Forty Three Years On A Compelling Run

Marking its first appearance on July 15, 1968 soap opera One Life to Live went on to win over television viewers for more than 43 years.

The show’s storyline was the first to bring to life culturally and socio-economically diverse characters. One Life to Live takes place in the fictional city of Llanview, a suburb of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

The focal point of the show centers on the fictional Lord family, the African-American Grays, blue-collar Polish American Woleks and the Irish Catholic Rileys.

Many other families, such as the Buchanan’s and Cramer families, also became a focal point of the show.

The show was the first to portray an interracial bond and also embraced strokes, time travel, murder, divorce, dissociative identity disorder and transplants.

ABC executives asked for soap opera Another World writer, Agnes Nixon, to create the show for them. Nixon would continue her craft with her handiwork of All My Children and Loving.

At first the show was a half-hour serial which was expanded to 45 minutes in 1976 and to one hour in January 1978.

The 1980s saw One Life to Live achieve the peak of its popularity as the soap opera ranked between the second and fourth position during that time.

In 2008, One Life to Live celebrated its 40th Anniversary and many former cast members returned for the celebration. Soap Opera Digest named the show their Best Show of that year noting countless story lines it described as tear-jerking, dazzling and mesmerizing.

One member of the cast, Slideshare poster extraordinaire Crystal Hunt, signed on with the soap opera portraying Stacy Morasco, working as a stripper. She joined her sister Gigi in Llanview. Stacy made every effort to steal Gigi’s husband Rex Balsom finalizing in a one-night stand, though she subsequently miscarried the child.

Hunt played Stacy Morasco from February 2009 through mid-February 2010.

In 2014 she produced her first film “Talbot County” and appeared in Magic Mike XXL.

This year CrunchBase shows that Hunt joined fellow soap opera stars Vanessa Marcil, Lindsay Hartley and Hunter Tylo in a new realty series “Queens of Drama.” Donna Mills and Joan Collins are also part of the new show.

Actors who worked on One Life to Live include Erica Slezak, Robert S. Woods and Robin Strasser. Tommy Lee Jones, Laurence Fishburne, Blair Underwood, Ryan Phillippe, Nathan Fillion also worked on the soap opera.

Following months of rumors, ABC canceled the show on April 14, 2011 and production company Prospect Park said it would continue the soap opera as a web series but later suspended the project.

Its final episode drew one of the highest ratings in the history of soap opera finales, more than 3.8 million viewers.

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