Arrogance appeals to me. What can I say?

— Reid (to Luke)

Van Hansis and the 2011 Daytime Emmy Awards

ETA, 4th March 2011, 9.49pm GMT: I just posted links to all of Van’s Emmy reels, as well as those of all the clips he lost to.

After Nelson Branco released his list of pre-pre-nominations (NOT pre-nominations, as widely misreported), soap, ATWT, and Van fan boards were flooded with the question: Where the heck is Van Hansis? Based on reports from Nelson Branco and Michael Fairman (plus a detailed reading of the Daytime Emmy rulebook, all evidence pointed to Van having stayed out of the fray. He subsequently confirmed this on his Facebook Wall (you need to be Friended to read posts). Michael Fairman also posted a recap of these events which is pretty consistent.

Greg Hernandez has also picked up this story with an unexpected shout-out :). In all honesty, while I had my suspicions (and Facebooked, PMed, emailed, and called everyone I could think of to try to get an answer – more on the answers I did get shortly), I got my confirmation about the same time as everyone else (actually about 3 hours later than everyone on Facebook, as you can tell from the screen caps!). As a general rule, I have tried to refrain from publishing Facebook posts as I haven’t been able to confirm Van’s view on the subject, but this story simply was too big (and indeed I’ve seen these caps or transcriptions thereof everywhere from Facebook walls to Datalounge and fan forums).

I’m working on a longer version of the pre-pre-nom post with some context not only on what the process is, but why, and how ATWT cast might be impacted by the cancellation of the show, but RL intervenes, so it’ll be a few hours before it’s up.

Here’s the short answer:


Van’s Facebook posts explaining his rationale and his thoughts on Eric Sheffer Stevens’s inclusion on the list, plus some background on Van’s history with Daytime Emmy nomination history, links to all his Emmy clips (and those that were voted better), as well as some analogies and my interpretation after the jump.

Within minutes, dozens of well-wishers and dismayed fans posted over the next three hours during which Van carried on a lively conversation covering everything from book recommendations, to LA coffee shops.

Interspersed among over a hundred “you so deserve it!” (which he does!) replies to his post were his rationale:




And yes, as has been pointed out both Van’s wall and AE – “I coulda been a contender” is from On the Waterfront, not Raging Bull.

Commenters on both Van’s FB Wall and AE have pointed out that “I coulda been a contender” is from On the Waterfront, but as noted by eagle-eyed reader mmc, it was actually also in Raging Bull, so Van was right. If you want to see for yourself, check out the script for Raging Bull.

Finally, as a LuRe fan, I have to SuperLike this one:



A little bit of context on Van and the Daytime Emmys

I find the whole award year for episodes the prior year thing a bit confusing, so hopefully I’m not getting years mixed up, but I think this is Van’s Daytime Emmy story. I’ve long been meaning to chase down all of Van’s Emmy submissions, as well as those the judges deemed more award-worthy.

One of the things that distinguishes Daytime awards from film (Oscars) or even primetime (Emmys) is the sheer number of episodes generated. With film, you sit down for 2-3 hours and you can watch a complete submission. 10-15 hours and you’ve seen the entire category.  With primetime, assuming 20-some episodes per season, you can get a representative sampling of an actor’s work in a few hours.

However, as I wrote in my post on the Writers Guild Award, Daytime typically airs 200-some episodes a year per show. As with anything mass-produced, inevitably large chunks of that material are complete junk. Short of forcing all awards judges to watch 200-some episodes of each submitted show (or maybe 50-100 some episodes for any given actor), some sampling needs to be done.

2007 Emmy Awards

Van Hansis first appeared on ATWT at the very end of 2005. In 2006, he had some absolutely STUNNING episodes which I’m still amazed didn’t win. Starting in January , where he confronts Keith about blackmailing Lily into marrying him (and, while brandishing a knife challenges him to cut out his kidney! hard to believe this scene is only his 7th ever!), and continuing through the whole hiding in the closet/Jade/Kevin storyline, his coming out story, to the scenes with Lily first arguing about the reprogramming camp and then with his guilt about pushing her down the stairs, and culminating in his confrontation with Damian at the airport, Van/Luke had killer storyline after storyline.

Interspersed among these killer “big” episodes were wonderful small, character-moments with Lucinda, Holden, Will, Jade, and others, both during Luke’s coming out story, and afterwards as he comes to terms with how others perceive him as an out gay young man. Really phenomenal work.

Van received his first Daytime Emmy nomination (in the Younger Actor) category in 2007 for work done in 2006. He submitted some great scenes from an episode early in the storyline with Kevin (unrequited love), Jade (friend and user), and Holden (concerned dad)  – as well as scenes from the Damian/airport episode.

Despite some great clips on his reel, this Emmy instead went to Bryton McClure (Devon Hamilton, Y&R) who submitted scenes confronting his recently rehabbed birth mother, and a scene where a newly-deaf Devon confronts Carmen for sticking it to adoptive mother Dru. 🙁

2008 Emmy Awards

Van received a second Younger Actor nomination in 2008 for his 2007 work and submitted episodes opposite Jake Silbermann, who arrived on the scene in mid-2007. As far as I can tell, Luke was mostly a prop to other Snyder family storylines for the pre-Noah part of the year.

The Emmy went to Tom Pelphrey who submitted clips from the death of on-screen wife Tammy. This episode generated a LOT of buzz and included the infamous BIG emotional scene where he climbs onto her hospital bed to hug her lifeless body. All I can say is that Tom was infinitely better as Jonathan Randall on GL than as the ill-conceived we-need-a-way-to-bring-James-back-that-hasn’t-already-done-and-are-out-of-ideas Mick Dante on ATWT.

2009 Emmy Awards

By the 2009 awards, Van had aged out of the Younger Actor category, but was nominated as a Supporting Actor for 2008, which included the Ameera storyline and the Cyndi Lauper reconciliation.

Brian Wheatley arrived on the scene in mid-2008 and the autumn storylines were the election scandal and the Brian kiss (with some drunky Luke thrown in for good measure).

I believe this was the first year entrants were limited to scenes from a single episode. Van submitted clips from the June 16th 2008 episode where Luke and Noah break up (can you believe they did this dance for two years?!)? I preferred some episodes during the Brian arc including the the year-end make-up/break-up (or was it break-up/make-up), but it is what it is.

There was a tie for first place, and this Emmy went to the well-established Vincent Irizarry (David Hayward, AMC whom I remember watching as Lujack on GL back in my teens) and Jeff Branson (Shayne Lewis, GL). Vincent submitted clips from an episode starting with him holding a gun and contemplating suicide (not his best work, IMNSHO), and Jeff Branson’s clips were from his first weeks on the show, when, after the recently paralyzed Shayne learned that mom Reva had cancer, he contemplates what he wants to do next.

2010 Emmy Awards

In his 2009 episodes, we had the dreadful Z twins and Mason. Van did not receive a nomination for the 2010 Best Supporting Actor award (nor, in fact, did any actor from ATWT). In fact, Van did not receive a pre-nom for ATWT, as those went to Trent Dawson (Henry Coleman) and Austin Peck (Brad Snyder). This was not his strongest work (IMHO) and I have no idea if he even submitted himself for a pre-nom. The award ultimately went to Billy Miller (Billy Abbott, Y&R) for an It’s a Wonderful Life-themed, made-for-Emmy New Year’s Eve episode.

Fast forward to 2011

Which brings us to 2010/2011. I thought Van had a great year, with several Emmy-worthy episodes (starting with the post-surgery episode and ending with several of the finale episodes). But after three prior attempts (and perhaps disappointments? can’t speak for Van, but I know I’d be disappointed!), I could see the appeal wearing thin.

So, here are a few last things to consider. I have no idea if any of this influenced Van’s decision or not, but it certainly would have influenced mine were I ever in his position.

Van’s situation is very similar to Crystal Chappell’s last year. She was a very visible front-runner for the Lead Actress Emmy, and many people had pretty much handed it to her on a silver platter. But a funny thing happened on the way to the podium – she didn’t win. With all that hype, I have to believe that it was a disappointment. Van is certainly getting that very same hype – “a shoo in.” Unfortunately, Jonathan Jackson is ALSO getting that same hype – and from many in the soap press who actually follow both shows (it’s easy for those of us who watch only ATWT to say “there’s no way anyone could be better!”).

Then throw in the fact that Trent Dawson was likely to be in contention again, having turned in some great performances this year himself. and that Eric was probably an unknown (would he submit or wouldn’t he) at the time Van was making his decision. Then consider that although Van received glowing (and well deserved) accolades for his work in the finale back in September, the year-end awards have been suspiciously quiet in their Van-love (which has been mind-boggling to me all along, but it is what it is).

Finally, consider that the show will not be supporting any ATWT submissions (they’ll supply footage, but it’s up to the actors to get their DVDs mailed, pay for their plane tickets, etc, if GL’s experience is an indicator, and it does sound like a lot of “hoopla”, especially if he “didn’t want it that much.”

He’s right – Another nomination won’t help him; a win probably would. Chance for nomination is good though not perfect – against Trent and Eric, Trent was given some great material and a lot more airtime.

The Crystal Chappell story

In 2009, ATWT’s sister show, Guiding Light went off the air in September. At the end of the series, the show had a SUPER-popular front-burner LGBT couple – Olivia Spencer and Natalia Rivera (more on this someday in another post, but trust me – the numbers I’ve seen suggest a much larger, though perhaps less vocal, fanbase). As another victim of CBS/Telenext/differential treatment, not only did Otalia never have sex, they never actually shared even a real kiss (Olivia kissed Natalia as a “demonstration”, but it was kinda like LuRe’s first kiss when Luke completely wasn’t expecting it, and certainly didn’t kiss back). Wrote

Crystal Chappell here was part of a Lesbian storyline on Guiding Light that got a lot of critical raves for the slow burn, and the Sexuality-questioning/unexpected soulmate angle, and how they seemed to do without sensational or publicity purposes.

Sound familiar?

And, like Van in his finale scenes (September 7th was particularly impressive to me given the range of emotions, starting with cocky giddiness at the thought of Reid’s triumphant return), actress Crystal Chappell (Olivia) had an absolutely kick-ass, big, super-emotional, super-soapy scene to submit.

As context: Olivia had a heart condition (sound familiar?); she had fallen for Gus Aitoro who was due to marry Natalia. In a hurry to tell Olivia that she has a donor heart available, Gus is killed in an accident and his heart is given to Otalia (sound familiar?). But, in an ironic twist for LuRe fans, the super-popular straight character was killed off to launch the gay supercouple (but I would not say it was a waste or that he was a prop because GL actually did a LOT with this – for starters, I hated both characters, but his death created a new couple that I adored). Olivia was devastated to learn she had Gus’s heart and lost her will to live. Natalia resented Olivia for indirectly causing Gus’s death, but she refused to let Olivia pity herself to make Gus’s death be for naught. Natalia basically nominates herself as Olivia’s (and Gus’s heart’s) caretaker. They move in together (with Olivia’s daughter) and soon hate turns to friendship to affection to love. On a day Natalia is due to marry a man she doesn’t love (long story), Olivia goes to Gus’s grave to declare her love for Natalia.

[tubepress video=gLFGa3fvpQQ title=false description=false]

(Incidentally, the song at the end of the above clip is “What If I’m Wrong” by Ehren Ebbage, which was the inspiration for one of my LuRe music videos).

At any rate, Crystal Chappell was widely perceived to be a front runner for the Emmy last year. Tom O’Neil who writes the LA Times’s award-centered Gold Derby blog declared, “Guiding Light’ star Crystal Chappell will win best actress.” Roger Newcomb of We Love Soaps called her performance “the best of 2009.” Michael Fairman described her as “one of the early favorites to walk home with Daytime’s highest honor.” TVSquad wrote: “If I were voting, Crystal Chappell would be a shoe-in for this Emmy. As Olivia, she confesses her unexpected love to Natalia. But will the fact that ‘GL’ is off the air hurt her chances?” And the Advocate asked and answered: “Is Chappell a lock to bring home the gold in Las Vegas on June 27? Well, if the LGBT audience has something to say about it, she should.”

All this sound familiar?

But it wasn’t unanimous in the press, and ultimately it was Maura West (Carly Tenney, ATWT) who took home the Emmy, accepting the award with a very emotion-packed speech the same night acting partner Michael Park (Jack Snyder, ATWT) took home his first award as Lead Actor. I know I’ve seen Maura’s reel – it was from an episode during the drunk-Carly storyline where her family (including Craig, Rosanna, Jack, and Parker) have arranged an intervention and she is in serious denial. I couldn’t find it on YouTube anywhere when I looked tonight, though. Like Crystal’s episode, it was big, soapy, with lots of emoting.

All in all, not an easy climb, and not a sure thing. Not even for Van.

(And Van, in the very unlikely event that you see this post, please know that I’m not trying to put words in your mouth nor am I even remotely saying that I have any idea what you are thinking; just trying to provide some background for what I would be thinking about, if I were in your shoes.)

14 Responses to “Van Hansis and the 2011 Daytime Emmy Awards”

  1. selma says:

    Van Hansis: I, too, am happy for Eric S S. It is a wonderful feeling to be nominated, is it not?I left a longer comment on love lure’s website!

    This is surprising but yet so generous of you to pull back. You will be noteworthy is the eyes of many and especially in the eyes of the one! You are a wonderful actor and a topnotch human being with a glowing heart.

    • selma says:

      Van Hansis: That comment is on the Feb 21 blog(love lure)and it ends with ‘but’ because I want you to finish it.

      • lovelure says:

        Hi selma – just confirming that you know that this site has no personal connection with Van Hansis? Anything I know about Van (or Eric for that matter) is either available in the public domain (including members-only fan boards and Van’s Facebook), or is stuff I picked up from personal appearances (and from friends who have met the actors in person). I’m told Eric knows about this site (don’t know if he’s ever visited, but a very reliable source told me he’s been informed of it), and when I mentioned it to Van, he kinda said “Oh yeah!” but I definitely felt he was just being polite!

        In all honesty, I think both these guys have better things to do, and sufficiently well-balanced egos not to bother spending time wandering around fan sites to see what we crazed fangirls and fanboys are saying! If you want to get a message to Van personally, I’d suggest visiting Van’s Facebook and asking to be Friended (it took me three tries – I felt like a stalker, but a few friends suggested three times would be the charm!) or using his official ATWT Fan Club postal or email addresses. Good luck! – LL

        • selma says:

          Just wanted to let Van Hansis know how talented we feel he is,and how we don’t want him to feel down about having to wait for the perfect role– not interested in making personal contact at all–sorry, my well wishes were misinterpreted!!!

          • lovelure says:

            No problem – I think we ALL want Van to know how much he’s appreciated! Just wanted to make sure you weren’t expecting a response… 🙂

  2. mmc says:

    Wouldn’t that have been nice Ron if Oprah would have put ATWT on her channel, but I don’t think that will ever be.I loved the story of Luke and Reid and I’m still missing them….truthfully I think I always will.But weren’t we lucky to watch Eric and Van on the screen. I have never seen such chemistry between two actors.And we’re lucky too to have lovelure keeping us up to date as to what’s going on with them.

  3. Ron says:

    If Oprah wants to jumpstart her network, she should bring back “As The World Turns” before Reid was terminated. Think of all the fans that would scramble to tune in. ATWT was one of the best………Oprah’s gain, CBS’s loss…………

  4. Liz says:

    This is a very good write-up of Van’s situation, great job!

    As this is Van’s decision not to submit himself for Emmy, I’m not disapponted at all and I fully support him; perhaps because I’m not American, I don’t care much for the Daytime Emmy. I’m looking forward to what’s ahead for us as his fans.

    • lovelure says:

      Thanks, Liz! It’s nice to know that my random ramblings actually make sense and are interesting to people! And yes, I think we’re all looking forward to what’s next for Van – bring it on! 🙂

  5. mmc says:

    I coulda been a contender was also in Raging Bull , spoken by Robert de Niro as Jake La Motta!

  6. mmc says:

    I hope Van is not making a mistake by not submitting himself for the Emmys.Even though i read what he posted it seems that every nomination and any win looks good on your resume.2010 was his best year and so many fans agree that it’s such a mistake not to submit.I wish he’d reconsider because his acting was wonderful and it will keep him on peoples minds.i hope he makes the right choice

  7. mmc says:

    My son sent me these posts right before i came to your blog.He didn’t say they were from his facebook so i’m glad I came here to clear this up. Even though I understand his feelings i’m crying for what should have been!

  8. mmc says:

    OMG, can we ever love Van more?Not only is he such a wonderful actor, but more than that he is such a womderful man.I think he should submit, but if this is his choice we have to respect that choice.I love Eric, but this should have been Vans year and as i’m typing I’m crying.He is the nicest human being and i hope to meet him so I can thank him in person for all the wonderful years he gave us.He will always be my favorite actor but more than that he’s my favorite person.I love you Van, i wish so many good things for you!

Leave a Reply

See also:

%d bloggers like this: