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New head writers at GH and OLTL

by Dan J Kroll
Posted Wednesday, February 21, 2001 1:49:09 PM
New head writers at GH and OLTL

There's a whole lotta shakin' going on at ABC. The network has shuffled its writing lineup, bringing in two very familiar names to General Hospital and One Life to Live. Elsewhere, no immediate changes are planned at All My Children.

ABC Daytime has confirmed a report made earlier this month Soap Central report that Megan McTavish has been named the head writer of General Hospital.

Angela Shapiro, President of ABC Daytime, made the announcement yesterday.

Currently, McTavish serves as head writer of One Life to Live. She will be replaced by a familiar face at ABC Daytime, Lorraine Broderick. Joining Broderick will be Chris Whitesell.

This past November, Michele Val Jean was named head writer for General Hospital after Robert Guza, Jr. and Meg Bennett. The appointment made Val Jean the first African-American head scribe in daytime television. According to an ABC Daytime statement, Val Jean remain on as co-head writer under McTavish. Another recently elevated writer, Elizabeth Korte, will also remain on the head writing team.

Megan McTavish has an extended history within ABC Daytime. She has served as head writer of One Life to Live since November 1999. Before that, she was the head writer for All My Children from 1992 to 1995 and again from 1997 to 1999. During her tenure at All My Children, McTavish and the rest of the writing team earned a Daytime Emmy nomination for Outstanding Writing. Ms. McTavish also served as associate head writer for All My Children from 1987 to 1982 and during that time won two Daytime Emmy awards as well as five Daytime Emmy nominations.

Before joining the ABC Daytime team, McTavish was head writer for the CBS series Guiding Light. Her work there earned her a Writers Guild Award for Best Daytime Serial.

Lorraine Broderick is also an ABC Daytime veteran. She served as co-head writer of All My Children from 1987 through 1991 and then again from 1995 to 1997. Broderick's stint with All My Children was heralded with five Daytime Emmy awards for Outstanding Writing. Broderick also had brief stints at CBS's As The World Turns and NBC's Days of our Lives, where she was replaced as head writer before writing a single word. From 1991 to 1995, Broderick worked on the Emmy-winning writing staff of Guiding Light. She's also served as associate head writer and head writer for Another World. Currently, Ms. Broderick has been working as a break down writer for Port Charles.

Chris Whitesell served as the head writer for the now-cancelled NBC soap opera Sunset Beach. Before joining Sunset Beach, he worked as co-head writer for General Hospital as well as on the writing teams of Another World, Guiding Light and One Life to Live. In addition to his soap opera work, Whitesell also wrote for the ABC After School Specials. Currently, Mr. Whitesell is a writer for Days of our Lives.

This is not the first behind-the-scenes shuffle between One Life to Live and General Hospital. In November of last year, One Life to Live Executive Producer Jill Farren Phelps was moved to the same position within General Hospital after Wendy Riche decided to step down.

The changes to the writing staff take effect on March 5th.

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