Who’s killing ABC Super Soap Weekend at Disney’s Hollywood Studios?
It’s not Zach Slater, the sometimes bad boy on ABC’s All My Children played by Thorsten Kaye. He’s pledged to attend this year’s Walt Disney World ABC Super Soap Weekend, set for Nov. 15 and 16. Same with John McBain, the sometimes suspect One Life To Live character played by Michael Easton, and Carly Jacks played lately by Laura Wright on General Hospital. They’re both among the 30 or so ABC soap stars planning to join this year’s annual Walt Disney World festivities, which also features special soap-oriented entertainment.
Yet as Disney prepares for Super Soap Weekend, now in it’s 15th year, there’s a shocking end in sight: It won’t return in 2009. Healthy and popular in this episode - it'll be dead the next.
Surely it’s not Mickey Mouse’s fault. The biggest theme park resort in that character's corporate portfolio has spent millions of dollars in the past year renovating Disney’s Hollywood Studios to make it more hospitable for special events. For many years Super Soap has been one of the Studios' anchor events, along with ESPN The Weekend, and Star Wars Weekends.
No, Brian Frons, president of the Daytime Disney-ABC Television Group, appears to be the one to have written Super Soap out of the ABC script.
In a press release issued today, Frons said ABC wants to send its soap stars on a national promotional tour in 2009, rather than sponsor one big Super Soap Weekend at Disney World. “Our fans have told us they want us in their neighborhoods," he stated
“We thank Walt Disney World for being a wonderful host and partner and look forward to our plans to send Super Soap off with a bang,” Frons added.
Rilous Carter, Disney World’s vice president for Disney’s Hollywood Studios is promising that this year’s event would be a fitting finale.
Yet is there a chance that it might return in 2010 if the tour doesn't succeed? Stay tuned.
I am a big Star Wars Disney Geek, and would love to meet some more.