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Bright Promise

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By my estimate, Jennifer Leak had been on the show for some time. I think her arrival pre-dated the arrival of Anne Jeffreys' Sylvia as she was described as a daughter was mentioned in some the press regarding Jeffreys' arrival. The papers interviewed her in June 1971 about hot pants. Apparently, Ms. Leak loved wearing them and had tried to wear them on the show. Jerry Layton, the producer, told her it was a no go. Cast list state Leak was only on the show in 1971, but I wouldn't be surprised if she arrived in late 1970 and stayed through the conclusion. She isn't listed in the cast list from the January 1971 Daytime TV FrenchFan posted, but this doesn't mean she wasn't there. Given the storyline, I don't know how Leak wasn't with show from at least early 1970 until the show's conclusion.

Jennifer Leak started on Bright Promise in March 1971 and was with the soap approximately six months. She left before 1972 and was not in the final cast.

Bright Promise Final Cast

SHERRY ALBERONI (Jody Harper)

WALTER BROOKE (Gibson)

SUSAN BROWN (Martha Ferguson)

PHIL CAREY (Robert Corcoran)

DABNEY COLEMAN (Dr. Tracey Graham)

JOHN CONSIDINE (Dr. Brian Walsh)

TONY GEARY (David Lockhart)

REGINA GLEASON (Sylvia Bancroft)

GAIL KOBE (Ann Boyd Jones)

DAVID LEWIS (Henry Pierce)

CHERYL MILLER (Samantha Pudding)

MARK MILLER (Howard Jones)

PAMELA MURPHY (Sandra Jones Pierce)

ANNETTE O'TOOLE (Gypsy)

PETER RATRAY (Stuart Pierce)

JUNE VINCENT (Dr. Amanda Winninger)

LESLEY WOODS (Isabel Jones)

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As always, thank you, for clarifying. At times, I let my imagination go a little wild.

Did Martha go on trial for someone else's murder or was Regina Gleason still playing Sylvia in flashbacks?

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Probably already known, but the exact date Sylvia Bancroft was killed off, was, if Daytime TV is accurate, January 13.

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June 1972 Daytime TV talks a bit about what the cast did after cancelation, and they say that in the last few weeks, Diane Herbert and Annette Davis joined the cast. Do you know anything about them?

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Looking at that final cast,there were some interesting names.

Seeing Phil Carey there is a surprise in that when he joined OLTL it was made out that it was his first soap after doing movies and primetime.

Soap vet Lesley Woods-someone unrecognised even though she probably worked on the most shows.

Dabney Coleman-just watched the 73 TV movie Dying Room Only-probably worked on this shortly after BP

Susan Brown,Tony Geary,John Considine,Peter Ratray all went on to other soaps.

Regina Gleason had been on Days,Gail Kobe went on to produce Texas and GL.

June Vincent was acting back in the 40's and was in one of the well regarded film noirs Black Angel.

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From SOD article about cancellation

Bright Promise had a lightning finish, but it's finale was one of simple beauty-once the plot manouvers were out of the way. After being cleared of a murder charge, Martha Ferguson (Susan Brown) was whisked home to a marriage ceremonyto the upstanding Dr Tracey Graham (Dabney Coleman) given away bt her proud father Henry Pierce (David Lewis). As the bride marched down the aisle, it was none other than Tony Geary,as Martha's adopted son David Lockhart, who provided the musical background. he played the guitar and sang a song called "Hello Rainbow".

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Thanks. I'd like to see that. It's the spirit of that era, I guess - A World Apart also ended with a musical performance.

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Carl, in regards to Paul Lukather's leave from "Bright Promise," it lasted four and half months. Up the thread, I had mentioned he had been off the show and returned May 18th. I didn't put two and two together until now. I don't know if I mentioned this already, but Mark Miller took time off from the show to do or a movie or something. This was in the summer of 1971. Also, Pamela Murphy was on maternity leave when the show was cancelled.

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Thanks. Daytime TV's announceent for the show says they were going to be casting for Nancy Boyd, counsellor for women students, Miles Ferguson, athletic associate professor of English literature, his wife, Martha, Sandra Jones, an exciting undergraduate, young newlyweds, Susan and Chet Matthews. Did these characters all end up appearing on the show?

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I just found an article detailing the first week of "Bright Promise." I'll try to get it up soon.

All of those characters popped up, but there were name changes. Nancy Boyd became Ann Boyd. Miles Ferguson beame Bill Ferguson. Susan Matthews became Jennifer Matthews.

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I look forward to that. I have a fair amount of interviews with actors from BP but of course that's not as good as story. You have such wonderful stuff.

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Bright Promise Series Stars Dana Andrews

September 27 1969

The controversy created by an English professor who endorses an anti-curfew crusade by women college students highlights the premiere of the NBC Television Network's new weekday dramatic serial, "Bright Promise," Sept. 29-Oct. 3 (in color, 3:30-4).

***

Dana Andrews stars as Bancroft College President President Tommy Boswell, in the the contemporary series, which centers on Bancroft's administration, faculty and students and their reactions to the rapidly changing and increasingly permissive present-day society.

Colleen Gray costars as Dean Ann Boyd.

Premier week storylines follow:

Monday, Sept. 29- English professor Bill Ferguson publicly endorses a crusade against women's dormitory curfew regulations. Undergraduate Sandy Jones is called to Dean Ann Boyd's office to explain some recent misconduct.

Tuesday, Sept. 30- Martha Feruson tells Ann some feelings she has about her marraige to Bill. Alumni president Red Wilson presses Tom to stand firm on Bancroft's past regulations and to fire Bill Ferguson.

Wednesday, Oct. 1- Alice and Albert Porter learn that their son Mike has not been enrolled at Bancroft. Sandy explains her serious personal problem to Bill. Tom tells Ann about a mysterious letter he is to give her.

Thursday, Oct. 2- Jennifer, who works in Ann's office, reveales her worries about the financial aspects of her marriage to Chet, a medical student. Bill asks to see Sandy about her theme.

Friday, Oct. 3- Chet and Jennifer discuss their mounting problem. Sandy is pleased at what Bill has to say about her. Ann receives the letter Tom had mentioned to her.

Featured in the cast are Paul Lukather as Professor William Ferguson, Susan Brown as Ferguson's wife, Martha, Tod Andrews as Martha's father Dean Henry Pierce, Susannah Darrow as Sandra Jones, Gary Pillar as Chet Matthews, Nany Jane Stevens as Chet's wife, Jennifer, Richard Eastham as Red Wilson, Nigal McKeard as George Townley, Peter Hobbs as Albert Porter, Sydney Scott as Mrs. Porter, Darryl Young as the Porters' son, Mike, David Pritchard as Don Martin, Kimetha Laurie as Fay Kendall, and Terry Guerrin as Jimmy Boswell.

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I, too, was curious about the letter. This is purely speculative, but I think Ann might have been up for a promotion. Colleen Gray, the original Ann, was gone by the spring of 1970. I found an article with Colleen Gray from April 1970 talking about her work, and I found an interview with Gail Kobe from June 1970 talking about her work on the show & her work at a real university. Ann Boyd was Tom's love interest. I can see how Ann and Tom worked as the non-traditional matriarch / patriarch the way Jessie / Steve did on "General Hopsital."

In an interview, Dana Andrews mentioned Ann was cheating on him with another man. I wonder if this was Howard Jones since Ann would later marry him, and cheat on him with John Considine's Dr. Brian Walsh. Andrews also mentioned his son, Jimmy, was smoking marijuana. On Facebook, Eric James said he was disappointed with the scripts; he claimed Dana agreed with his thoughts.

I found articles with Anne Jeffreys and Tony Geary about the show. Not a huge surprise, Tony Geary was introduced around the same time as the Bancroft family. Anne Jeffreys mentions Dana Andrews in the present tense. When did Andrews leave the series?

Anne Jeffries of "Bright Promise" relaxes

Vernon Scott

UPI Hollywood Correspondent

from Star-News May 8, 1971

What ever happened to Anne Jeffreys and Robert Sterling, the charming ghosts of television's "Topper" series way back in 1953-54?

Sterling took some smart pills and abandoned the acting dodge to become a singularly successful businessman with diversified interests in computers and manufacturing.

Anne has chosen to stay with greasepaint and currently is starring in the daytime serial, "Bright Promise."

When other performers ask in shocked voices why she is appearing in a soap opera, Anne responds: "And what are you working in?"

Anne could earn as much money in eight weeks in road company tour of plays as she does in a full year of daytime television, but there are other considerations- her husband, three sons and family pets.

"I love the theatre, but my boys need a mother right now," Anne said. "Tyler is 11, Robert 12, and Jeffreys, 16. Then there's the parrot, the cats and the dog.

"The nice thing about working in this series is that I go to the studio only twice a week. THe rest of the time I shop, cook, clean house and look after my family.

"The show is on the air five days a week, but we have 14 running characters. It's something like 'Peyton Place' inasmuch as it's the story of a town and all the people involved in it.

"To keep the show suspenseful they leave the audiences dangling a day or two on the adventures of the various characters before returning to a dramatic situation. Some problems go on for months.

"I've watched other soap operas and they do the same things. I just hope we do them better."

Anne finds herself somewhere in the vague category between leading lady and character actress. On the NBC series she plays the widow of the town founder with a 21-year-old daughter. Predictably mother and daughter are ready to scratch each others eyes out.

"My character was introduced last March," Anne said. "Dana Andrews bgan with the series more than a year and a half ago.

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Thanks for finding that. I have some interviews, if I can ever get around to putting them on here. Hopefully that might give more detail.

Who was Eric James?

I wonder if BP was the first soap to have dope smoking.

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