Days of our Lives has set September 1 as the day it plans to once again get those grains of sands moving through its iconic hourglass. According to a report by Deadline, Corday Productions, the production company behind DAYS, sent emails to the cast, notifying them when work would resume. The NBC soap will be the last of the four daytime drama series to head back to work, but it is also the only soap currently airing all-new episodes.
For years, DAYS has been filming many months ahead of the airdate schedule. While that practice has drawn criticism in the past for not allowing the show to change direction if a storyline were not gaining traction with viewers, the frenzied production schedule allowed DAYS to be one of the few US television programs to remain on-air with completely new content.
When an industry-wide shutdown was ordered earlier this year due to the coronavirus pandemic, Days of our Lives had already filmed enough episodes to continue airing new material through the fall. Contrast that to CBS' The Bold and the Beautiful and The Young and the Restless, which only had about a month of material already completed when the work stoppage hit. ABC's General Hospital had slightly more content in the can than its CBS counterparts, and GH also helped extend its supply of new material by inserting additional flashbacks into episodes.
The Bold and the Beautiful, meanwhile, is the only soap to have already returned to production. In fact, the CBS soap has already completed at least one new episode, though an airdate for new material has not yet been announced. The Young and the Restless had been eyeing an early July restart, but due to a sharp rise in coronavirus cases in Los Angeles, the soap has pushed back its planned resumption date to July 13. General Hospital is slated to get back to work in mid-July.
It is unclear if Days of our Lives will revert to a more normal production model when things do resume, or if the show will ramp up production to once again get an eight-month padding from tape date to airdate.
Despite being the only soap airing new episodes, DAYS has not seen a bump in its ratings. In fact, on most days, the NBC soap's new content has been bested in the ratings by classic episodes of The Young and the Restless.
It is unclear if the ratings issues had any impact, but a longtime member of the behind-the-scenes team at Days of our Lives will reportedly not be rejoining the soap when production does resume. Daytime Confidential reports that co-executive producer Greg Meng has been let go after 30 years with Corday Productions.
In addition to his EP duties, Meng penned bestselling DAYS-related books, including Days of our Lives 45 Years: A Celebration in Photos, and helped launch the soap's companion web series and app. For more on Meng's exit, continue reading OUT! Co-executive producer Greg Meng reportedly fired from Days of our Lives.
Reps for NBC, Corday, and Sony Pictures TV have yet to respond to requests for comment.
Do you think DAYS' decision to wait until September to resume production is a good decision? Would you like to see the soap film closer to an episode's airdate? Do you have thoughts on Meng's reported ouster from the NBC soap? We want to hear from you -- and there are many ways you can share your thoughts.