Young and the Restless Executive Producer Explains Decision To Re-Hire Michelle Stafford And Fire Gina Tognoni
The Young and the Restless spoilers tease that Michelle Stafford is back on the Y&R set and filming, ready to reprise her role as Phyllis Summers for viewers. Of course, that means that we’re in the final few days of Gina Tognoni’s run as Phyllis, and that has some fans dismayed but others delighted to welcome Michelle Stafford back.
There’s also been a lot of speculation about what led to this big Phyllis switch. Some fans have wondered whether Michelle Stafford orchestrated the whole thing, and exactly what was behind the decision to get rid of Gina Tognoni after all of this time. After all, she’s been a great Phyllis for Y&R and has even won a Daytime Emmy for her portrayal.
Well, according to a recent interview with Soap Opera Digest, the whole switch was the idea of Y&R’s Executive Producer Anthony Morina. According to the article and his own words, he takes full responsibility for the decision to rehire Michelle Stafford and fire Gina Tognoni. The article, which also included Y&R’s Head Writer and Co-Executive Producer Josh Griffith, is enlightening.
Morina said the following: “Michelle wasn’t looking for a job, it was really me. I called Michelle up.” Morina went on to explain that he and Michelle had a conversation about the future of The Young and the Restless and where the producers wanted to take the show. And Josh Griffith added that the decision was part of a larger plan to take Y&R back to a place of “iconic sensibility.”
Morina also noted that Michelle wasn’t looking to reprise her role as Phyllis Summers on Y&R, and in fact she was happy at General Hospital. Morina persisted and eventually got Michelle on board with coming back over to the show. So, that settles any speculation about the whole thing having been driven by Michelle – clearly it wasn’t.
But of course, the decision to rehire Michelle meant that Gina Tognoni would have to exit the role that she’s made her own over the past several years. Morina was clear in the interview that they love Gina and that she was a professional, capable actress in the role, but that their decision was firm, and that Michelle is the one who best fits with Y&R’s future direction.
So, it seems that fans of Gina Tognoni will have to wait to see where the talented actress lands. Surely she will be back on our screens in some fashion in the near future. As for Michelle Stafford, she’s sure to be embroiled in some exciting new storylines on Y&R upon her return.
— Young and Restless (@YandR_CBS) June 2, 2019
What do you think? Are you looking forward to seeing Michelle Stafford return to The Young and the Restless as Phyllis? Or do you think it was a bad decision on TPTB’s part to get rid of Gina Tognoni?
As always, more detailed spoilers and a full collection of pictures for the week in question will appear here on Hollywood Hiccups, where there will be more clues and hints over exactly what’s going on.
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