"We are trying to encourage people to stop smoking, within the drama of the show," showrunner Brad Bell explained. "We'd love it if worldwide, we could get 1000 people to stop smoking. We're trying to change some lives. Part of what inspired this story is knowing the reach we have in France, Italy, Africa and around the world, where smoking is more prevalent than it is here. We're trying to get the word out: It's going to kill you."
In the 6000th episode of The Bold and The Beautiful, Stephanie Forrester (Susan Flannery) gave cigar smoker Nick Marone (Jack Wagner) her own brand of intervention, with testimonials from lung cancer survivors Kathryn Joosten ("Desperate Housewives"), Dr. Michael Weitz, Meryl Bralower and Zheng Cao.
"We had no scripts, which is groundbreaking," Jack Wagner recounted. "The testimonials were real, and then we had to respond in character. It's a nice change from beauties and babies."
Emmy winner Joosten found the episode a nice change, as well, but for a different reason. "I have been very vocal about the fact that I've had lung cancer twice," Joosten said. "I'm healthy now and I am so frustrated that I can never get the word out, beyond, 'Did you smoke?' which doesn't make any difference. It was a thrill for all of us. Various groups have gotten in touch with me to say, 'We're excited this is going to finally be explored.' Brad, you did a fantastic job. Thank you."