Prospect Park Cuts New Episodes of All My Children and One Life to Live to Two a Week!






Prospect Park has issued a press release with lots of talk about research and online viewer habits (I will post it below), but to cut to the chase—or chase to the cut—the production company has decided to take new episodes of All My Children and One Life to Live down from four-a-week to two. See full release below:

For close to two years we have been working passionately to bring first run premium content to an online platform with the creation of brand-new versions of the two iconic series, All My Children and One Life To Live. There was no precedent for this effort- we had no history-no barometer for how our fans would respond. We always knew there would quickly be new insights into how audiences would respond to our shows and this new platform, and that our ability to adapt quickly to audience needs would ultimately determine the long-term success of the shows and our mission. This is a new medium, a new time and we have always planned to make changes quickly by listening to you, our fans and customers.

Today it is clear these shows have resonated, as many millions of views have been logged since our April 29th debut, a mere two and a half weeks ago. We’ve consistently been in the top ten shows viewed on Hulu and viewers and critics alike have told us how impressed they are with the quality of both programs. The past two weeks have been invaluable in terms of learning about how you watch and when you watch our shows on this new platform. We have gained enormous insight through our actual viewing data and our research. And our research has revealed the following:

·         In the past these shows had their vast majority of views within the first 24 hours. Instead, our shows are primarily consumed on different days then when they originally air. Primarily, fans have been binge viewing or watching on demand, and as a result, we feel we have been expecting our audience to dedicate what has turned out to be an excessive amount of time to viewing these shows. (As an example, for the substantial audience only watching on the weekends, we are currently asking them to watch five hours of programming to keep pace with our release schedule).

·         On ABC the shows shared a large percentage of their viewers with each other. Yet, the majority of our viewers are watching one show or the other, not both, and they aren’t viewing the shows when they did before. Part of the reason for choosing between the shows may be that the largest viewing takes place either between 12PM and 1PM (when people generally can only fit one episode during lunch time) or between 5PM and 7PM (when the vast majority of competing shows are a half hour long). We are finding that asking most people to regularly watch more than a half hour per day online seems to be too much.

·         During their ABC runs, viewers watched only 2-3 episodes on average a week and picked up with whichever day’s episode it was. Our viewers seem to primarily start with the first episode and then continue forward episode by episode. Like with primetime serialized dramas as opposed to the traditional slower pacing of daytime, people feel lost if they miss an episode. People are starting from the beginning; the shows are designed for complete viewing from episode one. Yet starting from the beginning with the amount of episodes we are releasing is asking too much for viewers who need to catch up.

The clear conclusion is that while somewhat mixed, these viewing patterns resemble more closely the typical patterns of online viewing rather than how one would watch traditional television. This leads us to believe we are posting too many episodes and making it far too challenging for viewers to keep up. When it comes to online viewing, most of us are just trying to find time to watch series comprised of 13 to 22 episodes a season-so asking viewers to assign time for over 100 episodes per show is a daunting task.

Therefore, we have chosen to revise our scheduling model beginning this Monday, May 20th by introducing two new episodes from OLTL and AMC each week- new episodes of AMC will now run on Mondays and Wednesdays, and fresh episodes of OLTL will post Tuesdays and Thursdays. MORE, our behind the scenes series, will run as a single show on Fridays. This allows us to introduce a new episode of quality television every Monday through Friday and gives the audience a chance to catch up as we continue to build awareness and excitement around these new shows.   Because Hulu agrees with our findings, for the meantime they will keep all of our episodes on Hulu.com for free to give viewers the opportunity to find us and catch up.

We know our most dedicated viewers will be upset as they would probably prefer more shows to less (we personally wish there were more episodes of our favorite shows; we would love 50 episodes a year of Homeland, Mad Men or The Simpsons). We apologize to these viewers and ask them to please understand we are trying to ensure our shows succeed and not meet the fate they experienced previously. We need to devise a model that works for all viewers and follows how they want, and are actually watching, online. When it comes to online, as with all new technology, it’s adapt or fail.  We feel fortunate to be an online company and to have such an opportunity to adapt. Of course, we will continue to evaluate all the data that comes in and will be vigilant about revising our strategy as needed.

We want to be clear that this will in no way impact our feverish pace of production - we will be filming new episodes through mid-June, continue editing throughout July and until we go back into production in August. It’s a frenetic schedule but all of us are up for the challenge and excited to continue to deliver great shows.

As a new venture we felt obligated to address the needs of our viewers head on and to make adjustments that we think will work for our viewers. And as always, we thank you for your continued support and encouragement.

Sincerely

Rich Frank and Jeff Kwatinetz

Okay, I am sure this is about to cause pandelirium (When pandemonium meets delirium) here in the DC comments and across the interwebs, but this time around I am going to wait before I rush to judgement. PP managed to get these soaps back on the air — when many thought it was impossible. If they have to tinker with things a bit, I am not gonna start dousing them with haterade.

I've enjoyed the relaunches of both soaps, for the most part, and will continue to support them as they find their way. I'm sure when Mama Irna Phillips took The Guiding Light from radio to TV there were tons of hiccups. We'll get through this, soap nuts! 


Comments

kayceekay's picture
Member since:
10 April 2013
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48 weeks 36 min

I don't know.
I just hope it doesn't make it seem like the story is dragging on forever. I mean.. if a week's worth of drama takes two weeks to get to the point.

But on the other hand, this is kind of good for me in a way because I always fall behind then watch in clumps and it does take a chunk of time to catch up.

DevinMissesOLTL's picture
Member since:
16 February 2012
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1 week 1 hour

I remember when I watched/taped Loving, Days, AMC, OLTL, Santa Barbara and GH. All while taking care of my mom, grade school, high school and my 40hrs a week jobs. And never missed an episode. And 27 years later I still don't miss!

Kristismom's picture
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6 January 2010
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40 weeks 2 days

When I was in high school in the early nineties, I would program my VCR to switch channels every half hour. That way I got 15 min of Santa Barbara, the last 15 min of Loving and first 15 min of AMC, the last 15 min of Y&R and first 15 min of B&B, the last 15 min of Days and first 15 min of AW, 15 of ATWT, the last 15 min of OLTL and the first 15 of GH, and 45 min of GL because it was my favorite. I did that 5 days a week for over a decade!

I agree that this is all spin and a scam because they are not making enough money to sustain their model BUT I also think this is how they are able to lure back the important "names" too, because they would not have to film as much as they would to sustain the plot line of a 4 day a week show.

For example, AMC's Bianca is on in a temp role to get us to care about Miranda as an independent character. I believe Eden Reigel appeared in a week's worth of episodes in what was mostly filler. Let's say she was only available to fly out to New England to film for one day. She may film enough to make a 5 min cameo, and that would be OK with 1 hour of footage a week. It would be sufficient. AND cheap.

While I think that this press release wreaks of BS, I do admit that SO FAR the shows look better than anything we saw on the last season of GL, AND as a diehard ATWT, AW and especially GL fan, I was pissed off over the last few months hearing about how ABC fans were bitching about various aspects of this deal that didn't 'approve' of, such those listed by J Bernard above.

On the other hand (I'm running out of hands!) I do believe that the writing leaves a lot to be desired and I have lost interest. That's not because I can't keep up - its because there is nothing substantial to keep up with (talking more about OLTL than AMC). OLTL has cutesy scenes between Bora - with no plot. Don't even get me started on Todd/Victor - horrible execution. What is Blair doing? Natalie? Cutter? NOTHING. Matthew and Dani are completely unlikable. Ugh.

I will go down with this ship, however. Hope things get better. They should use the money they save to hire better writers.

rabbit on the moon's picture
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highdensity02 wrote:
I think we should all shut up and get behind them.

How about you not tell people to shut up. You can get your point across without being rude and disrespectful.

J Bernard Jones's picture
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9 September 2008
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3 hours 2 min

If this is a "scam" and "all spin," how does it work exactly and who benefits from it?

Kristismom's picture
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6 January 2010
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40 weeks 2 days

J Bernard Jones wrote:
If this is a "scam" and "all spin," how does it work exactly and who benefits from it?

They are attempting to scam the viewers with their spin that they call a press release. Why not come out and say, "We are very dedicated to this project, but the numbers are not adding up. We had to regroup and realized that airing 2 hours of content a week is more feasible for us so that we may continue to bring you your shows." Or something like that.

Prospect Park is spinning this to make it look as though they didn't fail. To me, they are attempting to scam the viewers into believing that is actually their own shitty viewing habits that are influencing this decision. Why not just be honest?

Also, if people are viewing the episodes in blocks, what does it matter since the "ratings" are counted no matter what (as opposed to traditional TV ratings). Maybe I just don't get the idea they are trying to push. As most people have heard from the soap press ad nauseam (in reference to bad storylines or OJ or other reasons viewers tune out), once viewers get "out-of-the-habit" it causes problems. We have 10, 20, 30, 40 EVEN 50 year habits with the way we view soaps. I don't know. This whole idea right now perplexes me.

Member since:
16 January 2012
Last activity:
42 weeks 2 days

Even though I don't care for swearing(or taking the Lord's name in
vain Stare )I must say,Thom Hunt,ICAM with your post! It's been GREAT
having my show,AMC,back and I look forward to seeing more of it,in the
future,until whenever. The fact of the matter is,before PP stepped in,
there was NO hope for these shows(AMC/OLTL)now there is. People need
to get a grip,already. Stop being SO negative and doom and gloom. Angry
JMO. Smile

Member since:
5 July 2008
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1 day 5 hours

They didnt fail. They just realized that after watching AMC & OLTL film their first cycles a change needed to be made so they looked at the viewership and saw people watch daily soaps 2-3 days a week. That has been so for YEARS.

So they decided to air both soaps twice weekly and reduce each shows order to 110 episodes of original and combine more OLTL & More AMC into one recap show on Fridays.

IMO maybe starting the shows at two episodes a week would have been better, However, there is no conspiracy. This is trial and error. They tried to produce 168 episodes of both shows but when U have 18 hours plus days and up to 150 pages to film that costs a lot of money.

This is PP/TOLN tryin to figure the best model that can bring the best quality episodes to audience as well as be the most profitable for PP/TOLN/HULU/Itunes. Nothing wrong there.

So this year should be looked as a learning curve & adjustments have been made & shouldnt have been a surprise.

Lets just support the shows and PP so they can get this all figured out.

In the long run this will benefit to the longevity of these shows and can even help obtain higher episode orders each year.

IMO its a win-win.

Member since:
16 January 2012
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42 weeks 2 days

Thank you,Forgood21! My sentiments,exactly! Smile

Member since:
12 January 2010
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23 min 54 sec

Very well said appleridge!

nysam's picture
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28 October 2008
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20 min 28 sec

Sad to say it's over. They will be canceled by the end of the year.

AbercrombieMike's picture
Member since:
26 April 2013
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3 weeks 1 day

These sick bastards are pouring salt into our wounds. Two years ago, we had five, 60 minute episodes a week. Now we get two, 30 minute episodes.

Yoryla's picture
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26 May 2012
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1 day 8 hours

One thing some poster here said, that I have kind of wondered myself. I once looked up Jeff Kwatinetz online, and his record is quite colorful, yet nothing previous really from the soap industry. Actually, by his profile he doesn't seem like the person who would be interested in soaps at all.

My question is: Why does he want to do this?

Maybe it's just me being prejudiced, but I honestly get the feeling he is *just* a business man, with no emotional investment on the soap industry. And if that is the case, it doesn't bode well. I don't trust it.

NORN23's picture
Member since:
26 April 2011
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45 weeks 8 hours

If they simply said, "Look, we are a small crew, doing this on a wing & a prayer, and this pace is unsustainable."
I think we would all have their back.

But this spin is bullshit, and I'm worried about them using Debbie Morgan, Jill Larson & Cady McClain as spokespeople... That doesn't feel right, to throw them out in front to defend PP.

Member since:
17 May 2013
Last activity:
48 weeks 18 hours

Lets face it people, with a new venture nothing is perfect the first time. If PP is losing money, they still want to keep these shows going instead of canceling them. They're trying. Lets try with them.

Sweet_Thing2's picture
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16 May 2013
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47 weeks 3 days

Peyton Place aired twice a week. I think this makes sense honestly. It's more economical and will probably produce a better quality product if they can slow production down a bit. Not stop it, but slow it down. I agree with J. Bernard that the actual numbers as opposed to what Nielsen brings us could be very disturbing. I would be curious to see what the numbers for Y&R and B&B would be if they were streaming only in the US.

I want both of these shows to survive because I love, love, love soap operas. But I did try to watch OLTL yesterday and just found it a bore. Not meaning to be insulting to anyone, it just didn't grab my attention. Time and time again what turns more people away from soaps, that I know, is the influx of newbies. The casts are hired for looks and youth instead of character and story contribution. I recently watched all of the old Dallas and the majority of actors on the show were in their late 30's early 40's.

Today's shows will hire a young popular actor and put prosthetics on them to play an older, less attractive character. Ploys like that have just become insulting and even my two teenagers are onto it.

Member since:
17 May 2013
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27 weeks 2 days

Thank You Appleridge!

Member since:
6 February 2009
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3 days 23 hours

I beg someone to explain how nothing will change even though they are cutting the number of episodes in half.

Member since:
2 April 2009
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1 week 3 days

They aren't cutting the number of episodes produced in half just the episodes shown a week.

And good lord after reading all of these post I can see how much almost all of us are all about "me me me we need more we deserve more blah blah" hell I've done it myself. We shouldn't be complaining about a damn thing 2 episodes a week is more than what we have been getting which is cancellation/nothing. Does it suck? Yep! Do I understand financially why it makes sense? Sadly yep.

Member since:
5 July 2008
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1 day 5 hours

They way they shoot wont change. Just the numbers produced and when they air will.

Member since:
5 July 2008
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1 day 5 hours

Im supporting this & believe PP wants this to succeed because they have over 200 people that they employ that count on this to help pay bills and put food on the mouths of their families.

Maybe some fans should think about this when they say they want to give up. Stop being me me me

TV Gord's picture
Member since:
18 February 2009
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3 hours 1 min

The cast and crew will feel the impact, though. Slowing down when the shows air, eventually they will be stretching what they thought would be an income for a certain amount of time out to a longer amount of time. If, like me, you're suspicious about them re-starting in August, that will spread out their income, as well.

A lot of people are suggesting we should give Prospect Park the benefit of the doubt, but the shady dealings that have dogged Jeff Kwatinetz for more than a decade make me highly skeptical that he's doing anything other than playing a shell game with everyone around him (and more broadly, with viewers).

katehhoward's picture
Member since:
11 January 2012
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3 hours 15 min

No darling he is right all of the haters need to shut it.

Member since:
5 July 2008
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1 day 5 hours

We dont know how often they get paid they may get paid every other week for 52 weeks regardless of filming or not

katehhoward's picture
Member since:
11 January 2012
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3 hours 15 min

I am appalled and disgusted with all the negative comments i have been reading on this posting. I feel perturbed that there seems to even be posters on this posting that I have never seen before knocking on PP and their decision.

I am in agreement with PP. The shows should be pushed down to two one hour episodes per week. Both shows look fabulous and i am sure that it is expansive producing these two soaps. I adore OLTL and I am positive that there will be more exciting twists and turns on the way. We have not even been introduced to Billy Douglas yet. OLTL is the best come back. If they budget the show correctly they ight have enough to bring back some veterans. I would like to see Kamar de los Reyes return and scoop Tea up. I welcome Roger Howarth remaining on doing both GH and OLTL. I hope PP will be able to keep the cast in tack and continue with the raunchy great stories.

As for AMC it needs time and a revamp. The Angie/Jessie/Cassandra and Cara/David are the only two stories that I am really excited over. As for as the younger cast members they lack what OLTL brings. They should cast a gay teenager, Miranda should of been more like Erica Kane, I hope Colby will bring the fire and they should of had a more diverse youth cast, The show lost its younger appeal long ago. The days of Tad/Jessie/Jenny, Julie/Cecily/Niko/Charlie, Hayley/Mateo/Brian/AnnLi/Terrence/Kendall/Antone are gone. It would take a big risk towards one of the characters to make this show more appealing to younger viewers. I think they need to check out MTV and BET for some ideas. I still watch AMC but it could be so much better.

I love these shows I grew up watching them and I hope they remain on indefinitely. I for one support PP and I hope they do right by the actors, crew and viewers. PP sounds like they are more of a marketing company and who ever is behind it sounds like a mobster. They are trying to be HUGE when they should continue taking small steps. It takes time. Whoever the heads are they need to chill out and stop obsessing over petty nonsense. Focus on producing great fun soaps. Take notes from GH.

TV Gord's picture
Member since:
18 February 2009
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3 hours 1 min

If you're calling me a hater, katehoward (rather than a realist, which is what I am), I don't plan to "shut it", as you put it. You need the realists here to temper the disappointment when everything inevitably falls apart (as it's already starting to do).

I've been through this before, more than once. A small minority of us wrote that soaps were going to be cancelled, and we were right. Now, we're pointing out the same economic realities exist for Prospect Park, and once again, you don't want to hear it. Well, take your blinders off, google Jeff Kwatinetz, and see for yourself who you're putting your faith in. You're only setting yourselves up for disappointment...again.

And katehoward, your latest post shows part of the problem of many soap fans: you're looking at this venture as a soap lover would. You have to look at it from a business standpoint to see what's really going on.

You can "hope" all you want that Prospect Park will do right by the actors, crew and viewers, but it doesn't take much research to see the long line of people he has screwed over and treated inhumanely over the years.

I'll be over here, watching as you wait for a leopard to change his spots.

TV Gord's picture
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18 February 2009
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3 hours 1 min

I'm kind of laughing at my-own-self a bit, considering the position I'm in now. I was one of the biggest critics of people who have nothing good to say about GH, and now the roles have reversed. While I never told anyone to "shut it" or stop voicing their opinions, I was critical of them, just as I'm being criticized now. Laughing out loud

Isn't life funny?

Member since:
5 July 2008
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No actually fans like Kate Howard are looking at it from the business model because they agree that PP needs to do what it needs to do.

Its the fans that bitch & moan about it that are only seeing it as a fan and only want what they want screw anyone else including the actors & crew. They seem to feel who cares if they work til 4am every day, I want my 4 shiws a week or nothing. These fans need a reality check and to grow up.

TV Gord's picture
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18 February 2009
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3 hours 1 min

Take your blinders off, appleridge. These are not people to be trusted. History has proven it time after time.

Member since:
28 September 2011
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25 sec

I don't blame PP. why up load 4 episodes a week when the majority of viewers are only watching at least 2. That is like throwing $80,000 into the garbage.