CBS Announces Soap Renewal

CBS renewed its top soap, THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS, for three more years, a move that will keep it on the air through the 2013-14 season.

The 38-year-old soap has been the number one daytime show for 22 years, so its renewal isn’t really a surprise, but a three year deal signed this early in the season should at least come as welcome relief for soap fans who’ve seen some mixed signals about the future of their favorite genre.

In 2009, CBS ended the longest-running program in broadcasting history, GUIDING LIGHT, which left the air after a combined 72 years on television and radio.  Earlier this year, AS THE WORLD TURNS left the air after 54 years on CBS.  But fans got a little relief after NBC decided to renew its 45-year-old Days of Our Lives.  Of the current soaps still on the air, the youngest one, THE BOLD AND THE BEAUTIFUL, premiered back in 1987.

Variety reports that CBS is also close to signing a deal to renew B&B, Y&R’s sister soap.


Daytime Emmy Nominations Announced

This year’s nominees for the Daytime Emmy Awards were announced this morning, and CBS’s THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS received 16 of them, ranking second in the number of nominations of any show.  Only ABC’s General Hospital garnered more, with 18 nominations.

Both Y&R and THE BOLD AND THE BEAUTIFUL are nominated for Best Drama Series. GUIDING LIGHT‘s Crystal Chappell (Olivia Spencer), Y&R’s Michelle Stafford (Phyllis Newman), and AS THE WORLD TURNS‘ Maura West (Carly Tenney) are nominated for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series. Y&R’s Peter Bergman (Jack Abbott) and Doug Davidson (Paul Williams), and ATWT’s Jon Lindstrom (Craig Montgomery) and Michael Park (Jack Snyder) are up for Outstanding Lead Actor.

GL’s Beth Chamberlin (Beth Spaulding) and ATWT’s Julie Pinson (Janet Snyder) are nominated for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series. Y&R’s Billy Miller (Billy Abbott) is up for Outstanding Supporing Actor in a Drama Series.

Outsanding Younger Actor or Actress Nominations went to Y&R’s Christel Khalil (Lily Winters), ATWT’s Marnie Schulenburg (Alison Stewart), B&B’s Drew Tyler Bell (Thomas Forrester) and GL’s Zack Conroy (James Spaulding). Conroy, by the way, can now be seen on THE BOLD AND THE BEAUTIFUL in the role of Oliver.

LET’S MAKE A DEAL‘s Wayne Brady is nominated as Outstanding Game Show Host for his work in the freshman series that replaced GUIDING LIGHT.

THE DOCTORS received a nomination for Outstanding Talk Show/Informative Program. THE PRICE IS RIGHT received a nomination for Outstanding Game/Audience Participation Show.

As for THE WENDY WILLIAMS SHOW, fans know that Wendy makes no bones about her collection of wigs.  They must have impressed Emmy judges, since her hairstylists were nominated for hair design!

You can view the full list of nominees at the official website of the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, which awards the Emmys. This year’s Daytime Emmy Awards will be broadcast on June 27th on Live 5 WCSC.

Another Cancellation Rocks Daytime

CBS has announced that another staple of daytime television will leave the air. AS THE WORLD TURNS will air its final broadcast in September, 2010.

At the time of that final show, the soap will have been on the air for 54 years.

Since its premiere on April 2, 1956, the show has broadcast more than 13,000 episodes and has featured now-big name actors like Marisa Tomei, Meg Ryan, Parker Posey and James Earl Jones. From the very first episode, actress Helen Wagner has portrayed the matriarch of the Hughes family. It was a scene with Wagner that was interrupted by Walter Cronkite on November 22, 1963 with a bulletin that President Kennedy had been shot in Dallas, Texas.

“The almanacs will show AS THE WORLD TURNS as a pioneer of the format, a hallmark for quality with its numerous Emmy’s, the launching pad for many television and film stars and a daytime ratings powerhouse for parts of three decades. But, the true legacy of AS THE WORLD TURNS will be the fictional characters and stories of a small Midwest town that resonated every day with millions of viewers over multiple generations, becoming a treasured daytime institution in the process,” CBS Senior Vice President for Daytime Programming Barbara Bloom said in a statement.

The decision at least allows the writers a lot of time to wrap up storylines (or build cliffhangers that won’t get wrapped up, depending on their plans) for the Hughes, Montgomery, Ryan, Snyder, Stewart and Walsh families, and all characters in between.

There’s no word, yet, on what will replace AS THE WORLD TURNS on the CBS schedule, but speculation is that another game show format may be pulled into service. Earlier this year, GUIDING LIGHT, which had been on the air in radio and television for a total of 72 years, came to a close and was replaced with a cheaper-to-produce game show, LET’S MAKE A DEAL.

Several game show formats were considered before the network decided on LET’S MAKE A DEAL; it’s possible one of the others may appear in the AS THE WORLD TURNS timeslot.

When AS THE WORLD TURNS leaves the air, CBS will have only two soaps left on the air: THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS, which has been the number one soap in daytime for years, and THE BOLD AND THE BEAUTIFUL, which is the most-watched soap in the world.

Then again, a lot can happen in nine months. So stay tuned.

CBS Soaps Return Monday

Soap fans, U.S. Open Tennis is pre-empting the CBS daytime lineup today. But don’t worry: CBS did not produce episodes of their soaps today, which means that on Monday, each show will pick up right where it left off yesterday.

On THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS, viewers were left with quite the pair of cliffhangers. First, there’s crazy Patty, who’s kidnapped Colleen, and Paul, J.T., Jack and Victor are all hot on the trail to find them before it’s too late. Previews indicate it’s going to be a particularly exciting week next week. Then there’s Amber, who’s forced wedding to Deacon was just interrupted by Daniel, who’s dangling a shiny offer Deacon may have a hard time refusing.

Meanwhile, on THE BOLD AND THE BEAUTIFUL, Owen has just seen the website about Jackie’s past secrets and was left speechless. Will this be the last nail in the coffin for their May-December romance?

The mood was much lighter in Oakdale where AS THE WORLD TURNS characters were celebrating the death of James Stenbeck. At least, we’re assuming he’s dead. He’s “died” on that show so many times that I’ve lost count. Presumably, he’s been embalmed, so that would seem to be a good indication…but it’s a soap, after all, so you never really know for sure. In the middle of the celebration, Henry has a change of heart about the inheritance he’s just received. And Riley, who’s really Adam, just turned himself in.

Then, GUIDING LIGHT is back on Monday for its final week on the air after 72 years and more than 15,700 episodes. There’s hope for some new starts for several relationships that have been on the rocks lately. New starts, just in time for the big finish on Friday.

So there’s a lot happening you won’t want to miss starting Monday at 12:30pm on LIVE 5 WCSC.

60 Minutes Salutes Guiding Light

Odds are that most of the people actually reading this blog weren’t alive during a time that GUIDING LIGHT wasn’t on the air, either on radio or television. But next week, after 72 years, the CBS soap goes dark.

Guidling_Light_LogoAnything could happen and it usually did over the course of its more than 15,000 episodes. Characters would disappear and re-emerge after years, become entangled in the most outrageous plots writers could fathom – they could even die and come back to life. Morley Safer talks to the people who produced and appeared on GUIDING LIGHT, some for decades, as they celebrate the life and now accept the breakup of what has for them become a family, Sunday on 60 MINUTES.

First on the radio in 1937, “Guiding Light” made the transition to television in 1952 and rode the soap-opera success train to its peak in the 1970s, when the networks ran 16 of them. Its demise leaves just seven on the networks now.

“I’m 54 years old. I will never have a job like this again, ever in my life,” says actress Kim Zimmer, who played Reva Shayne – a character who married nine times on the show. “Nothing this steady and this stable and this wonderful.”

Executive producer Ellen Wheeler says it’s more than a job. “We have to say goodbye to the characters and we have to say goodbye to the town, the whole town. We have to say goodbye to each other. Our working relationships are over,” she says.

Beth Chamberlin, who went from a teenager to middle age on the broadcast as Beth Raines, is a little bit in denial. “I think it won’t sink in for maybe a month later that we’re actually not going back. We’re not just light on story right now, there is no story to be told,” she tells Safer.

In addition, Safer also speaks to ‘GL’ writer Jill Lorie Hurst and longtime actors Ron Raines, Tina Sloan and Grant Aleksander.

60 MINUTES airs Sunday at 7:00pm on LIVE 5 WCSC.

Today’s Episode of Guiding Light

For those who missed a portion of today’s episode of GUIDING LIGHT because of Governor Sanford’s press conference, here is a summary of today’s episode:

Rick informs the waiting family that the procedure went well and now they just have to monitor how Phillip’s body responds and how well Alan recovers. James worries that Alan’s body won’t be able to handle the surgery. Phillip and Alan slowly come back to awareness. Lizzie thinks that today is a
beginning for their family.

Josh and Reva play with Colin, Henry and Sarah. Reva jokes about what Henry is going to call Josh. Reva introduces Sarah to Daisy.

Rick explains to the family that the patients are past immediate danger and says they can visit Alan and Phillip. Lizzie rushes in and hugs Phillip, and then fills him in on how everyone is doing. Jonathan asks Reva to come with him and Sarah to see Lizzie. Lillian thanks Ed for saving Phillip and Alan. Phillip admits to Beth that he was afraid he’d never get to look in her eyes again. Rick congratulates Ed on the successful surgery. Rick thanks Ed for saving his best friend. Phillip is wheeled into Alan’s room. Phillip thanks his father.

Rafe admits to Ashlee that his mom likes Olivia. Ashlee explains to Daisy that her mom is gay and is only mad that Doris didn’t let her know sooner. Daisy convinces Ashlee to explain that to her mom. Doris apologizes for not informing Ashlee sooner. Ashlee hopes this could be a new start for them. Natalia explains to Frank and Blake that Olivia and Emma are moving back to the farmhouse with her.

And just a reminder: because of CBS Sports coverage of the U.S. Open Tennis, none of the CBS soaps will air on Friday. The shows will pick up just where they left off on Monday.

Soap Fans: Prepare for a Long Weekend

Soap fans will have to wait one extra day to find out what happens next on their favorite CBS soap operas. This year, as in years past, THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS, THE BOLD AND THE BEAUTIFUL, AS THE WORLD TURNS and GUIDING LIGHT will not air on Monday.

But hold your horses: you’re not going to miss anything. CBS did not produce episodes of the soaps for this day. The Network will be carrying US Open Tennis in its place. Episodes on Tuesday will pick up right where they left off on Friday.

But there’s one more little thing you need to know: Live 5 WCSC is part of the Jerry Lewis Labor Day MDA Telethon Love Network, which means we’ll be airing the 44th annual telethon from Sunday night at 9 through Labor Day at 6:30pm. So if you’re a tennis fan, you’ll be able to check in on the matches on Comcast channel C2. (We hope you’ll flip back to Live 5 WCSC to see the great entertainment Lewis has in store.)

On Tuesday, everything gets back to normal with the soaps, beginning at 12:30pm, right after LIVE 5 NEWS AT NOON.

CBS Soap Scores Upset at Daytime Emmys

CBS’s THE BOLD AND THE BEAUTIFUL was a big winner at the 2009 Daytime Emmy® Awards this past Sunday. The soap snagged its first Emmy for Best Drama Series in its 22 year history, beating ABC’s All My Children and NBC’s Days of Our Lives.

Christian LaBlanc, who plays lawyer Michael Baldwin on THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS, won the Emmy for Best Actor in a Drama Series. Jeff Branson (Shayne Lewis), of GUIDING LIGHT won Best Supporting Actor in a Drama Series.

THE BOLD AND THE BEAUTIFUL airs weekdays at 1:30pm on LIVE 5 WCSC. The show has taped over 5,000 episodes in its over 20 years on the air and is viewed daily by millions of viewers in more than 100 countries, making it the most-watched dramatic serial in the world.

GUIDING LIGHT airs weekdays at 3:00pm on LIVE 5 WCSC. It has taped more than 15,000 episodes and spanned 72 years on television and radio, making it the longest-running program in broadcasting history. It will air its final episode on Friday, September 18th.

Last Light Tapes Today

The final episode of CBS’s GUIDING LIGHT wraps up taping today, closing the book on the longest-running show in broadcast history.

Guidling_Light_LogoGUIDING LIGHT premiered in radio in 1937, and transitioned to CBS television in 1952. In all, it spans 72 years, and almost as many Emmy Awards between the show and its actors over seven decades.

The final episode airs on Friday, September 18th. Two weeks later, on Monday, October 5th, a revival of LET’S MAKE A DEAL will take over the timeslot.

For actors like Kim Zimmer, who has portrayed Reva Shayne for nearly 30 years, walking away from the show is very difficult. “I’ve gotten to be close to some of daytimes most gorgeous men!” But all joking aside, for many of the folks behind the scenes at the show, it’s the loyal viewers they feel the worst for.

Those of us who work in TV, even if we haven’t been loyal viewers of GUIDING LIGHT or soap operas in general, still have to tip our hat to a show that managed such an incredible run generation after generation. It’s not likely that any drama — daytime or nighttime — will ever come close to GUIDING LIGHT’S tenure.

GUIDING LIGHT airs weekdays at 3:00pm on LIVE 5 WCSC, followed by LIVE 5 NEWS FIRST AT FOUR.

Daytime’s New Deal

Most of us grew up watching Monty Hall in a sea of costume-clad contestants trading one prize for another and occasionally a great prize for a “zonk.” A new version of LET’S MAKE A DEAL will premiere in a couple of months as a replacement for the long-running GUIDING LIGHT which ends a 72-year broadcast run in September.

Emmy Award-Winner Wayne Brady will host this new version of LET’S MAKE A DEAL.

The original LET’S MAKE A DEAL was a television game show staple during the 1960’s and 70’s when it was hosted by Hall from 1963-1977. While later versions aired in syndication and primetime, the game show is best remembered for the years hosted by Hall, who will serve as a creative consultant on this latest version.

“I am honored and ready to go; it is not every day that you get to be a part of a franchise like LETS MAKE A DEAL,” said Wayne Brady. “I think it is a perfect fit.”

“We are delighted to have LET’S MAKE A DEAL back on the air with CBS,” said Monty Hall. “I know the audience is going to welcome the charming and engaging Wayne Brady as the new host.”

“Wayne Brady is a unique talent whose extraordinary skills in both hosting and improvisation make him the perfect choice to host this legendary and engaging show. We are thrilled to be adding him and LET’S MAKE A DEAL to the number one Daytime line-up,” says Barbara Bloom, Senior Vice President, Daytime Programs, CBS. “We’re also very lucky to have Monty Hall as our creative consultant, bringing with him a knowledge of game shows that will prove invaluable as we present this classic game show to a whole new audience.”

LET’S MAKE A DEAL becomes the second game show on CBS’s top-rated Daytime line-up, joining THE PRICE IS RIGHT, hosted by Drew Carey, which is the #2 ranked series on Daytime television, second to THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS.

Wayne Brady won an Emmy Award and earned two Emmy Award nominations for the improvisational show “Whose Line Is It Anyway?” and went on to host his own syndicated talk/variety show “The Wayne Brady Show” for two years. He picked up Emmy Awards for Outstanding Talk Show Host and Outstanding Talk Show. Brady was last seen hosting the game show “Don’t Forget the Lyrics.” He has guest starred on “The Dave Chappelle Show,” “30 Rock,” “Dirt” and “Everybody Hates Chris,” as well as “How I Met Your Mother,” on the Network. In film, Brady recently provided a voice for the upcoming animated feature, “Foodfight!” Brady also earned a Grammy nomination for Best Traditional R&B Vocal Performance for his single “A Change is Gonna Come” off his debut musical album “A Long Time Coming.” In 2005, he completed a run playing Billy Flynn in the Broadway production of “Chicago.” He has also made a big splash in Vegas with his current hit stage show “Makin’ It Up.”

LET’S MAKE A DEAL will premiere on October 5, 2009 and will air weekdays at 3:00pm on LIVE 5 WCSC.