It’s been the worst kept secret in the soap world, but it looks as if General Hospital’s Jane Elliot will be taking a bow from the show this spring. Daytime Confidential reports the actress has informed producers she will not renew her contract.
Elliot originated the role of Tracy Angelica Quartermaine in 1978, appearing intermittently for short-stints until 2003, when she returned full-time. Tracy, the youngest daughter of Edward and Lila Quartermaine, frequently found herself at odds with her family due to her greed, scheming, penchant for blackmail, thirst for power and snobbery.
A veteran actor with extensive daytime, primetime and film work, Elliot’s credits (daytime and primetime) include A Flame in the Wind, Knots Landing, Guiding Light, All My Children, Days of our Lives and The City; films Change of Habit, One is a Lonely Number, Some Kind of Wonderful; and primetime series N.Y.P.D., Kojak, Dan August, Law & Order and more.
The actress discussed the subject of retirement in an interview with TV Insider in 2016.
Losing an actress of Elliot’s caliber would be a blow to any series, but for GH it’s one that would cut deeply. Tracy anchors the Quartermaine family, and continues to feature prominently in storylines (unlike Leslie Charleson’s Monica who is a supporting character). Jane Elliot isn’t just the heart and soul of the Quartermaine family – she’s become the heart and soul of the series itself.
If Ms. Elliot is ready to sail into the sunset, General Hospital owes it to her and fans of the long-running soap to give her an exit storyline that pays tribute to the actress and the rich history of her character. And series execs also need to be prepared to elevate other series veterans, such as Genie Francis, Leslie Charleson and Jackie Zeman to fill the void.
TV Source Magazine has reached out to GH publicity for comment. We’ll keep you updated as more information becomes available.
Author’s Note: There needs to be serious discussions about the future of the beloved Quartermaine family, which until 2012, had been decimated over the previous decade because of short-sighted, terrible creative decisions – such as killing off AJ (who was resurrected and killed off again in 2014), Justus, Alan and Emily.
Creative should consider tapping into the show’s history to introduce new Quartermaine characters through a recast of Edward’s illegitimate son Eric Quartermaine aka Jimmy Lee Holt (who hasn’t been seen since the 80s and was last mentioned in 2012). There’s also the untapped well of Edward’s extended family – unnamed brothers and sisters whose children (a niece was introduced and killed off in the early 80s) could serve as an injection of new life into the family.