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Veteran Soap Opera Director Larry Auerbach Dies: Won Daytime Emmy For OLTL, Steered Love Of Life for Nearly 30 Years

Courtesy/DGA

Courtesy/DGA

Iconic daytime drama director Larry Auerbach has died.

Auerbach, who is considered by many to be a pioneer in daytime television, passed away today in La Jolla, California at the age of 91 from complications of glioblastoma.  Auerbach helmed CBS’ Love of Life, from 1951 to 1980, which was its entire run. He directed the talents of Warren Beatty, Jon Voight, Jessica Walters,  Christopher Reeve, and Roy Scheider, who would all work on the series during the early parts of their careers.

Following Love of Life, Auerbach directed on a number of New York based soaps including: All My Children Another World , As the World Turns and One Life to Live.  It was at OLTL where he was very well known for his work, after his 29 years at Love of Life, so much so that he received a Daytime Emmy for directorial achievement in 1984.  It is estimated that Auerbach clocked over 3,000 hours as a daytime television director.   He was considered such a soap opera expert that Dustin Hoffman consulted with him on the film Tootsie, in which the actor played a soap opera star.

Larry was  also named a DGA Honorary Life Member in 2004, joining an elite group that includes Charles Chaplin, Walt Disney, Jack Warner, Lew Wasserman, and Jack Valenti and he received the union’s 1991 Robert B. Aldrich award.

DGA president Paris Barclay made the following statement today on the passing of Auerbach:  “Larry emerged as a vigorous presence right after the merger that created the modern DGA, diving headlong into a long career of service to the Guild and his fellow members.  Larry worked tirelessly, out of love for his Guild and his profession, to ensure better working conditions and stronger protection of creative rights for Guild members, and he was instrumental in raising the profile of daytime serial directors, the genre to which he dedicated his career.  Under his watch as National Vice President and a member of the Eastern Directors Council, Larry helped organize the renovation of the New York headquarters, and he played a major role in ensuring greater health and fiscal security for Guild members through the DGA-Producer Pension and Health Plans.  He was a dynamo – a strong and powerful voice for our members for decades – and we will miss him greatly.”

Share your thoughts on the passing of Larry Auerbach below: Did you watch Love of Life?  Do you remember his work from OLTL?

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Llanviewer717jimh(leave it to beaver)rocky83Mary SFvinman Recent comment authors
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Llanviewer717
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Llanviewer717

I was a little kid and watched Love of Life with my mother. So, I’m sure I saw his work. If he was directing OLTL during the 1980s, I certainly saw and enjoyed his work. That was the era of Karen, the housewife hooker, and the fabulous Marco Dane. The Buchanan clan came to town. We got our first glimpse of the evil and hard to kill Mitch Laurence. Niki Smith returned. Dorian got a family in Herb and Cassie. A lot happened during that decade. Thank you Mr. Auerbach for your wonderful work. RIP.

jimh(leave it to beaver)
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jimh(leave it to beaver)

My thoughts and prayers are with his family…if there is a daytime hall of fame he should be part of it…he was behind the scenes but he is a daytime legend!!! I loved Love Of Life!!!

vinman
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vinman

Loved <3 Vanessa and residents of Rosehill, USA.

Lew S
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Lew S

A true legend. Thanks for making soaps truly great, back in the day.

mike
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mike

Soaps owe a great deal to him, his work on Love of Life helped steer the genre in new directions.

Iakovos
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Iakovos

When such a revered leader in the industry passes, it makes me wish for “the good old days.” We are reminded just how great they were, even if we did not realize it then. Thank you, Larry Auerbach.

LLATWTFan
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LLATWTFan

I watched Love of Life and I was very sad when it was cancelled. Larry Auerbach was on camera on the final episode in the last sad scene and it is very memorable. The director’s work is always visible. He helped make Love of Life a great and memorable show.

Mark in FLA
Guest
Mark in FLA

Wasn’t he seen at the end of the last episode of LOL leaving the director’s booth & walking thru the set one last time? He is to be saluted as a giant of daytime drama.

vinman
Guest
vinman

Also the passing of Ann Marcus (93)..writer for Peyton Place (’66) along with many others LIAMST, DOOL, GH, OLTL, KL, ..many others.In addition to have been creator head writer for Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman.

vinman
Guest
vinman

Died December 3,2014

jimh(leave it to beaver)
Guest
jimh(leave it to beaver)

Thats more sad news…i didnt know she passed…very talented writer…thanks for letting us know!

Mary SF
Guest
Mary SF

As fans most of our attention goes towards the actors and the writers, occasionally to a producer but rarely do we ever focus on soap directors. What they do contributes greatly to our enjoyment of our soaps. So as we “fade to black” on this pioneer soap director, let as all take a moment on Monday as we watch our favorite soap to thank the directing team of the soap in a manner you chose. I will be raising a glass of eggnog and saying thank you for a job well done— and if I were a younger person I… Read more »

Llanviewer717
Guest
Llanviewer717

Very well said Mary SF. All the people who “male it happen” definitely desire our thanks.

Llanviewer717
Guest
Llanviewer717

That’s make it happen.

rocky83
Guest
rocky83

Y&R terrible, fix this show if possible, how on earth is this soap #1 #Baffeling

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.    

 

View this post on Instagram

 

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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