Hi Suds Buds:
Turtle-Run is inundated with email from fans of the wonderful and talented Linda Purl who will be premiering on Port Charles on Monday, May 1, 2000. Linda's fans couldn't be more delighted to get the chance to see one of their favorites on screen for the entire month of May.
Linda plays a character named Claire Wright who arrives at General Hospital in dire straits and is admitted. We soon learn that she has a terminal illness. Claire's story deals with the issues of a person having the right to die without being plugged in and hooked up to every life-preserving device in the hospital.
"Claire has had a collapse in a public place," Linda explained over the phone last week. "She's dying and all she wants is nature to take its course."
Claire initially interacts with Eve (Julie Pinson) and Joe (David Gail), but is soon a part of everyone's life in Port Charles. Although she is extremely ill, "she tries to get the laws changed in time to help her," said Linda. "And she recruits the aid of many of the doctors and staff of the hospital who are, or become, sympathetic to her cause." Of course, everyone has their own opinion on the issue, and Claire's plight becomes the springboard for conflict and soul searching among the other characters.
"The character of Claire is a terminally sick person, so for most of my tenure on the show, I will be lying in bed dying, with a lime pallor to my complexion," Linda admitted. A far cry from some of her more up beat roles such as Gloria and Ashley, two of Richie Cunningham's (Ron Howard) girlfriends on Happy Days! However, the seriousness of the role has not put a damper on Linda's sense of humor. "I would still love to be revived by any one or all of the very handsome doctors in Port Charles," she said with a laugh. "I would love for Claire to have an affair with any one of them. They are all so handsome!"
Linda is no stranger to daytime television. Along with her extremely impressive long list of primetime television, MOW and feature film credits, she appeared on The Secret Storm from 1973-74 as Doreen Post.
One thing is certain. Linda brings a wealth of talent and poise to Port Charles. I've had the pleasure of working with her on a film that I produced called Sunday. Linda was the star, and although there is minimal dialog in this film, Linda's performance was heart wrenching, and beautifully executed. Keep in mind that this was a project with which I was extremely familiar, being the producer and all! :o) Yet, thanks in large part to Linda's amazing performance, and the way in which she felt the part, Sunday is a little gem that evokes emotion and brings a tear to my eye every time I see it. And I know the material like the back of my hand. Imagine how moved people are when they view it for the very first time! Linda is truly wonderful in Sunday and both writer/director Andrew Bloch and I agree, she did great justice to the part!
In addition to her work on Port Charles this month, Linda is also starring with Duncan Regehr (Zorro) in The Little Foxes directed by Jenny Sullivan (Baby Dance) at the Rubicon Theater in Ventura, California. I'll be seeing Linda in The Little Foxes this Wednesday, and will be sure to send her your best!
For those who can't get to the west coast to see the play, I recommend that you tune in to Port Charles this month and see her work, then please post your thoughts on the character of Claire, her plight, and Linda's performance on the TRO Port Charles Message Boards. We will be sure to pass your comments along to Linda. In the meantime, visit Linda at her official website http://www.lindapurl.net, or on the Internet Movie Database at http://us.imdb.com/Name?Purl,+Linda. Drop her a line, and tell her we said hi! In regard to her getting that wish of Claire having affairs with all the Port Charles doctors? We will just have to tune in and see!
In other ABC Daytime news, ABC Daytime, All My Children and ABC.com have teamed with WeddingChannel.com, the most comprehensive wedding planning resource on the net. The alliance will join the websites with AMC for an unprecedented multimedia wedding event. AMC's Hayley Vaughn (Kelly Ripa) and Mateo Santos (Mark Consuelos) are planning a very special June wedding. Pine Valley's fictional affiliate, WRCW, has launched "The Wave," a lifestyle show hosted by Hayley, the busy bride-to-be. On May 5th, as she plans her big day, Hayley will seek the help of her loyal "Wave" audience with the important decision of choosing her wedding dress.
Simultaneously, ABC.com will unveil a newly created web page (http://www.abc.com/wave) which will link to WeddingChannel.com, allowing internet fans of the show to view exclusive photos of Hayley modeling four gorgeous wedding gowns created by designer Vera Wang. Between May 5-19, fans can cast their vote for their favorite gown. The gown that receives the most online votes will be the one that Hayley will wear to her June wedding to Mateo. Not only will viewers help choose Hayley's gown, they will also have a chance to win the actual Vera Wang wedding dress worn on AMC by actress Kelly Ripa.
Angela Shapiro, president, ABC Daytime said: "This is an exciting opportunity for our viewers to extend their on-air experience with two extremely popular characters to the Internet for an enhanced viewing destination."
"Soap fans are among the most avid visitors to ABC.com," said Brian Bowman, vice president and general manager, ABC.com. "We are pleased to offer them this online chance to truly influence what they see on All My Children."
Speaking of online participation in the selection of formal garb, has the gown at http://www.nbc.com/passions been chosen? Which one won?
And now for something completely quantitative -- here's an interesting tidbit. For the week of April 17, 2000, CBS Daytime dramas had 5,150,000 viewers. ABC Daytime dramas had 4,150,000. NBC Daytime dramas had 3,650,000 total viewers.
Casting and Other Good NewsShemar Moore (Malcolm, Y&R, Soul Train) along with Idalis DeLeon, Monica Keena (Dawson's Creek) Genevive Maylem (Blow), Mike Muhney and Sally Kirkland have all signed to star in the pilot of the potential Fox primetime soap, Celebrity.
Samantha Eggar will be joining the cast of All My Children in the recurring role of Charlotte, Alexandra Devane's (Finola Hughes) mother. Episodes including Charlotte will begin airing on Wednesday, May 24, 2000.
Gene Canfield will play a "trooper" who helps with crowd control following the devastating train wreck on One Life to Live beginning Monday, May 1, 2000. Noel Wilson appears as State Trooper McManus, who searches Sam's (Kale Browne) house for a missing Will (Jason-Shane Scott) on Wednesday, May 3, 2000. Steven Ogg plays a police officer who questions Jessica (Erin Torpey) and Cristian (David Fumero) outside Viki's (Erika Slezak) cabin where they are hiding Will beginning Monday, May 8, 2000.
On Days of Our Lives, Marci Kaplan continues in the role of Marlo. Tanya Boyd is back as Celeste on Thursday and Friday, May 11 and 12, 2000.
Congratulations to Barbara Bloom, who has been named a head writer for Port Charles, joining Karen Harris, who was named head writer of Port Charles in December, 1999. Bloom has been with ABC Daytime since 1992 in various programming, promotion, advertising, and development capacities. She oversaw the development and launch Port Charles. According to Angela Shapiro, president, ABC Daytime, "Barbara's career has spanned many key aspects of ABC Daytime promotion and programming. Her concentrated involvement in the creative process has continually demonstrated her natural instinct for great storytelling. I am thrilled to have her join Karen on the head writing team."
Passions informs us that electronic greeting cards for Passions and other NBC shows are now available. Sending a Passions egreeting is as easy as going to http://www.egreetings.com and scrolling down till you come to Movies & TV. Click there then scroll down to "Tune in to NBC Greetings," then click Passions.
And just because I love the music, Sugar Ray's Mark McGrath will play a psych resident on the May 11, 2000 episode of ER.
TRO's Filming on Location cover story's current subject, Law & Order, has just been renewed by NBC until the year 2005. L&O spinoff, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit has been renewed through the 2002 season.
Seeing StarsAbigail Spencer and Forbes March (Becca and Scott, AMC) will host the fashion show at the opening of the New London Mall, 351 North Frontage Road, New London, CT from 406 PM on Saturday, May 20, 2000. For more information call: 860 437-7100.
Please see "Top of the Week," April 24, 2000 for other recent casting news, appearances and info you may have missed. Click Past Top of the Week for links to previous "Top of the Week" articles.
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