Dynasty Cast Changes

Discussion in 'Dynasty' started by ClassyCo, Jun 25, 2018.

  1. ClassyCo

    ClassyCo Soap Chat Well-Known Member

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    Dynasty was quite well-known, then and now, for its cast changes, some of which occurred abruptly. I recollect the E! True Hollywood Story episode that profiled Dynasty commenting that the show's constant revolving cast door didn't seem to sour the audience, at least not in the beginning.

    All four of the Carrington children — Adam, Steven, Fallon, and Amanda — had two faces. Of the four, only Steven's change got an on-screen explanation.

    Aside from different actors playing the same characters, some actors were removed or added to the show in abrupt manners. Recently, I've been baffled at the quick removal of Dominique, Ben, and Clay.

    Any thoughts?

     
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  2. bmasters9

    bmasters9 Soap Chat Addict

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    Why would only Steven's change (Corley to Coleman) get that explanation? I would have probably expected it for Adam (Thomson to Sachs), Fallon (Martin to Samms) and Amanda (Oxenberg to Cellini) as well.
     
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  3. Michael Torrance

    Michael Torrance Soap Chat Well-Known Member

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    In retrospect, they should not have done the face reconstruction storyline, since they didn't really use it even for a single scene. There was just Mrs. Gunnerson lamenting the old beautiful face of Al Corley, the show summarily dismissing all of us who were his fans as the hired help. Just the "presumed dead" storyline was all that mattered then after all. But with so many changed faces, especially Steven and Fallon, it is a shame none of the original players came back to expose the other as impostors. Shame also they never did the Adam/Michael plot.
     
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  4. Carrie Fairchild

    Carrie Fairchild Soap Chat Fan

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    Dynasty was particularly bad at writing out characters IMO. Many arrived with great fanfare and then left with a whimper. Think about the juiciness of the arrivals of Dominique, Ben, Caress and Amanda. The mystery lady, the vengeful brother, the ex-jailbird sister and the secret daughter, hidden away in Europe. And then think about their departures. They all just left town. Some didn't even leave onscreen.

    I think once Dallas did what they did with Miss Ellie, the other shows figured they could get away with swapping a head here or there. Except, Dynasty did it to the extreme by swapping the heads of an additional three siblings from the core family.
     
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  5. Michael Torrance

    Michael Torrance Soap Chat Well-Known Member

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    Dallas was a pioneer of bad decisions (Donna Reed, killing off Bobby on screen to satisfy the actor and thus making his return ludicrous, and of course the dream season). But while Dallas decisions were a result of idiots running the show at the time, and often capitulating to the actors as in the case of Duffy, DYNASTY decisions often came down to the show wanting to punish the actors, whether for money, or for wanting their storyline to make sense, or what not. It was a case of idiocy vs. malice for the two mega-soaps at the time.
     
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  6. ClassyCo

    ClassyCo Soap Chat Well-Known Member

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    In the story, it was written that Steven had been involved in an oil rig explosion at sea. When it was decided by the producers to finally recast the character after Al Corley had refused multiple offers to return, the explanation was given that Steven had to undergo plastic surgery to reconstruct his face after suffering severe burns. This made way for an explanation that Steven would look different upon his eventual return to the show.

    Although Jack Coleman never compared to Al Corley, I did feel he was quite serviceable as Steven, and I did warm up to him rather quickly.

    The one that had the most dramatic transformation was Fallon. When examining her, it's like taking a look at two entirely different characters, naturally played by two entirely different actresses. In the first four seasons, Fallon (as played by Pamela Sue Martin) was Blake's headstrong, temperamental daughter who had business aspirations. She hadn't any ideas to conforming herself to any man or to any image someone had of her other than her own. When Fallon returns in Season Five (now played by Emma Samms), she is now the exact opposite---she claims she's conformed to the image her father and Jeff have put on her, and that she's allowed them to protect her by being their little girl. Totally out of character when in comparison to the original's bite, but at the same time it somehow fits for this "New Fallon" and her relationship with the same ole Jeff.

    Adam was brought in as a stand-in for the absent Steven. Gordon Thomson did an excellent job playing him, and I haven't seen the reunion miniseries as of yet, so I cannot comment on the actor that replaced him in it.

    As for Amanda, I always saw her as a Fallon filler. Ironically, however, she wasn't really a filler for Martin's Fallon, but a serviceable stand-in for Samms' eventual Fallon. Amanda came in, as I understand it, amid much fanfare. Aside from sleeping with her mother's husband and having her wedding invaded by terrorists, however, she had little more to do than mop around and whine. And that got old. Quick, too. Catherine Oxenberg was certainly a beautiful young lady, and I'm sure the producers did everything they could to promote her as their imitation of Lady Diana, but they never seemed to get it quite right with her. She was axed because she wanted a raise. I've always wondered why they decided to replace her with Karen Cellini briefly, when they could have just as easily let Amanda die in that fire with Claudia.
     
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  7. ClassyCo

    ClassyCo Soap Chat Well-Known Member

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    It was a shame that three of the Carrington children changed faces during the show's initial run. Fallon and Steven did so at the show's pinnacle, too. I don't think I would have liked all of them being exposed as phonies, but I am quite disappointed that Adam wasn't actually proven to have been Michael Torrance.
     
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  8. ClassyCo

    ClassyCo Soap Chat Well-Known Member

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    Dynasty was terrible at writing out its characters. They were like, "Oh, we're done with you, so don't come back next week," and then the characters just weren't included in the episodes anymore. The four characters you've mentioned --- Dominique, Ben, Caress, and Amanda --- all had "grand" entrances and were each involved in some decent storylines, but they all became casualties of producers who just didn't know what they wanted.

    Right off the top of my head, I cannot remember any clean on-screen explanation for the departure of Dominique or Ben. Wasn't Caress blackmailed and eventually decided not to return? Didn't Blake say that Amanda left for England "to think"? I cannot remember really, but it doesn't matter if these two ladies had a one-line sendoff because their overall exit was handled way too shabbily.
     
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  9. ClassyCo

    ClassyCo Soap Chat Well-Known Member

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    Yes, it seems ABC and the show's producers (i.e. Aaron Spelling) were more interested in punishing their actors for whatever reason they deemed necessary. Sometimes their screen time was cut, and others they were simply shown the door. Either way, they done them wrong.
     
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  10. tommie

    tommie Soap Chat Dream Maker

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    Probably because they had already started writing season 7 by the time Catherine was fired and Karen presumably auditioned for the part of Channing on The Colbys - they saw a faint resemblance to Catherine and casted her, despite not having any experience at all in front of the camera. On top of that they gave Karen no real directions (which she desperately needed) and were more concerned with her hair.
     
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  11. GillesDenver

    GillesDenver Soap Chat Active Member

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    When it was decided by the producers to finally recast the character after Al Corley had refused multiple offers to return[/QUOTE]
    Actually Al Corley was never asked to return. Except for "The Reunion" of course.

    Because several scripts and story outlines were already written, you can't rewrite them two days before the shooting. The only other solution was to give Amanda's lines to another character. Only Jackie was eligible for that but I guess the staff think she has not enough potential.
     
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  12. ClassyCo

    ClassyCo Soap Chat Well-Known Member

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    I didn't consider that. But it certainly seems logical. I've also read that Karen Cellini auditioned for Channing Carter on the less popular spinoff, The Colbys, but lost that role to the seemingly more experienced Kim Morgan Greene.

    Karen Cellini vaguely reminds a viewer, albeit a casual one perhaps, of Catherine Oxenberg. One noticeable difference is the vacant English accent, and the lack of on-screen charisma. Her personality, which was already slim with Oxenberg in the role, is erased even further, but as many have said, that wasn't Cellini's fault. She needed to be coddled and guided through the role, but she wasn't. And that's so very clear. It seems after an episode or two that the producers quickly realized they had made a mistake. Her role was marginalized and Cellini herself back-burnered. After her contracted thirteen episodes, she became just another casualty in the Dynasty saga. On more than one occasion since her departure, there have been a few instances to the Carrington family as a whole, but Amanda's always left out. Blake and Alexis both are each only acknowledging three children --- Adam, Steven, and Fallon --- and that's it.

    As it seems, Amanda was just a filler. And a forgotten one at that.
     
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  13. ClassyCo

    ClassyCo Soap Chat Well-Known Member

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    I'm not sure I agree there. I wouldn't be scared to guess that the producers tried (if not intensively) to retain Al Corley. They only had two seasons in the can, and I'm sure they weren't looking forward to loosing the actor that gave Steven Carrington, the show's most controversial character, a face and personality. The only reason the producers wanted him back for The Reunion because Jack Coleman wasn't available to return, or refused to. I cannot remember the details.

    It's been stated that the writers had already outlined the beginning of Season Seven and that Amanda's services were needed. I just wonder why they didn't try to quickly "fix" it by axing Cellini sooner like that had post-Moldavia the previous season. I agree, only Jackie could have stepped into Amanda's lines, but the producers had always side-lined her. I seriously doubt they even considered bringing her to the forefront.

    Who knows?
     
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2018
  14. tommie

    tommie Soap Chat Dream Maker

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    I dunno
    I would guess they signed Cellini for at least a season contract, but was secured to get paid for 13 episodes either way so they just ended up using her for the episodes that they would have to pay her. A similar thing happened to Hilary Swank on Beverly Hills 90210 - she signed a contract for two seasons, but would get paid for 13 episodes either way if they decided to ax her, which they did (of course ms Swank went on to a better career than Cellini).
     
  15. ClassyCo

    ClassyCo Soap Chat Well-Known Member

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    Possibly. That all seems very possible.
     
  16. Karin Schill

    Karin Schill Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I agree that it's ridiculous how they recast all four of the Carrington children. But for some reason I actually prefered the second Steven to the first. Maybe because he was with the show for more seasons. Also they had a logical explaination for his change of appearance. Also Dynasty actually recast Steven before Dallas recast Miss Ellie as the new Steven joined the show in 1982 and Miss Ellie wasn't recast until in the 1984/1985 season.

    I like the recast of Fallon too as I prefered to have the character alive rather than dead and I enjoyed The Colbys.

    I never liked the recast of Amanda though and the recast of Adam for one reunion movie was so unnecessary!
     
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  17. ClassyCo

    ClassyCo Soap Chat Well-Known Member

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    The originals usually win the popularity polls, but everyone is certainly entitled to their own opinion.

    In referencing Steven, I believe I preferred Al Corley, but Jack Coleman grew on me, and it's been so long since I've watched the earlier seasons that my memory of Corley in the role is blurred. However, I do remember liking the sensitivity that Corley had. Coleman has never managed to have the same sensitivity, he's more of a go-getter.

    Pamela Sue Martin was better as Fallon, or how Fallon was originally written. Emma Samms played the role as it has been tailored for her talents. That's the jiff of it.
     
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  18. Karin Schill

    Karin Schill Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I preferred Pamela Sue Martin's Fallon too. But I liked Emma Samms Fallon and accepted her in the role. I can't say the same for the recast of Amanda.
     
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  19. Willie Oleson

    Willie Oleson drilling for soap

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    Gee, all the things that didn't happen on Dynasty, and yet they had to develop that storyline?
    I never think of him as a recast since he only appeared in that dreadful reunion movie.
     
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  20. ClassyCo

    ClassyCo Soap Chat Well-Known Member

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    Well, while the story you're referring to wasn't spectacular by any means, I'm sure there still was some pre-plotting before Season Seven even started filming. There had to be some idea of where the story was headed, even if they were going to change it, mess it up, and kill it before it was all over. I plan had to be submitted.

    I see your point, Adam was never replaced on the original series itself, but her was, technically, recast. He had two faces, even if one of those faces didn't appear until the 1991 "dreadful reunion movie," the one I have still yet to watch in its entirety.
     
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