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News for the week of 19-Jan-2015

by Carol Banks Weber

Maurice (Sonny) and executive producer wife Paula Benard’s movie, The Ghost And The Whale, received a nomination for best picture at the upcoming Hollywood Reel Independent Film Festival (February 12-26).

Nancy Lee Grahn’s new digital series — a kind of insider talk show for the daytime fans — premiered with three episodes, January 12. Another three will come out February 2. Grahn dips heavily into her daytime stash for guest stars: Jason Thompson (Patrick), Tyler Christopher (Nikolas), Sebastian Roché (ex-Jerry), Ian Buchanan (Duke), Kirsten Storms (Maxie), Lisa LoCicero (Olivia)… for starters.

Kristen Alderson (Kiki; ex-Starr, OLTL) posted January 14 the reasons for choosing to leave GH at the height of her daytime career: for other projects, to grow, to try new endeavors, to pursue singing opportunities, etc. “I have had the best time over the past three years. And this decision is purely spur of the moment, kind of an epiphany that I had that I have been in this amazing soap bubble since I was six-years-old, and now I am 23, and I have never done anything else, or pushed myself, or challenged myself to do other things, and not necessarily in the industry, but things in life like … taking a class here or there for something other than acting, and getting back into singing, which you guy know I love to do …  so that would be really exciting. And who knows where this road is going to take me? But, this had all happened very quickly, but I am prepared for the worst, and I am prepared for any failures.” –Video posted at Michael Fairman

During a January 15th GMA interview for Nutrisystem — she’s the new spokesperson — Genie Francis (ex-Laura) talked about her struggles with weight and food. She recently dropped 30 pounds on Nutrisystem, in seven months. Prior to Nutrisystem, Francis went on the extreme Medifast diet to start her on her way. Now, she’s satisfied with a more realistic way to eat and live, as an admitted “emotional eater. I use food to comfort myself. It’s been an ongoing problem in my life. But the biggest part of the problem was that before, in order lose weight, I would do extreme diets and starve. The good thing about Nutrisystem is that I’m more at peace with food,” Francis explained, in the press release. In the interview, she told Luchina Fisher that the 30 pounds she lost on Medifast began to wear away after watching her sister Shelley fall ill and then, pass, on June 2013. The Nutrisystem diet has begun to right her back on a normal, healthy eating regimen. “All the other diets I’ve done all my life have taught me how to starve, how not to eat. It was all or nothing. The big thing with Nutrisystem, it’s teaching me how to eat. The more I eat a balanced diet, the less vulnerable I am to those trigger foods...because I’m not miserable and starving.” She’s also exercising, using a trainer, doing cardio and strength training like she should.

Soap fan Tricia Sheldon and Mare of YouTube Channel Romabriere put together a lovely video retrospective on Denise Alexander, who played Laura’s mother Lesley. Sheldon earlier did a video chat with the veteran actress who’s also been on DOOL and AW. The video retrospective contains footage from 1949 to today, including her current role on Pretty The Series, a Steve Silverman mockumentary web series. Enjoy “Denise Alexander ~ 65 Years and Counting!,” published January 14, here.

So many soap fans clamor to know where to buy the clothes the characters are wearing. For the longest time, they’ve had to go without a solid directory — until “I’m A Soap Fan” came around. This blogger posts where you can purchase the denim skirt Rosalie had on recently, or Anna’s chic plaid wool coat from the January 14th episode. Kirsten Storms (Maxie) has been tweeting links to the blog.

Gossip for the week of 19-Jan-2015

by Carol Banks Weber

Soap Opera Digest, January 26th edition, features “Stuff We Know (And Shouldn’t Tell You),” mentioning this blind item: “Insiders say a couple of daytime soaps will be slimming down their top-heavy casts due to network mandates. Sources report that a number of actors are concerned that they may wind up on the unemployment line in the coming weeks.” Sounds like GH and Y&R to me. Their casts are terribly bloated.

On Celebrity Dirty Laundry (January 10, 2015), Amanda Austin throws out the possibility that Vinessa Antoine (Jordan) may go next, a rumor that first surfaced on this site last month. According to ‘General Hospital’ spoilers, on Friday January 9 Antoine shared this message with fans on her Facebook page, ‘The decision has been made. It’s been real Facebook. If you are a friend or fan stay tuned…’ Sure, Vinessa’s message was pretty vague and could mean a number of things. But, considering that rumors have been flying around that her character Jordan would be killed off, and when she joined GH the length of her character’s run was never specified, there is a very real chance that she was subtly announcing she was leaving ‘General Hospital.’” When you go to Antoine’s Facebook to find the January 9th post, it’s not there. Hmm. Instead, she addresses the rumors of her exit thusly: “Still on ‪#‎GH lovelies. wink emoticon My Facebook status was about Facebook. lol Was thinking about letting someone else handle my page for me [January 10].”

Is Kirsten Storms’ (Maxie) baby girl Harper — who recently turned one — with husband Brandon Barash (Johnny) going to play baby Georgie now?

General Hospital News & Gossip, Copyright © 2015 Carol Banks Weber. Published by / Jeff Jungblut. No part of this page may be reproduced or transmitted in any form, by any means (electronic, recording, or otherwise) without the prior written permission of the publisher. Opinions expressed on this page are those of the author and may not be representative of or its advertisers. Don't steal scoops.