The It Parade
Tuesday, August 2, 2005
Which Daytime Stars Are Poised To Become The Next Big Thing?
A slew of daytime actors have garnered even more fame in prime-time and film. Then there's that elitc group who have catapulted into the celeb stratosphere, becoming household names and tabloid fodder. Think Lindsay Lohan, who once played ANOTHER WORLD's Alli and is now, well, evenywhere or YOUNG AND RESTLESS alum Eva Longoria (ex-Isabella), who cruised into the fast Wisteria Lane on DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES.
"It's never been like this before. The amount of actors who, when they leave, go on to movies and prime-time series is astronomical. I've never in my 23 Years of being a casting director seen it like this" says GENERAL HOSPITAL's Murk Teschner. "There seems to be a greater respect for daytime than ever before and the industry has caught up to what we have always known: We have exquisite, exciting actors on daytime. There seems to be a feeding frenzy these days."
A combination of artistry, the right look timing, luck and that inscrutable "It" factor separates the hottest talent from the pack. Who's a contender for suPerstardom? We asked soap insiders and fans to give their take on which young daytimers we'll be able to say we knew when.
First, about the youth thing: Yes, there are many brilliant actors in their late 30s, 40s, 50s and beyond, but the showbiz reality is that "There is a very intense emphasis on youth that seems to be the thrust of what everybody is looking for." notes Teschner. "That being said, it is ironic that the popular shows are DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES and CSI."
And now for our next big things. The name mentioned again and again was GUIDING LIGHT's Tom Pelphrey (Jonathan). In Digest's, 7/5 "Performer of the Week," we observed, "The buzz about Tom Pelphrey began right after his debut as Jonathan last summer," and went on to praise his "raw talent and magnetism." We're certainly not the only ones who've noticed. Ilene Kristen (Roxy, ONE LIFE TO LIVE) sat on the Emmy Panel this year and was captivated by Pelphrey's submission reel. "He is to the manor born of actins. I was shocked that he didn't win," admits Kristen, "In fact, when he didn't win, I didn't feel so bad about not winning. I tell you, he had scenes with Kim Zimmer [Reva] that blew me - You can say - 'the blank' away."
Talent Manager Michael Bruno, who boasts a roster of soap-star clients and is a panelist on SOAPnet's I WANNA BE A SOAP STAR, concurs, and also singles out ALL MY CHILDREN's Leven Rambin (Lily). "She just has such an enormous beauty and instrument as an actress. This girl is going to be huge" he predicts. "I think they have another Sarah Michelle Gellar ex-Kendall on that show"
Bruno's other picks include Michael Graziadei (Danny,Y&R "You can tell the kid knows what he's doing BOLD AND BEAUTIFUL's Drew Tyler Bell (Thomas) "He takes it very seriously. I've talked to him. His head's on straight" and PASSIONS's Justin Hartley (Fox), Even though he's great looking, he's not your typical let's-phone-it-in-because-I'm-great-looking guy."
Kristen also sees a bright future for her teen co-star, Kristen Alderson (Starr): "She's got an edge. She's a natural. She's a very good singer, she's got good timing, she's a very talented girl."
Visitors to www.soapoperadigest.com weighed n with their picks in a Help The Editor Poll. They echoed the endorsements of Pelphrey, Hartley and Rambin. "This dude has got something that makes you stop and watch no matter what he is doing" wrote Pelphrey devotee Emily of Birmingham, AL. Qua of Pittsburgh, PA raved "Justin Hartley is a wonderful actor... He will bring many women to box offices as an action star." David, from Memphis, TN said of Rambin, "Her talent and beauty will just continue to grow and she will be able to parlay her AMC success into bigger roles."
Soap aficionados also have their own ideas about who is going to et hot next. If viewers like Jeanette from Chicago IL are on the mark, Hartley's PASSIONS costar and real-life wife Lindsay Hartley (Theresa), will join him in Hollywood. GGI would love to see her go on to bigger things. She has the talent for movies and any prime-time show would be lucky to have her" she stated.
The other big vote-getter among fans was GH's Tyler Christopher (Nikolas). "He's about to hit it big!"' predicted Meigan of Roswell GA.
Regardless of what offerings acome down the pike, all of these actors have their work cut out for them. While talent and charisma are part of the recipe, those gifts alone can't work magic. SOAP STAR judge and AMC Casting Director Judy Blye Wilson says, "The practical advice would be to study and to stay on a focused track in terms of your career. And hopefully, they have good people behind them to help support them. To make it in this business, you need to be persistent and determined"
All that said, in this industry, nothing is certain. "Look, I've been wrong before about people going off and succeeding," admits Kristen. "There was one actor, I don't know if he ever did a soap, but I did a play with him. I thought this kid was going to be the next big thing. I was totally sure of it. I don't know what ever happened to him.
By Elaine G. Flores