All My Children’s Jill Larson (Opal) spoke with Soap Opera Digest in the new issue on newsstands now about the dissolution of the contract talks between the actors of All My Children and One Life to Live along their union AFTRA, and Prospect Park, the company that was to bring the two soaps to the Internet, especially One Life, shortly after they aired their last episodes on network television.
Larson detailed that after a few contract go rounds, and Prospect Park coming back to the actors offering them a New Media contract, with different lawyers representing them, the Union wanted to make sure the actors were protected. Eventually, talks petered out.
Jill revealed: “Things came to a head around the holidays. When the new attorneys, the new representation came in, they were sort of pressuring us. We had to call an emergency meeting two days before Christmas. They were still trying to push it through, one way or the another for One Life. So we all gathered together a conference call with people from the two shows, and that was when they put forth the new media contract, which is really a very temporary contract that’s cobbled together, mostly for people who want to do these independent webisodes and stuff like that – you know, pay no money up front and $ 50 an episode, if it goes anywhere, that kind of a thing.
This was kind of an insult, really, but we addressed it as sincerely as we could and were told that the reason that we had to have an answer back to them within three days is that their option on the shows ran out on January 1. So we did one round back and forth with them and they never got back to us and we all kind of knew, “Well, they’re not going to make it.”
What a frustrating story for the actors, who were trying to make this new production model work, for the legacy of the these two legendary ABC soaps, and for the fans.