The cancellation of ABC's long-running daytime soap All My Children shocked many loyal fans. All My Children's most famous star Susan Lucci, 64, said the news "came as a surprise" even to her.

"For everybody involved, it was sad that they didn't know ahead of time," Lucci told Access Hollywood backstage at the Daytime Emmy Awards. "People sold homes in bad markets, rented and uprooted children. So that part is really awful. But what are you going to do?"

Lucci, who has played Erica Kane on All My Children since 1980, said she doesn't know how exactly the soap will end when it airs its final episode on Friday, September 23, after more than 40 years on the air. "You know, all I know is that we're in the best of hands," she said. "However it's going to end, it's going to be fantastic. I think, probably like all great novels, it ends with you wondering what happens next. That's what I'm going to guess, but I don't know what the details are."

Lucci's most devoted fans may not have much to worry about. She answered rumors that she might be joining the cast of Desperate Housewives once All My Children has wrapped."There's been a lot of talking, but we'll see," she said. "It's a show I like very much, of course. The cast is amazing. [Housewives creator] Marc Cherry is amazing."

One Life to Live, another long-running ABC soap getting axed, will broadcast its series finale in January 2012.