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Take A Look Back: The First 25 Years of Lead Actor & Actress Winners At the Daytime Emmys!

Courtesy/NATAS

On-Air On-Soaps will be getting you ready all week long for the 39th Daytime Emmys to be handed out this Saturday night, June 23rd live from the Beverly Hilton Hotel and for the first time on cable network HLN!

For starters, we dug up one of our favorite tribute segments on the Daytime Emmy Telecasts. The year was 1999, and the Daytime Emmy turned 25 years old.   Barbara Walters anchored this special segment which featured clips of the past winning moments of the Lead Actor and Lead Actress categories, and at the end of it, the stage was filled with many of the past winners collectively for the first time in one group!  Of course, there were some that were not present for various reasons, but the sentiment was right!  Will we ever see something like this again on the Emmys?  Jury is out on that one.

From Larry Bryggman to Larry Haines to Justin Deas to Peter Bergman to Michael Zaslow to A Martinez to Tony Geary to Darnell Williams to Erika Slezak, Judith Light, Kim Zimmer, Helen Gallagher, Marcy Walker, Linda Dano, Jess Walton and Finola Hughes and Irene Dailey, it’s fun to see the montage of winning moments all put together.  And now, who will have their shining moments this year?

After the jump, take a look back and stroll down memory lane of the first 25 years of winners, and let us know which brought back smiles or tears of joy for you! 

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Barb Harnedy
Barb Harnedy

The Michael Zaslow win brought tears to me eyes. Such an amazing man and actor!! What a tragedy to lose him so young!!

Cindy
Cindy

Ditto. He was amazing.

Blake
Blake

Yes he was! GL wasn’t the same without him and Roger Thorpe! How he only won one Emmy is beyond me!

Bart
Bart

How cool – makes you realize just how much Daytime TV meant back then and all the talent in front of the camera…can’t say that for today’s version of “daytime TV”!!

Blake
Blake

No. Those were the days! On one of the dvds that I have (from when it was originally on VHS tapes), they actually had a 50 year anniversary of soaps show where the stars from all the soaps got together and talked about their shows and showed clips from over the years. Those were the days when soaps were respected and all over the place. Stars would be on talk shows like Oprah, Ricki Lake, etc.

MiCHELE
MiCHELE

oh this made me cry….I miss our stories…

kay/kay
kay/kay

Great but so many that should have won over the years Victoria Wydham who played Rachel for so many years, go and check her tribute to Douglas Watson that was when you got the lumps in the throat. And yes Michael Zaslow who died of ALS as my mother-in-law a horrible disease. I don’t know sometimes as you get older you say what changed it was so great back then. Oh well !!!

Barbara
Barbara

I didn’t realize the Wyndham never won until I watched the clip. Another glaring omisssion for a winner: Beverly McKinsey, who played Iris on Another World and then Alexandra Spalding on Guiding Light. For years, McKinsey turned in great performances in numerous storylines. McKinsey really deserved to have won for multiple years.

Also, this video was interesting. For Elizabeth Hubbard, it included one clip of her as Lucinda Walsh when she never won for that part (again, another mistake) but, instead, won for her role on The Doctors.

Why don’t the Daytime Emmy’s do this type of thing again? Bring back prior winners or veteran actors in some type of tribute? The soaps are in horrible shape. Frankly, I don’t know viable this award show will be next year – There won’t even be enough shows on the air to have five nominees? There is so little competition that the entire thing will be worthless.

kay/kay
kay/kay

Thanks for reminding me about BM she is the one actress that put Jill Farren Phelps in her place she showed up one day and said I quit when she was on GL she had an eight week clause in her contract that Phelps did not bother to read . One very smart talented lady! I love it when actors take charge of their lives instead of getting pushed around.

Tom
Tom

Those of us who had the opportunity to watch Michael Zaslow perform his craft in Springfield were truly blessed. Seriously.

Blake
Blake

Yes we were! I like watching my dvds with GL on it (that were recorded on vhs tapes that I transferred over). Most of them are on youtube. And thank God for youtube to watch scenes I don’t have or didn’t see!

Patrick
Patrick

I have to acknowledge… the win(s)… and the emmy goes to:

Larry Bryggman – John Dixon – ATWT
Elizabeth Hubbard – Lucinda Walsh – ATWT

A Martinez – Cruz Castillo – Santa Barbara
Marcy Walker – Eden Capwell – Santa Barbara

notwithstanding… DAYS Macdonald Carrey – Tom Horton
DAYS Susan Flannery – Laura Horton

DAYS actually won best soap in 1978.

ethel
ethel

michael thank you so much – this was awesome & it brought back so many fond memories! ♥

Rodd
Rodd

I’ve watched this segment before onYouTube and it always gets me chiked up; such talent ans wonderful memories. Those os us who have watched the soaps for many many years have been blessed to have born witness to a myriad of gifted performers who, as BW said, sustained our interest for months ~ even decades ~ and touched our lives so profoundly.

Iakovos
Iakovos

I cannot believe how quickly things have changed on the daytime landscape. And how disappointing those developments are. Thanks for sharing this tribute clip. Daytime shines bright today, only the scope is not as wide. A shame really.

My late father lamented the loss of radio programs he enjoyed as a boy. I miss my daytime dramas in the same way. How wonderful that there were once as many as 18 on the air. New plays and dramas every day, once upon a time… live! The talent and work to do that was remarkable. And should be applauded to this day and beyond!

Emily
Emily

Made me feel good and sad all at the same time!

Christy
Christy

oh, that was great! Thanks Michael!

All My Children

8 Years To The Day Of All My Children & One Life to Live Being Canceled; Still Considered By Many Worst Move For Daytime

It’s hard to believe that 8 years ago today on April 14th, 2011, the soap world, its fans, and the cast members, learned of the heartbreaking news that ABC, in one swift move, decimated its daytime line-up when they announced the cancellations of long running series, All My Children (which would end at its 41st year), and One Life to Live (which would ends its run in its 43rd year).

At the time, ABC announced it would move to more lifestyle/entertainment series to replace these dramas.  In its place came The Chew and The Revolution, neither show is still on the air today.  Executives at that time pointed to research saying that times are changing and that their decision was “guided by extensive research into what today’s daytime viewers want,” and blame, in part, “the changing viewing patterns of the audience” for the axing of AMC and OLTL

Then ABC Daytime President, Brian Frons had joked to Deadline about the big announcement that he: “Pre-entered the witness protection program prior to today’s events.”  He added that “The demise of the two venerable soaps was actually a year in the making.  A year ago, we started to look at our projections where the ratings for the soaps would go.  When those projections came in pretty discouraging, the network began to aggressively develop replacement shows, 15 of them.  Four of the 15 were picked up to pilot: The Chew and The Revolution and two others, a talk show and a dating show. Originally, the idea was to cancel only one daytime drama.  The way the ratings developed and the pilots turned out, the ratings developed negatively and pilots developed positively, so we decided to make a bigger shift.”  Of note is that when it went off the air, One Life to Live was in third place among its competitors in the ratings.

The press release that came with the cancellations stated: “To honor the core, passionate audience and their rich history both shows will conclude in a manner that respects their legacies and the longstanding hopes of many of their viewers.”

Following the cancellations daytime reeled. The mainstream was sure it meant the endings of the soaps, period.  However, four shows illustrated that is not true at all.  For Days of our Lives, General Hospital, The Bold and the Beautiful and The Young and the Restless all remain, and still whether they are up or down in their numbers/ratings, they remain relevant and important to the enduring daytime viewing audience.

Sadly, as with any shows, the end of ABC’s AMC and OLTL meant loss of jobs for so many working in front of the camera and behind the scenes. One Life was the last soap opera in production in New York at the time.  AMC was already being shot in LA to cut costs to save it.

Still in 2019, if you venture on to social media, especially Twitter, you see fans constantly missing its stars and the towns of Llanview and Pine Valley, wanting this wrong rectified.  Although Prospect Park tried to revive the show with their online versions, eventually after legal battles that went on for a few years, ABC now retains the right to these properties,

The good news is that many favorites from AMC and OLTL have found success and been hired on other soap operas, bringing their followings with them, whether it be on-screen, or in the writing, producing, directing or crew departments.

So, do you think the loss of AMC and OLTL consolidated daytime and made the remaining shows stronger so they would not be touched or canceled?  Do you think ABC should try to mount a resurrected AMC and OLTL or an amalgamation of the two?  Do you remember where you were when you learned the two soaps were cancelled? Was this the worst misstep of all-time for daytime? Share your thoughts and theories via the comment section below.

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All My Children

George R. R. Martin’s “Leak” Of New Hulu Series WILD CARDS Featuring Eden Riegel, Thorsten Kaye. and Greg Rikkart

April Fool’s Day started off with a bang today when Eden Riegel (Ex-Bianca, AMC) posted a photo of herself with Thorsten Kaye (Ridge, B&B) and Greg Rikaart (Ex-Leo, DAYS)  in a very intriguing image.  See above pic!  As it turns out, it’s said to be from behind the scenes from some leaked footage of the upcoming Hulu series, Wild Cards.

The premise of Wild Cards is based on the sci-fi anthology series edited by George R. R, Martin, best known for writing the “Song of Ice and Fire” novels, on which HBO’s Game of Thrones is based.  Riegel’s husband, Andrew Miller is the showrunner attached to the upcoming series.

On Martin’s website he teases the set-up of the “leaked” video clip:  “This was not supposed to go public.. Everybody (Well, everybody that has been paying attention knows that we are developing two Wild Cards as a series for Hulu  Andrew Miller has taken the reins as showrunner, a writing staff has been hired, and they have been hard at work for months.  What was NOT supposed to be known is how far they’ve come.  Not only have some scripts been finished, but the first show has gone into production and has been shooting.  That was supposed to be a deep dark secret, however.   We wanted to surprise the world. It’s hard to keep secrets in Hollyweird, however.  And now it appears that some of the rough footage has been leaked by person or persons unknown”

Meanwhile, Riegel sent out a series of tweets: “Hooo boy…cat’s out of the bag! Fans, please don’t judge our show based on these leaked videos!! The effects are going to knock your socks off. And my costars, and , are doing the best work of their lives!”  That was followed by, T”hank you for the chance to work with you on your first foray into soaps! I am humbled and honored. We won’t let you down.” And then, “I’m probably not allowed to share this with all the NDAs I signed, but damnit I’m just so proud of the team!  think we are breaking new ground for soaps. So proud to work with you!”

Now below, check out the Wild Cards “leaked footage” and let us know if you think of the …. um … drama! Comment below.  And one more thing … Happy April Fool’s!

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All My Children

WATCH: All My Children Reunion On Strahan & Sara

On Monday’s episode of ABC’s Strahan & Sara, the show welcomed several stars of the beloved All My Children for a reunion, of sorts. Joining hosts Michael Strahan and Sara Haines were Susan Lucci (Erica), Walt Willey (Jack), Cady McClain (Dixie), Jacob Young (JR) and Jill Larson (Opal).

While it was wonderful to see the stars from Pine Valley again, it was also a painful reminder that this network, ABC, canceled the show, and had put in its place – The Chew, and now Strahan & Sara – since canning the series.   In fact, as you will see on the clips below, many of the crew who work on this talk show were once the crew for All My Children.

During the segment, Susan Lucci was tested to see if she remembered all of Erica Kane’s wedded names.  Later, Walt Willey and Susan re-created the final scene of the ABC version of All My Children between Erica and Jack, where Jack walks out on her.  However, this time, they have Jack changing his mind and coming back to Erica and sealing their relationship with a kiss – a moment of closure that never happened (since the show moved to online via Prospect Park).

In addition, Cady McClain and Jacob Young re-created the infamous Dixie “dying from eating poison pancakes” scene, as JR watches his mother die, only this time she lives.

It’s always great to see these veteran performers, but Strahan & Sara is trying to capture the soap viewers to put eyeballs on their show by bringing in talent from the show that sadly and wrongly went off the air.

Watch the clips below from the All My Children reunion below.  Then, let us know what you thought of it via the comment section below.

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GH icon Genie Francis chats with Michael Fairman about her return to the soap as Laura after being taken off-contract earlier this year. Leave A Comment

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