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TMZ and Deadline Question Future of General Hospital as Katie Couric Deal Looms Closer

Noise that ABC might cut General Hospital in 2012 as part of its desperate courtship of Katie Couric is getting louder. TMZ is hearing The Mouse House is thisclose to signing a $20 million dollar pact with Couric, and reports the network may give the timeslot currently occupied by General Hospital back to affiliates to make it happen.


ABC would also give Katie a 1-hour, 5-day-a-week syndicated talk show, that would begin in September, 2012.  Our sources say ... one option ABC is considering is giving its affiliates back the hour where "General Hospital" airs to make room for Katie.  In other words, ABC would axe the third, longest-running soap in history and the last one standing on ABC.

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The report goes on to say ABC is anticipating the failure of either The Chew or The Revolution, and may put Couric's potential show there. So let me get this straight, according to Brian Frons, ABC developed 15 projects, with only four proving halfway decent enough to air. Then that number was cut down to the two that were picked to replace All My Children and One Life to Live, yet ABC is so lacking in confidence about one of the shows that will replace a TV institution that they already predict it will fail? This comes after ABC Daytime spent millions to move All My Children from New York to Los Angeles in 2010, only to cancel it in 2011. I'm sure the Disney stockholders must love how Frons is spending their mouse money.

Deadlne  also weighed in on the latest episode of Where Will Katie Go?, speculating that ABC could opt to move General Hospital to an earlier timeslot in order to give the 3 pm hour back to affiliates.

ABC will probably have to give an hour of daytime programming back to the affiliates and that would likely be the 3 PM slot currently occupied by General Hospital though it doesn't necessarily mean that the sole soap on ABC's daytime schedule will be canceled as it may be moved to an early time period. The Chew and The Revolution are set to take over the 1 PM and 2 PM slots in the fall and in January but the odds are they won't both succeed, leading to a vacancy.