By Marlena De Lacroix a.k.a. Connie Passlacqua Hayman
When I was a girl soap reporter, I called him “Mr. Bell” during interviews because of Bill Bell’s exalted status in the soap industry. And Bill Bell (1927-2005) would just laugh and go ahead to speak about what one always talked to him about: the work. He was the only person I ever interviewed who hardly ever promoted himself personally. And he was in show business! Bell, a true gentleman, preferred to have his work speak for itself.
So I’m glad there’s a new biography that both examines Bell’s personal life story and takes a comprehensive look at his always top-rated soaps. The book, published by Sourcebooks, is titled The Young and Restless Life of William J. Bell, Creator of The Young and the Restless and The Bold and the Beautiful and written by veteran soap journalist Michael Maloney and Lee Phillip Bell, Bell’s wife, who also co-created both soaps.
Bill Bell had a wonderful life, told in this book with same kind of class that helped make him such a remarkable person in life and in television history.
There was never a day in his 40-plus years in the soaps when Bell’s writing wasn’t excellent and his soaps engrossing and entertainingly and intelligently done.. He, his soaps, his family and his organization were always all about class — and success. And on top of all this, he was a genuinely nice man.
Bill Bell really was the prototypical American success story of a man who started humbly and worked his way to the top. He came from a Midwest middle class family, served stateside during World War II, and [Read more…]