SoapLand - The Battle Of The Stunt Casting - The Result

Discussion in 'SoapLand - The Battles' started by Willie Oleson, Feb 25, 2019.

  1. Willie Oleson

    Willie Oleson drilling for soap

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    All those actors that were cast because of their name or fame or maybe another kind of relevance, to give their characters a little bit more cachet.

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    Did it always work? And which ones were your favourites?
     
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  2. Toni

    Toni Soap Chat Enthusiast

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    [​IMG]

    Remember her? She was Pam´s Twin Sister...
    She used to do all the swimming-pool scenes
    because Pam was too prude for them...
    ...or did you mean another kind of STUNT?​
     
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  3. Willie Oleson

    Willie Oleson drilling for soap

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    1. Ava Gardner in KNOTS LANDING
    [​IMG]
    I found her the most entertaining celebrity stunt cast, and because Knots Landing wasn't an out-and-out glamour show it felt extra special to watch her in that particular soap environment. Well of course Greg and Claudia's mother couldn't be just anyone.

    2. Helmut Berger in DYNASTY
    upload_2019-2-26_23-17-53.png
    I just can't think of a better choice for Dynasty's EuroPeewee than the Dorian Gray of seventies Euro Cinema. His previous work made him the perfect shambles for the toned-down Carringtons but, alas, it wasn't meant to be for American television anno 1984.

    3. Lana Turner in FALCON CREST
    upload_2019-2-26_23-49-56.png
    Jacqueline Perrault is one of SoapLand's most fascinating characters, but that has more to do with what she represents rather than what she did on screen.
    I've never seen a Lana Turner movie so I don't know if there's some kind of parallel going on here (probably not).
    Either way, it's a very big name in the TV soap genre, but having her play opposite other Hollywood veterans Jane Wyman and Mel Ferrer makes it feel a wee less special than Ava on Knots (with the benefit of hindsight of course).

    4. Christopher Atkins in DALLAS
    [​IMG]
    Obviously he was cast for his semi-scandalous Blue Lagoon fame, and I think it was an excellent choice.

    5. Jane Russell in THE YELLOW ROSE
    upload_2019-2-27_0-24-23.png
    I was going to say that this situation was similar to my #1 choice, but I think The Yellow Rose lent itself to big name casting more than Knots Landing did.
    But they didn't, therefore Jane Russell's guest role appears to be super stunt-y - but it also makes sense that they asked her, and not another Hollywood icon (well, they couldn't ask Joan Crawford).
     
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  4. Carrie Fairchild

    Carrie Fairchild Soap Chat Well-Known Member

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    1 - Ava Gardner in Knots Landing: I love Ava Gardner but she didn't get my vote for just that reason alone. Knots was generally a "younger" show with few senior cast members (bar the wonderful Julie Harris). As a result, they didn't really subscribe to the "dig someone up for the golden era of studio system" guest star policy that other soaps of the time often did, as most of the cast were aged fortysomething or below. But when it did come to casting the mother of one of the principal cast, they certainly didn't f*ck about. Ava was outstanding. Cloaked in swathes of cigarette smoke, she subtly ingratiated herself into proceedings as she aligned herself with Abby and meddled in her son's business and personal affairs before taking off for Africa. I would've loved to have seen more of her but Gardner only did the show to top up her dwindling coffers at the time and took herself off back to London once her bank balance was looking healthy again.

    [​IMG]


    2 - Lana Turner in Falcon Crest: this was the gold standard in the aforementioned "dig someone up for the golden era of studio system" guest star policy. I could probably fill my top 5 with Falcon Crest guest stars alone but as an early entrant, Lana was the one that set the bar that FC and the other shows followed. On top of the glitz of having her on the show, she actually was an interesting, multifaceted character. Big names would sometimes be rolled out in order to wander through a show for the sake of it without leaving much of an impression. Jacqueline caused trouble. Her actions had consequences that would reverberate through the show for seasons to come. Which is more than can be said for the awfully one dimensional contributions that some of the other stunt castings were saddled with (I'm thinking of you, poor, wasted Billy Dee).

    [​IMG]


    3 - John Waite in Paper Dolls: fresh off the success of his number one hit Missing You, British singer John Waite was parachuted into the world of Paper Dolls, playing himself, as the love interest of Nicollette Sheridan! His acting wasn't great and the story arc brings up the best in 80's cheese but this stands out as one of the first times that an 80's soap tried to properly embrace pop culture of the time. Yes, we had Lisa Hartman belting out Foreigner covers on Knots and Sammy Jo shaking her thing to dodgy Michael Jackson instrumentals. But this was in a similar league to the use of pop music and pop star cameos as Miami Vice (which incidentally premiered that same season). Behold John in all his glory below.




    4 - Helmut Berger in Dynasty: I love this stunt cast more so for the potential that it had rather than what played out on screen. A handsome bisexual European film star who'd worked with some of the finest directors and shagged some of the finest celebrities of the 60's and 70's. Berger was edgy and that edginess only got to peak out on screen as Peter but his Euro sleaze added a brief fizz to the shiny but often staid world of the Carringtons.

    [​IMG]


    5 - Bianca Jagger in The Colbys: a brief but campy appearance from the Studio 54 disco queen and former Mrs. Mick as a vampy widow of an Asian dictator. Her appearance also had significant consequences for the Colby clan as she provided the key that unlocked the enigma of the mysterious Hoyt Parker.

    [​IMG]
     
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  5. Daniel Avery

    Daniel Avery Super Moderator Staff Member

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    1. Ava Gardner, Knots Landing. For such a short tenure, they did give her a lot of "soap staple" activities. She got to marry a man on his deathbed, meddle in her son's love life, plot with the town's premier villainess (Abby), feast on delightfully bitchy repartee (especially with Laura), and do it all in fabulous clothes. Best of all, she didn't wear out her welcome with viewers (Greg and Laura, not so much).

    2. Kim Novak, Falcon Crest. Her plot was tough to follow at times, but I loved the whole arc. It had to have been an instance of the plot written with the actress in mind, rather than a plot being written, and then an actress hired to play it.

    3. Ruth Roman, KL. Sylvia Lean was very...practical, and even when she realized Peter was out to bump her off, she never seemed to break a sweat. If she did indeed have an affair with Paul Galveston years before, then it appears Paul had a 'type' because Ruth also had that 'gutsy broad' attitude--only poor Sylvia had to do the discount version since fortune had not smiled on her the way it had for Ruth.

    4. Lana Turner, FC. She was definitely larger than life, and the distaste Wyman had for Turner (and vice versa) only amped up their scenes more. I love how the back-story for this character kept erupting every few years to cause trouble.

    5. Rock Hudson, Dynasty. A stunt casting that had the worst timing ever. Whoever said "there is no bad publicity" probably would have paused before saying it if they'd known what would go down.
     
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  6. Toni

    Toni Soap Chat Enthusiast

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    Miss Piggy wanted to top the list because she was mentioned by the WC Dienasty cast in one episode, but I said no because a) this show is hardly a soap, and b) that infamous channel doesn´t even know what "stunt casting" is, and has no budget for it either.

    [​IMG]
    Here´s the new promo for the channel:
    "The WC: We show you what you´d never want to see"

    So these are my winners (drums):

    1) Alexis Smith as Lady Jessica Montford in..."Dallas" Season 6 & 12

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    Those looks say it all..."She is as cuckoo as Woody Woodpecker!"
    2) Kim Novak as Kit Marlowe / Skylar Kimball et al in..."Falcon Crest" Season 6

    upload_2019-2-28_0-10-49.jpeg

    ...And they obviously let her keep her clothes!!
    3) Rock Hudson as Daniel Reece in..."Dynasty" Season 5

    upload_2019-2-28_0-12-6.jpeg

    Let´s face it: in an alternate universe where Rock did stay healthy,
    he and la Evans would have made a beautiful married couple,
    at least for awhile, despite the dumb ideas of That Forsythe Man

    4) Ava Gardner as Ruth Galveston in..."Knots Landing" Season 6

    upload_2019-2-28_0-17-52.png

    "I´m Ava Phucking* Gardner, Red, and if you don´t like it, you know what you can do..."
    *Copyright by @Alexis
    5) Barbara Eden as LeeAnn Nelson de la Vega in..."Dallas" Season 13
    [​IMG]

    "Excuse me Mr. Ewing, have you ever seen my belly?
    I´ve been looking for it for the last 30 years..."​
     
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  7. Richard Channing

    Richard Channing Soap Chat Enthusiast

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    1. Priscilla Beaulieu Presley

    jenna-wade-0624ed6d-e622-45c5-96a1-4dd99c0da24-resize-750.jpeg

    This one was the definition of stunt casting. I can remember the buzz about it at the time. Elvis' wife was gonna be on Dallas. As far as anyone knew she wasn't even really an actress. But she was married to the king and she sure was beautiful and everyone wanted to see who she'd become, and if she could pull of a role on the number 1 Tv show at the time. Whether she did or not is debatable, but I enjoyed her as Jenna for the first couple of years, and then it all kinda went south until I was glad to see the back of her. Regardless, her casting on Dallas sure made the splash it was intended to, and she was fittingly beautiful as Pam's rival and Bobby's first love.


    2. Lana Turner

    FalconC1021LanaTurner.jpg

    Lana brought that old Hollywood glamour in spades and her character was intriguing, mysterious and ultimately pretty shady and dangerous. There was definitely a less is more quality to her time on the show, she would come and go but always delivered on drama when she was around. And although I would have loved to have seen more of her, I think it's good that she left leaving you wanting more. And she was the gift that kept on giving, as her sinister past managed to have repercussions long after her untimely death.


    3. Gina Lollobrigida

    65dc305e40ead5070e3ba4ae7af5953b.jpg

    Gina was wonderful as Angela's Italian half sister and she seemed to fit right in on Falcon Crest. She embodied the fiery European glamourpuss, but also brought a heart and earthy quality to the role. Not to mention that wonderful voice and marvelous cleavage. Bellissima!

    4. Ava Gardener

    41vw3BGuaVL._SX385_.jpg

    Ava kicked ass as the chain-smoking vamp and mother-in-law from hell Ruth Galveston. She was powerful, worldly and ruthless, and when it comes to soap mothers who breeze into town to meddle in their children's lives, she didn't disappoint.


    5. Kim Novak

    knovak.jpg

    Not just stunt casting but even stunt scripting as Falcon Crest channels Hitchcock with a very familiar story line for Kim Novak. It got a bit convoluted as it went on but her introduction and initial story line was lots of fun. And she was still as breathy and beautiful as ever.
     
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2019
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  8. Willie Oleson

    Willie Oleson drilling for soap

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    Interesting choice, I guess it doesn't get bigger than the Presley name!
    Kind of like Angie Bowie in the Big Brother house:D
     
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  9. Karin Schill

    Karin Schill Super Moderator Staff Member

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    1. Priscilla Beaulieu Presley (Dallas)
    2. Rock Hudson (Dynasty)
    3. Barbara Eden (Dallas)
    4. Ava Gardner, (Knots Landing)
    5. Lana Turner (Falcon Crest)

    Honorable mentioning to: Charlton Heston (The Colbys)
     
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  10. Angela Channing

    Angela Channing Soap Chat Warrior

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    1. Lana Turner (Jacqueline Perrault) FALCON CREST - When you need a viable rival to an veteran Oscar winning actress, you need the stature of an Oscar nominated veteran actress to fill the role. Rumours of an off screen feud between the Lana and Jane Wyman gave her involvement on the show an added edge, although this photo seems to suggest that the feud was exaggerated.

    [​IMG]

    2. Alexis Smith (Lady Jessica Montford) DALLAS - with a lesser actress Jessica could have been an over the top pantomime villain but casting a Hollywood star in the role gave her character added interest.

    [​IMG]

    3. Rock Hudson (Daniel Reece) DYNASTY - when he first appeared in Dynasty his screen presence and the acting ability was way ahead of many of the established cast and his character made an immediate impact. Sadly both faded as did his health but his stint in Dynasty was still very memorable.

    [​IMG]

    4. Lew Ayres (Andrew Douglas) KNOTS LANDING - a brilliant veteran Hollywood actor who was Oscar nominated for his role in the film Johnny Belinda in which he appeared with Jane Wyman. In Knots Landing playing a silent film director who is interested in Abby because she reminded him of his late wife. Only an actor of his calibre could make an appearance in a single episode so touching and memorable.

    [​IMG]

    5. Christopher Atkins (Peter Richards) DALLAS - Christopher was at the height of his fame when he joined Dallas, not long after starring in the hit film The Blue Lagoon. Although his relationship with Sue Ellen divided fans, I liked him on the show and particularly loved the scene in which Sue Ellen ends their relationship and he cries.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2019
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  11. Willie Oleson

    Willie Oleson drilling for soap

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    I had never heard of him before, but the same goes for Billy Dee Williams (they say he was in Dynasty...)
     
  12. Daniel Avery

    Daniel Avery Super Moderator Staff Member

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    He was really good in that one episode. His performance distracted the viewer (and even Abby) from realizing his character lived in the "Three Sisters" mansion from the episode two weeks before.:re:
     
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  13. Jock Og

    Jock Og Soap Chat Fan

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    1) Lana Turner - FALCON CREST.
    2) Rock Hudson - DYNASTY.
    3) Ava Gardner - KNOTS LANDING.
    4) Priscilla Beaulieu Presley - DALLAS.
    5) Barbara Stanwyck - THE COLBYS.


    Jacqueline has come from France, for a very quick visit. Angela sends Lance to the Gioberti castle, with a present of wines. Chase's mother compares American and French wine, (a scene from season 1, 1981 - '82):

    "Well I won't compare those with my Bordeaux."

    Chase: "There are some good wines coming from Falcon Crest now mother."

    Jacqueline: "Well for California I'm sure but for here wine is a business and in France it's an art."
     
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  14. Angela Channing

    Angela Channing Soap Chat Warrior

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    Lew Ayres was a big star and was probably best know for starring in the Dr Kildare films in the 1930s and 1940s and playing the lead in the film All Quiet On The Western Front. He also played a number of significant supporting roles such as the kindly doctor in Johnny Belinda (1948) for which he was nominated for an Oscar. He was married to Ginger Rogers and was awarded two stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. So overall, he was quite a major star.
     
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  15. Victoriafan3

    Victoriafan3 Soap Chat Well-Known Member

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    1. Rock Hudson
    2. Chris Atkins
    3. Billy Dee Williams
    4. Alexis Smith
    5. Donna Reed dare I say?

    Priscilla Presley really could be number one here, she was absolute stunt casting but sorry I just couldn’t bare to have Jenna win this. Soz
     
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  16. Angela Channing

    Angela Channing Soap Chat Warrior

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    Is that cockney rhyming slang? :D
     
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  17. Falcon Crest I

    Falcon Crest I Soap Chat Active Member

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    1. Lana Turner as Jacqueline Perrault
    2. Helmet Berger as Peter De Vilbis
    3. Alexis Smith as Jessica Montford
    4. Ava Gardner as Ruth Galveston
    5. Gina Lollobrigida as Francesca Gioberti
     
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  18. Willie Oleson

    Willie Oleson drilling for soap

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    [​IMG]





    FALCON CREST
    1. upload_2019-3-13_0-12-8.png 29 points

    KNOTS LANDING
    2. upload_2019-3-13_0-12-45.png 26 points

    DYNASTY
    3. upload_2019-3-13_0-13-20.png 20 points

    DALLAS
    4. upload_2019-3-13_0-13-51.png 14 points


    And Very Special Stunt Starring

    DALLAS
    5. upload_2019-3-13_0-14-27.png 12 points


    Congratulations, FALCON CREST![​IMG]
     
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  19. Gioberti84

    Gioberti84 Soap Chat Active Member

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    In my opinion a very worthy winner in Lana Turner.
     
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