'General Hospital' switches timeslot today; Maurice Benard ready for more

ABC

On Monday Sept. 10, ABC’s General Hospital will move up an hour to the 2 p.m. timeslot — to accommodate the new Katie Couric show, Katie — and longtime star Maurice Benard (Sonny Corinthos) couldn’t be more excited for the future. “Ron [Carlivati, head writer] and Frank [Valentini, executive producer] just keep everything interesting. The way these guys know how to keep stories going from one to the next to the next is unreal,” says Benard, who’s about to celebrate 20 years on the show and whose mob boss has often dominated story lines. “And they’ve been able to make this show into an ensemble. Which it’s never been. If I had the old ego, I might be upset. But I love it. It just adds spice to life. To me, if the show’s better, that’s what matters.”

Considering the recent demise of ABC’s other two daytime soaps — All My Children last year and One Life to Live earlier this year — the fact that the show is still on the air is a surprise, admits Benard: “Six months ago we were dead men walking. Now we’re on the team to go all the way to the Super Bowl.”

Benard doesn’t always have a say in the story direction, but he does have a wish. “I want to see a different side of Sonny where he could have more joy,” he says. “I would like him to be with Kate [played by Kelly Sullivan] and happy, but not complacent. With her and I, it’s never going to be boring because Kate’s crazy. Sonny’s crazy. Crazy people put together, it’s nice.”


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