“Barbara Bloom [senior vice president, Daytime Programs, CBS] offered me the role and said, ‘We write for women on the show, and this role of Dinah Marler, let me explain this to you….’ I knew who it was. I knew Wendy [Moniz‘s] work, and I knew how well she did it, how solid she did it. She created a wonderful foundation and an incredible dynamic for the character. That to me is very impressive, when you take on a character for the first time and do so much with it that the network decides to keep the character on its canvas. It means you did something special and it’s an honor to the original actor. So when they presented this to me I knew this was a [great] character.”
Next, Tognoni spoke with GL’s new executive producer, Ellen Wheeler. “I had several questions for Ellen, who, by the way, the cast apparently loves,” notes Tognoni. “She’s a remarkable lady. It all made sense. So I thought, ‘God, let’s go for it. Let’s have fun. Daytime has been beat up a little bit. Let’s show everybody what we are made of.’ I was thrilled. It was timing.”
Tognoni has watched tapes of Moniz. “We did that a month before [the deal was signed]. I’m pretty anal about everything, as far as research. And it’s so wonderful because CBS is a network I have never worked with before. I worked with ABC, Fox, Touchstone…. It’s like a new family. I had heard such great things, and you don’t always hear great things. Everyone was like, ‘You are going to be so happy.’ I hope so,” she giggles.