The cancellation of the ABC soap operas “All My Children” and “One Life to Live” will not only deprive millions of viewers of their favorite shows, it will deprive thousands of union members—actors, crew members, writers and production staff—in Los Angeles and New York of a regular paycheck.
The AFTRA actors of these two ground-breaking serial dramas have entertained generations of viewers around the globe for more than 40 years with stellar performances and dedication to their craft.
AFTRA notes that serial dramas, once a prolific source of employment and benefits for television actors, have been challenged by the new economics of television, stating:
It is, therefore, critically important that AFTRA members stand united to strengthen existing contracts and to organize new increased work opportunities in new and evolving media industries.
These groundbreaking shows have provided entertainment and enlightenment to millions of viewers, and have provided good employment to dozens of talented, dedicated writers.
Members of the Broadcast Employees and Technicians-CWA (NABET-CWA), which represents the broadcast engineers on both soaps, could see a large number of layoffs in New York and Los Angeles as a result of the cancellations. Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE) and Directors Guild members also face serious job loss.
“All My Children” is scheduled to go dark in September and “One Life to Live” in January 2012.