Since Jeanne Cooper (Katherine Chancellor) passed away in May, many fans have wondered if and when The Young and the Restless would address the Emmy winner's passing in the show's storylines.
Due to the show's production schedule, The Young and the Restless was unable to immediately address the actress' death on the show; the show's storylines are written several months in advance, and scenes are taped at least a month before they air on television. Now that "real time" and the production schedule have caught up, the top-rated CBS soap is ready to tackle the difficult task of the icon's death, and it is doing so by inviting back some Y&R favorites.
This week, the residents of Genoa City learn of Katherine's death. A memorial service will air on-screen on September 3 and 4, and many Y&R favorites will be returning home for the occasion.
TVGuide Magazine's Michael Logan reports Lauralee Bell (Christine Williams), Tricia Cast (Nina Webster), Patty Weaver (Gina Roma), Adrienne Frantz (Amber Moore), Beau Kazer (Brock Reynolds), and Michael Damian (Danny Romalotti) will all return to the show, according to TVGuide's Michael Logan. In addition, Cooper's son, Corbin Bernsen, will reprise the role of Father Todd Williams.
"We decided, for the sake of the audience and the characters, that it was important to have closure with Kay," Y&R's executive producer, Jill Farren Phelps told TV Guide earlier this year. "And, contrary to rumors, we never gave a thought to recasting the role -- not for a minute! Y&R was forced to do it when Jeanne was out ill for a bit a couple of years ago, when she was replaced by Michael Learned. But that was a temporary situation. You cannot replace the irreplaceable. The greatest way to honor Jeanne is to make Kay's exit as dramatic and meaningful as possible."
Jeanne Cooper originated the role of Katherine Chancellor in 1973. During her 40-year tenure with The Young and the Restless, Cooper earned two Daytime Emmys. In 2004, she was awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award. Four years later, the underdog Cooper won the Outstanding Lead Actress trophy. Cooper passed away on May 8, 2013, at the age of 84.
For more on the life and death of Jeanne Cooper, please read our extended coverage, including reaction from the world of daytime.