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News for the week of 15-Feb-2016

by Carol Banks Weber

Maurice Benard (Sonny) announced on Twitter last Friday that his indie movie, The Ghost And The Whale, will see wider audiences now with MarVista Entertainment on board. The indie airs on Digital HD and On Demand as of May 17. Benard’s wife Paula ran the show.

Daytime Confidential’s Jamey Giddens tweeted this past Saturday that Ron Carlivati won his Writers Guild of America award for the work he did on GH before the firing. Carlivati and his writing team, including Elizabeth Korte, Chris Van Etten, and Jean Passanante, beat CBS’s B&B for the honors. Fuck you, GH cast. The Awards took place at 5 p.m. Feb. 13 at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza Hotel in L.A.

Several GH cast members got a thrill when the indie series they’re on — Winterthorne — earned 13 nominations in the 7th annual Indie Series Awards. Kathleen Gati (Dr. Liesl Obrecht) scored a nomination as a “Best Guest Actress” for her part in Michael Caruso’s Winterthorne. The Indie Series Awards honor web-based shows. The official party to honor the winners happens at 8 p.m. April 6 at the El Portal Theatre in North Hollywood.

Nancy Lee Grahn (Alexis) and William deVry (Julian) indulged in the Julexis Army love for Part 2 of Michael Logan’s self-indulgent TV Insider interview Feb. 8. They answered questions from their fans, centered around the upcoming wedding of their besotted, middle-aged characters. For such an accidental soap couple, they seem tailor-made for an atypical soapy wedding. The actors tried to keep the interview self-consciously light, wild, wacky, and full of levity — except when Grahn went in with her trademarked feminist agenda (?). Fans who love them will love their answers. Fans who are tired of Grahn, won’t. The woman just can’t leave well enough alone. To wit:

>> This is not a question but a comment. @JulexisisLoVe says: “I love the way Julian looks at Alexis like she’s the only goddess on Earth.”

Grahn: That’s so nice. I’ve been on the show 20 years and nobody likes me very much. But Will does. The reason Julexis is successful is that Will commits to this relationship, which has not been my experience on soaps. Or in life. He doesn’t resent the idea of a man being head-over-heels in love with a woman, and that’s a frequent problem with actors. When I was on Santa Barbara, Mason and Julia were a really great, complicated couple, but it’s no secret that Lane Davies was difficult. He didn’t like to play how much Mason loved Julia, as if it made him less complex or less manly or less interesting. That happens a lot on soaps and it’s foolish. Julian being devoted to Alexis makes Will more interesting and even hotter. The women at home pick up on that…

This is interesting. @GabeRodney wants to know: “Where do you think your characters would be if there was no Julexis?”

Grahn: It would all depend on who’s writing the show. If men were writing GH, I’d be a utility player and Alexis would be representing mobsters in court for crimes she knows they committed. And that’s the truth. She’d have no love life or any interesting purpose. She’d all the time be asking her daughters, “Are you OK?” instead of having a life of her own. And at night she’d be sitting home watching Wheel of Fortune. And staring at her orange carpet that’s been there for 40 years. [Laughs] And drinking.
deVry: I honestly don’t think I’d still be on the show. Julexis is a big reason—maybe the reason—Julian remains on GH.
Grahn: If it wasn’t for Alexis keeping her man out of the mob, Julian would be on a meat hook, just like anyone else who dares to cross Sonny.
deVry: Or at the bottom of Lake…uh…what lake would it be? Lake Erie? Where the hell is Port Charles anyway? >>

If you can sift through the Grahn crap, you’ll notice buried beneath the lead that deVry wasn’t so hot on the idea of a wedding at first. “I was very hesitant. They were very tightlipped at the show. I did get a little indication that a wedding was coming up, but I didn’t share it with anybody, not even Rebecca [my girlfriend]. She always makes fun of me because I never ask her to rehearse scenes with me at home. I don’t want her to know what happens. I want her to watch the show and be as shocked as anybody. I like having that objective viewer in our house. She’s my hot-and-cold gage meter. She either likes what I do, or she doesn’t. There’s no lukewarm. Eventually I did talk it over with Nancy who said, ‘Hey, listen, this is a great payoff for the fans, for all their hard work and dedication. They deserve it.’ That made me feel okay about it, but then my next question was: ‘Are they gonna be happy for more than five minutes?’ But that was then. Now, I’m really happy about it. I’m embracing it. I’ve been through all the emotions.”

Gossip for the week of 15-Feb-2016

by Carol Banks Weber

Daytime Confidential’s Jamey Giddens broke the story Feb. 8 that Rebecca Herbst (Elizabeth) may not be so hot to re-sign her contract with GH. “Is General Hospital about to lose another big star to a Sony soap? I'm hearing from multiple sources Rebecca Herbst and ABC have reached an impasse in contract negotiations for her to continue on as Elizabeth Webber, R.N. Insiders reveal Sony's Days of Our Lives is very keen on bringing the popular actress on board their canvas.”

Looks like this rumor may have wings. Herbst reportedly has been so disappointed in the way the writers have steered her character into the dark side uncharacteristically that she’s considering leaving and may even already be out the door, ala Jason Thompson (ex-Patrick; Billy, Y&R). IMHO, she is a huge reason for GH’s success. TPTB are TIIC if they don’t do whatever they can to meet her needs and stop scapegoating Elizabeth like she’s a walk-on and not a legacy character.

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