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Knots Landing Interviews where you ask the questions

 

SPEAKING TO SCOTT HAMNER

July 26th 2006, London. Scott Hamner, son of the legendary Earl Hamner
(creator of THE WALTONS and FALCON CREST) and current writer on daytime soap YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS, kindly agrees to speak to us from the East Coast about his experiences both as a freelance writer on KNOTS LANDING and FALCON CREST, and as a story editor on KNOTS LANDING and DYNASTY.

Jason Yates: How are you?

Scott Hamner: Good, thanks.

Jason:Oh, thank you so much for doing this. We spoke to James Houghton a few months ago and we know your schedule's really, really, really tight.

Scott: Yes, it is. It's just non-stop.

Jason:Oh wow. OK. So we've got questions have come from all over the world. I mean, basically the format of the interview is we just chat to you and it's all very informal, and can I introduce James to you who's going to be talking to you as well?

James Holmes: Hi, Scott.

Scott: Hi. How are you?

James: Fine, thanks.

Jason:OK. Let's start basically just by asking you how you sort of
generally felt about the genre of the prime time soap, because obviously,
you know, you'd written THE WALTONS - you wrote the final episode - and the prime time soap opera was sort of anti-WALTONS, wasn't it? Dysfunctional families, materialism, greed, sex. How do you feel about the genre in
retrospect?

Scott: Well, THE WALTONS was episodic and it was not a soap.

James: No.

Scott: It was a completely different genre. At the time, it was the standard and each episode was self contained and usually had two major stories and then a runner story. Not - it would not always have the runner, but usually there might be a very small story. And for the most part, each of those stories was self contained within that day, and the ongoing stories which were, you know, the bigger stories having to do with, for instance, the grandfather dying and the stroke that Ellen Corby had that was then integrated into the show, were not really serial stories in the same way that the soaps were. (Clears throat)

Jason:And how was that for you as a writer? You did one of KNOTS LANDING's early episodes "The Rose and the Briar", and how did you come to write for KNOTS LANDING?

Scott: I was - I had done a couple of THE WALTONS, and I had a friend named Diana Gould -

James: Oh yes.

Scott: - who was working on KNOTS, and I asked her if I could come in and pitch some stories and she said yes, and so I went into the KNOTS LANDING offices and I pitched them some stories and they liked one of them, and I just had a very intense feel for the characters and I wrote one, and I ended up writing one almost - at least one - almost once a year or so for the run of the series. There was a time when I was on some other series when I didn't write them, but I wrote freelance episodes for a number of years, and then finally ended up on staff.

Jason:Yes, you - I love the episode, your first episode, "The Rose and the Briar". It's got one of Constance McCashin, who played Laura - it's got some of her best scenes with Richard, John Pleshette, and of course the Julie Harris character, Lilimae - you wrote that wonderful story for her and Bert Remsen's character.

Scott: Writing for Julie Harris was totally one of the biggest treats of my
whole career. I loved writing for her and she's such a fabulous actress and a fabulous woman and I have always just felt really honoured to have been able to have done any work for her. But that - yes, that sort of
introduction of Lilimae (chuckling) was particularly fun to write.

Jason:Yes.

James: So that was one of the ideas you came up with yourself. Can you
remember any of the others - I mean, I know it's a long time ago - that you pitched at that meeting? Ideas?

Scott: No, I don't recall. You know, part of what you did as an episodic
writer was - and this forum is pretty much gone now - the freelance writers have been sort of crowded out, and so there's not as much of it as there used to be - but it used to be that you would come in and have maybe ten or twelve different stories, and you would tell them to the staff and then if they liked one of them, they would pay you to write an outline, and from outline you would go to the first draft and then the final draft. But often now, if there are freelance episodes available, they often will tell you what they want you to do.

Jason:Ah, I see.

Scott: And that was a sort of gradual thing that happened, but initially the more stories that you had that you could throw at them, the greater the chance that you were gonna get a job.

Jason (chuckling): Yeah.

James: So when KNOTS became more serialised, presumably all their arcs were kind of ongoing, so you, as a freelance writer, would have less opportunity to pitch, because there wouldn't be any self contained stories as such?

Scott: When that was - actually, that transition happened fairly quickly.

James: Yeah.

Scott: And it was I think totally in - as a result of DALLAS's huge success.
DALLAS just became such a tremendous phenomenon and was so successful, that they - it sort of instituted that shift into the night-time serial.

Jason:Did you think KNOTS LANDING - how did you feel KNOTS LANDING made the shift? Did you - you know, did you like the way that it made the shift in serialisation?

Scott: Well, clearly, it was very successful because the series went on for many, many years. The first year that it was on, they did do that episodic form where they did stories that were contained within that one day, but it had a sort of - built into it - the possibility for a serial form because of Gary and Abby Ewing, and the fact that many of the writers who were working on it were people who were at Lorimar and had some connection with DALLAS and were already doing that form, and it just was a general feeling that the show would be more successful if it were translated into serial, and I think that it did it very, very successfully. You know, obviously that the show was such a huge success proves it.

James: So it was quite a close - seems to be quite a close connection, I
guess, with all the Lorimar soaps. With DALLAS, with KNOTS LANDING, with FALCON CREST, a lot of the same names appear -

Scott: Yes.

James: - crop up again and again, and it's sort of quite interesting.

Scott: Yes, yes. There were so many different shows like that on that time.

Jason:Yes. And yet FALCON CREST had a very different tone and feel to any of the other shows. Could you reflect on FALCON CREST? Was it a very different experience for you as a writer writing for that show than it was for, say, KNOTS LANDING?

Scott: Yes, it was very different. (Clears throat) There were a number of
differences. One was that, although it was a serial and it was a night-time soap, it tended to have smaller stories within it that were more self
contained, and so it had a contradictory kind of - I think - form to it. It
also was more - characters were bigger. They were more - there was a larger than life quality to the characters that was not in DALLAS or in KNOTS LANDING. The characters in DALLAS, you know, were basically working people who had become very, very wealthy, and in KNOTS LANDING it was middle class people, and in FALCON CREST, as in DYNASTY, the characters were more mythic. They were more - the stakes were more - uh -

Jason:It seemed more epic, didn't it? Sort of -

Scott: Epic?

Jason:Yeah, and did you find that, as a writer - for example, I've just
watched some episodes from Season 2 and what really struck me about the difference between FALCON CREST and, for example, KNOTS LANDING, is when a character would die on KNOTS LANDING, the effect - emotional effect - on the other characters was huge, but yet on FALCON CREST - for example, when Carlo Agretti's murdered, it doesn't seem to have an effect on the characters.
It's rather a plot point, if you see what I mean. It's action orientated.
Would you agree with that, or -?

Scott: I would agree with that. I think that the show in general was more
heavily plot driven, and that the stories on KNOTS LANDING were a lot, for most part, about the characters' emotional lives. The characters on KNOTS LANDING had very rich and multi-layered emotional lives and their emotional journeys and the progression of their inner lives was generally the focus of the series. The plot points were, in a large degree, incidences that impacted the characters' inner lives. I thought it was very interesting to write the show, as many of the scenes were not necessarily about what was going on. For instance, there could be a scene about Karen and Val baking cookies -

Jason (chuckling): Yes, yes.

Scott: - and the scene was really about, you know, the problems in Val's
marriage or Karen's addiction to prescription drugs.

Jason:Yes.

Scott: The subtext was always very, very important, and I just found that
complexity very, very interesting.

James: Yeah, whereas on FALCON CREST, it was very much telling the next bit of the story.

Scott: Yes.

James: And as a sort of freelance writer, you're coming into an ongoing
series - which was easier, or which was more satisfying, to write?

Scott: Well, just my personal preference was writing KNOTS. I know people who preferred writing FALCON CREST, but I just had an immediate feel for the KNOTS LANDING characters and had a sort of very passionate involvement with them. I just felt very close to the characters and I enjoyed writing them immensely.

James: Were there certain characters or certain kinds of stories that you
liked particularly?

Scott: Yes I did. I loved writing Lilimae, I loved writing Karen. I loved -
actually, I just loved writing KNOTS LANDING, period. I just enjoyed - you
know - and the villains on KNOTS were also extremely interesting, cos they were less arch than in other shows.

Jason:Yes.

Scott: They were more sociopathic, because the villains were often intensely charming and likeable, but were completely without any sort of moral compass and, you know, they were often murderers, but it was fun because they were never written as moustache twirling. They were always written as very subtle and clever, and therefore much more dangerous.

James: You know, we spoke to Joan van Ark - we interviewed Joan van Ark a few weeks ago, and she recalled a scene in an episode which you wrote. She said it's one of her favourite episodes, one of her favourite scenes. "Inside Information" is the name of the episode, and it's from Season 6. It's when she's got amnesia. She's lost her babies and she's retreated into another character and she's living in Tennessee, and it's the character of Abby who comes to see her, and she's waitressing in a diner and she waits on Abby, and she says it's her favourite - one of her favourite scenes in the whole series, and it's a wonderful scene and that's one of yours. Do you have any memory of that?

Scott: I do. I do recall that. It was tremendous fun to write for Joan as
well, and writing the different characters for the actress.

James: Yeah.

Scott: That was interesting and a lot of fun. It was fun to invent the
character of the woman that she became -

James: Verna Ellers.

Scott (chuckles): Yeah.

Jason chuckles.

James: That was great. That was almost like a little soap within a soap,
that little town she moved into. That was really well realised.

Scott: Well, Joan did such - I mean, she just walked in there and knew
exactly what to play, and so her performance was fantastic.

Jason:Oh, extraordinary.


James: And there's another scene in that episode - I just have to say it's
one of my favourite KNOTS - well, one of my favourite TV scenes. It's when
Greg Sumner is telling Laura, his girlfriend, that his father, Paul
Galveston - oh no, he's telling her that - sorry, he's telling that his
father IS Paul Galveston.

Scott: Uh uh.

James: And it's a wonderful - it's one of those potentially dime-a-dozen
soap moments where somebody tells somebody that their father isn't really
their father, (chuckles) but it so surpasses that in its execution. It's so
well done. It's so -

Jason:And it's finished with this outrageous thing that I wanted to ask you
about. Afterwards it's implied that some sort of - I don't know how to say -
rough sex goes on between them - almost, almost - sort of, you know - very
controversial, it's just thrown in. Do you remember that? Right at the end
of the scene they -

Scott: I do remember that. The thing that was so fun about KNOTS was that
the group of writers that I worked with were always looking for ways to
surprise the audience, and the way that we would do that is often by
surprising ourselves. (Jason chuckles) We were always looking for ways to
play a scene that wasn't - was not the way that you would expect it.

Jason:Yes.

James: Yep.

Scott: ... surprising and unique. It was tremendous fun collaborating with
all of those people. They were, you know, so talented and so gifted and
hardworking and just a real pleasure.

James: But it seems a quite unusually collaborative show in terms of working
with the actors. They - again, we spoke to David Jacobs, and he said he sort
of encouraged a kind of open door policy where the actors would come and
discuss scripts with him and - how did you feel about that? Was that
something you minded or you enjoyed?

Scott: That's important because - I think that communication is important
because if the actors are not understanding what our intention was in
writing the scene, then we're not going to get the performance from them
that we want. Because the actors are living these characters' lives, they
can offer insights that might not have occurred to us. Yeah, but David was
known for that and I just - I think it was enormously constructive.

James: And did - I mean, I'm guessing that's quite unusual. Did that - did
anything like that happen on FALCON CREST? Or later on DYNASTY when you
worked on that?

Scott: It did. It did.

James: Oh!

Scott: It definitely happened on FALCON CREST. I know that my father would
meet with the actors regularly and discuss story and character, and on
DYNASTY also, the actors would meet regularly with the writing staff.

Jason:Really? Wow.

Scott: And I actually - I also recall Joan Collins coming and watching
dailies. She was a real pleasure to work with. She's one of the smartest,
most intelligent women I've ever met.

Jason:Yes.

Scott: Terribly, terribly funny.

Jason (chuckling): Yes, and can - while we're talking about DYNASTY, you
inherited something quite sort of - the beginning of - after the Moldavian
massacre -

James: That was funny, because that was like the Number One show, wasn't it,
when you took it over, but it kind of feels - I mean, from a layman's point
of view, it feels like they kind of painted the show into a corner. They
basically shot - shot -

Jason:They shot everyone!

James: - shot everyone, and then gave it to you to get on with it. How was
it from your perspective?

Scott laughs. Jason laughs. Pause.

Scott: I was talking about - to somebody about this yesterday -

Jason:Yeah!

Scott: - because it's so memorable, and how the season ended with them all
lying in a -

Jason (chuckling): Yeah!

Scott: - and I suppose the only way you can imagine it is that they were
pretending to be dead so that, you know, the people who shot them would go
away and -

(Jason and James laugh. Jason claps delightedly.)

Jason:I love that! That's fantastic! (Laughs)

James: So that - I mean, that must have been a very - sort of - was it quite
a kind of pressured time? Because it was the biggest show, and then how -

Jason:They're all dead, and then you're asked to come in and sort of
resolve this incredible cliff-hanger. Did you have - did you guys have lots
of sort of frantic meetings about it or - do you remember any of that?

Scott: Well, you know, a lot of these story decisions are often made for
production reasons, and that's true on many different levels, having to do
with, you know, sets or actor vacation times or disagreements over
contracts. There can be any number of production problems or requirements
that will impact a story, and in this instance, as I recall, it had to do
with renegotiating actor contracts.

James: Ah.

Jason:I see. And then of course Joan Collins didn't - wasn't - didn't, sort
of, turn up for the first week of filming, did she? Wasn't she not in the
first episode or something?

James: Yeah.

Scott: She wasn't. She was off in a nunnery.

(James and Jason laugh)

James: So was that a lot of - as you - it just seems that when you and Diana
Gould took over, it seems there was an unusual amount of baggage that you
had to deal with: you inherited that bizarre cliff-hanger (Jason chuckles)
and also the Krystle lookalike story, there was the Colbys you had to
introduce and then spin off into their own series, there was the thing with
Joan Collins being absent. So there was a lot to, sort of, contend with. Was
that - how did - (laughing) how did you do it?

Scott: Well, from the first - it was very difficult to pick it up. It was -
and there were two difficulties: one was that the Moldavia stuff needed to
be wrapped up very quickly, because there was a decision not to continue
with the Moldavian angle.

Jason: Yeah.

Scott; They wanted to refocus the show back in Denver with the Carringtons.
(Clears throat) So wrapping that up very quickly was hard, but it ended up
being, I think, you know, helpful in the long run. The two Krystles story,
there was a decision to draw that story out, and that ended up being
difficult because there was very little for her to do when she was sitting
in that shed.

Jason and James laugh.

Jason: Yes.

James: Except suffer.

Scott: And so the dilemma for us each week is, "How do we give her something
interesting and fun for the audience, and keep her tied up and, you know,
isolated like this?" And that was, I think, one of the toughest things that
I've ever had to tackle.

Jason:Right.

James: So who was making the decisions to draw a story out or wrap a story
up? What was the, sort of, chain of command? Cos there seems a lot - I've
never been straight on - there was the Shapiros, there was the Pollocks,
there was Aaron Spelling, obviously. Who was - who was in charge of what, if
you know what I mean?

Scott: Well, the Shapiros were overseeing the show and they had the final
decision making power, and then the Pollocks worked very closely with the
Shapiros, and they were the next down, and then Diana and I answered to all
four of them. We worked mostly with the Pollocks on a day to day basis.
Usually on the weekends, we would all meet at the Shapiros' house and go
over stories.

Jason:Yes.

Scott: The Shapiros were very hands on. They were very involved in all
stories and in overseeing the show, and Duke Vincent and Aaron were also
very hands on, very involved in the show. They - everyone was very, very
involved.

James: Is it unusual to have that amount of people sort of involved? Cos one
thing I noticed about the opening credits of DYNASTY, as opposed to DALLAS
or KNOTS or the others, there's a lot of producer credits, writer -
"Teleplay by", "Story by" - and it seems - was that just a contractual
thing, or was that symptomatic of there being a lot of people running the
ship?

Scott (clears throat): I think that there were a lot of people working on
various aspects of the show, and in those instances I actually think it
worked to our advantage. People brought various skills and so, rather than
it being many hands, people had something very specific that they were
working on or overseeing.

James: Right.

Jason:We're curious as well about the Kate O'Mara character. I think
there's a sense of frustration -

James: Cos she's very popular with the fans.

Scott: And - and what?

Jason:Well, I think there's a sense of sort of frustration with the fans. I
think that she's very popular, and just as her story line seemed to take
off, the character disappeared, and I'm just wondering if you remember
anything about that.

Scott: I didn't hear which character you -

Jason:Kate O'Mara's character, which was Caress.

James: Alexis's sister.

Pause.

Scott: I can't remember what the problem was. I don't remember why that was
not pursued.

James: She came in with a biography she was writing, a tell all biography
about Alexis -

Scott: Honestly, I have no recall.

Jason and James laugh.

Jason:It was a long time ago! And do you remember the - I think during your
tenure, Pamela Bellwood's character, Claudia, left the show.

James: She died in the La Mirage fire at the end of Season 6.

Scott: Yes.

Jason:Do you think that affected the show? I thought her presence was quite
integral to the show, even though perhaps, as the show went on, she had less
and less to do, but I thought she was, you know, one of the original
characters and she brought an original tone to the show. Do you remember
anything about her character, or memories of the actress or -?

Scott: I thought she was terrific. I really liked the character and, as I
recall, she - I think, and I could be wrong about this - but I think it was
more about the actress not wanting to continue on, because I think that, you
know, she was such an important character, and I don't remember exactly why
she left.

James: I think she'd just had a baby, so that might have had something to do
with it.

Scott: I think that was it.

James and Jason: Yeah, yeah.

Jason:And while we're talking about DYNASTY - I thought DYNASTY was - were
you aware when you were working on DYNASTY that it was a very different kind
of show from, say, DALLAS or KNOTS LANDING or FALCON CREST? Do you think it
took itself as seriously as the other shows, if you know what I mean?

Scott: I can tell you with absolute certainty that it took itself with even
greater -

Jason bursts out laughing. Pause.

Scott: It was - yes, they were absolutely, completely serious about it.

Jason: Wow. Wow.

James: And you took over as Story Editor in Season 7, isn't that right?

Scott: I think so, yeah.

James: Yeah, and I think one of the favourite plots for the fans, and I
think it's really good, is when - there's a two episode thing where Blake
gets amnesia and he and Alexis are alone together, and it's like they
recreate their past marriage. Do you remember anything about that?

Scott (laughing): Yes.

James: And I think the fans loved it and they would have - you know, they
would have loved that to go -

Scott: Because amnesia is such a sort of soap standard -
everyone gets amnesia one time or another - I think the idea there was to
play it with as much fun and entertainment value as possible. You know,
rather than play it in a more serious way, the concept had to do with
entertainment value, and I thought it was wonderful and I thought it was a
lot of fun, and it helped to reset a lot of the stakes for the characters in
terms of their emotional lives, and help them to see what the draw was
between Blake and Alexis that was so hard for both of them to break it off
in a permanent way, and help us understand why these two people were still
so involved in each other's lives after all this time, so -

James: Yeah, and you really saw a softer side to Joan Collins' character,
cos I think she'd kind of been slightly painted into a corner, in the sense
that she was so tough and so, sort of, narcissistic really, and that allowed
her to be kind of softer and more human.

Scott: Right. Yeah, absolutely.

Jason:Also while we're on DYNASTY, the character of Amanda went from the
actress Catherine Oxenberg to Karen Cellini. Do you know what the
circumstances were that led to that? Cos it was all very strange, the Amanda
character.

Scott: I cannot remember why that happened. Either I don't - I don't
remember - Catherine Oxenberg - I mean, she could have possibly had a child
as well or gotten married. I don't know why - I don't remember why that
change was made.

James: And the character then left quite abruptly. Do you remember anything
about that, and what led up to that?

Scott: No, I don't remember.

Jason:OK. And of course you became staff on KNOTS LANDING for Season 12.
Was that fun? How was that for you?

Scott: It was fun to be on staff, but it was a very difficult time because
it was right after Larry Kasha had died.

Jason:Oh yes.

James: Yes.

Scott: It had really a tremendous impact on everyone at the show. He was,
you know, just a really loved person and he was - there was - part of the
heart of the show was tied up in what he brought and his presence, and
people were just, I think, devastated when he died. And I think that the
year was a lot about the staff and the production people and actors grieving
for him.

Jason:Yes.

Scott: It was a tough year.

Jason:Yes. And it was a year on the show of change in terms of the, you
know, the format of KNOTS LANDING. The Michelle Phillips character really
came to the forefront, and of course the introduction of Kathleen Noone as
Claudia saw a very different tone to the show. Did you think - in
retrospect, did that work? Were you, you know, were you happy with the way
that that year went?

Scott: I thought that the characters were brilliant characters, that they -
I think that the Michelle Phillips character was more successful, and I
think that Kathleen was fabulous. I had wanted for her to remain. I really
thought that she was interesting character, that there was a sense that the
characters that we had needed more focus and so there was a sacrifice made,
which I thought was sad because I thought she was very interesting and gave
the Sumner character another dimension.

Jason: Yes.

Scott: But it was the Michelle Phillips character that sort of took off.

Jason: Yes.

Scott: And that mother/daughter relationship that developed on the show, and
the rivalry between those characters for Sumner, and the intrigue of all
that became, I thought, very successful and very interesting, and I really
enjoyed that character.

Jason:And you had Linda Fairgate, Lar Park Lincoln, who I think was
incredibly strong on the show, and I think a lot of fans generally feel a
bit disappointed that she never - you know, the character didn't continue,
and that it wasn't developed perhaps as it was expected to. Do you remember
anything about the Linda Fairgate arc?

Scott: As I recall, it had to do with the actress' availability, and that -
you know, we wanted her back because she was such an important part of the
history of the show - but, as I recall, it was not possible that the actress
was able to continue playing, and I don't know the exact reasons, but the
writers considered her a very valuable character and we were really with the
time that we had with her.

Jason:It's an interesting year, Season 12 on KNOTS LANDING, because I think
it's perhaps the year when you have the most unsympathetic female
characters. You know, Laura's gone and Lilimae have gone by this point, and
you have -

Scott: Can you wait just a second?

Jason:Sure.

Scott disappears off the line for a few seconds.

Scott: Sorry.

Jason:Oh no, no problem. No problem at all. It was just about Season 12,
that I think it's an interesting year because it's perhaps the year where
the female characters - KNOTS LANDING had a lot of sympathetic female
characters - you had Laura and Lilimae, and I think there's a sense in
Season 12 that a lot of the characters - it's quite interesting - the female
characters are not necessarily sympathetic. You've got three of the - you
know, Michelle Phillips, Kathleen Noone and the Linda Fairgate character -
who are not necessarily sympathetic, and Paige as well. Did you feel a shift
in the show in terms of its female dynamic?

Scott: There was a shift, I think, of the softness of them, but there was
always a very conscientious decision making process to add complexity to the
characters, so it was always important to understand, for instance, you
know, what was driving Michelle Phillips and what humanised her, and that
was true for all of the characters. They may not have been as sympathetic,
but I think they were interesting, because we were always looking for ways
to humanise them while letting them behave in ways that were not
particularly nice, but would make sense if you understood what was driving
the characters.

James: And you worked very closely with Bernard Lechowick and Lynn Marie
Latham, didn't you?

Scott: I'm sorry, what was that?

James: You worked very closely with Lechowick and Latham, didn't you?

Scott: With Lynn Latham?

James: Yeah.

Scott (chuckling): Yes, I'm still working with Lynn Latham.

James: Oh, of course you are, on YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS. I just wondered,
because they were producing the show and then they left - I think their last
episode was Episode 300, which was just before the end of Season 12, and
you're credited as writing the very next episode, which was kind of the
first episode after they left after many years of them being there. Do you
remember - because they almost kind of wrapped their time up on the show, I
remember - I think Gary and Val got remarried for the third time (chuckles)
- and then you took over, and you introduced the character of Brian
Johnston, the architect. That must have been a strange, sort of a pocket of
four or five episodes before the next people took over for Season 13.

Scott: Well, Lynn and Bernard were instrumental in guiding that show for so
many years, and they had developed a tone to the show and rhythm to it, and
a kind of a story telling that was so strong and so sort of an iconic style
for KNOTS LANDING that I don't think there was ever a thought about
dramatically altering that. So it was really more about sustaining the
vision that they had while they were there, and there were other writers who
were still on the show, who had been working with Lynn - Jim and Dianne
Stanley, who worked with Lynn for many, many, many years - and I think,
collectively, a lot of it was just about trying to keep things the same.
Lynn and Bernard, you know, both have their own unique way of seeing things,
so we did lose that, which was always very original and helpful, but
fortunately, that's why I'm working with - (chuckles)

James: Yeah.

Jason:Yeah.

Scott: That was just her on the phone a minute ago.

James: Oh!

Jason:Oh, right! Oh, we'd love to speak to her at some point.

(James and Jason laugh)

James: It's interesting, cos the end of Season 12 is quite - it's kind of
unusual. It's Karen - she gets shot by a paint ball and pursues these kids
down an alley, and it ends up with Jason Lochner, her sort of foster son -
she opens the door and he's sort of unconscious in the car - and then Anne
Matheson, Michelle Phillips' character, is homeless. It's a very, sort of,
interesting, unusual season finale. And I think, if I'm right in thinking,
Season 13 was a whole new batch of writers who seemed to take the show -

Scott: Yeah, everyone (clears throat) - the new producers brought in their
own people and it was a whole different group.

James: So you don't know - obviously - I guess those of you working on
Season 12 - you wouldn't have had any plans for what would have happened
next in Season 13. That was kind of somebody else's -

Scott: Yes, that was somebody else.

James: A little bit like what they did to you with Moldavia.

Scott: Errr, perhaps. It could - yeah, well, it - I think, actually, that
new group of people were already formulating the direction they were going
with by the end of that twelfth season. So it's really more, I believe, the
stories that they wanted to walk into. I think that they had developed it.

Jason:Sure, sure.

James: Right.

Jason:And just in retrospect, there's just something interesting about
Season 12 as well, in that it's not - I think it's the only - it's perhaps
the one season in KNOTS LANDING that moves away from the cul-de-sac. Was
that a conscious decision to move away from it? I mean, there's literally -
there's hardly anything happens in the cul-de-sac. It feels very much as
though The Sumner Group is really the focus, and I'm wondering how you felt
about that, having worked on the show for so long, and how perhaps the
actors felt. Do you remember anything about that?

Scott: I - you know, as I said before, there are so many factors that
contribute to these decisions. I know that the focus was - I think that part
of it was a shift to fewer characters, more to do, but I also think that
part of it had to do with the actors' contracts and there could be any
number of other factors -

Jason:I see.

Scott: - that I'm not even aware of that were taken into consideration with
production.

Jason:Of course, cos you have to - when you're shooting in the cul-de-sac,
that's expensive, and - yeah.

Scott: Yeah, so there could be any number of reasons that are not - that
guided that decision making.

James: We won't keep you much longer, Scott. We've just got a quick question
about - that somebody wanted us to pass on about THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS - which unfortunately we don't get to see here anymore.

Scott: That's terrible.

James: Yeah, it used to be on cable here for a while. I quite enjoyed it,
but I don't think it's - not for quite a few years. Although it might be,
cos I don't have cable anymore, so -

Jason:No, it's not. It's not.

James: No.

Scott: I think you need YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS there.

James: I think we do!

James and Jason laugh

Jason:I think we do, yes.

James: Cos we're getting very old and content. We need to be young and
restless.

Jason:We want the Joan van Ark -

James: Oh, we would have loved to have seen Joan van Ark. She spoke to us
about her time on the show. It sounds really, really interesting.

Scott: Well, we've also just had Ted Shackelford.

James: Oh yeah, that's right, playing a judge or something.

Scott: Sorry?

James: Playing a judge or something.

Scott: District attorney.

James: Oh. My -

Jason: Wow.

James (laughing): My bad.

Jason:Wow. Who have you got - any KNOTS LANDING people coming up? You
should get Constance McCashin out of retirement!

Scott: Well, I will bear that in mind. I'll keep that in the back of my
mind. Yes, yes, yes.

James: Oh you should!

Jason: That would be wonderful.

James: I just wanted to pass on a message from one of the forum members,
[Chris Sumner Matheson] who just says, "I was very pleasantly surprised to
see your name listed on THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS which has been absolutely brilliant since Lynn Marie Latham took over as head writer. The story lines are better paced and the characters are coming alive again. What do you hope to bring to the show while you're there? Good luck at Y&R, the fans really
appreciate the hard work!"

Scott: That's exactly what we are trying to bring. We are trying to increase
the pace so that you have to watch every day. That's the goal.

James: Right.

Scott: We need people to - if they have a problem with the show, we want the
problem to be that it's so exciting that they can't miss a day.

James and Jason laugh.

James: Well, that's great. Thanks, thank you so much.

Scott: You're welcome. Thank you.

Jason:Thank you, Scott. It's been a real pleasure. Thank you for taking
time out of your schedule. We really appreciate it.

Scott: Thanks.

James: And please tell Lynn Marie Latham we love her work. Well, we love her
KNOTS work.

Scott: I will do that.

James: Thank you very much.

Scott: OK. Good-bye.

James: Cheers, bye.

Jason:Bye bye.




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