Y&R’s co-executive producer, Paul Rauch talks about his career and his 5oth year in the business with MSN.com’s, Deanna Barnert, and a bit about this week’s Masquerade Ball, and the firings that rocked the soap world back in the 70′s firing, George Reinholdt and Jacqueline Courtney (Steve and Alice) from Another World. Here are a few excerpts!
Rauch on the secret to pulling off a big production event in these times difficult financial times for the soaps, i.e. the masquerade ball: “In this case, we see an explosion at the end of the show and then the people trapped or buried in the debris. We see the aftermath. We don’t see people flying through space, which isn’t a practical thing to do and wouldn’t accomplish or mean anything, anyway. It’s still difficult to shoot. We had a couple extra cameras to do it, but the most important thing is that we do it efficiently and not take all day and night doing it. Time is money. It also depends on whether you have problem personalities, but this is probably the most professional group I’ve ever worked with. When we cast, we cast people who are actors. In the ’90s, all the shows were suddenly eager to load their casts up with young, beautiful people, irrespective of whether they had chops or not. So you had a floor filled with beautiful people who couldn’t carry off performances well. That was a challenge. How do you give a note to an actor who doesn’t understand what the note is? Here, I can work in shorthand. The actors know what to do, understand what the note is and make adjustments. I just saw the sweetened version and it’s pretty impressive. The ball is exciting. I think the audience is going to enjoy it and its part of the denouement of the Adam story.
Rauch on firing Reinholdt and Courtney during his tenure at AW: “That was an unusual situation. This guy had been a problem for a very long time and, on the fateful day, he threw an iron folding chair at a director and hit him in the head. So I fired him on the spot. You always have difficult people. Things get insane. The challenge is to make it work for everybody, not to fire somebody. It’s not to exercise power or control: It’s to get the thing done and do it well.”