General Hospital has dropped Genie Francis’ contract and bumped her into a recurring role. Many disappointed fans are demanding an official explanation from management. The news also brought to light the gender equality issue on soap operas, especially as it emerged at the time of 2018 Women’s March.
Genie Francis, who plays Laura Spencer on ABC’s daytime soap, has been on the show for about 40 years, on and off. Her fans and supporters of General Hospital are surprised with the abrupt decision to cut her off and cancel her storyline.
“Today would be a good day for someone at #GH or @ABCNetwork to address the rumors that Genie Francis is gone from @GeneralHospital – Lots of concerned fans here,” a GH Twitter fan account wrote.
“Right now I am so PI**ED at #GH I cannot see straight. Frank Valentini fired Genie Francis. No leaks. Nada. We all witnessed the firing on air. Genie fans were happy that Laura got a story. Instead we were stabbed. A handful of actors put soaps on the map. Genie was 1 of them,” another one commented.
Others asked to respect Genie and other veteran stars who have been the foundation of the show. They made General Hospital the show that it is now. One fan added that devaluing one female television icon is devaluing every female viewer.
Daytime Confidential broke the news of Genie Francis getting off contract. The management decided not to renew her contract, but they are keeping her on a recurring basis. Still, it is as good as she is fired. On General Hospital, Laura decided to withdraw from her run as the mayor of Port Charles. She is heading off to France to take care of Spencer (Nicholas Bechtel) who had been injured from skiing.
Neither General Hospital Executive Producer Frank Valentini nor the ABC Network has released any official statement regarding Genie Francis’ status. Francis signed a long-term contract in 2015 as she was promised of a “big storyline” focused on Laura. It comes unexpectedly that there were no leaks that things were heading this way for her character. GH spoilers reveal Laura will still be seen on Monday, Jan. 22, as she updates Lulu.
General Hospital airs Mondays to Fridays at 2 p.m. on ABC.