15 stars who got their start on soap operas

By Nelson Branco

From Robin Wright to Brad Pitt, daytime TV audiences were lucky to witness today’s boldest and most beautiful Hollywood stars cutting their teeth on the soap opera dial. And while some stars refuse to admit to their soapy past or even discuss it, most actors choose to pay tribute to the eccentric storylines that gave them their start in show business.

“I’ll never forget my time on As The World Turns,” Julianne Moore tells Hello! Online. “We were a family – and I really got to do some great work. I still keep in touch with them.”

Just as there are no small roles, just small actors, smart performers realize there are also no small mediums.

CLICK THE IMAGE TO SEE WHICH STARS GOT THEIR START ON SOAPS:

“I love soaps,” proud All My Children alum Kelly Ripatold Hello! years ago. “And I owe them everything, from honing my acting skills to getting Live! With Regis and Kelly to meeting my husband [Mark Consuelos] who gave me three children. There’s no shame in doing soaps. It’s the hardest job in TV.”

Luckily, the tide is turning on the stigma of soaps, thanks mainly to stars like James Franco who are diving into the daytime scene once they've already achieved fame. (In 2009, Franco rocked the entertainment world by agreeing to short-term arc on General Hospital.)

And one of the big perks of working on a daily serial is the opportunity to vie for a Daytime Emmy Award, celebrating riveting and memorable performances, an accolade that lends credibility when up-and-comers later auditioned for bigger Hollywood projects.

“My Emmy Award definitely opened some doors,” admits Shemar Moore, who starred on The Young and The Restless before joining Criminal Minds. “People start taking you more serious when you’re a young Emmy winner trying to make it big in Hollywood. But you still have to work hard.”

So, in honour of the 42nd annual Daytime Emmy Awards, doled out on April 26 and hosted by Tyra Banks, Hello! Online takes a stroll down memory lane to recall which famous personalities brought us love in the afternoon.

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