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CBS Cancels 'As the World Turns' After 54 Years On Air

CBS' 'As the World Turns' is being cancelled after 54 years on the air.

The network announced the cancellation on Tuesday and said the soap opera's last episode is scheduled to air next September.

Set in the fictional town of Oakdale, Illinois, the show debuted on April 2, 1956 and changed the landscape of drama television.

'As the World Turns' and 'The Edge of Night', which premiered later on the same day, were the first two dramas to be thirty minutes in length from their premiere. Before it, all serials were fifteen minutes in length.

It's the second long-running daytime drama CBS has canceled in less than a year. CBS cancelled 'Guiding Light', credited by the Guinness Book of World Records as the longest running drama in television and radio history, in April.

The era of the daytime drama definitely seems to be coming to an end as the cancellation leaves CBS with two just 'The Young and the Restless' and 'The Bold and Beautiful'. On the other networks, ABC has three soaps left and NBC just has one.

It also marks the end of soaps produced directly by a subsidiary of Procter & Gamble, the company which inspired the term 'soap operas' because it was used to advertise products like the Ivory soap to housewives.

"We are disappointed and saddened by the news that the show s not being renewed," says executive producer Chris Goutman. "It will certainly be a loss for all of us, and for the show's loyal audience."

Through the years, Marisa Tomei, Meg Ryan, Parker Posey and James Earl Jones appeared on 'As the World Turns'.

December 9, 2009 |

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