All My Children drew to a close on ABC in September 2011 after 41 years on-air while One Life to Live reached its television conclusion in year of this year after 44 years on-air; both soaps were created by Agnes Nixon. After ABC announced their double cancellation in 2011 it was quickly revealed both would continue with episodes premiering online after the broadcaster signed a licensing deal with Prospect Park. That deal ran into trouble though and was later abandoned much to the disappoint of fans of both soaps.
In the past few weeks though it has been reported that Prospect Park are close to bringing both soaps back as originally planned. According to reports the company has signed deals with new unions – though they need to reach a deal with a third – clearing the way for production to begin. The company has also reportedly contacted actors on both shows about reprising their roles.
Although it is still VERY early days more details are beginning to emerge of the planned revivals. TV Line reports that plans are afoot for All My Children and One Life To Live to film new episodes in Stamford, Conn which is roughly an hour from New York – the filming will take place there because of tax breaks. All My Children was filmed in Los Angeles towards the end of its television run having relocated from New York which left One Life To Live as the last remaining soap to film in the city.
TV Line also reports that both soaps, should they actually be revived, will premier four new original episodes each week at hour an hour in length. When both soaps ended their run on ABC they were an hour long so halving their running time cuts down production costs. When the two serials were originally launched on ABC they were half an hour in length but in line with other soaps their running times were increased. One Life To Live was extended to 45 minutes in 1976 and then 60 minutes in 1978. All My Children made the move to 60 minute episodes in 1977. Currently the only soap in American to air 30 minute episodes is CBS‘s The Bold and the Beautiful.
Prior to ABC’s cancellation of AMC and OLTL there were discussions about cutting both soaps back to 30 minute episodes or merging the two into one serial. – Given the number of crossovers between the two soaps over the years that wouldn’t have been impossible but ultimately ABC decided to cancel both. We should point out here that at the time of its cancellation OLTL was ABC’s top-rated soap, in terms of overall numbers, and the 3rd most watched soap in America after The Young and the Restless & The Bold and the Beautiful.
As we reported earlier AMC‘s leading lady Susan Lucci has been contacted over reprising her iconic role of Erica Kane. As yet though no cast members has been signed up from either soap and the fact that several OLTL actors have moved over to General Hospital, in the same roles, may just complicate matters. Media reports state that under the Prospect Park deal they have the rights to OLTL characters so if they decided they wanted those currently part of General Hospital they would have to move over to OLTL but not necessarily with the same actors playing them…..
[Via TV Line]