Friday, June 8, 2007

Silbermann Talks WORLD TURNS and Boundary Busting writer Christine Champagne talked to the newest star of AS THE WORLD TURNS, actor Jake Silbermann ("Noah Mayer") about the historical import (and potential) of his gay teen character's upcoming summer romance and his "natural" chemistry with on-screen love interest Van Hansis ("Luke Snyder").

Which isn't to say that the road to gay iconography has run smoothly. Silbermann tells Champagne of his first ATWT public appearance, a trip to the GLAAD Media Awards before he had even aired as Army brat-turned-news intern (turned-supercouple's son-scoping charmer) Noah. His first mistake? Not knowing to be fashionably late...

Read Champagne's story here.

RELATED - "GENERAL HOSPITAL's New Gay Hottie," the interview with Ben Hogestyn

Thursday, June 7, 2007

HEROES's Kring Signs New NBC Pact

From the Hollywood Reporter:

HEROES creator/executive producer Tim Kring, has inked a new overall deal with NBC Universal Television Studio, the studio behind the hit freshman show.

Under the two-year pact, said to be one of the biggest in television, Kring will continue as the showrunner on HEROES and will shepherd its upcoming spinoff, HEROES: Origins, as well as the various HEROES offshoots in print and digital media. Kring also is expected to develop new projects for the studio.

This marks the first major talent deal to close since Katherine Pope took the reins of NBC Uni TV as president several days ago. That couldn't be more fitting as Kring and Pope are close friends going back to the early days of NBC Studios, which the two joined within months from each other in 1999-2000.
Read the full story here.

Bianco (pre-) Handicaps (pre-) Nominations for the Prime-time Emmys

As nominated soap actors race look to the Daytime Emmys (a week from tomorrow), the soapiest actors in prime-time are at the start of the process to determine who will share the slate with their non-serial bretheren on the prime-time Emmy ballot.

This week, "nominations for nominations" ballots for the prime-time awards fest begin arriving in Academy member's mailboxes. In honor of the occasion, USA TODAY's Robert Bianco offers his suggestions for who should fit the bill.

Bianco's picks are heavy on soap players, including both prime-time serial women (Evangeline Lilly of LOST, America Ferrera of UGLY BETTY, and Sally Field of BROTHERS & SISTERS) and, after recognizing Kyle Chandler of FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS on his best actor list, Bianco stocks his supporting actor slate 100% with nighttime soapsters, including Masi Oka of HEROES, T.R. Knight of GREY'S ANATOMY, and Sam Neil of THE TUDORS.

Bianco's list is strong, if a bit safe. He rightly cites that nearly every woman on UGLY BETTY could be nominated for an Emmy, before proceeding to choose the predictable--and most famous choice--Vanessa Williams as the one most deserving. While I like Williams on the show a great deal, stars Ana Ortiz and Becki Newton have given revelatory performances with characters that could easily have been one-note. He also shortchanges BETTY's men in his calculations, with nary a mention of Eric Mabius or the delightfully surprising Michael Urie. (Personally, I would have thrown Adrian Pasdar, who's complicated take on what--literally--could have been a cartoon made viewers willing to patch over a huge plot hole in HEROES's season finale, and to hope that said hole somehow means he'll still be flying into living rooms on Monday nights next season.)

Still, Bianco shows the nighttime serial the love it deserves by recognizing some of the amazing contributions that have been made by TV stars, movie stars, and newcomers alike to the genre and prime-time slate this past season. To read his full predictions, click

Wednesday, June 6, 2007


Nina Tassler, president of CBS Entertainment, has announced via the network's official message boards that the canceled serial JERICHO has been givne a reprieve, with the network ordering seven addtional episodes to be aired, most likely, mid-season of next year.

In her post, Tassler noted, "On behalf of everyone at CBS, thank you for expressing your support of Jericho in such an extraordinary manner. Your protest was creative, sustained and very thoughtful and respectful in tone. You made a difference."

The digital elements of the show will apparently continue apace until the show makes its return to the small screen, and, should ratings improve for the final seven episodes, a long future could be ahead for the newly revived, and likely just as creepy, prime-time soap.

Jericho Fan Campaign: Just Might Be Nuts Enough to Work

Fan protests of the decision to cancel shows are nothing new. In fact, the Internet is lousy with petitions, old and new, devoted to dearly departed network and cable offerings. Soaps, however, are in a league of their own...something the editors of Soap Opera Digest (who occasionally have to beg fans to stop sending a particular item in) or executives at Proctor & Gamble, drowning in the fruits of whatever fan campaign ("place these two characters together!", "break these two up," "give _______ a new contract!") happens to be active at the time, can tell you.

[ed. note -- I even admit to to participating once, protesting Jennifer Branson's firing from GENERAL HOSPITAL--and as much as I love, love, LOVE Laura Wright's amazing take on "Carly Corinthos," I still think Bransford got screwed, and that ABC Daytime owes her a second chance someplace else...]

But such campaigns are more rare, and less successful, as a rule, in the realm of prime-time, though dissapointed fans of the canceled JERICHO, are redefining the creative fan campaign playing field.

In a recent report filed by Scott Mayerowitz for the ABCNEWS Business Division on reports that a fan campaign to deluge CBS with thousands and thousands of pounds of peanuts to protest the network's decision to cancel the show appears to be working.

So far, nearly 8 million, or 40,000 lbs. of peanuts have arrived at the offices of multiple CBS executives, and the Associated Press, citing an anonymous source, reports that the network is now reconsidering the cancelation, with a decision on whether to revive the show for mid-season next year, due soon.

Read the full story here.

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

David Bauder Looks at Fall's Network Serial Plans

From the Associated Press' David Bauder:

There were two lessons from this season that television executives clearly didn’t forget: Don’t overdo the serial dramas with complex story lines that require a serious viewer commitment, and keep interruptions for successful ones to a minimum.

More dramas — and network TV is primarily in the drama business these days — will tell stories that won’t baffle the viewer who happened to miss last week’s episode.Three successful serials were particularly hurt this season by long intervals with reruns. That was fatal to CBS’ “Jericho,” which was canceled. The other two, ABC’s “Lost” and NBC’s “Heroes,” will run their new episodes uninterrupted next season, following the model of Fox’s “24.” So will the CW’s “One Tree Hill.” CBS will try the same thing with “Swing Town,” one of its most promising newcomers.

“I don’t know if we know the ideal model yet for each of them,” said Kelly Kahl, chief of scheduling at CBS. “We’re looking, experimenting, trying to find the best way to do it.”

SoapNet's Reality Fashion House Victim of $70K Crime

...thus screams the headline in the usually far more subtle ;-) New York Post.

Read the story here.

ATWT Does Branson, MO!

Two stories chronicle the adventures of AS THE WORLD TURNS on location in Branson, MO:

Branson Drenched in Drama with As The World Turns Taping
Business Wire via Yahoo! Finance Tue, 05 Jun 2007 5:43 PM PDT

Where is the "Live Music Capital of the World"? (ed. note - Uhm, it's Austin, Texas) What is its latest claim to fame? It's Branson in southwest Missouri, and the longest-running daytime drama on CBS, As The World Turns, is heading there for on-location shooting June 6 - 8, with the shows plot deeply imbedded throughout the city's theater's and attractions.

'As the World Turns' filming in Branson
The Springfield News-Leader Tue, 05 Jun 2007 1:06 AM PDT

Ask Paula Graves of Morrisville if she's a fan of "As the World Turns" and she'll respond: "Does milk come from a cow? Heck, yes, I am a fan," the 49-year-old said. The CBS soap opera "As the World Turns" is filming in Branson this week and has soap opera buffs buzzing. Some are planing vacations around the show; others are driving to Branson in search of cast and crew members.

Monday, June 4, 2007

One of the surefire ways to make sure a water-cooler show does not face the dreaded sophomore slump is to make the kind of casting choices that not only keep new viewers interested, but might lead others to sample the show for the first time. NBC may be doing just that in adding a vet of a departing show of equal water-cooler appeal to the cast of the superhero soap HEROES next season.

According to the Hollywood Reporter, Dania Ramirez, known to passionate fans of HBO's THE SOPRANOS as the fiancee of troubled Soprano scion A.J. (played by Robert Iler), will join the cast next season as a new character with powers.

Saturday, June 2, 2007

Sci-Fi Announces End Date for Space Serial BATTLESTAR GALLACTICA

From UPI:

The Sci-Fi Channel's Peabody Award-winning and critically acclaimed series BATTLESTAR GALLACTICA is coming to a close.

Although the show's ending was not officially announced until Friday, Gallactica's executive producers, Ron Moore and David Eick, said they began feeling several months ago the show was nearing its end, reported.

"This is a decision that took some time to arrive at, and like all decisions this large, there were a number of questions we had internally and a creative agenda we wanted to serve. I think we all had to collectively decide when we wanted to be definitive about it. That time is now," Eick says.

Although Sci-Fi reportedly was not exactly thrilled with the idea of giving up the show, Moore said once he and Eick made their case, the network didn't stand in their way.

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