Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Leyden and Collier leaving Oakdale

Pilot season usually begins in January, and we often lose some of our best soap stars around this time so they can try their luck in primetime. Last year Mark Collier (Mike, ATWT) and Grayson McCouch (Dusty, ATWT) both left their soaps temporarily to audition for several pilots (TV shows that aim for a spot on the fall schedule) but came back to their soap roles when they didn't have any luck. This year, Collier is leaving "ATWT" permanently, when his contract is up in December, to give pilot season another try. Paul Leyden (Simon) is also leaving -- he just signed a 6-month contract, and it's up in December. Leyden actually landed a primetime gig a couple years back on the Heather Locklear airport drama "LAX" but, alas, it was canceled.

So now that the soap's two biggest hunks are leaving at the end of the year, where does that leave Katie (Terri Colombino)? With Austin Peck, most likely. Peck has won of the role of Brad Snyder and will debut early next year. This is just speculation, but I'm thinking he'll be a love interest for Katie (poor Henry, no blondes seem to appreciate him), and thus fufill the show's hunk deficit in the process.

I wish Collier and Leyden luck in L.A., but if Hollywood doesn't come calling, let's hope they return to Oakdale. Katie is at her most entertaining when she's conflicted about love.