The Three Roles Roger Howarth Played On General Hospital

Roger Howarth has been entertaining ABC daytime fans since 1992 when he appeared as Kent Winslow in 19 episodes of the now-defunct half-hour soap "Loving." By 1993, a second ABC soap, "One Life to Live," snatched him up and gave him one of the most iconic roles in daytime history. Here, he played Todd Manning (via IMDb), a college student who led a group sexual assault against Marty Saybrooke (Susan Haskell) at a fraternity party (via Soap Central). The story won Howarth a Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Younger Leading Actor in 1994, and Todd went on to become semi-redeemed over the years.


While he spent several years on "As the World Turns" as Paul Ryan, Howarth was back at "OLTL" playing Todd when the soap left the airwaves in 2012. In fact, Howarth was one of a handful of actors who took their "OLTL" characters to the fictional upstate New York town of Port Charles, which is how Howarth first became a part of the "General Hospital" world. Then, on "GH," Howarth portrayed three different roles.

If you or anyone you know has been a victim of sexual assault, help is available. Visit the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network website or contact RAINN's National Helpline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).

Roger Howarth moves Todd Manning to General Hospital

After "One Life to Live" came to an end on ABC, several of the soap's actors were hired by "General Hospital" to play the same characters. Those actors included Kassie DePaiva (Blair Kramer), Kristen Alderson (Starr Manning), Michael Easton (John McBain), and Roger Howarth (via Deadline). Naturally, other actors, like Easton, have played multiple roles on "General Hospital."


Although Todd Manning and the other "OLTL" characters were supposed to be long-term "GH" characters, it didn't work out that way. This was due to Prospect Park, who was producing an online version of both "One Life to Live" and the canceled "All My Children," claiming that ABC no longer had the rights to the characters (via Soap Central). That lawsuit was resolved several years later, with ABC winning the rights back, but in the meantime, the network had to write those characters off "GH" in 2013, while still providing some of the actors with jobs (via TVLine). Therefore, this is how Howarth's second Port Charles character was born.

Roger Howarth becomes Franco Baldwin

The character of Franco first appeared on the "General Hospital" scene in 2009, played by film actor James Franco, whose net worth may surprise you after his combined soap and film work (via IMDb). A famed artist who turned out to be a serial killer, the original Franco seemed irredeemable until 2013 when "GH" gave Roger Howarth the role to keep him employed. Franco's serial killer ways were eventually explained away with a brain tumor, and nobody noticed that he looked exactly like Todd Manning, who had just left town. Franco went on to become a quirky character who was fully redeemed when he fell in love with nurse Elizabeth Webber (Rebecca Herbst) and became a beloved stepfather to her three sons (via Soaps in Depth).


Franco and Elizabeth were a popular pair, but "GH" still decided to kill the character off in March 2021 when villain Peter August (Wes Ramsey) shot him in cold blood, devastating fans. The one consolation was that Howarth quickly told the audience he wasn't leaving the soap; only Franco was gone. However, he was looking forward to what came next after he was given a few months off.

"I'm really excited," Howarth told Soap Opera Digest. "I have great faith in the people who think of these things. I've been in good hands so far."

Roger Howarth now brings Austin Gatlin Holt to life

Sure enough, Roger Howarth was back on "General Hospital" by the end of May when a character named Austin Gatlin Holt appeared out of nowhere in the woods to deliver Maxie Jones' (Kirsten Storms) baby as she ran from a crazed nurse hired by her crazed baby daddy, Peter August (via Soaps in Depth). Of course, Maxie didn't notice he looked exactly like the recently-departed Franco.


Austin eventually revealed himself as a long-lost Quartermaine cousin who wanted his share of the family fortune, but when he had to choose between that and keeping his job as a doctor, he chose being a doctor. Austin is now in a new romance with Maxie, but his friendship with Britt Westbourne (Kelly Thiebaud) seems to have caught on with fans, and the soap might have to change course if fans demand a Britt and Austin pairing over a Maxie and Austin pairing (via Soaps).