By Michele Dargan

NBC’s Days of Our Lives celebrated the show’s 45th anniversary with an exclusive red carpet party, reception, and panel discussion hosted by the the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences last week.

Past and present cast members were on hand to commemorate this historic television landmark.

Detroit’s Local 4 WDIV-TV NBC Affiliate anchor, Jon Jordan, was the master-of-ceremonies for a panel that spoke of the show’s legacy as they shared clips of the show’s greatest moments.

Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger sent congratulatory letters, which were read aloud.

In addition, there was a live webcast and interactive messaging via Twitter and Facebook.

The swarm of fans who braved record heat and gathered outside to see the stars were given a surprise when the Academy opened its doors to them so they could watch the show from the audience and share in the excitement.

Panelists included Suzanne Rogers, Drake Hogestyn, Maree Cheatham, Melissa Reeves, Bill Hayes, Susan Seaforth Hayes, Kristian Alfonso, Josh Taylor, Charles Shaughnessy, James Galen Gering, Louise Sorel, Joseph Mascolo, James Scott, Arianne Zucker, Alison Sweeney, Nadia Bjorlin, Jay Johnson, Peter Reckell, Bryan Dattilo, Lauren Koslow, and Mary Beth Evans.

Fan favorite host and actor Ty Treadway conducted exclusive backstage interviews with cast members.

Greg Meng, Days of Our Lives Executive in Charge of Production, and Eddie Campbell, television and film art director, were on hand to talk about their coffee table book, Days of our Lives 45 Years: A Celebration in Photos.

The book is being released to coincide with the groundbreaking anniversary on November 8. This book features never-before-seen images of cast, crew, sets, and styling.

By Michele Dargan

Hey Days of Our Lives Fans!

An event tailor-made for you.

Days of Our Lives fans will have a chance to take part in a 45-year annivesary celebration of the popular soap opera Tuesday.

The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences and Days of our Lives will present “Celebrating 45 Years of Days of our Lives” 7:30 p.m. at the Leonard H. Goldenson Theatre, 5230 Lankershim Blvd., North Hollywood, CA. Arrivals will begin at 5:30 p.m.

Moderated by Detroit’s Local 4 WDIV-TV NBC Affiliate, Jon Jordan, the evening will highlight the show with six panels featuring talent, producers, and executives who have been a part of the drama for the past 45 years.

These panels will touch upon subjects such as character discussions, growing up in Salem/on set, and the business side of the show.

“Celebrating 45 Years of Days of our Lives” will stream LIVE on the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences website: http://www.emmys.com.

Fans will have the opportunity to watch the panels as they happen.

The first 200 guests to arrive will be given the opportunity to stand alongside the red carpet as current and past cast members enter the theatre. The first 100 will be given a gift bag and one fan chosen at random will be given access inside to the panel discussion and celebration.

Scheduled panelists include: Suzanne Rogers (Maggie Horton), Drake Hogesten (John Black), Maree Cheatham (Marie Horton), Melissa Reeves (Jennifer Deveraux), Bill Hayes (Doug Williams), Susan Seaforth Hayes (Julie Williams), Kristian Alfonso (Hope Brady), Josh Taylor (Roman Brady), Charles Shaughnessey (Shane Donovan), James Reynolds (Abe Carver), Galen Gering (Rafe Hernandez), Louise Sorel (Vivian Alamain), Joseph Mascolo (Stefano DiMera), James Scott (EJ DiMera), Arianne Zucker (Nicole Walker), Alison Sweeney (Sami Brady), Nadia Bjorlin (Chloe Lane), Jay Johnson (Philip Kiriakis) Peter Reckell (Bo Brady), Bryan Dattilo (Lucas Horton), Lauren Koslow (Kate Horton), Mary Beth Evans (Kayla Brady) and more!

Also making its first public appearance will be behind-the-scenes photos from the brand new archive book Days of our Lives 45 Years A Celebration In Photos. The book and photos will be featured in an exhibit in the main lobby of the Leonard H. Goldenson Theater as guests enter for the evening. The book itself will début in the beginning of November followed shortly by a fiction series of books called Salem’s Secrets, Scandals, and Lies.

“Celebrating 45 Years of Days of our Lives” offers complimentary attendance for Television Academy members and one guest. Limited seating is available on a first come, first served basis. There is no ticketing for this event. A Television Academy membership card and photo ID must be presented for admission.

To RSVP, members need to go to emmys.tv and for more information or questions for panelists, please contact activities@emmys.org

NBC’s Days of our Lives will celebrate its 45th year on the air in November and has already garnered numerous Emmy® Awards and nominations. Days of our Lives is produced by Corday Productions, Inc., in association with Sony Pictures Television.

By Silas Kain

Anyone who’s listened to my show knows that one of my greatest flaws is my failure to keep my tongue in my pocket. (Please hold the snarky retorts.)

That being said, I want to take a moment to set the record straight on a few things concerning today’s rallies or lack thereof for As the World Turns. So, without further adieu, here goes, it’s going to be a bumpy ride!

First of all, THANK YOU to all who listened in last week and participated in our Surge on Soaps. Unfortunately, the majority of those who lurked in the background agreeing to attend a rally failed to follow through.

That stinks – not so much for me but for Sue and Tami who have put their hearts and souls into this campaign. So with that said, here goes…

Suffice it to say I am disappointed and if those who claimed they were going to a rally did so to sabotage the movement, you are hereby served notice. There are those of us in this group who are fighting the good fight to save a genre.

We’re not interested in personal glorification, nor are we interested in sucking up to soap celebrities. As much as this is about soap actors, we understand that actors are human beings, too. They have personal lives, they do this because they love their craft and they don’t want deification — they want to work.

Too many people have been involved in this campaign only to promote personal agendas or serve as shills for a band of gutless “pundits” who would sell their own souls to gain a scoop or “one up” the competition.

As I said EVERY DAY last week on my show — leave your egos at the door.

This is more than just a show or two. This is about an art form which is in serious trouble.

And to all the Johnny-come-latelys who are coming out of the woodwork claiming that they’re concerned all of a sudden — where the heck have you been? We’ve been here all along willing to work with anyone who shared our view of the importance of keeping soap opera alive. Sure the times have changed. That means that the soap model has to adapt as well.

I’m sorry to sound so negative but to be honest I am mostly disappointed.

I’ve known Sue for 12 years. I know how strong her passion has been and I know she’s given herself time and time again — at her own expense and to the risk of her health. Let’s not forget just 6 days ago she had a pacemaker inserted under her breast. Yet she made the trip to NYC. She’s put a lot of her own money into this effort and never asked a single one of us for a dime. Yes, it was her choice, but where is the gratitude, folks?

This woman has given of herself, her heart and her well being because of her passion which she thought the rest of us shared. And tonight she may very well be in an emergency room in Connecticut because she just did too much in these last few days. Again, that was her choice; however, Sue can never wear the badge of shame which says she didn’t do her part. For her service, I salute her and thank her for never giving up especially when most around her were giving her nothing but lip service.

I predicted on Thursday that there would be many disappointments today. My prophecy has been fulfilled. And that’s OK, I’ve been through this before.

Eleven years ago, I remember reaching out to GL and ATWT fans about Another World. I remember begging those fans to hear our case. We were ridiculed. We were lambasted. We were treated like Barack Obama at a Tea Party Rally. And, you know what? We proved we were better than that.

When GL got cancelled, the same AW fans that were once shunned were sought out for advice and guidance. I didn’t get involved in that fight. Frankly, I didn’t want to waste my time. Then CBS announced the end of ATWT.

I don’t care what line of crap the soap media feeds you nor do I believe the “official” line of the studios. This is business. Whatever the motivations were for killing a show which has been enjoyed by 5 consecutive generations of viewers is of no concern to me.

What is most important is the shoring up of those shows that remain while encouraging another network to consider the development of one or two new shows.

That’s right, I said it – NEW soaps.

I believe today just as I did in 1999 in the simple premise that there is demand for quality soap opera.

I am a vociferous proponent of getting arts back into education. I think part of the problem with Daytime is that the last two generations of children have been robbed of the gift of exposure to the arts be it music, drama or literature. And that, my friends, creates students who have a diminished capacity to learn the basics.

Tomorrow is a new day.

The Rallies are over; the ATWT post mortem is at an end.

No more grieving, no more looking for excuses as to who to blame.

If you want to work to promote the genre and get these professionals back in circulation, then join us in this renewed cause. We are the FIRST group which presented a comprehensive, bold approach to reinventing Daytime. That is fact. We have an arsenal of professionals behind the scenes who share our passions and are waiting for the right time to do what they must to join this cause.

So, where to from here?

For me, the answer is simple.

We will continue to work on our proposal. We will fine tune it. We will seek input from people who are willing to place their own egos at the door.

And while I’ve slammed a lot of soap press I know that there are many out there who share my passion. I know that there are many actors, writers and crew who are amazed that we have been in this for them – each of them – because we recognize their value to their respective professions. We believe this initiative is the natural progression for the times in which we live.

Irna Phillips has been an incredible influence on American society for over 50 years. This initiative is dedicated to her in gratitude for her accomplishments. We’re not interested in fan club or studio fan events which take money from the same band of fans ad nauseum. We want to see our actors and writers out there executing their crafts in a forum where they will be most appreciated.

When an actor acts, an actor is most fulfilled. When a writer can weave a tale from the times in which we live without the fear of studio reprisals or “political incorrectness” he/she can spin a tale which captures and inspires. When a director can take their experience from Daytime and bring it to a community theatre for the benefit of up and coming actors and audience they are not only a gift, they are mentors to a new generation of accomplished, seasoned professionals.

Later this week we will be putting out our Irna Phillips Initiative in a boldly creative way. Last week’s Surge on Soaps convinced us that there is stirrings of a new movement so we’re going to do something about it.

If you’re in, drop me an email at soaps@delibernation.com.

We have a new website coming out and we have a completely revamped proposal in the works. The foundation of which is encompassed in the original proposal which you can find on this site. OwnUpOprah.com will become SurgeOnSoaps.com complete with tools for every soap fan to promote their own soap ideas and more.

As Michael Swan said the other night, “where there is life, there is soap.” We could not agree more.

And where there is soap, there is inspiration and opportunity.

Personally, I have been enriched by the experience of soap. I’m passionate about theatre and the arts as equally as I am passionate about the state of our political affairs today. I see the intrinsic value of arts being incorporated into academia in a resurgence not seen in 40 years.

That’s my mission.

If you’re with me, welcome. Join the cause. Help us convince a studio, network or theatre group to hop on board our train. Thanks for reading.

I’m sorry, in advance, if you’ve been offended. There are words that Senator Ted Kennedy once spoke which I feel apply to many a situation – be it politics, parenting, education and yes even soap opera. “”The work goes on, the cause endures, the hope still lives and the dreams shall never die.” Without passion, we are robots, folks. Passion trumps.

And, as the great Helen Wagner said hundreds of times over the years, “Good night, dear.”

Silas