The daytime world has also lost in December and in 2016, another iconic figure.
Longtime ABC casting director, Joan D’Incecco passed away in New Jersey at the age of 89.
For over 20 years, Joan was the casting director at All My Children. And it was D’Incecco who is credited with finding Susan Lucci to play Pine Valley’s Erika Kane, as well as Kelly Ripa as Hayley Vaughan. D’Incecco was honored by Susan Lucci when the iconic soap star finally won her Daytime Emmy after 19 tries and took the stage to accept her award. She saluted the legendary casting director citing that she “saw me as more than just an ethnic type … and saw that I could play Erica Kane.”
Following the news of Joan’s death, Susan Lucci told NorthJersey.com, “At the time I was told I could not work in television because I was too ethnic looking — I had dark eyes and an olive complexion — but Joan was able to look past that and was very warm and encouraging,” Lucci said, adding that Mrs. D’Incecco made good on her promise to call her back in six months. At the second meeting, with Mrs. D’Incecco, show creator Agnes Nixon and other producers in attendance, Lucci won the part of Erica Kane.
“Joan remained as accessible, warm and smart as the first day I met her,” said Lucci. The actress said she was able to get a message of gratitude to the casting director in the days before she died. D’Incecco introduced countless actors to TV audiences including a young Laurence Fishburne and Tom Berenger to One Life to Live and the one and only six-time Daytime Emmy-winning Erika Slezak (Viki).
Joan’s film work included the original Mel Brooks movie, The Producers as well as The Subject was Roses, which led to Jack Albertson winning an Academy Award for Best Actor and Patricia Neal being nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actress.
She was the winner of the Casting Society of America’s prestigious Artios Award in 1985, 1989, 1991, and 1992, and was nominated for the award three additional times throughout her career. Longtime fans of ABC Daytime fondly remember seeing D’Incecco’s name in the closing credits of AMC and OLTL.
Joan is survived by her son, John and his wife, Meg, and daughter, Nicole and her husband Ian; and her grandchildren; L.J., Benjamin and Sam and sister, Doris Mueller. Funeral services were held on December 19th, with amemorial service to celebrate Joan’s life planned for New York City in early 2017.
Share your thoughts on the passing of Joan D’Incecco, and her ability to find some of the greatest talent every to appear in daytime dramas in the comment section below. But first, watch Susan Lucci’s Daytime Emmy-winning speech where she shares her gratitidude for the legendary casting director!