Will the new digital versions of All My Children and One Life to Live have traditional network soaps running scared? Not according to Sony Pictures Television boss Steve Kent and Days of Our Lives executive producer Greg Meng.
The daytime television movers and shakers were interviewed for a new piece in Variety, along with Prospect Park's Rich Frank. While Kent and Meng seemed supportive of The Online Network's reboots of the classic ABC sudsers, I did detect a bit of healthy, competitive shade-throwing in the article, especially when discussing reports that the new AMC and OLTL will provide racier content. Here's what Frank had to say about the saucy scuttlebutt.
“We are going to be a little hotter and sexier,” Rich says. “That doesn’t mean we’ll be doing anything that’s offensive. We’re trying to be contemporary and have storylines that are relevant to people’s lives.”
Both Meng and Kent pooh-poohed the use of "bells and whistles", or overly scintillating content on soaps. Said Kent:
“If they turn ‘All My Children’ into porn — and I’m sure they won’t — then nobody is going to watch. Soap audiences are more traditional.”
Meng remained supportive of the new ventures, but apparently doesn't view the returning soaps as a threat to his sudser. Said the Salem, U.S.A. showrunner:
“We all have our fingers crossed that this is successful,” says Meng. “(But) these shows won’t be competitive with us.”
I'm sure many a radio executive thought the same thing about that new-fangled doohickey, the television set back in the 50's.
Photo credit: TOLN