). Her father was Ivor Francis an actor who had been on Broadway and many TV shows. Genie was so young and innocent looking. I clicked immediately with her.

Photo: ABC

“The second person I was introduced to was Anthony Geary (Luke),” recalled Richard. “Some people called him Tony. ..but I did not. He was an actor’s actor. Mr G had curly hair like me. When he was not acting he was sitting in his dressing room learning all of his lines.  His door was always closed. One day when it was open. I asked if I could come in and sit and talk. This man won 8 daytime Emmys for playing Luke.”

“Now what can I say about Jane Elliot (Tracy)? She had an aristocratic face,” says Simmons. “One moment her character was very nice then she was the queen of mean. She allowed me to come into her room and chat while she was putting on makeup.”

Photo: JPI

Then, Richard recalled the late, great Stuart Damon (ex-Alan) and Jackie Zeman (ex-Bobbie). “I then met Prince Charming. Stuart Damon. He had been in a lot of TV shows and played Prince Charming on a special about Cinderella. Jackie Zeman was so cute. She had a pixie face.”

Simmons recalled when Rick Springfield joined the cast as Noah Drake, sharing, “While he was on the show his father passed away in Australia. I went to the news stand and bought him a bunch of magazines to read on the plane. How many times have you sung Jessie’s Girl and Don’t Talk to Strangers? When he came back from Australia he resumed his role.”

Courtesy/ABC

Noting his humble beginnings on GH running the aerobic classes at the Campus Disco, Richard recalled, “My first scene was in Luke’s Disco. All the nurses and other actresses were there dancing with me. I had never memorized lines before. So much was going on in my head. At the end of my scene, I heard the sound of heels clicking on the floor and everyone froze. It was Ms Monty and she was talking to me. ‘Richard the television is this big . You are talking like you are on a screen in a movie theater…bring your voice down.’ So I did.”

What do you think about the sentiments shared by Richard Simmons on his reflections on his time on General Hospital? Check out this OG GH scene with Richard leading the exercise class at the Campus Disco with some beloved Port Charles notables. Then, comment below.

Leave a comment | 3 Comments

3 Comments
oldest
newest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

My first GH memory from my childhood is Richard teaching at the Disco.

Remember his GH stint well. Much love to a beautiful soul.

I have read nothing about Richard Simmons re-joining the human race.Many articles over the years about him in seclusion and now here he is discussing GH, when and where did his return to society happen?

General Hospital

Nicholas Chavez Speaks Out on the Death of Friend and Former GH Castmate Johnny Wactor: “I’m Beside Myself with Sadness”

It has been another rough go for the General Hospital family following the news surrounding the shooting that killed beloved former cast member, Johnny Wactor (ex-Brando Corbin) over the weekend.

Since that time, there has been an outpouring of grief, shock and sadness, and remembrances for the actor who died at 37-years-old.  Many of Johnny’s castmates have spoken out about the loss and shared heartbreaking tributes.

Now, Nicholas Chavez (ex-Spencer Cassadine) who is soon-to-be-seen in Ryan Murphy’s limited series on Netflix, Monsters: The Lyle and Erik Menendez Story, has also shared his sentiments. With heartfelt words, along with a photo of himself and Johnny, and another former GH co-star, Marcus Coloma (ex-Nikolas), Chavez explained the difficulty he is having processing Johnny’s death and the unbreakable bond they shared.

Photo: Facebook

Nick began, “Johnny — I’m beside myself with sadness. The last time I saw you, we ran into each other by accident in Los Angeles. When we recognized each other your face lit up and you ran essentially across the room to give me a big and tight hug. You were a strong and kind person”

He went on to say, these heartfelt words to Johnny, “You were a phenomenal friend and you always made me feel welcomed and loved. I consider myself incredibly lucky to have been a part of your life and I’m praying for you and your family. I will miss you very much.”

Johnny Wactor run on GH lasted from 2020-2022, while Nicholas Chavez appeared from 2021 till early in 2024.

Share your thoughts on Nicholas’ remembrances of Johnny Wactor via the comment section below.

Continue Reading

Breaking News

New Details Emerge in Fatal Shooting of General Hospital’s Johnny Wactor; Was Protecting Female Co-Worker From Armed Car Thieves

The brother of Johnny Wactor (ex-Brando Corbin) has come forward with some new information on the act of violence that took the life of the General Hospital favorite on Saturday May 25th in the wee hours of the morning in downtown Los Angeles.

As valiant as man as Johnny was to all those who know and loved him, he was through and through that man till the very end. According to Grant Wactor, Johnny actually shielded a female co-worker at the time of the crime before he was fatally shot.  Three men were trying to steal Wactor’s catalytic converter from his vehicle, one of which fired the shot that killed the former GH star.

According to a new report from the Daily Mail, Wactor was leaving his side job as a bartender at a downtown LA rooftop bar with a female colleague at around 3:25am when he saw the three men near his vehicle at West Pico Boulevard and South Hope Street.

Photo: ABC

Believing he was being towed, he approached the men to try to discuss it. One of the men then looked up and pointed a gun at Wactor, who put his body in front of his female co-worker as he was shot. Police say, the three men were all wearing masks, and then fled the scene in another car.  The suspects currently remain at-large.

Grant commented on his brother’s last act of bravery, “We’re Southern, born and raised, and we would never let a female walk to their car by herself.” He added that Johnny, “Thought his truck was being towed. So he said something to the guys, like, ‘Hey, are you towing?’ And then once he turned around, he saw what was happening and he put his coworker behind him. And that’s when they shot him.

Photo: JPI

Sadly, Grant revealed, Johnny was shot in the chest, and that Johnny and his co-worker had to park about two blocks from the restaurant, so they were walking to their cars after they finished their shift when the incident unfolded.

Grant shared that he hopes justice will be served and the men are caught, “I hope they are able to track the people who did this. I am glad in a way that this is getting the publicity so that it could shed some light that things need to change, or find ways so that no one else has to experience this – whether it be a murder or being at the wrong place at the wrong time.”

In what has already been horrific that we lost Johnny to a senseless act of gun violence over an attempted theft, learning that the actor died right after protecting somebody else, only reinforces the kind of man Wactor was to all those who knew and loved him. Share your thoughts on the latest details on Johnny’s death via the comment section below.

Continue Reading

General Hospital

General Hospital Co-Stars Share Their Grief and Mourn the Loss of Johnny Wactor

There has been an outpouring of grief, sadness and remembrances for former General Hospital actor, Johnny Wactor (ex-Brando Corbin 2020-2022), who the world learned was shot and killed on Saturday in a senseless theft and act of gun violence.

As previously reported, Wactor was only 37-years-old. The incident, as told by Wactor’s mother to TMZ, which ultimately took his life, occurred when three individuals attempted to steal the catalytic converter from Johnny’s car. Once alerted to the situation. Wactor did not try to stop or interfere in the theft but the unidentified suspects shot him anyway and then got a way.

Wactor’s talent agent, David Shaul, made this statement on his passing to Variety, “Johnny Wactor was a spectacular human being. Not just a talented actor who was committed to his craft but a real moral example to everyone who knew him. Standing for hard work, tenacity and a never give up attitude. In the highs and lows of a challenging profession he always kept his chin up and kept striving for the best he could be. Our time with Johnny was a privilege we would wish on everyone. He would literally give you the shirt off his back. After over a decade together, he will leave a hole in our hearts forever.”

Photo: ABC

Many of Johnny’s former GH castmates took to social media in the last several hours with heartbreaking and touching words on the loss of Wactor. Here are just some below, and Michael Fairman TV will continue to update these remembrances as they are posted.

Sofia Mattsson (Sasha) – My heart is so utterly broken… Johnny was the absolute best. So genuine. So caring. Incredibly hard working and humble. With a huge heart that spread so much kindness and joy. He always made sure everyone around him felt seen, heard and loved. I admire the man he was so much and I’m a better person for having known him. We shared so many special moments, both on and off screen, and I will forever cherish them deeply in my heart. You will be so incredibly missed Johnny… I’m sure you’re already busy taking care of everyone up there.”

Maurice Benard (Sonny): “What can I say about something so senseless? Johnny was the sweetest guy coolest dude and just a great soul. This is beyond words you will be missed my friend.”

Chad Duell (Michael): “Some POS scum taking the life of someone who’s making something of themselves, and an amazing person. So disgusting and infuriating. Don’t know what else to say.. just so wrong.”

Photo: ABC

Jon Lindstrom (Kevin): “When the tears slow down, I am literally sick to my stomach at this news. Johnny was one of those rare young men in this business who was kind, unassuming, humble, and always thought about other people. A talented young guy who just wanted to share that talent with the world. I wish I had enough love to fill the hole that his loved ones must feel right now, but I know that’s impossible. Johnny will be missed on this plane. For a long time to come. R.I.P.”

Nancy Lee Grahn (Alexis): “An absolutely inconceivable, enraging & senseless tragedy. Johnny was a lovely man. Condolences to his family & friends. May they find eventual peace & may his memory be a blessing.”

Finola Hughes (Anna): “Gutted…. 🕊️ sending my deepest condolences to his family 🤍 I feel I must add to this post. The shock is so terrible, for such a genuine young man to be taken so violently. I am incredibly sad for his family. He was a very hardworking person, kind and extremely respectful to his fellow cast members. I am so sorry for his loss 🤍 Johnny Wactor xxx”

Photo: ABC

Kirsten Storms (Maxie): “I’m in a state of disbelief and complete sadness. I don’t typically do posts like this, but Johnny was such a special person and it feels important (for me) to put these words out there. To Johnny’s mother and family, I am so sorry for your loss. I can’t imagine what you must be feeling right now. You are in my thoughts and prayers. Johnny was one of those rare “real individuals” that you almost never come across. I was fortunate enough to have some really good conversations with him where we discussed things I don’t typically open up about. For some reason, we talked about the deep stuff. He was a safe space for those conversations and, in turn, he would talk about his life. He genuinely cared about people and their journeys in life. During his time on GH I witnessed him work hard and truly have respect for every single person in our building. I just cannot believe that his life was stolen from him the way it was. My heart hurts. RIP Johnny”

Bonnie Burroughs (ex-Gladys): “I am heartbroken and sickened by this terrible loss. Johnny I love you. My heart breaks for your real mom and your whole family. The world is darker now.”

Photo: ABC

Ashton Arbab (ex-Dev): “Absolutely heartbroken while typing this. Johnny Wactor was not only my tv dad for more than 25 episodes on General Hospital but he was a great human, a kind soul, an inspiration and a one of a kind actor. May your soul rest in peace. Heaven gained an Angel.”

Perry Chen (Brad): Johnny Wactor was a beautiful, beautiful soul. So talented. As you can see from the promo clip, always up for anything. Funny as all heck. Fit as all hell but also loved ice cream and ate all the junk I did as well. We all were cheated of many years with him.

Kelly Thiebaud (ex-Britt):  “Johnny Wactor, you were one of the good ones. I’m so sorry this happened to you. RIP”

Photo: ABC

William deVry (ex-Julian): “Honestly, words can’t begin 2 express the sadness with which 2 convey my feelings towards losing another GH Alum. The senselessness of this lose is beyond description. Johnny was such a good guy. Really horrible. RIP Johnny Wactor & much love & comfort to those who loved him.”

Laura Wright (Carly): “In shock. My heart breaks for Johnny’s family. You were an incredible man.”

Kathleen Gati (Obrecht): Another talented, kind and generous General Hospital colleague gone too soon. Deepest condolences to the family, friends, colleagues and fans of Johnny Wactor.”

Cynthia Watros (Nina): “What a kind soul. We lost an amazing man.”

Briana Lane (ex-Brook Lynn): “The world lost a wonderful person yesterday and a true gentleman to everyone he met. I feel lucky to have known him and to have experienced the warmth he exuded so effortlessly. RIP Johnny Wactor”

Lydia Look (Selina): “Johnny, I’m crying and will be for a bit. I knew you were talented when you simply just took your shirt off when the rest of us were trying to outdo each other with our skits. I also knew there & then that you were fine as wine 😻 I also saw how you’d let others take the spotlight whilst confident & loving in your own space. Most of all, I learnt what a magnificent human you were in our long car rides between fan events. I will cherish our chats. Thank you.”

The official General Hospital social media accounts on X and Instagram shared: “The entire General Hospital family is heartbroken to hear of Johnny Wactor’s untimely passing. He was truly one of a kind and a pleasure to work with each and every day. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his loved ones during this difficult time.”

What do you think about some of the remembrances of Johnny Wactor as shared by his former GH co-stars and friends af learning he was shot and killed? Comment below.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by SOFIA MATTSSON (@iamsofiamattsson)

Continue Reading

Video Du Jour

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

Recent Comments

Power Performance

Michael Easton as Finn

General Hospital

Airdates: 5-20/24-2024

Popular