As the World Turns: Kathryn Hays Recalls Shooting the Cancelled Soap’s Final Scene

As the World Turns endingAs many soap opera fans are well aware, As the World Turns has been cancelled after 54 years on CBS. The final scenes of the daytime drama were shot in June and are set to air next Friday, September 17th.

The folks at EW obtained an exclusive shot of the last scene to be taped. Appropriately, it features longtime stars Don Hastings and Kathryn Hays.

He’s played Dr. Robert Hughes on ATWT since October 1960, holding the record for the longest continuous role on US television. Hays has played Kim Sullivan Hughes since 1972 and worked on the now-cancelled Guiding Light series before that.

Hays described the end of filming and said, “The last day was poignant, and what was so incredible about it was how we shot pretty much in order that day. As each group finished with a scene, that would be the end of their involvement. But it wasn’t like tomorrow was another show, so the studio got really full.”

She continued, “By the time they got to our scenes with Don and myself, there was hardly any room for cameras or the boom. In a way, it felt like being in a theater. We don’t normally have an audience. The stage manager asked if it was going to be a problem for us, but we both said no. It was like everybody’s arm was around us. It was absolutely incredible, there was not a sound. It was like everyone was holding their breath. In a way, we were all doing it together.”

“When we finished, Don and I both spoke a little bit to everybody, and the whole As the World Turns family moved to the other end of big studio where they had the world’s longest table set up, covered with champagne glasses. On the way home, I said to my daughter that if you are gonna go out, this is the way to do it.”

What do you think? Will you be tuning in to see this venerable program sign off?

Canceled and renewed TV show

65 Comments · Read them below or add one

  1. shirlee says

    i have watch the show since 1962. thank goodness for vcr s . i sure will miss all of the actors . bob john lisa nancy and kim. penny too .

  2. jb says

    i, too, am deeply saddened by the cancellation of atwt. i have watched it for almost 25 years and this is the ONLY show i have watched consistently. it is my time to escape (i have 3 1/2 year old triplet boys) and i look forward to watching at night once they are asleep. I have laughed and cried with the oakdale residents, and i have celebrated with them, as well. i can’t understand why it was cancelled- it seems like they have such a strong fan base. i couldn’t agree more, i hope another network picks up the show- it was classic and unmatchable- i will miss it very, very much! :( PLEASE FIND A WAY TO BRING IT BACK!!!!!!!!!

  3. Darlene Hardwick says

    I too grew up watching ATWT with my mom. I was so happy when I got my first VCR so I could record the show while I was at work. All the cast has given me joy, sadness, laugher as I shared the story each day. I have loved ATWT for my entire life and I am going to miss it so much. I have cried so many tears this week after I heard that tomorrow is going to be the last day. God Bless you all and from the bottom of my heart thank you for each day I spent with you. You all have been more like family to me then a soap story. It broke my heart when the Guilding Light ended. Now I have to lose my favorite show. I wished there was a way to get it back. You all are going to be missed in my living room.

  4. Pamela Miller says

    I watched this with my mother just before I had to take a nap as a child. Many memories.
    I suppose a game show will take its place….to bad, it was a way of escaping sometimes, the rat race we all live in now…

  5. Tam says

    Proctor and Gamble shame on you. I have yet to get over Guiding light ending and now you are ending As the world turns- I have no choice in this matter-but I do Have a choice in what I buy at the gocery store. I have started reading labels- Proctor and Gamble will not be in my cart.

    • Darlene Hardwick says

      I agree with you. No more Proctor and Gamble in my home either. I can’t not believe we had to say good bye to the Guilding Light and Now AS THE WORLD TURNS.
      It truely breaks my heart.

  6. Carol Garcia says

    In this time when the economy is so bad CBS decides to have all these people both stars and the staff who work behind the scenes now have to seek other employment.
    I have watched both Guiding Light and As the World Turns since I first came to the USA from Scotland in 1978, I have never missed an episode yet here I am now, First Guiding Light gets cancelled now ATWT and for what more talk shows, games shows or MORE reality tv, when will CBS wake up and think of us viewers who have watched and followed these shows forever, I sure hope some other channel decides to pick up where CBS DROPPED off as I will be among the first to DROP CBS.

  7. Trish says

    So sad to see ATWT end. I have watched it for atleast 20 years and often chat with my mom about the different episodes. Thank you for having such great actors and actresses -they brought the stories to life! Of course my two favorite couples were always Jack& Carly, Holden & Lilly
    God bless :)

  8. Charlotte B. Teagle says

    I have watched ATWT since its inception in 1956. I can remember my Mom standing in front of the TV watching it while she ironed. When I was out of school or work for a sick day, I tuned in without fail. Mom died in 1957 and although I was able to watch it only occasionally when I was either at school or at work, I always kept up with it. With the advent of the VCR, I was able to watch every episode. The Hughes family was MY family and my heart aches at the thought that my longest-standing family members will not be a part of my daily life. RIP, ATWT!!!

  9. Connie says

    My heart goes out to the whole ATWT staff…After 50 (that’s FIFTY) years of watching ATWT, my heart is also breaking that tomorrow will be the last day of a part of my life. Thank you all for what you have given me. May we all find peace (and may ATWT find another network that will honor the show and reclaim it! PLEEZZZZ)

  10. Betsy Hafer says

    Very sad days this week watching ATWT…..been watching since I was a little girl with my Mom. I think it was only on 15 minutes a day at that time. The show always made me feel so close to my Mom who passed away 25 years ago, especially when they showed the old clips. I can’t imagine that there will be any more people out there watching a talk show than there was watching ATWT. It was always so realistic, unlike some of the other soaps. You could identify with their lifestyles & story lines. Good luck to all the cast members, hoping to see them in the future….maybe even the Big Screen!!

    • donna mcgill says

      I agree with you Betsy. I have been watching ATWT for years. I started out when I was feeding my babies. Time went by but, somehow I would always come back to it.
      I am now watching my Granddaughter and watch it faithfully every day. I have had a lot of tears this week. I can’t believe, really can’t believe that they would take it off the air. Maybe they were having a lot of cast members retiring, but, the younger actors/actresses did well also… So Sad! And to replace it with a Talk Show, makes me mad. Leave the Talk Shows until later, or at night…

      • donna mcgill says

        By the way, I was born in 1956, the first year ATWT aired… I wish all of the actors/actresses well. You were like Family!

  11. Edward Hildebrand says

    Can anyone tell me where the wedding of Jack and Carly took place?

    I know the series is filmed in Brooklyn,NY

    but the outside scene of the wedding, looks like some park perhaps upper NY state or Northern NJ

    any help would be great!! please respond directly to my e-mail address

    Ed Hildebrand

Leave a Comment

Your comment may need approval from a moderator before it appears. We review comments to weed out spam, duplicate postings and personal attacks. We welcome constructive discussion.