Could General Hospital soon be welcoming back two of its Emmy-winning former stars? It certainly looks that way. According to a published report, the folks at ABC have approached both Genie Francis (Laura Spencer) and Vanessa Marcil (Brenda Barrett) about returning to the show.
"If you look at the canvas, Laura's entire family is in crisis," General Hospital's head writer, Robert Guza, Jr., told Soap Opera Weekly, noting that the timing is right for Laura to return.
It's been about a year-and-a-half since Francis last appeared on General Hospital. Since that time the actress has been busy with primetime projects, as well as testing the waters of the recording industry. Francis earned rave reviews for her work as Peyton McGruder in the Hallmark Channel's 2007 made-for-television movie, The Note. The project was so well-received that Francis was asked to reprise her role for a sequel, 2009's Taking a Chance on Love.
In November 2009, Francis teamed up with her brothers, Ivor and Kenneth Francis, to release an album of Christmas music. The album, entitled It's Christmas Time Again, features Francis performing ten holiday classics, including "Silent Night," "The First Noel," and "Jingle Bells." For ordering information, please click here.
Francis assumed the role of Laura Vining in 1976. The actress has made several breaks from the ABC soap in the past, but her most recent exit was in September 2002. Francis returned for a month in 2006 to mark the 25th anniversary of Luke and Laura's wedding. Despite the controversial nature of how they met, Luke and Laura Spencer would go on to become one of General Hospital's most popular couples of all time. Their 1981 wedding was watched by more than 30 million viewers.
Francis' short-term return to mark the milestone propelled her to her very first Daytime Emmy, 2007's Outstanding Supporting Actress win. Despite her popularity, Francis had received only one previous Emmy nomination. In 2008, Francis made a similar short-term appearance.
For more on Vanessa Marcil's possible return, click here to read our related news story.
A General Hospital spokesperson notes that "Nothing is definite yet. Of course we'd always love to have them back, but at this point, it's still a work in progress. We definitely want them, so stay tuned for 2010."
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