Home Television Soap Opera Cliffhanger for “One Life to Live” Characters on “General Hospital”

OK, it’s getting weird between ABC and Prospect Park, the company they licensed “One Life to Live” to for airing on the internet in 2011. When Prospect Park, which is owned by Jeff Kwatinetz, didn’t pull their plans together by early 2012, ABC took three actors and their characters from the cancelled “One Life” and migrated them to “General Hospital.” They were a hit, and “GH” has become a revived smash.

Now PP, which says it’s finally going to produce “One Life” and “All My Children,” wants the actors and characters back. They are willing to share, however.  But they’ve issued a mysterious statement that only mentions Michael Easton, who plays John, and Kristen Alderson, who is Starr. Pointedly missing in the new announcement is Roger Howarth, popular from “One Life” as rapist-turned-anti-hero (only on a soap) Todd Manning.

Kwatinetz is well known to us in mainstream entertainment, but I doubt soap people have any idea of what they’re dealing with. The one time owner of The Firm has had a Renaissance with “Royal Pains” on USA Network. But he has a long and contentious past as a manager that includes nearly tanking Kelly Clarkson‘s career. http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,287075,00.html

Kwatinetz still hasn’t made a deal with super soap star Susan Lucci, of “All My Children.” And there are doubts that Prospect Park can pull off the internet launches at all.

What will happen next is a soap cliffhanger.

Here’s what Prospect Park sent out tonight:

Prospect Park released the following statement regarding its licensing agreement with “All My Children” and “One Life to Live.” In 2011, when Prospect Park decided to put everything on the line to reboot these shows, they lent characters to “General Hospital” until shooting began for the new programs so that the characters could stay alive with the fans and also so that the actors could remain working.  Everyone at ABC and on the production staff of “General Hospital” understood that this was a temporary arrangement until production started once again on “One Life to Live.”  Now the time has come to start production and Prospect Park needs to, once again, cast these characters including Llanview transplants Michael Easton (John) and Kristen Alderson (Starr). See statement below:

“Prospect Park understands that ‘General Hospital’ has featured Llanview transplants Michael Easton (John) and Kristen Alderson (Starr) among others while we arranged production of the new version of ‘One Life to Live.’ These characters, who we own under our agreement, are obviously essential to our production efforts, and a large reason we licensed the program. We also understand that legions of ‘General Hospital’ fans have grown to love these actors and characters in a short time. So even though we are paying ABC millions of dollars to license the shows, we have been, and continue to be willing to equally share the characters with ‘General Hospital’ and ABC. It’s a win-win for the actors, the shows and fans, who love all of the shows and storylines. We hope to work out these agreements with ABC and the actors.”

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Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.
8 replies to this post
  1. I can’t wait for OLTL to start back up and truely hope that they all come to an agreement. I love these people on GH. The chemistry between Starr and Michael is believable. I just hope GH gets rid of this vampire storyline very soon. I can go see Twilight if I want to see vampires

  2. In a way,even if they don’t work an agreement out with the characters,looks they’ve already got another part for Michael Easton by having him play vampire Caleb Morley again.

  3. I don’t give a rats butt about General Hospital, I want ALL the One Life to Live actors back on the new One Life to Live. I’d also like to see the writers, General Hospital pouched from One Life to Live, returned to the remake of the new OLTL as well.

  4. Oh, what bullshit. Prospect Park bobbled the ball — if not outright dropped it — on reviving these shows for over a year, and now they’re just slapping them together and rushing shit to air (using a “Royal Pains” “writer” for OLTL? Even if Royal Pains were watchable or well-written, which it isn’t, the genres don’t translate; this guy is doomed to fail).

    Starr has no story left to tell in Llanview (unless she wants to pop in and comment on what a horrible actor her little brother Jack is), and John could wrap up the story that’s continued to unfold with him on GH (being cut out of baby Liam’s life by Natalie and Clint because he had the gall to admit to one kiss with Sam on GH) with less than a one-week return guest shot. All three characters’ lives and stories (particularly Todd, who has the most ties back in Llanview, yet seemingly isn’t being courted, most likely because Howarth has no intention of returning) have continued on GH, and from what I’ve seen, the new OLTL writers aren’t bothering to incorporate these stories into their new storylines, let alone bother to pick up Llanview where it left off (just look at the cast list to realize this). PP is obviously attempting to extract some sort of contract blackmail out of ABC (not that I’d waste any pity on ABC at this point), because they’ve realized they have some leverage AND that’s it’s going to cost them a shitload to make these shows happen with little to no monetizing potential on the backend. The only ones to suffer in all this are the fans and the actors affected. Sounds like Kwatinetz is up to his old egocentric scorched earth nonsense.

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