Tuesday, May 08, 2007


While enthralling viewers with intricately improbable plotlines, soap operas double as boot camp for actors. Any notion of a stigma is a thing of the past, and savvy talent scouts already scour soaps for future stars.... "There's an actor who just left 'Guiding Light' named Tom Pelphrey -- he won the (younger actor) Emmy last year," Sloane adds. "He's definitely one we see as having a lot of potential.".... "Julianne Moore came from this show, but it was in her makeup to succeed," says "As the World Turns" executive producer Chris Goutman. "She wanted to do great works of dramatic literature as well as popular entertainment. She had that hunger and desire as well as talent and luck."

Complete story at Variety.com.

My own personal record with picking future movie and primetime stars from the daytime ranks is one of hit and miss. I knew Demi Moore (GH), Meg Ryan (ATWT), Marissa Tomei (ATWT) and Anne Heche (AW) were going to hit it big from their first days on soaps. They just stood out from the crowd in an obviously spectacular way.

However, Demi's GH co-star, Janine Turner (she played her sister, Laura, a silly attempt to replace the departed Genie Francis), seemed like a blob of nothing special. I was surprised to watch her find so much success in primetime (Northern Exposure).

I thought Julianne Moore (ATWT; above with another Oakdale-boy-makes good, Steven Weber) was incredibly talented, but (foolishly) assumed her unconventional looks would keep her from ever becoming more than a solid supporting player. Same for Allison Janney (GL).

Ryan Phillippe seemed like just another OLTL pretty boy and 10 years later the same show's Brandon Routh (Superman) hardly registered.

When she was on ATWT, Kristanna Loken could barely walk and talk at the same time. Co-star Jordana Bewster's feature success was much less of a surprise.

GL's Cyntha Watros hit it out of the park (and into the Emmy) as the so-crazy-she's-funny-and-scary-at-the-same-time Annie. It was quite a change of pace to see her play the sitcom straight girl on The Drew Carey Show and Titus.

And the first time I heard Laura Bell Bundy sing at a GL Fan Club Luncheon, I knew soaps weren't this girl's destiny -- she was obviously Broadway bound.

Of the initial two GL Marahs, Ashley Peldon (above on location with Beth Ehlers as her nanny, Harley) was one of the most talented child actors I'd ever seen on daytime, while Kimberly J. Brown seemed pretty ordinary.

How about you? Which daytime actor's success did you predict? And which one took you completely by surprise?

Tell us in the Comments box below!

1 comment:

Esther said...

Like you, I totally knew Meg Ryan and Anne Heche. I thought Julianne Moore would do great but not THIS great! Ashley Peldon of course. I knew Lori Loughlin would do fine. I also thought Matt Bomer would do great, so any success he has makes me happy. Ditto Sherry Stringfield. I also thought Justin Chambers was great and thought Jill Phelps was an idiot to fire him.

I couldn't stand Demi Moore, so that was a shocker for me. I thought Luke Perry was bland. Oops. Parker Posey shocked the heck out of me. Couldn't stand her on ATWT but of course love her in all the Christopher Guest movies. Jane Krakowski bugged me as TR but she's done great.

I never really thought much of Sara Ramirez in her brief ATWT stint, but I did find her look incredibly interesting and love her on Grey's Anatomy. That's about all I can think of at this moment. ;)