Friday
April
18
2014
8:39 am
Weather
  Home
  Local News
  State / National / World
  Sports
  Opinion / Letters
  Business
  Arts / Entertainment
  Lifestyle
  Obituaries
  Calendar
  Submit Event
  Comics / Games
  Classifieds
  DJ Designers
  Archives
  Advertise With Us
  About Us
 
 
 
 

Check out our archive of Dining Guides - Yum!

50 years looks good on ABC’s ’General Hospital’
November 06, 2013, 05:00 AM The Associated Press

NEW YORK — A few years ago, ABC’s “General Hospital” was in trouble.

“All My Children” and “One Life to Live” had been given their series’ end dates and the “GH” cast and crew worried their show would be next.

“You’d be on set and you’d hear little things like, ‘Oh, we’ve got maybe six months”’ before cancellation, said Jason Thompson, who plays Patrick Drake on the longest-running daytime show. “It was tough.”

“We had a couple holes in the ship,” added Kelly Monaco, who plays Samantha Morgan.

Then in February 2012, “One Life to Live” executive producer Frank Valentini and head writer Ron Carlivati joined “GH.”

“We were all worried and we had a right to be worried. The show was in a very dark place and Ron and I managed to come in and shake it up,” Valentini said.

Almost immediately, the characters were given a purpose.

“One of Frank and Ron’s things is that every character has to have a job and every character has to have a romance,” says Tyler Christopher, who plays Nikolas Cassadine, “so there’s an opportunity there for you to show up in somebody else’s story ... so you’re still relevant.”

This isn’t an easy task.

“There are a lot of characters on the show and that’s a blessing and a curse,” Valentini said. “We try not to go more than two weeks without seeing somebody, and if we do, it could be for other reasons like the (actor) is on vacation or doing a movie.”

The pace of the show quickened, cutting between scenes to tell different perspectives of a story.

Christopher says speed also exists behind the scenes, where “things need to be done quicker, better, faster.”

“The number of pages we do in a day has almost doubled but it’s working,” he said. “As hard as it is no one complains. We just sweat it out and keep moving.”

“General Hospital,” which airs weekdays at 2 p.m. Eastern, also began to utilize longtime cast members like Jane Elliott, who plays Tracy Quartermaine.

“Jane is such a spectacular actress and to have her not do much on the show seems like a waste of a resource,” Valentini said.

Characters from the past — like Lynn Herring’s Lucy Coe, Jack Wagner’s Frisco Jones and Tristan Rogers’ Robert Scorpio — were brought back in episodes leading up to last April’s 50th-anniversary mark. Some stayed longer than others, but Valentini said they were all “gifts for the audience.”

He says the show is working to bring back others.

“We’d love Demi Moore to come back. We’d love John Stamos to come back. We’ve still got plenty of fun stuff to do and plenty of surprises.”

“GH” marked its 50th anniversary by bringing back its popular Nurses’ Ball, where the characters put on a formal ball, complete with musical performances, to raise money for AIDS and HIV research. There are plans for another Nurses’ Ball next spring.

The Nurses’ Ball is “a tremendous amount of work and very, very expensive to do but I think we’ll be able to do it,” says Valentini.

Vicki Dummer, executive vice president of ABC Media Group and Primetime Current Series, says she’s been a fan of “GH” for more than 30 years and couldn’t be happier.

“Frank Valentini and Ron Carlivati have done extraordinary work on ‘GH’ and have really turned the show around,” she said in a recent statement, adding that the goal was to “redefine the show and give it a contemporary feel.”

Valentini says he’s already looking ahead to story lines for next summer.

“I think we’re really hitting our stride right now and that’s a much more comfortable pace from which to operate but there’s never really any relaxing.”

————

Alicia Rancilio covers entertainment for The Associated Press. Follow her online at http://www.twitter.com/aliciar

———

Online:

http://abc.go.com/shows/general-hospital

 

 

Tags: valentini, plays, characters, things, there, general,


Other stories you might enjoy:

Rather not invited to join CBS Kennedy coverage
Rapper DMX again arrested in South Carolina
Cruise says he’s close to daughter despite work
 

 
Print this Page Print this Page  |  Bookmark and Share
<< Back
 
Return To Archives
 
  


 
 
 
Daily Journal Quick Poll
 
What does the Easter bunny do when he visits your house?

Leave baskets for the kids
Hide eggs
Leave healthy treats
Hasn't been to my house in years

 

 
Tabbed Structure - Regular
  • The Daily Journal's office is located at:

    800 S. Claremont St., Ste. 210,
    San Mateo, CA 94402
    Phone: (650) 344-5200
    Fax: (650) 344-5290

    Email:
    news [at] smdailyjournal.com

These are currently our most viewed stories
To Report News - Click Here
 
 
 
 
 
Magnitude-7.5 earthquake shakes Mexican capital
ACAPULCO, Mexico — A powerful, magnitude-7.5 earthquake shook central and southern Mexico on Frida..
Avalanche sweeps down Everest, killing at least 12
KATMANDU, Nepal — An avalanche swept down a climbing route on Mount Everest early Friday, killing ..
Ukraine insurgents reject call to quit buildings
DONETSK, Ukraine — Dashing hopes of progress raised by a diplomatic deal in Geneva, pro-Russian in..
More >>  
 
 
  
 
  
 
©2014 San Mateo Daily Journal
San Bruno newspaper