General Hospital: Happy Birthday Genie Francis

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May 26 marks the anniversary of the birth of beloved actress Genie Francis who has played ABC-TV's General Hospital's Laura Spencer for over 25 years (off and on).

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 A native of Englewood, NJ, Genie Francis would become one of the most recognizable soap opera actresses of all time because she portrayed Laura Webber Spencer on General Hospital. The character's relationship with Luke Spencer (Anthony Geary) enthralled millions, with their wedding drawing the largest ratings for any soap opera episode ever.

In addition to her work on General Hospital, Francis has been a regular at different times on other serials including Days of Our Lives and All My Children. She has also done appearances on numerous series including Fantasy Island, Murder, She Wrote, and 3rd Rock from the Sun

"As the adventures of Luke & Laura became a national obsession, the show’s ratings skyrocketed, with college students going so far as to schedule their classes around it. Carried by an unprecedented wave of mainstream popularity, Francis and her frizzy-haired co-star, Geary, appeared on the covers of such national magazines as Newsweek and People. To many, however, the ultimate sign of “having arrived” came in the early 1980’s, when America’s king of late-night, Johnny Carson, himself, incorporated Luke and Laura material in his monologues. The Nov. 16, 1981 wedding of Luke and Laura remained the most-watched daytime TV event in history and stood as a high watermark of early 1980’s soap drama. Even “GH” fan Elizabeth Taylor popped in for a guest spot as the evil Helena Cassadine who puts a curse on the newly married couple. Only Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer’s real-life summer nuptials were watched by more people that year." (YAHOO.COM GF Biography)

Many happy returns of the day!