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USA Today – Daytime TV Takes Stock, retrenches in a changing world!

Brian Frons, Jason Thompson

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

The topic of course, that is on so many broadcasters, networks, production companies, actors and soap fans and pundits,  is the harsh reality of what is happening to the shrinking daytime genre.   With Oprah Winfrey bowing out after next season due to moving on with her next career move after 25 years of outstanding talk television, and Tyra Banks bailing on the talk format,  and ATWT and GL already cancelled by the end of 2009, Bill Keveneny of USA today had this to say  in his report out this week,  in regards to the latest dilemmas facing soaps.  Keveney had spoken with ABC head honcho Brian Frons and Soap Opera Digest’s Lynn Leahey.

“The cancellation of the lower-rated As the World Turns and Guiding Light does not mean the demise of the soap, says Lynn Leahey, editorial director of Soap Opera Digest and Soap Opera Weekly. “There remains an avid following, if you tell the right story, people will follow it.  Networks are cutting costs on their own shows (As the World Turns and Guiding Light are not network-owned) to make them financially viable, meaning lower salaries for stars and fewer lavish shoots,” Leahey says.  ” ABC, for example, is moving production of All My Children  from New York to Los Angeles to save money. Lots of times you can’t see (the cuts) on the screen,” she says.

Technology is bringing new competition and ways to reach women who aren’t at home, says Leahey. TV soap actresses Crystal Chappell and Martha Byrne have launched online soaps Venice and Gotham, respectively.

Networks and syndicators are embracing technology, too. All My Children, like General Hospital will be shot in high-definition, and greater use of CGI will allow “spectacular stunts,” ABC Daytime president Brian Frons says.

“Soaps aren’t all on the bubble.  In the end, the strong shows will remain, Frons says. “Some (soaps) have been on many years, so people feel the need to make sage-like statements about the future of the genre.  Nobody makes those statements when a sitcom or long-running drama dies. It’s the end of that program, and that’s the way we should look at it as well.”

So as we ring in a new decade and a new year in 2010, can soaps last another decade? The jury is out.  To read the entire USA piece, click here!

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mas
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mas

Mr Frons is a “JOKE” he does not listen to the viewers “The Loyal Ones” and continues to act as if GH was in the top of the ratings, Wake Up Frons you and Mr Guza have destroyed the once top GH, it has become unbearable to watch, the mob s/l has gone it’s distance bringing James Franco has put another nail in the coffin. Unless Mr Frons is fired ABC will lose all their soaps, AMC & OLTL “ARE TRYING” to return, GH lost it’s way two years ago, braking up Sonny & Kate, Jason & Elizabeth and returning… Read more »

Jen
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Jen

I can’t help but think that Brian Frons is a bit out of touch with the ABC Daytime audience. I am not a network exec but I know for a fact that many long-time fans of soaps are unable to watch the episodes when they air because they are at work. Many have told me they will not watch daytime at all if it is full of game shows and talk shows. Again, I’m not a daytime exec but would sponsors rather advertise to long-time, loyal, faithful viewers or the people who leave the tv on while they’re in the… Read more »

All My Children

All My Children Alum Ben Jörgensen Reportedly Dead At 51

According to his former All My Children castmate, Brian Gaskill. there is sad news in the soap world today.  Ben Jörgensen who played Kevin on All My Children and Chris on As the World Turns passed away on Tuesday at the age of 51, apparently via suicide, although unconfirmed as to his cause of death.

Gaskill, who played Bobby Warner while in Pine Valley shared via his Instagram:  “Sad news to report. Ben Jörgensen who played Kevin Sheffield on All My Children has past away at 51 years old.  My understanding is it was suicide.  I have heard he suffered from Bipolar disorder but as I have not spoke to him in years I do not know all the details. I just want to remember the good times we had on the set of All My Children 24 years ago. He was a good guy and had the courage to play a gay teenager on tv back when it was nowhere near as common to have representation as it is today. He was part of an award winning storyline…but mostly we just had some good times back then…my condolences go out to his friends and family. Please everybody hang in there and reach out for help if you need it. ”

Since the time of Brian’s posting, friends, colleagues and fans have been posting tributes and condolences on the actor’s Facebook page.  You can view that here.

 

In this heartbreaking photo below from Steven Bergman, during his time on As the World Turns, Ben is pictured with the late Nathaniel Marston, as well as Jaime Nicole Dudney and Terri Conn.

Photo: StevenBergman

On All My Children, Ben was part of the important social issue storyline brought into the ABC legacy soap opera by the iconic Agnes Nixon, who was always trying to move the needle forward in daytime, as the character of Kevin was a gay high school student facing bullying, ridicule and discrimination for his sexuality.

Share your thoughts on the passing of Ben via the comment section below.    

 

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Sad news to report. Ben Jorgensen who played Kevin Sheffield on All My Children has past away at 51 years old. My understanding is it was suicide. I have heard he suffered from Bipolar disorder but as I have not spoke to him in years I do not know all the details. I just want to remember the good times we had on the set of All My Children 24 years ago. He was a good guy and had the courage to play a gay teenager on tv back when it was nowhere near as common to have representation as it is today. He was part of an award winning storyline…but mostly we just had some good times back then…my condolences go out to his friends and family. Please everybody hang in there and reach out for help if you need it. #Actor #Filmmaker #BenJorgensen #BenMonk #Life#Death#AllMyChildren #Suicide #sad #rest

A post shared by Brian Gaskill (@briangaskill) on

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All My Children

Hallmark Channel’s ‘Home & Family’ Returns to Production For Ninth Season; Premiere Date Revealed

Another daytime show is heading back to production amid the coronavirus pandemic.  Now comes word that Hallmark Channel’s flagship morning lifestyle series, Home & Family has returned to production at its Universal Studios set for its ninth season.

All My Children favorite Cameron Mathison (Ex-Ryan Lavery) and Debbie Matenopoulos will return as co-hosts .

Look for the new season to kick-off on Monday, September 14th at 10am EST.

In a statement, Home & Family executive producer, Tracy Verna Soiseth shared: “We are thrilled to be returning to our home for the new season. Home & Family is a daily destination of comfort television, and we are very happy to be returning with two hours of daily interviews, cooking segments, DIY crafts and our hugely popular animal adoptions.”

For the past several months. a daily series featuring the cast called At Home with Our Family has run across the show’s social media platforms during the Covid-19 pandemic.

According to Deadline,premiere-week guests are to include: Jenna Bush Hager, Danica McKellar, celebrity chefs Jet Tila, Carla Hall, Buddy Valastro, Curtis Stone, Rashad Jennings and Dennis Quaid.

So, glad to know Home & Family is also back in production? Comment below.

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All My Children

Michael B. Jordan Pays Tribute To Chadwick Boseman: “Since Nearly The Beginning Of My Career, Starting with All My Children When I was 16 Years Old You Paved The Way For Me”

Following the news of the tragic death of now motion picture icon, Chadwick Boseman late Friday, tributes and sentiments have poured in from celebrities, politicians and fans from all across the world.

Chadwick Boseman passed away late last week at the age of 43 from colon cancer – a battle he kept silent about for the last four years of life.

Photo: JPI

No one could be more intertwined with Boseman’s career than that of his fellow Black Panther star, Michael B. Jordan.  For Jordan took over the role of Reggie Porter on All My Children from Boseman after the late actor lasted one week, following standing up to, and addressing concerns, of racial stereotypes in the way that the part was written.  Reggie was introduced to Pine Valley as a gang member in 2003.  As previously reported it was Boseman who helped the soap opera improve the role that Jordan took over with some recommendations.

Now Michael B. Jordan has written a heartfelt remembrance of Chadwick that he shared on his Instagram, and what he has meant to his life, including how he showed him how to be better, to honor purpose and create legacy.

Read below Michael’s post:

“I’ve been trying to find the words, but nothing comes close to how I feel. I’ve been reflecting on every moment, every conversation, every laugh, every disagreement, every hug…everything.

I wish we had more time.

One of the last times we spoke, you said we were forever linked , and now the truth of that means more to me than ever. Since nearly the beginning of my career, starting with All My Children when I was 16 years old you paved the way for me. You showed me how to be better, honor purpose, and create legacy. And whether you’ve known it or not…I’ve been watching, learning and constantly motivated by your greatness.

I wish we had more time.

Everything you’ve given the world … the legends and heroes that you’ve shown us we are … will live on forever. But the thing that hurts the most is that I now understand how much of a legend and hero YOU are. Through it all, you never lost sight of what you loved most. You cared about your family , your friends, your craft, your spirit. You cared about the kids, the community, our culture and humanity. You cared about me. You are my big brother, but I never fully got a chance to tell you, or to truly give you your flowers while you were here.

I wish we had more time.

I’m more aware now than ever that time is short with people we love and admire. I’m gonna miss your honesty, your generosity, your sense of humor, and incredible gifts. I’ll miss the gift of sharing space with you in scenes. I’m dedicating the rest of my days to live the way you did. With grace, courage, and no regrets. “Is this your king!?” Yes . he . is!  Rest In Power Brother.”

What do you think of Michael’s tribute to Chadwick and how they have been interconnected dating back to 2003 and All My Children? Comment below.

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