Friday, January 30, 2009

SMALL WORLD

The New York Observer has a feature on Rob Sedgwick's path from Upper East Side privileged WASP marijuna dealer (tip: If you're going to be arrested for drugs, be white, rich and connected to a major society family; it helps) to working New York actor to the proprieter of Stogo, an organic, dairy-free vegan “ice cream parlor” on East 10th Street in Manhattan.

Along the way, Sedgwick made his television debut on Another World in 1984, playing a rich, obnoxious preppie named Hunter Bradshaw (one presumes that if arrested for dealing, Hunter would fare just as well at the hands of the law as his portrayer). Donna Love wished that her "sister" Marley would date a proper young man like Hunter, instead of the boy she really had her eye on -- working-class Ben McKinnon.

Interestingly enough, two years earlier, Rob's real-life sister, actress Kyra Sedgwick, had made her own television debut, also on Another World!



At seventeen years old, she was playing Julia Shearer, the adopted daughter of Susan Matthews and Dan Shearer, granddaughter of that Bay City grand-dame, Liz Matthews.

Ambitious Julia quickly got herself a part in A View of the Bay, the movie based on Jamie Frame's scandalous tell-all about his home-town, by sleeping with the director. When the movie fell through, Julia became the assistant to glamorous romance novelist Felicia Gallant. Eager to emulate her mentor, Julia penned a book of her own -- unfortunately, she based it on her cousin Sally's secret past as a mother who'd given her baby up for adoption only to learn that the child's natural father and his wife had claimed the boy as their own. Liz was furious at what she saw as Julia airing their family's dirty laundry in print, but Julia refused to back down.

By this point, Kyra Sedgwick had left AW for college. She would go on to a spectacular movie, television and theatrical career. In fact, in 1998, Kyra appeared in the Lincoln Center production of Twelfth Night opposite Brian Murray who, from 1978 to 1979, played Julia's father, Dan Shearer, on AW!

In 1983, the role of Julia was recast with another young actress destined for prime-time -- Faith Ford.



After leaving AW in 1984, she went on to play Corky on Murphy Brown, and star opposite fellow daytime alum, Kelly Ripa, on Hope & Faith (created by ex-B&B leading lady, Joanna Johnson).

Small World, indeed!
WHITE OUT

The Brooklyn Eagle honors the late actor Arnold Moss on what would have been his 99th birthday.

Moss is best known to general audiences for appearing in two Bob Hope films, My Favorite Spy and Casanova's Big Night, and to Star Trek fans for his guest appearance as Anton Karidian (actually the genocidal Kodos of Tarsus IV) in the Shakespeare-infused episode Conscience of the King. (Moss came by his Shakespeare credentials honestly - he played Prospero for 100 performances in the 1945 production of The Tempest, that show's longest Broadway run ever.)

But from 1948 to 1949, The Guiding Light's listeners knew him as Ted White, a wealthy, British advertising executive pursued by Meta Bauer in an attempt to boost her modeling career. Meta did not love Ted and, when she became pregnant, kept it a secret and gave their son up for adoption. A few months later, Meta changed her mind and sued to get little Chuckie back from his loving adoptive parents, the Brandons.

Meta finally told Ted the truth, hoping he would help her reclaim Chuckie, but an angry Ted initiated his own custody suit. When Meta was awarded the boy however, Ted decided to marry his ex-lover, prove her an unfit mother and keep Chuckie for himself.

During the trial, Meta had started having feelings for Dr. Ross Boling (the man her shy sister Trudy, who'd always felt herself in Meta's shadow, had a crush on -- sensitive to the emotions of other people, our Meta was not). But when her family pressured Meta to wed Ted for Chuckie's sake, she gave in.

The marriage was a disaster and Meta left Ted. Tragically, a few years later, Chuckie died from a head injury. Meta blamed Ted for pushing their kindergarten-aged son into dangerous boxing lessons. She grabbed a gun and shot Ted dead.

Her murder trial in 1951 was the first instance of fans being allowed to vote on a character's guilt or innocence. Naturally, Meta was set free by the sympathetic audience who had lived through Meta and Ted's travails right along with her.

HEEEEERE'S JOHNNY!



Carly, Craig, Dusty, Meg, Paul, Josie (Bob, Carol, Ted, Alice, Larry, Curly, Moe, Dasher, Prancer, Marcia, Jan, Cindy) summarized (and mocked) as only Henry can, here.

To discuss these (and many more) Oakdale happenings in person, make sure you stop by the Trent Dawson (Henry) and Ewa da Cruz (Vienna) book signing tomorrow, Saturday, January 31 at 4PM at Borders Books & Music located on 1260 Old Country Road in Westbury, New York. Call 516-683-8700 for details.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

COUNT DOWN TO PHILLIP'S RETURN!

video
LOVE IN THE AFTERNOON

Oakdale-style!









Only in February, only on As The World Turns!

LARA'S THEME



She's Shayne's lost love and Edmund's daughter. On Friday, February 6, Kim Allen appears on Guiding Light as Lara Fasano in a flashback with her dad.

The actress, who graduated with a B.F.A in Drama from NYU's Tisch School of the Arts, is best known for playing Kim Delaney's (ex-Jenny; AMC) daughter, Amanda, on the Lifetime hit, Army Wives. She has also appeared on Lipstick Jungle and Law & Order: Criminal Intent.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

I AM NOT A NUMBER, I AM (MORGAN) FREEMAN!

His acting roles have included a pimp, a convict, the president of the United States, even God.

For that, Morgan Freeman has been celebrated with an array of awards culminating in December's Kennedy Center Honors.

The son of a barber, Freeman is the epitome of a late bloomer. He never lost sight of his dream even as he struggled with bit parts on stage, in children's TV programs and soap operas before breaking through....

While not reaching star status, Freeman worked consistently on the stage and small screen. TV roles in the daytime drama "Another World" and the children's series "The Electric Company" made him familiar to a nationwide audience.

Read more, here.

And for an in-depth look at the extraordinary cast of African-American actors featured on Another World in the early 1980s, click here!
BE GLAAD!

ABC and Milk lead nominees for awards from the 20th annual Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation Media Awards.... A gay-affirming story line in As The World Turns will compete with ABC's All My Children in the Outstanding Daily Drama category.

More here.
READY FOR HIS CLOSE-UP

It's a good thing ATWT's Billy Magnussen (Casey) is an actor. Because camera-shy, he's not...









Watch Billy "express" himself daily, only on As The World Turns!
DOG DAYS

Frank Dicopoulos (Frank; GL) is featured as the voice of “Dean the Dog” in the companion CD to the children’s book “Loukoumi's Good Deeds.”

Other celebrities featured include Jennifer Aniston, Olympia Dukakis, and Gloria Gaynor. The book will be on sale April 1 and a portion of the proceeds will go to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

For more information, go to
www.Loukoumi.com.

Pictured above: Emma may have two mommies, but check out Olivia Dicopoulos' (Maureen) two daddies!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

WHERE ARE THEY NOW: RUSSELL TODD (JAMIE, ANOTHER WORLD)

In total, 10 actors played Another World's Jamie Frame, son of the show's signature heroine, Rachel. His adult portrayers included Richard Bekins, Stephen Yates (ex-Ben; GL), and Laurence Lau (Brian; ATWT). But it was Russell Todd who was the final Jamie, assuming the role from 1990 to 1993. It was Todd's Jamie who, on the rebound from ex-wife Vicky, took up with her twin, Marley -- then watched both sisters morph from Anne Heche to Jensen Buchanan! (See the switch for yourself on Hulu.com)

The PGP Classic Soaps Blog caught up with Russell to reminisce about his days in Bay City and find out what he's doing now!

PGP: Although you'd appeared briefly on "Capitol" (as a temporary replacement Jordy), you came to "Another World" from prime-time ("Riptide," "Jake and the Fat Man") and feature film ("Friday the 13th," "Where The Boys Are") work. How did you enjoy the transition to producing an episode a day?

RT: It was quite an adjustment to go from pages a day to an entire show a day! I am thankfully a very good memorizer so it wasn't too difficult to learn the dialogue for each day. I do love challenges and doing a soap opera is surely that. There aren't many jobs in TV where you work about 50 weeks a year and quite often the days are long and exhausting. I really loved the work and was very thankful for being there.

PGP: Do you remember you audition for Jamie? Your first day on the set? How would you describe who Jamie was when you took over the role?

RT: I was brought into the office of the producer Michael Laibson. We read the scene and he said do it again but totally different. I did and they decided to test me with Anne Heche. The test must have gone well since I got the job!



I was the 10th guy to play Jamie so to most of the cast it was probably just another actor in the revolving door. Still, the first day everyone was very nice and welcoming. There was only one scene that day, a phone call to either Marley or Vicky... I can't even keep them straight now! I was nervous like any actor would be on their first day, but I kept reminding myself what someone once told me: "You got the part, so relax and enjoy it now!"

I had never seen AW before my audition. I didn't know who Jamie was except for what I was told and what I saw in a few episodes they sent me. I knew he was a doctor and a family man but little else about him. I thought he was very proper and well mannered and always hoped they would give him more negative traits. I asked if they would spice him up a bit and make him darker. That was never to be the case. Oh well, better to play a good guy than no guy.

PGP: What was the transition from Anne Heche's Vicky/Marley to Jensen Buchanan's like? Did it change your own performance to have a different leading lady, but playing the same character?

RT: I loved both actresses. Both were talented and excellent to work with -- and work off of -- every week. Obviously both would have different approaches and ways of working. I don't think it changed my own performance, but I do think it was easy to see how differently they played the characters.

PGP: What are some of your fondest memories from your days in Bay City? Do you keep in touch with any former cast-mates?

RT: Working so closely with the actors and crew day to day creates a very strong bond and family feeling. My last day was very emotional knowing it was over and most likely I wouldn't see most of them again. I fondly recall entering the studio on my work days and the wonderful greetings you'd receive from the guard post or the makeup and wardrobe staff. Everyone was just so friendly and that meant a great deal to me.

There are so many fond memories of my time in Brooklyn. There are just too many to mention. I was blessed to be working on a popular show with a great cast and crew. I had so many laughs on and off the set with fellow cast-members and staff.

I still stay in touch with Carmen Duncan (Iris), John Aprea (Lucas) and my dad from the show, George Reinholt (Steve). I always laugh when we speak because he jokingly calls me Son and I call him Dad. John lives here in LA, and I see Carmen when she comes to the States from Australia. All of the cast have gone our separate ways and it's hard to stay in touch, but nothing can stop the great memories of being part of the "Another World" family.

PGP: How would you answer the question: Where is Russell Todd now?

RT:
I'm in an excellent place in my life. I am an agent for steadicam operators and now own the largest agency in the world for that representation. I love what I do and love the challenge of dealing day to day and trying to get my clients the best jobs and deals. I do visit the sets of my client's shows and it's always nice to be back around the lights and cameras, even from the other side.

I am truly blessed in many ways and wouldn't change my path to the present. I still do some television commercials, including one I did that's showing in Europe and Asia, with Sharon Stone as my date. It was for a scotch . Los Angeles is my home and as much as it was exciting to live in NYC, I know this is truly where I enjoy life the most. Beaches, desert and mountains are all close by and I frequent them all. Most of my friends are outside of the business which I really enjoy as well.



To watch Russell's turn as Jamie on "Another World," click here, now!
ATWT ON (OR AT LEAST NEAR A) STAGE

Jeffrey Meek (ex-Craig)

Van Hansis (Luke)

Annie Parisse (ex-Julia #1)

Monday, January 26, 2009

BAUER POWER

In conjunction with GL's 72nd Anniversary, Mo asks below: When did the Bauers arrive on the scene and the town name change to Springfield?



In July of 1948, a woman calling herself Jan Carter arrived in Selby Flats (the show's second location after Five Points). She was really Meta Bauer -- although the family's original name was Baum. Creater Irna Phillips changed her mind after a few scripts. On August 31, 1948, Papa Bauer made his first appearance. Daughter Trudy and son Bill followed soon after.



In 1966, Bill Bauer transferred to the Springfield office of his public relations firm, taking his family with him. Coincidentally, family friend Dr. Paul Fletcher became Chief of Staff at Cedars Hospital located in the same city and also brought his family along. In fact, it seemed like the only former resident of Selby Flats not making the move to Springfield was Bill and Bert's son, Mike. Along with his young daughter, Hope, Mike also moved to the Midwest... but to the town of Bay City (he and Hope moved to Springfield in 1968).

Hope this answers your question, Mo!
CULTURAL LEARNINGS



What do ATWT's Pepper the dog and star-crossed lovers Jack and Carly have to be grateful for on this day?



Click here to find out!
MAYBE BABY

In 1952, during The Guiding Light's last few months of airing exclusively on the radio, central heroine Bert Bauer (Charita Bauer) gave birth to a son, Michael (named after Charita's real-life son in order to make things easier for her). At the same time, Bert's husband, Bill, was having an affair with TV star Gloria (Anne Burr), causing his wife infinite heartache (and making her later to speech to Ed about what a great man his father was even more disingenuous).

While viewers loved to listen to their favorite characters' voices, they also clamored for a peek at what the actors really looked like.

Below is a still staged for that very purpose and run in the fan magazines:



The thing I find most interesting about this picture -- above and beyond the fact that any woman who has just given birth would have the energy to tie a bow in her hair... or watch her husband's mistress on TV -- is that the "baby" playing newborn Mike Bauer is clearly still working in soaps today.

Here he is with Grayson McCouch (Dusty) on the set of As The World Turns...

Friday, January 23, 2009

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, GUIDING LIGHT!

On January 25, 1937, on NBC's Red radio network, The Guiding Light broadcast its first, fifteen minute episode.

Set in the fictional suburb of Five Points, near creator Irna Phillips' hometown of Chicago (where it was actually produced), The Guiding Light made its debut to the musical strains of Anselm Goetzel's Aphrodite, a relatively obscure 1919 musical.

The show starred twenty-four year Arthur Peterson as the fifty-something Reverend Ruthledge.



Peterson recalled to author Christopher Schemering in 1986, "I had played many older character parts before, beginning in college... But getting the part on GL was special to me for many reasons. First, the potential steady income allowed me to get married. I was engaged for three years, so when I signed for the part I immediately called for my fiancee to come to Chicago.... Secondly, this was a role I really believed in. It was a social documentary and an attempt at something realistic... Sometimes the scripts were very short, only five or six pages, which was unusual for radio. They weren't pregnant pauses; it was so the audience was able to digest the ideas, really think about what was being said and why."

The good Reverend would go on to preach about ideas that, in 1937, were hardly considered self-evident: the evil of racial prejudice, the futility of war and even, in a plea that is still being echoed today, the banning of playthings that glorified war, such as toy soldiers and guns.

His sermons became so popular that a book of them was published in the early 1940s and went on to sell 290,000 copies!

With America's entry into the second World War (no one listened to Dr. Ruthledge apparently), Peterson was sent overseas as part of General Patton's Third Army. While there, he wrote letters in the voice of his character, who was said to be serving as a chaplain in the European theater, about his experiences and what he had seen. Phillips adapted the letters and had them performed on the air. In addition, actors Louise Fitch (Rose), Ed Prentiss (Ned) and Eloise Kramer (Norma) supported the war effort by participating in the Victory Book Campaign, urging donations of reading material for the soldiers.



In 1946, Phillips and P&G decided to move GL to CBS Radio, and production to Hollywood. Peterson declined to relocate, as he and his wife were in the process of starting a theater in Chicago. Irna responded by informing Peterson that she would kill off the character of Reverend Ruthledge "so that no one can ever play him again -- including you."

The actor, along with his wife, went on to a long and distinguished theater career, though he is best known to television viewers as Major Gatling on the sitcom, Soap.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

I WANT MY AW-TV!

In 1991, MTV was ten years old, and common wisdom dictated that its vvisual style of bright lights, fast cuts, and hot, young bodies writhing to music wasn't the way of the future -- it was the present.

Another World decided to get in on the action with its notorious LadyKiller video. Dean (Ricky Paull Goldin) and Jenna (Alla Korot) -- who'd already rocked out to Wild August a month earlier -- were a couple in turmoil. He wanted her, she didn't want him. Well, she said she didn't want him, anyway.

Now Jenna is dancing in Dean's music video. He doesn't want her dancing in it. Well, he says he doesn't, anyway.

But the show must go on, and Another World went all out, MTV-style. Watch the finished product on the September 23 episode of AW on Hulu.com, here. Beware the intense make-up, teased hair (it may have been 1991, but the 80s weren't exactly over yet) -- and an explosive finale that wasn't in director Jake McKinnon's (Tom Eplin) original shooting script!

Will the LadyKiller video break more than just hearts? Find out now on Another World!
GL: PHOTO PREVIEW

Lizzie tries some retail therapy to get over Bill.



And... you know... other stuff.



Though even Cyrus seems to be wondering what exactly is going on here.



At least you'll get to find out next week, only on Guiding Light!

KIDS TODAY...

Wondering where ATWT's Gwen and Will Munson are these days? Check out Henry's thoughts on the out of town but not out of mind young couple, here!
WHERE ARE THEY NOW: SCOTT BAILEY (EX-SANDY; GL)

Academy Award nominee and Golden Globe winner Sigourney Weaver is starring in the emotional true story "Prayers For Bobby." Based on the book of the same name by Leroy Aarons, the movie will air Saturday at 9/8c on Lifetime.... The movie also stars Ryan Kelley ("Mean Creek"), Henry Czerny ("The Tudors"), Dan Butler ("Frasier") and Susan Ruttan ("L.A. Law"), Austin Nichols ("John From Cincinnati"), Carly Schroeder ("Mean Creek"), Scott Bailey ("Guiding Light"), and newcomers Shannon Eagen and Rebecca Louise Miller.

More here.

Carly Schroeder is also known to soap fans for playing Scott Baldwin's daughter, Serena, on Port Charles.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

WHERE ARE THEY NOW: KEVIN MAMBO (EX-MARCUS; GL)

Manhattan Theatre Club unveils Lynn Nottage's new play, Ruined, set in the war-torn Democratic Republic of Congo, Jan. 21 at New York City Center Stage I.... The cast features Quincy Tyler Bernstine, Cherise Boothe, Chris Chalk, William Jackson Harper, Chiké Johnson, Russell Gebert Jones, two-time Emmy Award winner Kevin Mambo ("The Guiding Light"), Tom Mardirosian, Ron McBee and Condola Rashad.

More here.

Mambo won two Outstanding Younger Actor Daytime Emmys (1996, 1997) for his role as Marcus Williams, initially introduced as a friend of Dinah's.

The actor recalled of his first day on the set, "I had to run around and fight with cops in a hallway, act with Michael Zaslow (Roger), be naked with Wendy Moniz (Dinah) and go swimming at the pool."

Saxophone-playing Marcus came to Springfield from Paris to check in with Dinah, but soon found himself suspected of killing a cop. (Marcus foolishly pulled out the knife stuck in the dead man's chest just as the police arrived -- really, people need to stop doing that.) Dinah contacted Marcus' estranged father, famed civil rights attorney Griffin Williams, to help with his son's case.

Griffin ended up sticking around Springfield and eventually being revealed as the biological father of Gilly Grant, courtesy of Griffin's affair with her mother, Vivian. When public support for Griffin's attempt to save 5th Street from Alan Spaulding flagged due to the revelation of his relationship with Vivian, Griffin arranged a fake assassination attempt on himself so he could look like a martyr.

When Marcus found out about his dad's duplicity, he was furious -- and Mambo won himself another Emmy.
JOSH & REVA

Serious.



And a little less so.

ACTOR APPEARANCE: ORLAGH CASSIDY (DORIS; GL)

Orlagh Cassidy will appear in Aristocrats, opening January 25 at the Irish Repertory Theater in New York City.

For more information, go
to www.irishrep.org.
WELCOME, MATT!

Eric William Morris returns to As The World Turns as Matt on Monday, February 2.



Originally introduced last year as an ex-cell-mate of Casey's, Matt was eventually revealed to be working for Grey Gerard, who was gunning for Margo.



Matt ultimately switched sides and, along with Alison, ended up on the wrong end of Grey's psychosis. Nevertheless, Matt returned to prison for his role in Grey's crimes.

Now he's back, and catching up with old friends....



As well as making new ones....



What trouble will Matt stir up in Oakdale this time around? Find out, only on ATWT!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

THESE ARE THE VOYAGES....

Soap fans who also watch Star Trek know that there is a great deal of cross-over between the two genres.

Kathryn Hays
(Kim; ATWT), Michael Zaslow (ex-Roger; GL), Marj Dusay (Alex; GL), Michelle Forbes (ex-Sonni/Solita; GL), Kate Mulgrew (Mary; Ryan's Hope), Robert Duncan McNeill (ex-Charlie; AMC) and John De Lancie (ex-Eugene; DOOL) among many, many others have played memorable and key roles in Gene Rodenberry's franchise over the years.



From 1994 to 1997 (with a guest appearance in 2000), Jennifer Lien played Kes on Star Trek: Voyager. But Lien made her series regular debut in 1991 on Another World.

She initially auditioned for the recast roles of Marley/Vicky (Anne Heche was ultimately hired). The producers didn't see Lien as either of the Love girls, and so created the role of Hannah Moore, Paulina's former foster sister.

Paulina invited the teen to move in with Paulina and her new husband, Jake. Jake wasn't thrilled and the pair often butted heads. When Jake thought Paulina was cheating on him with his younger brother, Kevin, he tried to convince Hannah to spy on the pair, by suggesting that Paulina was ignoring the young woman and deserved everything she got.

To check out this unconventional Bay City family -- and Jennifer Lien before she was Kes -- watch the current episodes of AW now airing on Hulu.com!