BREAKING NEWS: Guiding Light Cleans House of Younger Actors to Make Room for Big Returns!


If anyone thought all those high profile returns at Guiding Light didn’t come with a price, they are sadly mistaken. Setside sources have revealed to Daytime Confidential the show will be cleaning house in the new year. Four actors will allegedly be vacating daytime’s longest running drama in the early months of 2009.  John Driscoll, who portrays Henry Cooper "Coop" Bradshaw has already reportedly been let go. Rumor has it  the exit will be permanent for the character.  E.J. Bonilla (Rafe) is said to be next, with Bonnie Dennison (Daisy), Kane Manera (Grady), and Caitlin Van Zandt (Ashlee) also set to be axed.

Sources also reveal Guiding Light’s writing team will be going through another shake up in the new year as well. Things are set to be scaled down.

Keep your eyes peeled to Daytime Confidential for all the latest scoop on Guiding Light.

42 Responses

  1. Profile photo of nathan77

    WHOAH! That is big news. Out of all of them, the only one I really wanted gone was Grady. He has no place in Springfield. But Coop, Ashley, Rafe, Daisy? If they all go, that doesn’t leave much of a younger crowd in Springfield, and I think the show needs that for balance. The writing has never been stellar for any of those characters, but I don’t fault Driscoll, Bonilla, Dennison, and VanZant for that. And with Coop leaving, I am kinda shocked, he is a Cooper after all. And Driscoll was always easy on the eyes.

    As for writer shake ups, I think Jill L Hurst is gonna be made sole head writer.

  2. Profile photo of THEBEST

    Oh, snap! Could Danny & Michelle be part of those returns??? And, could we actually be getting ONE head writer that knows what they’re doing? It’s about damn time that Ellen Wheeler does her job…

    ***///My life as a soap fan is on life support, waiting for a miracle…\\\***

  3. Profile photo of smulgrew

    It probably makes sense. GL has almost no opportunity to gain momentum in the 18-49 demographic (especially in the markets where it airs before noon). If they focus on their veterans and more mature cast, they might be able to craft a fine niche for themselves.

    It’s a shame about John Driscoll, however. He never had the buzz that Pelphrey had, but Coop was the closest thing the genre had to a classic male lead. East Coast soaps would be wise to pick him up. How about a Jamie Martin (AMC) or Joey Buchanan (OLTL) recast?

  4. Profile photo of Soapsteve

    WOW!! talk about cutting the fat!!!! I always scratch my head when i think of ALL of the soaps that have people on it that they never uses and its such a waste of payroll. I’m glad GL is the first to really trim the fat and even if its for returns i do hope the returns are of characters that will help the longest running soap return to its glory day.

  5. Profile photo of GossipGirl

    I am actually very excited about this! Especially about Grady, Daisy, Rafe and Ashley. They were all pointless characters that never really contributed much to the show. I don’t think any of these characters were fan favorites anyway! I do like John Driscoll, but Coop hasn’t been in a major storyline for years. It looks like GL is on the right track!

  6. Profile photo of east.west

    I am sad to see Bonnie, Catlin, EJ, and John go, but I guess something had to give to at least give the show some good episodes until it goes to TV heaven.

    Kane, don’t let the door hit you on your way out. I hated how they tried to make him Jonathan lite (o shit, I am sorry Jammy fans).

    I can’t see where the girls can go as of now, but I can see EJ on AMC as a SORASED Lorenzo Santos and I can see John on either ATWT or OLTL.

  7. Profile photo of daysfan65

    Caitlin Van Zandt is one I’d be really sorry to see go! :(

    John Driscoll as well. Because Coop & Ashlee are one of my more liked couples.

    Rafe and Daisy I can take or leave,

    And praise the lord up above that Grady is gone! Now I can REALLY be 100% invested in GL again. I’ve been nack & forth lately, but I’m deff. starting to come back.

  8. Profile photo of daysfan65

    Caitlin Van Zandt is one I’d be really sorry to see go! :(

    John Driscoll as well. Because Coop & Ashlee are one of my more liked couples.

    Rafe and Daisy I can take or leave,

    And praise the lord up above that Grady is gone! Now I can REALLY be 100% invested in GL again. I’ve been nack & forth lately, but I’m deff. starting to come back.

  9. Profile photo of Jamey Giddens
    Jamey Giddens

    I totally support this move, the talented ones will find work elsewhere in daytime, Driscoll, Bonilla, Van Zandt (though she MUST stop screaming!!); and the others…Manera and Bonnie, well, they will no doubt book breakout roles in primtime and film because that’s how effed up this industry is.

  10. Profile photo of smulgrew

    Wait. I haven’t watched in a few weeks (so I apologize if it already contradicts something). I know they have Coop sleeping with Beth. I really hope this storyline doesn’t end with Alan hiring someone to off him.

  11. Profile photo of season1217

    I don’t think I’ll even realize that Caitlin is gone until six months after she’s left. There is still a faint echo from the scenes she did last month. Damn she’s loud!

  12. Profile photo of snowi

    Oh GL, I think I’m falling in love with you all over again…

    I’m sorry about Driscoll, but the rest…I won’t be crying the day the leave.

    Now bring on Phillip and Edmund! All I need are Josh and Reva back together (and a Danny/Michelle return) and I will be a happy GL fan again.

  13. Profile photo of Jammylove

    its kinda like they are getting rid of all these new characters meaning characters that were just put on less than five years ago and putting back together the old cast now i just need jammy and manny. jammy and manny and I will be in LOVE with GL !

  14. Profile photo of Set

    Driscoll’s contract expires next month anyway. I was reading it in one of the soap mags. They did an article on Coop and whoever the hell he’s with at the moment. And John was like “I hope I have a job in 09!”

    Hope springs eternal. Steady paychecks? Not so much.

    I’m not big on the GL, but I wouldn’t mind another soap poaching him. Preferably one of the ABC soaps, since those are the ones I watch.

  15. Profile photo of Scout

    Driscoll will most certainly land on his feet; he’d be a perfect re-cast for C.J.

    I think cutting down the younger set on GL in favor of veterans is a smart idea. It’s not like these youngsters were helping with the ratings; and trying to turn that rat bastard Grady into a so-called anti-hero was just plain dumb.

    We’ve all posted about the need for vets over newbies and now we got our wish, so let’s hope these moves — be they both smart and obviously desperate — will help GL tun things around.

  16. Profile photo of DaytimeFan0001

    First, who is JLH? I don’t think Ellen Wheeler is waking up and making any decisions. Instead I think her arm is being twisted big time. Where I am glad to FINALLY see some changes a stir over there on Peapack, I have to question: Why Caitlin and Grady? I anything get rid of Remy, Christina and the new Leah. They are an entire waste of money because they have no real tie to the show either. At least Caitlin and Grady are characters we are more invested in. Caitlin has good possibilities and Grady is is needed as a villain! Get rid of Cyrus! It’s nothing against their race or anything, I just think it’s time for them to go instead. I met both of those actors, Caitlin is especially the nicest and doesn’t deserve it…but it is a business afterall.

    also i am THRILLED to hear that EJ Bonilla is off that show. What a giant waste of time…that’s all i can say and no body better say anything because a lot worse things are have been said about the ‘light’ on here.

    So thank you whoever you are who shook up Ellen Wheeler who was asleep in her “chapel” office and convinced her to make the show about the people that made Guiding Light and ditching the failing teen scene… thank you Grant Aleksander!

  17. Profile photo of Ilovethesoaps

    All, I can say is WOW! I like Ashlee! They are going to get rid of Ashlee. . . but not her mom?! :jawdrop: get rid of Grady, but NOT Cyrus??? With getting rid of younger actors won’t they be LOSING young veiwers?? Reva, Josh, Beth are loved but are getting older every day! I can understand getting rid of some but NOT ALL!!

  18. Profile photo of Scout

    I don’t think GL — or any soap, really — has that many young viewers these days, so I’m sure it makes much difference; but if the Light gets snuffed in Sept. 2009, it seems like they’re bucking up to go down swinging.

    At least GL is working to save itself, which is much more than be said for Days. Deidre and Drake’s forced exile is a ridiculous move, when there’s so many other cast members should be cut before them.

    I think a smaller, quality cast would befit more soaps, rather than forcing youngsters and newbies down our throats. A smaller cast could also befit a smaller but more focused writing staff — scribes who write to character, come up with fewer out-of-space plots and pay attention to the show’s history.

    With more and more people out of work, there is a potential for viewers, both new and old. But ya gotta give the people something they can become invested in, not just any crappy plot that sticks to the wall.

  19. Profile photo of THEBEST

    ITA, Scout!!!!
    GL should focus on having about 15-20 (Josh, Reva, Phillip, Beth, Blake, Lizzie, Bill, Dinah, Marina, Shayne, Marah, Danny, Michelle, Rick, Mel, Remy, Olivia, Jeffrey, Cyrus, Mallet) contract players with a reasonable salary, while having about 10 (Vanessa, Billy, Holly, Ed, Lillian, Alex, Doris, Buzz, Clayton, Felicia) vets on recurring to keep substance & history to the show…

    Hell, most shows should follow suit and trim the newbies, and give us 75-80% vets (even if they have to trim their pay down a smidge) :)

    ***///My life as a soap fan is on life support, waiting for a miracle…\\\***

  20. Profile photo of Jammylove

    That sounds really good I think I am one of the young people who actually watch GL and I could really give a flying which young actor leaves !!!! Give me back my vets preferably NSA and PAS as MANNY.

  21. Profile photo of snowi

    I with you Jammylove.

    I’m in my twenties and I have only watched GL for characters like Josh, Reva, Danny, Michelle, Edmund…
    When I was a teen I loved Vanessa and Matt! I didn’t give a rat’s tush about the younger characters.

  22. Profile photo of soapfan4ever

    Good, it’s about time! The should have been the veterans getting the most screening time and better storylines. Now we just need Josh and Reva back together, Michelle and Danny to come back again, and maybe Holly, Ed, and all other veterans that would put GL back on its feet.

  23. Profile photo of Soap_Stud

    It is going to be very interesting to see what GL does to try and turn itself around. I hope Ellen has been paying attention to Y & R. It was in a bad place a little over a year or so ago, but now it is great daytime tv! OLTL went through a transformation a couple years ago as well and is now a great soap again. GL has the actors. It has a long, colorful history. The look has gotten better, even if it still doesn’t feel like daytime, but the stories and the focus are really lacking. If these casting changes are true, perhaps Ellen has realized younger is not better and will embrace the veteran characters..I think they need a strong head writing team and I don’t think they have that right now.

    Always soaptacular-


  24. Profile photo of joeAnne

    This is the best thing they could have done. Unfortunately, the current artists don’t have the same talent as the older one have. They must be brought up and put in the lights of the cameras to make themselves known again.

    Payroll Services

  25. Profile photo of GossipGirl

    ROFLMAO Season!!! :D

    She is way to perky as well! She was so excited during the V8 commercial…er, I mean during the crafty and well-executed product placement that was incorporated into the show.

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