Megan Follows Snubbed Colleen Dewhurst's RTA tribute

Discuss the series, characters and episodes.
User avatar
Timothy
Lighthouse Keeper
Posts: 1316
Joined: Tue May 31, 2005 10:30 pm
Contact:

Megan Follows Snubbed Colleen Dewhurst's RTA tribute

Post by Timothy » Sun Apr 29, 2007 6:57 am

There has been a persistent rumor that the reason Megan Follows didn't resume her role as Anne and appear alongside Jonathan Crombie in the episode 'Old Friends, Old Wounds' was because Follows felt the LMM works were "sacred" and didn't want to alter the characters/storyline.

This however, doesn't explain why Follows appeared in 'Anne 3,' a film that deviates so much from the Montgomery literature that it isolated fans and practically derailed Sullivan's Anne film franchise. Others have said there was a falling out between Sullivan and Follows, but clearly they have worked together despite these differences.

In a chat with Ashley Muscroft (Dora Keith, seasons 2-3), Ashley revealed the answer to this question. According to Ashley, who offered great insight into the series, Megan Follows was supposed to be in the episode 'Old Friends, Old Wounds' and opted out because she wasn't offered more money. She said the cast was bitter about it because they considered it paying respects to Colleen Dewhurst.

Do you think that it was tasteful for Megan to snub or brush off Colleen Dewhursts tribute episode because she wanted more money?

User avatar
AvonLea
Won Avonlea Spelling B
Posts: 176
Joined: Fri Jan 26, 2007 6:30 pm
Location: In my dreams, Avonlea

Post by AvonLea » Sun Apr 29, 2007 2:49 pm

If that indeed is the full truth, I do think that was terrible of her. I can't believe how greedy some people can be. Wouldn't it be better if greed was replace by love? If that is the truth, then I am VERY dissapointed.
Image

User avatar
hobbie
Saved School Library Funds
Posts: 237
Joined: Fri Jan 26, 2007 8:54 am
Location: Belgium
Contact:

Post by hobbie » Mon Apr 30, 2007 4:53 am

That's very disappointing indeed!What money can do with a person...
I will never forget the days of my youth when the waves rippled between my toas....Hetty king

Georgiana
Planted Magic Seeds
Posts: 43
Joined: Sun Sep 03, 2006 11:30 am
Location: London, England

Post by Georgiana » Mon Apr 30, 2007 11:04 am

If it is true I think it is horrible of her. Most people do tributes for free. Her insisting on being paid more is disgusting. I think it is so sad that someone can act like that. :x :cry:
Image
Image

Shelly
Leader of the Suffragette Movement
Posts: 612
Joined: Fri Jul 08, 2005 1:20 pm
Location: new england
Contact:

Re: Megan Follows Snubbed Colleen Dewhurst's RTA tribute

Post by Shelly » Mon Apr 30, 2007 8:10 pm

Tim wrote:In a chat with Ashley Muscroft (Dora Keith, seasons 2-3), Ashley revealed the answer to this question. According to Ashley, who offered great insight into the series, Megan Follows was supposed to be in the episode 'Old Friends, Old Wounds' and opted out because she wasn't offered more money. She said the cast was bitter about it because they considered it paying respects to Colleen Dewhurst.

Do you think that it was tasteful for Megan to snub or brush off Colleen Dewhursts tribute episode because she wanted more money?
If this is true, I am VERY surprised.

Megan has spoken very highly of Colleen Dewhurst in the past. One would think Megan would've jumped at the chance of paying tribute to an actress she had much respect for.

An excerpt from an interview on CBC's website, given in 2005 (emphasis mine)...
In fact, Follows’ recollections of her Anne stint are larded with expletives and off-the-cuff references to the Almighty, though her co-star, the late Colleen Dewhurst, is still spoken of reverently (“She was this powerhouse, but she never made you feel less than, or inexperienced, or any of the millions of things I must have been”). When she looks back on her days as a child actor, Follows is generally less careful, less guarded than she would have been at the time.
On the other hand, perhaps--in regards to the pay--this is similar to the case of Michael Mahonen backing out of HCMK (even though he wanted to reprise the role): Perhaps Megan believed the pay she was being offered was not comparable to what she would've done as Anne in the script. Or, on yet another hand, perhaps she thought she was entitled to more money, as most considered her to be synonymous with Anne (I'd dare say if Megan did appear in the episode, the ratings for it would've been through the roof...and RTA got very high ratings as it was!).

I'm not sure what to think, really.
foreverzach.net
"Luck. It had nothing to do with it." ~ Izzy Pettibone

User avatar
AvonLea
Won Avonlea Spelling B
Posts: 176
Joined: Fri Jan 26, 2007 6:30 pm
Location: In my dreams, Avonlea

Post by AvonLea » Tue May 01, 2007 7:11 am

It is a shame that she wasn't in the episode. It would have brought tears to my eyes to see Anne and Marilla together again. :cry: It almost brings tears to my eyes to think that she wasn't in that episode.
Image

User avatar
Oldbats
Found work at the Cannery
Posts: 22
Joined: Fri Mar 23, 2007 9:23 am
Location: Southern California

Post by Oldbats » Fri May 04, 2007 7:49 am

Actors are so highly paid, I can't believe it when they gripe about money.

I wonder if it came down to the fact that, she has her bills and living expenses, and she had the choice between doing the Avonlea episode or some other more lucrative project.

I can understand if she perhaps took some other acting job instead of doing the episode, although it would have been very nice to have seen her with Colleen Dewhurst once again.

I suppose for the actors, it's a job, and they don't have the same view on it as us, the viewers do.

Still, if it was simply over the issue of ego and the fact that she didn't feel she was being paid enough, I think that is childish.
"I honor value and I value honor" --Gus Pike

User avatar
Gwendolene
Won Avonlea Spelling B
Posts: 187
Joined: Fri Jul 15, 2005 10:55 pm

Post by Gwendolene » Thu May 17, 2007 4:09 am

Acting is a job, and I feel, as such one is entitled to sufficiant pay, after all, I've never been on a shoot that didn't involve at least 12 hour days (sometimes more than 15)... not to mention all the "homework" of memorizing lines and creating a character. It is also a temping job, which is to say it is not regular employment, so if you are going to give up a high paying job in exchange for a lower one, you must feel very strongly about the project and have the means to tide you over until another high paying job comes around (which is not always feasible, even if you LOVE the project).
Keeper of Muriel Stacy's Motorcar

putznme
Bright Station Arrival
Posts: 3
Joined: Wed Oct 21, 2009 4:40 pm

Re: Megan Follows Snubbed Colleen Dewhurst's RTA tribute

Post by putznme » Wed Oct 21, 2009 5:16 pm

I remember watching a clip on you-tube of the cast and some crew together talking about the show. Megan was asked why she didn't come back as Anne in that particular episode of RTA. She stated as well as Kevin Sullivan that she was already working on another project at that time and could not come back for the role of Anne. It is also worth stating that she said that she "wanted to" and that it saddend her not to be able to come.

User avatar
Timothy
Lighthouse Keeper
Posts: 1316
Joined: Tue May 31, 2005 10:30 pm
Contact:

Re: Megan Follows Snubbed Colleen Dewhurst's RTA tribute

Post by Timothy » Thu Oct 22, 2009 10:22 am

Do you have the link?

Shelly
Leader of the Suffragette Movement
Posts: 612
Joined: Fri Jul 08, 2005 1:20 pm
Location: new england
Contact:

Re:

Post by Shelly » Thu Oct 22, 2009 5:49 pm

Oldbats wrote:Actors are so highly paid, I can't believe it when they gripe about money.
Actors in Canada are NOT "highly paid".

I have no idea what the cast was paid per episode at the time, but ACTRA's scale, or base, pay is quite low. (ACTRA, for the uninitiated, is the main radio and TV performers' union in Canada.) In 2007, during the ACTRA strike, it was $565 CAD per eight-hour day for someone in a leading role. I don't know what it is now, or what it was when RTA was on the air and in production; but I can imagine back then it may've been a bit lower. Regardless, it is nowhere near what an A-lister in Hollywood is paid for a big budget film or what those on a popular TV series are paid per episode. (For independent/low-budget films, actors aren't paid much; and I think some have even worked on them for no money whatsoever.)

Anyway...I've scoured Youtube some, but I've not found the video in question. A link would be appreciated.
foreverzach.net
"Luck. It had nothing to do with it." ~ Izzy Pettibone

StoryJan
White Sands Employee
Posts: 123
Joined: Sat Jul 09, 2005 12:12 pm
Location: Central Virginia

Re: Megan Follows Snubbed Colleen Dewhurst's RTA tribute

Post by StoryJan » Fri Oct 23, 2009 7:13 pm

I vaguely remember an interview with Jonathan Crombie airing on the Disney Channel when the episode originally aired, and someone mentioned Megan working on another project at the time. The Disney Channel used to air three to four minute behind-the-scenes interviews with some of the season's guest stars in between programming. It's been so long ago, though; perhaps I dreamed it... but maybe you could find one of those clips on Youtube. I know some of them have surfaced in recent years, but I'm not sure about the one with Jonathan.

hannikan
Won Cameron Music Competition
Posts: 480
Joined: Sat Nov 15, 2008 10:32 pm

Re: Megan Follows Snubbed Colleen Dewhurst's RTA tribute

Post by hannikan » Fri Oct 23, 2009 8:01 pm

I think I remb that, too, StoryJan. I remb the interview (I couldn't remb if it was Crombie or Sullivan) saying that Megan was unavailable due to scheduling conflicts. Didn't surprise me as she was a very busy actress at that time. I would guess that for the series actors didn't get that much notification time beforehand that the character was being added to the script like they would for a film. I am sure Megan would have done it if she had been available. She seemed to really love playing Anne based on all the interviews I've seen with her talking about it over the years. And I know she had very high admiration for Colleen, too.
ImageImageImageImage

StoryJan
White Sands Employee
Posts: 123
Joined: Sat Jul 09, 2005 12:12 pm
Location: Central Virginia

Re: Megan Follows Snubbed Colleen Dewhurst's RTA tribute

Post by StoryJan » Sun Oct 25, 2009 10:04 am

I found some more information about Megan's decision not to appear in RTA in the Spring 1998 issue of the Avonlea Traditions Chronicle. In the cover story "Third Anne Movie to be Filmed in 1998," Alexandra Heilbron writes the following:
Directly after filming The Sequel, Megan Follows also publicly vowed not to do another Anne of Green Gables movie. She instead pursued roles which would take her (and the public's image of her) away from the squeaky clean Anne Shirley. However, none of the movies or series she appeared in was a success, either critically or with the public... Rumors that Megan Follows did not get along with Kevin Sullivan towards the end of the Anne movies were well known and emphasized by the fact that Megan did not appear with Jonathan Crombie in an episode of Road to Avonlea in which Gilbert visited Green Gables in order to attend Marilla's funeral. In 1995, the news that Megan would return to Sullivan Entertainment to appear in their made-for-television movie Under the Piano was the first indication that bad feelings had been put aside and perhaps an agreement could finally be reached regarding a third Anne movie.
So perhaps publicly, KS attributed Megan's absence to "being unavailable," but privately, there seems to be have been a rift between the two of them. Does anyone have any Avonlea Traditions Chronicles from the 1991/1992 time period from when the episode was filmed and aired? My collection is incomplete. I have the original issues and some of the later ones, but nothing from Season 3.

hannikan
Won Cameron Music Competition
Posts: 480
Joined: Sat Nov 15, 2008 10:32 pm

Re: Megan Follows Snubbed Colleen Dewhurst's RTA tribute

Post by hannikan » Sun Oct 25, 2009 12:23 pm

That's interesting info from the article StoryJan. It shines some light on why the 3rd movie was not done a few years earlier, which would have made more sense given the actors ages. I can understand why Megan would have wanted to distance herself from the Anne character when she was in her twenties, too. Even though she loved playing Anne, actors want to show their range. By continuing to play such a well-loved character I'm sure she felt type cast or as though no one would accept her in another, esp very different role. Sounds like that happened anyway, unfortunately. Sometimes your biggest success can become your biggest hindrance. Seems like it took some years away from playing Anne for her to get recognition for her talents in other productions. I'm sure that if Megan had been in OFOW (might want to change the title in the OP, Timothy since OQOL was the one that focused on Hetty and Romney) there would have been increased pressure for Anne to reappear in other RTA episodes, as well. I think it was best that Anne not be a recurring guest star in the series because it would have detracted from the other wonderful characters and stories on the show. We already had the very touching scene with Anne when Matthew died, I think it was nice to have Rachel be the one there when Marilla was passing.
ImageImageImageImage

Post Reply