General Hospital hopes to bring back several legacy players for its 50th anniversary celebration that kicks off Sept. 10, but there is one Port Charles veteran who won’t make a triumphant comeback — Laura Spencer, aka Genie Franics, who’s now a regular on CBS’ The Young and the Restless.
Francis, who starred on GH from 1977 to 2008, began playing Genevieve Atkinson on the CBS soap in May. She was actually at work on Y&R Thursday when, across town in Beverly Hills, a reporter asked the GH head writer whether she will be coming back to the show. “There is a rich history of amazing wonderful characters on the show right now in addition to us wanting to bring back players,” Executive Producer Frank Valentini said. “Unfortunately, contracts forbid us from discussing that. We are a big fan of Genie and wish her all the best. But I think we’re pretty solid right now.”
But Valentini promises that GH fans will be treated to the return of other legacy players throughout the sudser’s 50th season. He wouldn’t name names, but he showed big affection for the character Scott Baldwin, played by Kin Shriner. (Who wouldn’t mind a return from, say, Bobbie Spencer, as well?) The first of some past players will begin appearing in September, when GH bows in its new timeslot.
Valentini also promised the start of a big new umbrella story in the fall. GH got a second lease on life in April when ABC announced that it was canceling The Revolution. There were fears that the longtime sudser would get the shaft once Katie Couric’s new talk show debuted on the ABC owned and operated stations because it would have bumped the soap. The failure of the lifestyle show left a timeslot open on the network lineup.
“The network is doing a big push to inform the audience about the time change,” Valentini said. “We have alot of fun, terrific things coming in September.”