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News for the week of 28-May-2012

by Carol Banks Weber

The 2012 Daytime Emmy Awards has found a new home on HLN. Headline News? Better than the Food Network, don’t you think? Thanks to HLN taking up the slack, soaps will get their awards show—as well as an AMC and OLTL tribute—June 23. Watch the festivities air live 8 p.m.-10 p.m. EST.

Last week, the National Academy Of Television Arts & Sciences announced that it would relegate the outstanding younger actor/actress category to the June 17th Creative Arts ceremony, which would not air on TV. Then, it took that back and allowed the category to stay in the main awards ceremony after reportedly a backlash of complaints by the soap community, including some nominees who weren’t even going to go then.

It’s official. Starting July 9, ABC Daytime will air an extended Good Morning America, entitled Good Afternoon America, for nine weeks. The one-hour, entertainment-slanted program — replacing The Revolution, which unsuccessfully replaced OLTL — will air 2 p.m.-3 p.m. ET., and features co-hosts Lara Spencer and Josh Elliott.

When Jason Thompson (Patrick) received his Daytime Emmy nomination, the soap newcomer thought of everyone else but himself. He extolled the virtues of his co-star Kimberly McCullough (ex-Robin), whom he shared the majority of story with, as well as his fellow nominees. For his submission reel, Thompson naturally went with what felt good to him as an actor, and naturally, it involved Scrubs as they filmed a special birthday greeting for daughter Emma. “The connection I had with Kimberly McCullough in those scenes I felt were real,” he described. “I really enjoyed that day and had fun that day. I think in that episode it showed where Robin and Patrick were in their lives. And even as actors, we got to play around and feel what it is like to be family and then there was some love in at the end of it. The whole episode to me was rounded out with a nice arc within itself. We don’t get episodes like that. Usually it is an open-ended thing.” Michael Fairman interview

Jonathan Jackson was lucky. When it came time to select a submission reel, the Emmy-award-winning actor had loads to choose from. As unrelentingly intense as his last year with GH has been, Jackson was never at a loss for gripping story to sink his acting chops into. Jackson told Michael Fairman recently that he could’ve gone with Luke’s intervention, Lucky’s getting doped up, Luke’s rejection of Lucky at the Bordello… But it was the pivotal confrontation scene where Lucky tells Luke he was the one who ran Jake over that won out. “Something just happened when we were doing those scenes, so that is why I went with that. It just seemed like a complete show, with a beginning, middle and end to it,” Jackson explained. “… I feel I did honor what I wanted to do with Tony, by picking this episode for Emmy contention.”

Conversely, Emmy nominee Bradford Anderson (Spinelli) told Michael Fairman he had a bit of a tough time finding enough material in a show to submit. Claiming that TPTB at GH do not tend to write Emmy scenes but scenes that primarily drive story forward, Anderson said he chose his submission reel based on the challenging work he faced and achieved in scenes with Maxie at Georgie’s grave. Maxie had taken Spinelli there to shake him out of his Jackal P.I. persona. It’s where Anderson had to split himself in character between a hardened P.I. and a defeated, grieving computer geek. “These were scenes with Kirsten Storms from last summer. She was not feeling well that day and she did a great job. It is the first time the audience sees that the Jackal P.I. persona is actually a defense mechanism and what it’s all about,” Anderson described. “Maxie … pushed him really hard and then he goes into this neutral state, but highly emotive, where he doesn’t sound like Jackal P.I. He doesn’t sound like Spinelli, either! … The Jackal P.I. storyline was not easily digestible for a lot of people, but it was challenging for me. I felt like that day I made sense of it pretty well.”

When Laura Wright (Carly) won the Daytime Emmy last year, she did worry somewhat about the sophomore jinx, i.e., measuring up in subsequent years. Well, she won’t have to worry about that, she’s been nominated again—on the strength of the emotionally moving submission reel where Carly has to beg Jason to donate Jake’s kidneys to Josslyn. Wright had help picking out the right submission reel: Y&R champions Christian Le Blanc (Michael) and Michelle Stafford (Phyllis). They all looked at another option, where Carly goes off on Sonny at the PCPD when she thought he killed Jax, and felt that one was too one-note with just rage. Then they saw the subtlety, in the reel Wright wound up submitting. The actress said she tried to have a philosophical outlook on the Emmys, win, lose or submit. “… my concern after winning last year was; you don’t want to win an Emmy and then the next year, no one knows who you are or you disappear! (Laughs) But look, if it’s not your year, it’s not your year. If I didn’t feel I had Emmy worthy material, I would not submit myself because it is then all about ego. If I thought I did work that was O.K., I have no problem putting myself in the Supporting Actress category.” Michael Fairman interview

Who is Richard Steinmetz (ex-Jeff, Loving) going to play on GH? The new cast member will be heavily involved with Sonny, as Richard, and is said to be related to a former character.

The new ABC primetime drama, Nashville, co-starring Jonathan Jackson (ex-Lucky), was given the green light for the coveted fall season line-up. Jackson plays a bad boy country musician who catches the lead character’s eye. The new show will air Wednesday nights, 10 p.m. EST/PST.

Nathan Parsons (ex-Ethan) landed a guest-starring role in a new ABC Family show, Bunheads, to premiere June 11. He will play a surfer named Godot, whom all the girls go ga-ga for, in a June 16th episode.

Last week, General Hospital Happenings reported in its GH News section that Nathin Butler (Dr. Ewen) was let go late in May, without a final airdate as of yet. But Butler himself tweeted that he was just put on recurring and will not be gone.

Gossip for the week of 28-May-2012

by Carol Banks Weber

What gives soap fans the impression GH has one more year to impress TPTB? HNY (Happy New Years) on Daytime Dish recently dropped another date — June 5 — that could be key for the last remaining ABC Daytime soap. HNY posted that this date is when TPTB will know what they have to work with, if anything at all. But it’s fairly certain, according to HNY, that GH has a little beyond September at least.

Another major HNY spumor has Elizabeth serving as just a “support system” for other characters. “However, supporting others does not mean she makes any major impact on those storyboard.”

Another site portended GH’s end depended on the June line-up deadline. If in two weeks TPTB agree to dump GH, then they already have Good Afternoon America in place (starting in July) to extend another hour.

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