Plus, the location of All My Children's new Los Angeles stages revealed.
This just in-- Aiden Turner (Aidan) will not be heading to LA with the show. Soapodm has just learned that Turner's contract is not being picked up. We are sorry to see him go. See AMC casting page for more.
Although the stars of All My Children have much soul searching to do in deciding whether or not to relocate to Los Angeles with their soap, there are a number who have already bit the bullet, made the decision, and are now making plans to go west.
Soapdom met up with a number of All My Children stars during all the Emmy events this past weekend. The first question we popped? Who is moving to LA and who is not? Some of the stars were veryopen about their plans. Others like Adam Mayfield (Scott), Brianne Moncrief (Colby) and Brittany Allen (Marissa) were sticking to the more formal "We have until September 8th to decide," and then ABC Daytime will put out a major announcement, I'm sure.
However, I was able to get straight, candid answers from a few AMC stars like Cameron Mathison (Ryan), who is making the move to LA. He and his family are already house hunting. For him, there are two concerns. He wants to live close to the new stages, so he doesn't have to get caught in the horrific LA traffic, and he wants to live near good schools for his kids.
Melissa Claire Egan (Annie) is likewise definitely moving west. And the rumors are true regarding Chrishell Strause. Her contract is up in December and she was planning on leaving AMC and moving out to Los Angeles anyway. She is still planning on moving west, but now that AMC is too, who knows, maybe she'll stick around a little longer in Pine Valley. "Never say never," she said with a smile. Only thing is she is missing out on some financial compensation. As she planned on moving to Los Angeles all along, her move is on her dime, while all the other stars that choose to relocate will get relocation assistance from ABC.
Which brings me to this. ABC has stated that the show and the network stands to save tons of money by making this move. How can that be, when they are investing quite a bit in relocation fees, and risk the potential of losing viewers if fan favorite stars, like Thorsten Kaye (Zach), don't move with the show?
Leave it to Cameron Mathison to clear that all up for us. "Yes the network is spending money to get us all out here, but once we are here, the new stages are just so much bigger than our current stages in NYC, that we will save a lot of money in production costs." Mathison went on to explain that now, there is only so much "real estate" at the NYC stages and sets are constantly going up and coming down. "We employ two crews, a daytime crew and a nighttime crew, to manage the building and striking of sets," revealed Mathison. The show is operating around the clock and maintaining a 24-hour production team means astronomical staffing fees.
In the new studios in California, they have so much sound stage space, that sets can be constructed and remain standing.
So where are these spacious new stages?
When the network originally announced the move west, they held back on saying just where the new stages are located. We found out it was not at the Prospect Studios, where General Hospital is currently taped, but ABC would not mention the location of the new stage space. We persevered, however and can now reveal that All My Children will be taping at a state-of-the art production facility in Glendale, CA called Andrita Studios. Andrita is no stranger to the ABC/Disney family. SOAPnet shot the second season of General Hospital: Night Shift in these facilities.
Speaking of Thorsten Kaye (Zach) -- which we did, several paragraphs ago. Scroll up! LOL -- Soapdom has seen internet rumors that he is not coming to Los Angeles, as his wife, Daytime Emmy Winner, Susan Haskill (Marty, One Life to Live) is on the NY-based show and he did not want to separate his family. However, in the Press Room after her Daytime Emmy win, Haskill was a little less definite about Kaye's plans. "Well, he's not moving to LA without me," she announced with a smile. "We are still mulling everything over."
Last but certainly not least, we chatted up LaLuch herself, the ever lovely, Susan Lucci (Erica), who along with her husband and manager, Helmut Huber, remains in a quandry. "We haven't decided," they both said in unison. When I said that I hoped the network was able to work something out with her so that she at least could remain part of the cast even if for only weeks at a time, she was very grateful for the vote of confidence.
For everyone else, guess we'll have to wait until mid September to find out.
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