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The Lauralee Bell and Doug Davidson Interview – The Young and the Restless

Photo Credit: Kathy Hutchins

Photo Credit: Kathy Hutchins

If you watched today’s highly emotional tribute and memorial service to Katherine Chancellor on The Young and the Restless, you may have been caught by surprise, as were the actors who play Christine and Paul!  Of course, we are talking about Lauralee Bell (Christine) and Daytime Emmy winner Doug Davidson (Paul) who have kept the secret that during the memorial, Paul and Christine get married!  The shocking turn of events brings some happiness and hope to a rather heartbreaking day for Katherine’s loved ones, family, and friends who come together in Chancellor Park, the new set honoring the late Jeanne Cooper, to say goodbye to the Grand Dame of Genoa City.

On-Air On-Soaps chatted with Lauralee and Doug exclusively to get an inside look at what went down during the emotional taping of Katherine’s memorial, especially for these two who had such a deep and close bond to the legendary Jeanne Cooper.  Plus, we learn, what was their reaction when they learned that their characters would marry in the middle of the memorial?  Fitting, or, inappropriate?

For longtime fans of the number-one soap, Doug references throughout our chat the influences of Lauralee’s dad (Y&R creator Bill Bell) throughout this new storyline involving the letters Katherine left for the residents of Genoa City, that for many is a call to action, and for many a time to contemplate.  But for once in soaps, the good girl and the good guy finally get together.  What better way than to have their beloved friend and long time cast mate Jeanne Cooper looking over them from the heavens above onto the soundstage at CBS to watch the fictional union of two of her dearest friends in real life.  Here is what Lauralee and Doug have to share about the experience with all of you!

MICHAEL:

How was it for both of you to perform and participate in the memorial episodes for Katherine Chancellor knowing your deep personal relationship with Jeanne Cooper?

LAURALEE:

Courtesy/CBS

I don’t think Doug and I have ever cried so hard, honestly.

DOUG:

What happened was… the part that got me the first time was that during rehearsal Corbin Bernsen is up there as Father Todd, and where does the play stop and real life begin?  There are these big pictures of Jeanne around, and he started and he got caught up, and we were OK then, but then he goes to read this poem, and so much of the poem reminded me of Jeanne not really being away.  You could feel her presence in the studio.  She is such a powerful force.  Then having her son read this poem about herThen, suddenly Doug was getting more emotional than Paul should …

LAURALEE:

… Right, right!  We were all getting so emotional, especially our row.  If the camera were to have cut to us, it would have been an odd choice.  We could barely keep it together!  But there was one little segment apparently that Corbin said, “When I read it at home and was preparing to shoot the episode, I did not see this one sentence that said, ‘my blood lives within you,”’ or something to that effect.  It just choked him up immediately, because everything was, and is so real.

DOUG:

And, it’s so contagious.  It’s his mom, and you feel for him, and you feel for the loss of his mom, and our friend, and on so many levels, that you can’t anticipate how you are going to react with all of that coming at you.

LAURALEE;

Courtesy/CBS

It was a really hard day.

MICHAEL:

Were the two of your dreading taping the episodes, because of how close real life and art were this time?  Did you like the way the writers decided to deal with Katherine’s death?

DOUG:

What I liked is that Katherine is not off the canvas, and that is the bottom line, and that is why we were both thrilled how it was handled, because she is living beyond her departure through letters she gave to all of these cast members.  All of the letters are changing the lives of the people of Genoa City, and she is now still the topic of the show.

LAURALEE:

I had not really thought about if it would be difficult or not, because I felt like we had been through that.  But in some weird way, this was almost harder than Jeanne’s real memorial.

DOUG:

I think we were all eager to do it, because it was such a tribute to an iconic television character.  So, I think everybody involved in the story was honored to be there.  Our fans deserve a great tribute, and that she be honored in a fitting manor.  I guess if you are afraid of emotion, you have got the wrong job of being an actor on a soap opera.  From my perspective, it was a privilege to be able to honor her.  I don’t think anyone has been honored quite in this fashion: first a memorial for Jeanne, and now her character.

LAURALEE:

Courtesy/CBS

It all ended so nicely, too, because each cast member went up and singly had a sentence about her and for her as they put roses next to her ashes.  It was so well done.

DOUG:

Corbin brought some of Jeanne’s ashes to be in Katherine’s vessel.  It was very cool.

LAURALEE:

It was very intense.  And when you would look to your left and see the camera operators and the boom guys all choked up too, everyone on that set was involved.

DOUG:

There was no way out.

MICHAEL:

So, Paul is the last one to get a letter from beyond the grave that starts the turn of events at the memorial that sort of matches up with what Katherine said to Christine in her letter.

DOUG:

Paul is the last one to get a letter!

LAURALEE:

Christine’s letter said something to the affect of: “No one ever had on their tombstone, you put in great hours.  Take time to look at the sunset and take time to live your life, and if something is right there in front of you that you know it is meant to be, get it.  Don’t waste your life away.”  So the meaning was in there, and then Paul got his letter.

Courtesy/CBS

DOUG:

And Paul’s letter says, “What are you waiting for?  Marry her!”  That is all it said.

MICHAEL:

What happened to Nina (Tricia Cast) in all of this?  On Tuesday’s episode, Kay’s letter impacted her so much that she was ready to let go of Paul, and just in time!

DOUG:

Nina got a letter to forgive.  I must say since that story started, it has been more Bill Bell-esque in the style of the show, and character-driven with a heartbeat.  It has certainly felt more like Bill’s show since her passing, and that is due to the fact that Jeanne Cooper’s Katherine Chancellor is part of the original creation and concept of Y&R.  And, it’s carried through into all the other stories right now.

LAURALEE:

Plus, I hoped the fans loved all the flashbacks during the memorial.  It was great to hear Jess Walton (Jill) talk about how Jill and Katherine met.  And, how she was her manicurist, and that is something you forget.  Even as an actor on the show, to listen to everyone’s little vignette was. “Oh God. I forgot about that.  And Wow, there is such insane history.”  It was just all great!  So Paul says to Christine, “Will you marry me?”  It is a bizarre place, but at least we acknowledge it, like, “I don’t think we should crash Katherine’s funeral!” (Laughs)

DOUG:

But what was your reaction, Lauralee, when you heard about Paul and Christine getting married at Katherine’s memorial?

LAURALEE:

Personally, I did not believe it!

DOUG:

Courtesy/CBS

It was like, “What the heck?”

MICHAEL:

How did you first hear about the shocking fact that Christine and Paul would get married at Katherine’s Memorial?

DOUG:

I heard about it from the wardrobe department.  I was like, “Have they totally lost it?” (Laughs) And I have got to say when we got on the floor; it once again honored Kay and Jeanne.  It sort of all came together there … our emotions and our love for her.  It was about the things that stop us in life that maybe we would not have heard when she was here, but you hear loud and clear when she’s gone.  I will get messages from our viewers that they have so much more attachment to the veterans on the show since her passing.  And there again, they cherish what they lost, and are attaching to the people they have spent 25, 30 or 40 years with.

LAURALEE:

I went for a fitting for a wedding dress, and I was like, “Right?”

MICHAEL:

What did you think about how the marriage came about so quickly?

LAURALEE:

Well, Paul gets down on knee!  And … with Reverend Corbin looking on!  (Laughs)

DOUG:

Courtesy/CBS

Then Jill says, “This will be perfect!”

LAURALEE:

And Christine says, “I don’t think this is appropriate.  It steals focus.”

DOUG:

It makes it so right that it will honor her, in that we are starting a new life together and honoring a life that just past – so it’s a death and birth at the same time.

LAURALEE:

And there were instructions from Katherine, that this should not be a sad occasion but a party, and all of that.  So it did work.

MICHAEL:

You must have been concerned that this would come off as a bit odd?

DOUG:

In the beginning, yes … but then also what came into this was Lauralee’s relationship with Jeanne, and my relationship with Jeanne, and suddenly we looked at each other and we have our own history together.  So, then it becomes about Doug’s working relationship with Lauralee, and Lauralee’s with Doug’s, and suddenly your realize, all of our adult life has been spent in this environment.  Corbin pointed out that over half of Jeanne’s life was spent on Y&R, and suddenly we could all relate to the fact that what Bill and Lee Bell created lives on.  After the taping of the memorial was all done, Corbin personally challenged all of us in keeping the show alive and working as hard as we can.

Photo Credit: Kathy Hutchins

LAURALEE:

He challenged us to take this and take it to the next level, and never give up.  Even when you worked with Jeanne, she would force you to work harder to make it a better scene.

DOUG:

At 84!  She would show up, ready to go.  It was amazing.

MICHAEL:

And where do you think things were between Christine and Paul before the letters arrived?  Were they in a good place where Katherine’s influence would have sparked this to happen so quickly?

LAURALEE:

All Christine says to Paul is, “I know you are a little disappointed that you didn’t get a letter.”   She has been away and she shows up and Paul says, “Do you want to just pass on the memorial?”   Christine says, “No, after getting this letter, I feel closer to Katherine.  And, I am sorry you did not get a letter.”   Paul just sloughs it off and says, “I will just share yours.”   But you can tell he is very sad he does not have a letter.  But it was pretty immediate, and probably better that way, because if there was too much thought about it, it would not have worked.  The whole thing had to be spontaneous.

DOUG:

I am delivered the letter towards the end of the memorial service, and I go off to a private area to read it. 

MICHAEL:

So all this time Christine and Paul loved each other from afar?  Lauralee has not been on the show as much recently.

LAURALEE:

Photo Credit: Kathy Hutchins

Well, she moved back from Washington to be with Paul.  I work a bunch more in the beginning of September, so I think things will become clearer.

DOUG:

I understand there were production reasons why Lauralee could not come earlier, and then for Lauralee she had family plans during the summer.

LAURALEE:

I don’t know if I will be on more. I hope so.  I am auditioning and doing my web series, and when I get the call to come back to Y&R, I am happy to go.  It is all good.

MICHAEL:

Nina seemed happy she got her letter, so she was satisfied to let bygones be bygones.  She even was Christine’s maid of honor! But what about Danny (Michael Damian), who Christine has a romantic past with?  He did not look to happy about this union!

LAURALEE:

Nina was happy because she got a letter from Katherine.  She was happy to be acknowledged, same with Danny who said something like, “I’ve moved on.  I don’t care.”  It was pretty funny. (Laughs)

MICHAEL:

Do you think Christine and Paul ever stopped loving each other?

DOUG:

I don’t think they ever stopped.  I think they were driven apart by Michael (Christian LeBlanc) and Isabella (Eva Longoria) and if not for that, I think they would have made it over the separation.  But having the two forces; Michael on Chris and Isabella on Paul, it drove a wedge between them when Chris was working in Hong Kong. Upon her return, I don’t think they stopped loving each other.  I think it was all still there.  I think they became jealous, and because of it, it shrouded their love, but if you recall none of that happened naturally.  It was all forced upon.

LAURALEE:

Courtesy/CBS

Paul’s competition really is Christine’s job.  That is her problem.  She has to figure out what she needs more … a career, or a life.  But at this point in life, as people get older this marriage has a better chance of working, because it’s a different stage in your life, and you do realize that life does not go on forever and you re-prioritize.  I think that other than the circumstances of Katherine’s wedding, it was an emotional ceremony, and that they are on now on a very adult level with each other in a different way.

DOUG:

The fact that they have such a strong foundation and relationship beyond husband and wife, is the reason it’s probably going to last forever.  And, I mean forever as anything is on a soap opera. (Laughs)

MICHAEL:

Do you think Jeanne would love the fact that Paul and Christine got hitched on the memorial episodes dedicated to the legacy of her character, Katherine Chancellor?

DOUG:

I think you go one step further, too; it was a pairing that was incredibly important to Bill as well.  And for me, it was quite an honor that he picked my character to marry the character his daughter plays.  If you know anything about Bill, he would never do anything like that lightly.  That in itself is an honor, but Jeanne being connected to that goes above and beyond.  There is a video clip of where she is talking to me about Chris that was 20 years ago.

MICHAEL:

Courtesy/CBS

Lauralee, do you think Dad would be proud of this story?

LAURALEE:

I think so.  The history is there.  It defines itself, and the audience knows what we are thinking without speaking, and it’s characters that our so embedded in the show.

DOUG:

We could not have done this without Bill Bell.  This goes so deep into the core and the heart of the entire show, that it’s all him.

LAURALEE:

Friends who never watched the show asked me, “Oh, you’re getting married again?”  Then they asked, “Well, what number is this for you?”  And I said, “Surprisingly, it’s only the second man I have married on Y&R.”   Again, this relationship was not so all over the place, where Paul was with this person, and that person, and Christine was with half the cast.  These two have such a special bond that when you see one; you expect to see the other.

DOUG:

I hesitate to use the word “old-fashioned”, but it was the hero and the heroine, and Bill Bell was very protective of both our characters, and what we got involved it.  I know from my perspective, Bill would never have Paul shoot anybody.  He wouldn’t even let me point a gun.  That is how pure that was…

LAURALEE:

Photo Credit: Kathy Hutchins

… Or, let you solve a case! (Laughs)

MICHAEL:

Well, while Paul could never solve a case, Christine could!  She never lost a case in court! (Laughs)

LAURALEE:

When I went to The Bold and the Beautiful Ronn Moss (Ex-Ridge) said, “You’re my attorney?”  And I said, “You’re gonna win!”  (Laughs)

MICHAEL:

Do either of you have a favorite moment, or scene with Jeanne?

LAURALEE:

Well, I wouldn’t even know how to describe what we were talking about, but a few years ago, I think I came back for a couple of months.  I had a scene with Jeanne where I am assuming I was talking about Paul.  I bawled in the scene to her, and it didn’t ask for tears.  But in my brain, I had this thing like, “Oh, my God.  I bet I am never going to work with her again.”   Little did I know that she would live two years longer.  But it was so intense for me.  She did not say very much, but all I had to do was look at her, and it was sort of like the trust factor I have with Doug.  It was such a wonderful day for me. There was no panic about how am I going to say this big monologue with this person, and hope that it comes out right.  All I had to do was just look at her.  I don’t know if you can call it a favorite scene, but it was so beyond comfort in terms of working with someone, it was just such a gift that day.

DOUG:

Paul and Kay had a professional relationship, and it was not nearly as deep as Doug and Jeanne.  I have pictures of me in a scene with her, and she always made me laugh.  I would solve crimes, or loved ones for Katherine.  So that made my job kind of difficult. Paul would be sad, but not so heartbroken, that you can’t talk.

MICHAEL:

Courtesy/CBS Photo Credit: JPI

So Christine got this makeshift wedding, and wore what she had on for the memorial as her “wedding dress”!

LAURALEE:

Yes.  All the girls give me something borrowed, something blue and there is a makeshift bouquet! (Laughs)

DOUG:

Katherine did not want people wearing black, so no tears, no mourning.  So that colored the palette of what we were all wearing.  It was not a maudlin ceremony, and it took place in a place that never existed before.  So for the near future, this park is named after Katherine Chancellor, and we have scenes there with her plaque on the wall.  We honor her every time the park is up.  That is what I mean she is not off the canvas, and she will never be.  She will live on in the hearts of viewers, and all the people that had a personal relationship with her that remain on the show.

 

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mary jonas
mary jonas

Thank you for this. It was a really nice ending to #rememberKay. I like how it has a deeper meaning because Doug and Lauralee seem so close with Jeanne Cooper. Something sweet.

Dinah
Dinah

The only I dislike about today show, sorry this was should be only about Mrs C, besides they are very boring couple every been on YR

Dinah
Dinah

ever not every sorry

Chris
Chris

I love these actors and the characters they portray! I especially love Jeanne Cooper and Mrs. C. The tribute had some beautiful moments but the wedding was weird and upstaged why we all tuned in. Personally I thought it was in poor taste. I was emotionally involved the first half and then reminded that people who don’t get this show are running it.

JG and JFP don’t seem to know how to write/produce moments and just let that moment have its place in time. There is nothing deep in how they tell story.

Overall the episodes will remain with me because of the fact that we really did lose a loved member of the cast. That’s why these episodes worked.

Jules
Jules

I completely agree with your observation about the wedding. That wedding was entirely unnecessary in this particular episode. It was rushed, meaningless, no depth or poignancy and COMPLETELY took away from the otherwise lovely tribute they were giving to Katherine and Jeanne. Frankly, I would think JC would have been APPALLED that the show would try and upstage, or at the very least compete, with a tribute dedicated to her…in her humorous way of course, but you just know there would be truth behind her displeasure.

And moreover, it didn’t do anything for the characters of Paul and Christine either. I haven’t been watching long, but I do know the couple has been off and on for decades. This insta-wedding did such a disservice to their fans who have waited for years for them to find their way back to one another and get the wedding they deserve.

The episode was a mess and completely disjointed, and it’s a real shame not only because of what it was supposed to be about (which in and of itself is a damn shame), but also because it so easily didn’t have to be this way. I think Josh Griffin THOUGHT he was giving everyone what they wanted, and JFP THOUGHT she was creating her Emmy winning episode- balancing the sad and happy emotions, “a little bit of this, and a little bit of that”- but the final product was just a disaster. What started off as a really strong, sentimental and touching episode dedicated to the memory of one of the most legendary and enduring daytime divas of all time, was reduced to a pitiful, uninspired wedding after switching gears on a 180 degree turn at the next commercial break. RI-DIC-U-LOUS.

Jewell
Jewell

At least Nick and Avery decided to wait.. Paul and Christine only got married because of what Katherine said in that letter.. Also I learned Michael broke up their marriage last time, so Paul asks him to be his best man? Come on..

Mary SF
Mary SF

I watched the memorial shows and I never cried, got a bit misty eye at a few spots, but it was all done like I expected The clips were clips I had seen many times, but I enjoyed them. Maybe fatigue made me feel numb all through it;even the ghost at the end was a sweet, but lack the emotional punch of Edward and Lily’s ghosts going up the staircase did on GH. So here I thought nothing about it was going get me to cry– and then you tell me that Corbin placed some of Jeanne’s ashes in Katherine’s urn– now I am blubbering like a baby– thanks for giving me a real moment to say goodbye to great actress and character.

yogabba
yogabba

Lovin the good use of vets! sweet moments for a longtime couple. me likes. They need Isabella back now to go crazy on em!

Cupcake
Cupcake

Awesome soap I’ve been watching for 40 yrs and will really miss Catherine.

Judy
Judy

Great interview! I loved the wedding and certainly hope we do see more of Christine going forward!

Carole
Carole

Was very disappointed but not surprised that Christine would be suddenly brought into the story line and made the star of the show. The boss’s daughter has always been given the best storylines, clothes, close up shots, etc. Todays episode just proves it and was disrespectful of Jeanne Cooper and all the fans.

yogabba
yogabba

thats a stretch. she hasn’t been on much at all in recent years and suddenly she was ‘made the star’. i think it was just supposed to be cute.

lisa
lisa

It was a surprise – but I liked it.
In keeping with Katherine’s spirit ,I think she would have liked it too.
In death,life goes on.
I was very moved to see Jeanne’s real life son Corbin (Father Todd) performing the service – as he is cast as Paul’s brother on the show – I do hope he will make future visits.
It was a good episode.

Tom
Tom

At first I didn’t understand this storyline choice, but I always loved Paul and Cricket as a couple so I went with it. I haven’t agreed over the past few weeks with every story beat in the wake of Katherine’s passing, but take these memorial episodes as they were: we got a chance to see the show’s veterans in one last hurrah. With far too much of the past year–and years, for that matter–showing Genoa City awash in boring new faces, it was nice to just see the vets and legacy characters as well. We can’t predict what the future will hold, especially in the wake of the JFP/JG falling out, but I appreciate that I got to see a whole bunch of Bill Bell characters gathered together.

Joan
Joan

I know every one is entitled to their own opinion. Paul and Christine have always been a good match. I’m not surprised that they find their way back into each others arms.

Jewell
Jewell

The memorial was beautiful, when they shown the hologram of Jeanne Cooper at the end I lost it.. IMO the wedding didn’t belong at the wedding.. I would love to see Danny come back and fight for Cricket you can see that he still loves her.

k/kay
k/kay

Jeanne Cooper would have loved it Doug & Lauralee she loved hey it was her Dad’s creation you are suppose to love your children, don’t worry it is downhill all the way now The Steve Burton show. JFP you are welcome to it you and the golden boy deserve each other. I just pray that if Y&R goes first and he is out of work RC &FV tell him to kiss off.

Deborah
Deborah

BRAVO! Wonderful article. FAN-DAM-TASTIC Memorial. We ALL Wept like “the Family we are”….Hope the Chancellor Estate has a new portrait hanging over the mantle for the rest of time! Want to see the Duchess of Daytime Every time theyre is someoen in the living room! She will NEVER be forgotten … she’s “just in the next room.” The wedding was bizzare, but it was alright for this life-long fan. Jeanne would be as happy as Katherine that the wedding took place there. So thrilled to learn that she was present in the urn as well. Such a WONDER, REMARKABLE, UNIQUE EVENT and I am soooo proud and happy to have been able to virtually participate in paying my respects through my “attendance.” No other television star, has EVER been honored in such a way, by Millions of sincerely loyal fans. Just amazing, and soooo deserved. Great Lady!

PatF
PatF

It was a bit odd, but I do like that Josh G, who wrote it, was really doing so to keep all the veteran characters involved.

I’m suspecting that’s one of the reasons he was having creative differences with Ms Phelps, because she seems to want to get the show AWAY from our loved characters.

The entire two episodes really were pretty good and honored Kay’s and Jeanne memory. I love the park idea, but it better NOT replace the classic Mansion we want to continue to see.

I hope these new writers, who have no idea of the history of the show are able to continue the show with these characters we love.

Joy Mathys
Joy Mathys

Paul and Chris were my favorite couple when I started watching the show, years ago… and they still are. I loved these two episodes, I love Chancellor Park and I loved the wedding.

H Parson
H Parson

I love both of these characters, but I felt their wedding hijacked what should have been a second episode of our other characters strolling down memory lane.

And I think the park that was named in Katherine’s honour looked fake.

The new sets do not have the warmth of character Y&R sets have had in the past. In particular – the new ranch set is a disgrace. It’s so tacky and cheap looking.

Dee
Dee

I loved the dedication to Jeanne Cooper; glad to see Paul & Christine married and that Michael was best man(CLB is my fav actor) their friendship has grown as has their respect for each other. I think Josh did a great job and was sorry to see him go as I do not trust JFP to keep our beloved characters of the past front and Center..I have loved the fact that Christian LeBlanc Tracey Bregman and Doug Davidson have had more screen time since Josh took over..Now am waiting with bated breath to see how JFP and her cronies handle it. If they mess up me and my 7 friends who Josh got back to watching will all but quit as we almost did under MAB I only watched when CLB TEB and DD were on and you all know how seldom it was under MAB ..I was disappointed to see Josh G. go..lets hope the new writers are worthy of writing Y and R as it is supposed to be written.

Karen
Karen

I thought Katherine’s memorial was perfect. It had me in tears one minute and laughing along with everyone else the next. It must have been so hard for Corbin though. I don’t know how he got through it, but it couldn’t have been more appropriate. I was so happy to see some characters back for her memorial, but missed many others. As for the wedding – I loved it! It was a perfect way to end her memorial. And I have waited FOREVER for Paul and Christine to re-marry. Katherine would have been so happy. Will miss her always.

Agnes McKamey
Agnes McKamey

I wanted to find a copy of the poem that Father Todd read for Katherine. Please let me know since it was beautiful. The memorial service was outstanding and very fitting for a grand duchess!

Andrea
Andrea

If you find a copy of the poem read or even the name and author please e-mail me with the info.

Thanks

ellen
ellen

I’ve been searching for this too as I have an upcoming memorial that this would be perfect for. Thank you

Beacon
Beacon

Bill Bell knew that Cricket belonged with Danny. They were the love story of Y&R in the 80s. If Bill hadn’t have retired, Cricket and Danny would have found their way back together. There’s an episode from December 1995 I have where Danny is visiting Katherine and she tells him that Paul and Christine can’t last because Cricket’s heart is with Danny.

Daphne
Daphne

Actually, Bill Bell idolized Paul and Christine. Bill Bell was also the one who wrote the Danny character off in 1998 and put Paul and Christine back together to work on their marriage. Bill Bell only had the Danny character chasing after Christine while Danny always end up on the losing side.

Michelle
Michelle

Cricket better not hurt Paul. I feel that she is still in love with Danny and Nina still loves Paul!

lisette
lisette

PLEASE TELL ME WHERE I CAN HAVE THE POEM FOR MEMORIAL OF CHANCELLOR OF YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH

David
David

In the “you can never please everyone” category I personally thought this week was the best week in YEARS! The day Bill Bell retired was the day the show floundered. Kay Alden did a good job trying to maintain, but after she left so did the heart of Y&R! Stories sped up, didn’t make sense, and bad stories/characters interwove into the heart of the show.

No matter what I think of the show prior to this week JG and JFP did an AMAZING job. Every character that touched Mrs. C was a part of the show. Loved the Chancellor Park. Loved the slow build up of Chris & Paul then their wedding at her memorial service, and LOVED Jill’s speech. I lost it when Father Todd came up in the beginning and at the end. I dunno if it helped Corbin or dug deeper, but everything about this week FINALLY made sense.

Contrary to what people say this memorial will move story forward. Paul & Christine’s wedding (Loved when Jill called her Cricket). Nina forgiving Paul. Cane rushing up to Jill NOT Billy. Victor NOT learning the meaning of life lol I loved this. If they want to win the Emmy for best writing they need to submit this week’s episodes. The ghost of Mrs. C shocked me. I don’t watch GH so I never seen this done. I loved it.

I still want Wendy Riche and Claire Labine as Executive Producer and Headwriter respectively, but if the new writing regime can build off the momentum JG wrote I’ll be ok with that.

jaybird369
jaybird369

OMG!!!!! Leave it up to BOTH Josh Griffith and (especially!!!!!) Jill Farren Phelps to ruin Katherine’s memorial service on Y and R!!!!! That so-called (and forced) impromptu wedding of Paul and Christine was beyond ridiculous. What in the hell were JG and JFP each thinking????? Also, Danny didn’t look too happy as Paul and Christine were renewing their wedding vows. And, as for Nina (my all-time FAVORITE Y and R character…HOLLA!!!!!) being Christine’s maid of honor at the last minute…blah blah blah blah. If I were Nina, I would have left before those annoying and force-fed nitwit nuptials. But, that’s just me. Now that Paul and Christine are re-hitched (yawn), I think that Danny and Nina should hook up…that would truly ROCK!!!!! As for Jill Farren Phelps…STUPID WOMAN!!!!! And the DECLINE of Y and R continues……….

Betsy Dobrick
Betsy Dobrick

Thank you, loved the two-day tribute to one of my favorite stars. I am sorry for her family including the Y&R family. I liked the wedding as it finished off the “party” in a sweet way that was just fine. I loved the park dedication. I will miss her and the reunion was touching. Lots of loose ends tied up and look forward to the life and loves of the characters. She was very special.

Dave
Dave

I felt like Beau Kazer (Brock) should have had a lot more to say about his on-screen mother at the memorial. I felt a bit ripped-off that he was brought back after all this time and the writers had barely written a word for him to speak.

ellen
ellen

Please give the name of the poem read by Corbin (Father Tom) during the Memorial.
I Corintians…which verse was read?

beth ryker
beth ryker

I love Jeanne cooper (mrs.c) and miss her ever day.she was one great lady.she was ever one friend,mom and grandmother.i feel like I loss my mom all over again!!!

Jasmine
Jasmine

I enjoyed the tribute to Jeanne Cooper. I cried when Father Todd first came up, read the poem, married his brother to Christine and when he left. I was leasnantly surprised by the wedding of two of my all time faves. Also, loved Christine’s very pretty blue dress. I hope the marriage will be long and happy. I do hope their will be a complication if Dylan is Nikki’s son, I hope Paul is the biological father.

laryssa troniak
laryssa troniak

is doug Davidson leaving Y and R

Days Of Our Lives

NATAS President, Adam Sharp Talks On Daytime Emmy Review Findings & Plans For Change To Competition Process

In the aftermath of the letter that was sent to NATAS from daytime drama executives and producers demanding immediate change to the Daytime Emmys contest procedures, guidelines, or they would boycott participating in the upcoming 46th Annual competition, earlier today NATAS and its new president, Adam Sharp, released the findings of an independent investigation into the allegations levied against the academy and its annual competition.

After the full findings came to light , seemed to address most of the concerns raised by the four network soaps, Michael Fairman TV spoke with Adam Sharp to dive into what the reports means for change and evolution of the Daytime Emmys, and if it can resolve the issues so that General Hospital, The Young and the Restless, The Bold and the Beautiful, and Days of our Lives will come to the table and participate in the only kudofest honoring excellence in front of the camera and behind-the-scenes for daytime programming,

Here’s what Adam had to say about the key points addressed in our conversation below.

Transparency was a key issue noted by the soap producers in their concerns levied against NATAS.   One of the points centered around if NATAS had prior knowledge of the winners before the opening of the envelopes at the ceremony and the integrity of the contest.  What can you detail what the investigation found?

ADAM:  On the matter of whether anyone had prior knowledge to the winners, the reports clearly state that there is no evidence to support that. To the concern raised on the arm’s length distance necessary between us and the accountants we use to tally the votes, again there is no evidence to suggest that there was anything short of what you would expect of the standards of the competition. What it did find was that there were processes that either by virtue of generosity and us trying to be helpful when they asked, or by a lack of documentation to make people aware of policies and procedures, that created the appearance of unfairness, or unbalance in the process that may have been completely unintentional.  For example, the report noted that we did not have a published procedure for appealing decisions or filing any concerns or complains.  Some of this started because of one entrant in a digital category that raised concerns, and it was certainly elevated when the four soaps sent their letter, but without a published procedure, you’re really putting the onus on the entrants to know who to call and how to bring their concern.  So, that creates a system where there’s an imbalance because someone who doesn’t know who to call, doesn’t get the same hearing.  Likewise, if someone has made a mistake or technical error in their entry, and they happen to have entered the process early, and we catch it, we, in the past, have gone back to people and said, “Hey, I don’t think you intended to do this.  Would you like to resubmit?”  But if someone is entering at 11:59:59 on deadline night, they won’t necessarily have that.  Again, completely unintentional, but it could be argued that it created an imbalance or bias in the process, and the report made that clear.  For those types of things, we are going to crack down and be more consistent about our policies.  I told Brent and David that it’s going to mean saying no a lot more often in terms of giving waivers and extensions, and the types of things that we have done in the past to help people along. It is going to mean being more transparent and public about what our policies and procedures are so that every entrant has the equal set of knowledge to work from.

Courtesy/NATAS

Does this mean a demotion for David Michaels, Senior VP Daytime Emmy Awards?

ADAM:  Absolutely not.  That’s something that I want to put a very strong pin in right here.  David led the 2018 Daytime Emmys to record participation and a growing audience.  This new resourcing of the team allows him to be more singularly focused on doubling down on that success for 2019.  The Daytime Emmys are the only entertainment award show to have posted year-over-year audience growth from 2017 to 2018, and more than 30% increase in the number of entries.  The report rightly noticed that we did not do enough administratively to scale to that growth and to bring the resources to manage that added audience, and that added interest from competitors.  So, now we are going to make sure that David and Brent Stanton (Executive Director, Daytime Emmy Awards) each have the support and focus they need to be successful.

When the letter from various soap producers pointed out a “conflict of interest” for having the executive producer of the Daytime Emmys ceremony also be the awards administrator, many were wondering how that would shake out, or how NATAS planned to deal with this complaint.

ADAM:  Obviously, “conflict of interest” is a legal term of course, but I think that what the reports found was that it was not a conflict of interest.  It was a conflict of time, and many of the more specific errors that were raised in the report, as I said to David, occurred in the 25th hour of the day.  So, that is where it was really a resourcing problem, and a lack of procedure and policy problem.  The lack of resourcing created the environment for something to go wrong, and the lack of policy and procedure created an ad hoc nature for how we address those problems and made that ad hoc response open to questions because there was no prior documentation that this was how these things should be handled.  So, hopefully we have addressed each of these areas going into 2019, and that gives us a chance at a fresh start with the community.

 

Courtesy/NATAS

In response to the internal investigation findings, you mentioned you would bring additional resources to the Daytime Emmys, additional help in the operations, and you would add a “second pair of eyes”.  Would you potentially let people know who is in those positions that would be working with David Michaels and Brent Stanton?

ADAM:  Yes, so we are absolutely at a minimum committed to adding one full time position, and a handful of part time positions for that initial vetting process of the competition; that review of entries to make sure they meet the technical requirements, rules, and guidelines of their categories.  Now, in the past, there would be one individual, one set of eyes conducting that review, but now, we are modifying our policies such that before any adverse decision is made, such as disqualifying an entry, a second pair of eyes review it and give their independent assessment of the technical criteria and qualifications of the entry, so that there can be more confidence that multiple perspectives were employed before making any decision that could have an adverse effect on an entry.

Could a daytime drama actor participate and submit their work on n their own without the show being a part of it, if let’s say, the soaps won’t participate as a whole? And on that note, what would be the plans moving forward for the Daytime Emmys if the soaps decide not to participate in the competition?

ADAM:  If an actor or actress wishes to enter on their own with their soap still not participating: our rules permit anyone to enter independent of their program.  So, there is not a requirement that a show participate for an individual performer on that show to participate.  That said, they need to have the actual material to submit, and certainly a performer on that show is not necessarily the owner of that show and the owner of that content.  So, the question of whether they would have the necessary access to and rights to the video material to submit, that would be a question to the show producers as to what they would allow of that. In terms of the Daytime Emmy ceremonies moving forward without the soaps, the old saying goes, ‘the show must go on,’ and hopefully, it won’t come to that.  We have had constructive conversations with each of the broadcast soaps and believe our response and support goes a long way to addressing their concerns.  So, we are looking forward to having them.  Of course, they have a number of colleagues in digital drama, children’s programming, gameshows, and the rest of daytime television that we still expect to have a robust program at the 46th Annual Daytime Emmys in May of 2019.

You had mentioned that when you saw the results of the report that you felt it was very thorough, and you felt it pointed out things that needed to be fixed.

ADAM:  Yes, the report was exceedingly thorough and fair.  It delivered criticism where criticism was due, and there were a number of areas where we should have and must do better in the management of the Daytime Emmys and our other awards competitions.  I think the report certainly examined every issue that had been raised by members of the Daytime community and then some.  It allowed us to think about what actions we can take as a team to address each of those points.  I don’t think any awards show in our space has ever undertaken such an in-depth introspection of their procedures, yet alone made it public.  So, hopefully we are a trend-setter here.

The report indicates that NATAS will work more closely with the Television Academy (ATAS).  That seems to always be a point of contention.  How do you see yourself improving participation with them to engage that academy in more of the process?

ADAM:  So, the relationship between the two academies has strengthened incredibly in the past year, largely through the leadership of our respective chairman, Terry O’Reilly, the chairman of NATAS, who was elected earlier this summer and Hayma Washington at the Television Academy.  Obviously, they are going to have a new election soon as Hayma is retiring from the role.  So, we can continue that momentum into 2019.  What we note in our response to the report, was that one element of concern raised in the letter from the four soap producers was the mix of Television Academy members on our judging panels, and we want to be responsive to that.  We are prepared to make Television Academy membership a much higher priority in our consideration of judges for these panels, but obviously accessing that membership and engaging that membership requires a deeper partnership with the Television Academy, and we will see to that.

You are starting the call for entries on Monday, November 12th.  If the daytime dramas don’t participate within the timeframe you’ve given, do you see yourself adjusting the timeframe for the soaps if they were to say, “We want to work somethings out before we commit,” or are you just going to move forward if they are not participating in the deadlines you’ve set?

ADAM:  Our deadlines are going to be rather firm for all entrants.  We have a show date set for May and a process that moves backward from there in terms of the time that is needed.  Certainly, the fact that we have added additional review steps and procedures makes that timeline even more critical.  So, we are not going to be in a position to be extending extensions really to anyone.  In fact, the report specifically discourages granting extensions to anyone because that could create the appearance of unfairness that some types of entries get more time than other types of entries.  We welcome everyone, and if by the entry deadline there are particular genres, programs, or individuals that choose not to participate, we will miss them, hope they attend the show in May, and hope we can reengage them for 2020.

If the soaps did not participate in the 46th annual Daytime Emmys, but decided to come back later, it is my understanding that there would just be one drama category whereby web series and daytime soaps would be competing together in that.  Is that potentially what could happen?

ADAM:  I don’t want to go too many branches down off a tree of ‘what if’s,’ but our policies and guidelines do allow that if a category does not have a sufficient number of participants to be competitive, then that category can be eliminated or merged with another category or have its entries moved into another category for the competition.  So, we will look at all of the categories once we have the entries to see which ones remain viable and which ones do not.  Certainly, the fact that we do have digital drama categories gives us a place to contribute to have a drama competition regardless of what mix of entries we have.  I suspect that once you combine those, it becomes very difficult to uncombine them in the future, but obviously the call to entries is revisited every year, so, I can’t think of any long-term prognostications beyond 2019.

Since you are relatively new to your position with NATAS, you probably weren’t expecting that the producers that signed the letter demanding that change and issues be addressed in regard to the Daytime Emmys or they would boycott, would be something you would be dealing with off the bat.  How did you feel about it?

ADAM:  Well, I’m obviously rather new to the role.  My first day as interim president was the day after the Daytime Emmy show this year.  I was only named the permanent president last week.  It was certainly a trial by fire.  I would not say that I had enough history with the daytime drama community to have any expectation one way or another, and I think that is also true of our chairman, Terry O’Reilly, who came into office on July 1st.  That said, in a world of looking for silver linings, I think it gave us an opportunity for a blank slate and a fresh start.  By the community raising these concerns to our attention, and allowing us to conduct this deep review and make it public and be responsive to the issues they raised, it gives us a lot more opportunity to strengthen that relationship in 2019 than if a lot of these concerns had just continued to deteriorate and be whispered about at various cocktail parties, but never really spoken up and therefore, never really addressed.  So, while it was a painful process and there were parts of this report that were difficult to read, I think it gave us the opportunity to start from scratch and to put some of that history behind us.

So, do you think NATAS has addressed the concerns of the daytime dramas? What did you think of the points raised by Adam Sharp in this interview? Do you hope the Emmys will continue as usual with all four network soaps participating? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.

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Interviews

Eileen Davidson Farewell Y&R Interview: From Her Exit Storyline, To Her Co-Stars, And Her Decision To Leave

In a candid and heartfelt conversation, The Young and the Restless exiting Daytime Emmy-winning star, Eileen Davidson sat down with Michael Fairman to discuss her decision to exit the series after playing Ashley Abbott on and off since 1982.

Eileen’s final episodes are now airing on the CBS daytime drama series.  Just how will it end for Ashley?  How will she leave the canvas?  How sad will be her goodbyes?  Y&R fans are counting down now to just a few more airshows that feature Eileen.

During this interview for the Michael Fairman Channel, Eileen clarified many points that the audience has wanted to know about or come to understand, in particular, what led to her making the decision to call it quits, and would she ever return and how would she feel if the series recast her role.

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

In regard to what went into her decision to depart Genoa City, Eileen expressed: “It’s something I gave a lot of thought to.  Not something you can just go, ‘Gee, this week I want to leave!’  I was really thinking about it for over a year ago.  I talked it over with my husband and he was very supported of me.  My son is in high school and my stepson had left the nest and it had gone by so quickly.  I was like, ‘Wait! What happened?’  I was spending a lot of time in my car commuting; like two hours a day, and a lot of time in my dressing room, because our days are longer here than they used to be, and a myriad of reasons went into it.  It was not just one simple thing.  It was actually a whole bunch of reasons.  Even though I won the Emmy (Eileen won Lead Actress back in April of this year) I had pretty much decided long before then.  (Winning the Emmy) That was like “Oh, my God!”  That actually made me feel my timing was really right … I get this incredible nod right before I’m leaving.”

The emotional part of leaving the place she has called her home away from home for Davidson is saying goodbye to her beloved co-stars including; her on-screen big brother, Peter Bergman (Jack Abbott).  As Y&R viewers know, over the years Jack and Ashley’s relationship, and Bergman and Davidson, have shared plenty of screen-time together.  Eileen also gives a very special thanks to the fans who have supported her through the years and who have followed Ashley’s journey.

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

Davidson expressed on her final storyline revolving the “Blood Abbott” clause and how it all ties up, “It’s such a great way to go.  It’s so awesome how this whole thing comes up, and you realize how being an Abbott has affected her to her core.”

Now below watch Eileen’s farewell interview filled with clips from her performances and time on Y&R, and more heartfelt topics of conversation.

Then in the comment section below; tell us what you have thought of Ashley’s exit storyline?  What do you hope happens for Ashley? What was your favorite part of this interview and the sentiments shared by Eileen?  

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General Hospital

Genie Francis Talks On Her Return To GH, Fans Outcry Of Support & Her All-Time Favorite Storylines

On Tuesday, Genie Francis participated in a Satellite Media Tour with television stations and press outlets around the U.S. chatting it up on her return to her iconic role of Laura on ABC’s General Hospital.

Francis, who quickly wrapped-up her run after she was taken off-contract with the show back in January of this year, saw her and Laura exit Port Charles swiftly in a story-move that felt stilted to the audience.

Courtesy/ABC

After a huge outpouring of support on social media, GH fans cried foul on the play and wanted one of the series mainstays of all-time back where she belonged.

Francis elaborate it on that in our interview on seeing the show of support: “I couldn’t believe how long it went on and how big it was.  I think part of that was it looked like they were finally giving me a story with the major storyline, and then they yanked it so quickly, and I think people felt cheated.”

GH listened and brought Genie back to the canvas with a new storyline that puts her front and center on the series, as Laura is unaware that her husband Kevin (Jon Lindstrom) is locked up in Ferncliff, while his evil twin Ryan (Jon Lindstrom) has taken his place. Now Laura is reeling from the strange behaviors being exhibited by her “husband”. Will she figure it out in time? Will she run for mayor again?

Photo Credit: ABC

During her conversation with Michael Fairman TV and the Michael Fairman Channel, Genie touched on what she knew was going to be happening for Laura when she came to the show: “I knew we were going to start with the Ryan beat, which I thought was great. Everyone loves a good sociopath (laughs) and Jon (Lindstrom) is a wonderful actor.  It makes for an exciting story!”

Genie goes on to say that she is: “Just happy to have story, because it’s awfully boring to just be hanging around. I don’t want to be window-dressing. If it came to that, I think I might just leave.”

As to if Laura has a vendetta against Valentin (James Patrick Stuart) who for all intent and purposes murdered her son, Nikolas, Genie weighed-in: “She absolutely has a vendetta. I think right now, Laura who has the biggest heart and is kind of like the heroine of the show in many ways –  but this is the one person on the planet who she truly hates, and it would be interesting if she had to go through the exercise of forgiving him, but I also like that there is that one place where we can see all of that negativity and evil come out. I like that Laura has a dark side.  I really like that.”

Courtesy/ABC

To find out some of Genie’s all-time favorite storylines and least favorite storylines and more on her return watch the video below and make sure to subscribe to The Michael Fairman Channel for more upcoming interviews.

What do you think about Genie’s return to GH thus far and the sentiments shared in this interview? Comment below.

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Video du Jour

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

The Michael Channel

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  • jaybird369: “My curiosity got the better of me (lol)...so I decided to watch that so-called special episode of GH (11/12). Man...what…
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Beth Maitland as Traci

The Young and the Restless

Airdates: 10-24-26-2018

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