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Jeff Branson On Why His Exit From Y&R & The Storyline That Wasn't Told!

Photo Credit: Kathy Hutchins

Photo Credit: Kathy Hutchins

Daytime Emmy winner Jeff Branson, who finished up his latest run as Ronan Malloy on the number one daytime drama, The Young and the Restless, spoke to MSN Entertainment Canada during his recent visit to Toronto with cast mates, Christian LeBlanc (Michael) and Elizabeth Hendrickson (Chloe).

Branson addressed the reason that he is not continuing on in Genoa City, especially when the timing seems so off when he would have been smack dab in the middle of the teen bullying storyline involving the teenager Ronan has been mentoring! Here are some interesting excerpts below!

Jeff on if Y&R EP Jill Farren Phelps  and head writer Josh Griffith had asked him to stay on past the end on his contract cycle:  “It was a contract that was only supposed to last six months and it came to an end. They didn’t show any interest in wanting me to stay. We could have talked about that, but I can’t control that. I’m just currently doing both CSI and CSI: New York right now…I’m staying in the CBS family.”

Jeff on the story that was never given the proper airtime – that of Ronan and his mother, Nina (Tricia Cast): “I feel like a big ball was dropped there and I don’t know who was responsible. Tricia Cast is a powerhouse of an actress. I deeply wish that she and I had more time. There’s so much story there that was never touched…so much. You could still bring the Chance character back for it. I’ve told Jill Farren Phelps that if she wants to call me, I’m right by the phone. If I come back, I would more than anything play out a story with Tricia Cast and really do the Phyllis/Ronan storyline properly, which I think was the way it was going…it was more loving and real. More than just hooking up and having beer and pizza. There was real potential there.”

Jeff on leaving so soon after the bullying storyline (which features the teen Ronan is mentoring, Jamie) is becoming a front-burner storyline:  “That was frustrating for me. But again, things were out of my control. They had decision to make and they had to go another way. I wish it wasn’t the case. That storyline is extremely important, either way. Whether I’m a part of it or not, I’m happy it’s being played. It’s extremely relevant and needs to be talked about. Kids can be very hurtful and social networking makes them 800 times more dangerous. I’ve left it in good hands, Christian LeBlanc is an extremely talented actor and I know it’s going to be done the right way. I was just happy to be part of it.”

So soapers, do you think Jill and Josh should have done everything to keep Jeff Branson on Y&R?  Would you have liked to have seen the Nina/Ronan  mother/son relationship explored more?   Let us know your thoughts!

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Torrey
Torrey

I’m getting super frustrated with the revolving door at Y&R….What’s going on over there?! They have brought back the Ronan character, a multitude of times. I’ve lost interest in caring for the character, because I know he won’t stick around longer than a year. You can’t expect the audience to root for the characters, if they don’t have faith in the longevity of the character sticking around.

Sheryl Postin
Sheryl Postin

I think Jeff should have been kept in he is a great actor and could have brought alot to the show just like he always had. The mother and son story would be very good and the love between Phyllis and Ronan would have been great.

Dee Bickford
Dee Bickford

Yes Yes Yes! I do wish he had stayed on YR. Would love to see the mother/son story expanded. Jeff had become like part of the family. I enjoyed him on GL, and was happy to see him on the best soap on TV today.

ethel
ethel

i fell in love with jeff branson when he was on amc – i understand he only stays on y&r for a short time because of other projects – i really wish tptb would have had him stay thru the teen bullying s/l – also i really so disappointed that nothing really happened with the mother/son s/l – i did not care for the ronan/phyllis at all………………..

SZima
SZima

Lots of wasted potential there. He deserved better than he got and if he does come back, he should insist that the Nina/Ronan/Chance story be told properly.

Mary SF
Mary SF

That is it in a nut shell- the whole Ronan story line was never told properly from day one. It was MAB who introduced the character of Nina’s long lost son. And that was a good idea- it was a loose end from the history line that needed to be explore. But the character was all over the map from Day One. One minute he is a jerk then in the next he is just misunderstood. He is a user then a giver. Finally, his big secret comes out and only Chance can save him. He does then poof Ronan disappears. Up to that point it made sense sorta of, makin Ronan looked like this jerk who used his “real” family to get a cure for his illness- But when he came back it was a worse. He went from this cool unemotional man to a love sick puppy, which didn’t fit his character at all. At first Nina didn’t want anything to do with him because the way he left and then she is all hurt because he didn’t want to hang out with her? It was a zoo. If the character does come back they need to do some serious rebooting- get into their head who this guy is and what he is about otherwise this should be the last we see of Ronan

mo
mo

It would have been nice to have had Ronan have scenes with Nina. Liked the Ronan and Phyllis connection, but that was dropped. Doesn’t bother me that he left as they’d not given him great stuff.

Judy
Judy

It Jeff was going to continue to have one foot out the door then I think they did the right thing. If he had been willing to commit to a minimum of a year then I think they should have kept him but I just don’t see him doing that. There was great potential in a story with Nina and the bullying story but that would take time and a real commitment from him. I thought this pairing with Phyllis this last time destroyed him and should he return, I’d pair him with somebody else but first and foremost do a story with Nina. Agree he needed to do more than carry pizza and beer which he even seems to see as ridiculous.

Christine
Christine

Judy, you said everything I was thinking. I agree. The only thing I would like to add is that I am glad that Jeff Branson felt the same way about the story with Nina and Chance as the majority of us do.

Bee
Bee

Ronan was effectively ruined after they had him panting after Phyl. Not to mention, covering up a crime for her. Can’t say I was sorry to see him go. He had potential but the writers took care of that.

Chris
Chris

I agree with you Bee,he was ruined from the first day they hooked him up with Phyliss.The whole thing is that they had him having feelings for Chloe,then at a snap of the fingers he’s all of a sudden turning into a dirty cop or fbi agent ,just for sex. I hated this pairing from day one. Can’t say i’m sorry he’s gone either ,your right the writers did this mess. I can’t think of a single reason to bring him back. Not even to have a story with his Mom well help him now. Sorry that Jeff was fired ,thanks a lot to the new regime,but I hope he can get work with Primetime. He is a good actor given the crap the writers gave him.

k/kay
k/kay

I am disappointed with how these storylines with the characters JFP & JG did not want around anymore just dumped. It has not been a steady flow at all! But from everything I know about JFP Tricia Cast not being a size 2 you do not stick around you will not be seeing the character of Tracy Abbott again either.

Eileen Hargis
Eileen Hargis

Jill, do the right thing? Dont hold ur breath! All she is for is releasing actors so she can bring in more of her actor buddies. Jeff has always been underused, forget he is an Emmy winning, good looking terrific actor. She wouldnt recognize any of that if it walked up and bit her on the face. Same thing for Tricia, JPF doesnt like mature, great actresses, they threaten her. Same story every soap she has worked on. At least she is consistent, lol.

Leanna
Leanna

I hope Jeff returns and we finally get to see Ronan’s love story with Phyllis fully explored! I’m so happy he wants that too!! 🙂 His estranged relationship with Nina should also be addressed. Being involved with Phyllis would also create drama with his mother. He’s such a talented man and really showcased his amazing ability to convey vulnerability and devoted love. I really like how Ronan opened up to Phyllis, he could give the other men on this soap some pointers on how to love and support your woman. I miss the intensity and passion Ronan and Phyllis shared. I just want Jeff back, period! He brings a lot to this show and instead of nurturing the popular character they already had, they let him go and bring on all these shallow newbies. I would rather have Jeff Branson back. I hope JFP makes that call soon!

Allison
Allison

I absolutely love Jeff Branson, but I have been annoyed at the direction Ronan has taken for a long while now. Mostly the complete neglect of the Ronan/Nina story. It is a sad hole that should NOT have been skipped. It’s been over 2 years and they have had ample time and opportunity to really do the story right but FAILED in a big way. (What was the point of bringing him on screen during the Lucy/Baby stealing story if they weren’t going to address it??) SO SO Sad!!
Instead they focused Ronan on Phyllis and turned him into an obsessive sad stalker-ish character. They basically rewrote the character to prop up Phyllis. I could hardly watch, and like I said I ADORE Jeff.
If he comes back the #1 priority should be Nina/Ronan/Chance. THAT IS ALL.

Saundra
Saundra

It depends. What is going to happen. Not a fan of Phonan – they went no where with Nina. But what they have given us Navery , Chris and Paul has been just as tragic and disappointing.

Raine
Raine

The moment Ronan was put in Phyliss’s orbit he was ruined for me and many viewers as well. The character was literally trashed for Phyliss. It’s sad, because i really enjoyed JB since his AMC days and i know JB can bring it as actor when given good material to work with and his storyline with Nina would have been just good stuff!…certainly not that crap they had him doing with Phyliss. Character assassination at it’s best! If JB ever does return, let’s hope the writers have seen the errors of their ways and move the Ronan character in a better direction. Still so much potential there.

Karen
Karen

He used Y&R as his safety net and was never committed to the show. It was long overdue to send him on his way. If only they had gone back and acknowledged that he was just conning Nina and Chance to get an organ.

Chris
Chris

Sorry Karen,but from what I remember about the liver transplant,Ronan was very stern on not getting Chance involved,so he didn’t really steal his liver ,Chance made the dicission to go ahead with the transplant,Ronan even gave Chance a opportunity to back out and Chance said no. As far as Jeff using the show as a safety net don’t agree with that either, if they do his sl then they don’t need to use him ,what is wrong with Jeff trying to further his career ,if the show didn’t want him back then they didn’t have to have him back,it was their choice, they could have re-cast the role also.I ‘m glad they didn ‘t say he was conning Nina and Chance.

Benny
Benny

There’s not much TPTB could do with Ronan. I mean of course the storyline with NIna was completely wasted and they should’ve explored it, but the guy can’t keep signing on for short periods and then signing off at the first sign of primetime. It gets old and it HURTS the character. It wasn’t just MAB’s writing that hurt Ronan…JEFF BRANSON hurt Ronan because he always had one foot in the door and one foot out. How could TPTB keep the guy on knowing that as soon as they start a story with him, he’s going to leave again as soon as that contract was up? He’s done it like THREE times before for crying out loud

Ugonna Wosu
Ugonna Wosu

he was wiling to stay and play his stories out this time around, the new writers were not interested cause he didn’t fit into their Navery/Phack agenda.

k/kay
k/kay

What is up with Avery or should I say Betty Crocker Nick better watch out or he is going to gain 100 lbs with all that cooking. Snoozefest!

Christine
Christine

k/kay, Jessica Collins (Avery) went to Le Cordon Bleu cooking school and she has her own cooking blog. She mentioned to the new regime that she wanted to add that aspect to her character and they loved the idea. I agree that it gets a little boring.

Now they are hinting at some sordid past with an old boyfriend. I wonder who will get cast for that and just how sordid a tale this will be. I wish if they were going to pair Nick and Avery again this time that they would allow them to be happy a few months into the new year before they start with this.

Ugonna Wosu
Ugonna Wosu

lol. The cooking story is painful, as are Nick and Avery.

Alex
Alex

I love Jeff Branson but I wish he NEVER come back to Y&R if he comes back to be paired with Phyllis! That pairing ruined did NO good for his character! All I want to see from Ronan is a storyline with his mother and if he has to be paired with someone, make it Chloe or anyone else that is NOT PHYLLIS!!!!

AMANDA
AMANDA

I am really dissapointed about Jeff’s departure. He is an excellent actor with much story potential on Y&R. The Nina and Ronan story was never resolved and Ronan and Chloe had GREAT chemistry and the potential of a SUPER duo. Chloe with little chipmunk Kevin is a joke. Why they keep Kevin is a real mystery to me!

I must admit, I am not impressed with JFP at all. She has terminated too many good characters and brings in these new people, who I have NO interest in at all.

Best wishes Jeff with your future adventures!

Ugonna Wosu
Ugonna Wosu

I love Ronan and Nina and Ronan and Phyllis. Him and Chloe were hot, but she chose that loser Kevin over him and I got over them, lol. Besides, at first he and Phyllis had only ok chemistry, but the more they worked together the more their chemistry and eventually surpassed what he had with Chloe to me. Now the only way I’d want him with Chloe is if he and Phyllis were together for awhile and it didn’t work out. #phonan #forever

Trinity
Trinity

They need to bring Jeff Branson Back!!! As well as Tricia Cast. There was soooo much story that wasn’t covered with Ronan/Nina. They should have done a better job at exploring this. Tricia Cast is a dynamite actress& I was waiting for them to do a proper story in regards to Ronan and Nina’s mother-son relationship! They really dropped the ball on this& they need to fix it! Also I absolutely ADORED Phyllis and Ronan! Best Pairing to come along in a while on Y&R! Michelle Stafford and Jeff Branson were Magic Onscreen Together! Just Amazing! It was such a dissapointment to many fans when they just cut them short w/o giving them a chance! They need to finally do a Phyllis/Ronan love story the right way! Jeff Branson needs to return. Ronan has way too much unfinished business in Genoa City!

Another Fan
Another Fan

I agree, they really did drop the ball with Ronan, the Phonan pairing was the best to come along in a long time. I have been wanting them to address the storyline with Nina and Ronan every since he came to GC the first time, but all they seemed concerned about was sweeping it under the rug. The really sad thing is that if Ronan came back to town is that I think the current writers would be address the character of Ronan or would they just continue to sweep everything under the rug.

Chris
Chris

Maybe if Jeff would commit a little longer than 3-6 months it would let the writers,even if he would sign on for recurring ,he could still do his stiff off screen. I don’t get all this firing of long time characters. don’t even get me started on Phonan,it was beyond stupid, Ronan was totally ruined as far as this fan is concerned, they should have certainly invested in the sl for Ronan and Nina, they had great chemistry as mother and son,and Jeff said that he wanted this explored when he came back for MAB this time,but no she had to have her stupid Phonan pairing. I too loved the Chlonan pairing,EH and JB had great chemistry, because they weren’t forced as Phonan was,don’t get why Jeff wants Phonan so badly,but I guess that’s what he wants is to focus on this supposedly love story he thinks could happen. Sorry Jeff this is one pairing this fan hated. Even if they had paired him with someone else,I’d rather that then Phyliss. I guess some people think she is the star of Y&R,maybe that’s why Jeff wants. Sure miss the old Ronan though,bring him back and leave the love sick puppy in Washington. Think about it JG and JFP.

toscanti
toscanti

Y&R has been a disappointment to me as well. I felt the new regime deserved a chance but now they are bringing in a slew of new actors due to budget constraints, after firing already established talent. It is unacceptable what is happening to our show. Thank God at least Marcy Rylan (Abby) is returning. GH is on fire now that JFP is no longer running the show. Perhaps Y&R needs some new blood rather than the old has been on every soap and failed JFP. Just saying and we had better get to see Traci Abbott, she is one of the best. Jill do the right thing for once in your self absorbed career.

helen
helen

yes,yes. love him why can’t they keep him. he comes just enough to get you interested in his character and he is gone not fair.

Robert Seganti
Robert Seganti

This woman is in the process of destroying yet another soap opera.

Another Fan
Another Fan

I agree, I have stopped watching Y&R completely for the first time, well since I can remember. Nothing I hear in the spoilers makes me want to change my mind and start viewing again.

Jared
Jared

I am disappointed that the story of Nina and Ronan will be indefinitely delayed again. It doesn’t sit we’ll with me either that Nina is out and Cricket is back and with Paul again.

As for jfp, she has no business running this soap. How many announcements of new actors coming on have we seen since she took over? I don’t care about new young hotties brought on by the destructive irresponsible jfp. She has a proven track record of failure and destruction. Only in America does failure so often get rewarded by corporations and governments. If tptb really cared about this show, they’d bring on new talent who understand and care about this show and its important legacy.

Adam
Adam

So far Jill Farren Phelps has not done anything that the last witch didn’t do, other than get rid of some good actors/actresses! There can been so much told with Ronan, and the bully storyline has not been as great as it sounded, Phelps get with it, we want GREAT drama not so so storylines. The Adam/Sharon story is a re-run, we seen that already. Let’s move on……………………………………..

Lisa
Lisa

Please bring Jeff back!! Love him as Ronan! Also love the chemistry with Michelle Stafford. We need more actors like him on this show!

Lisa
Lisa

There was no story to be told with Ronan and Nina besides that one that he wasn’t really her son and was just conning the hell out of her. JB was terrible in this role and not committed in the slightest. Nina’s long lost child story did not need to be told. MAB messed it up very badly.

Robert in Jersey City
Robert in Jersey City

Jill Pharen Phelps , it seems, likes to fire people. She killed off Alan on GH. She wrecked GH, she’ll wreck Y&R.

Rosa
Rosa

Really liked the Rownan and Nina story line and also the Phyllis one seemed liek a true connection netween the two. could it be teh writers just don’t know how to make a real love come alive on the screen so sick of all the sleeping around with family memebers on teh show its degrading and also sets a bad example for young people watching the show.OK so maybe I am a little behind on all this with the way things are going in todays world but a new face occasionly wouldn’t hurt ,or at least Ronan back.

christina
christina

I think that Ronan ‘s storyline needs to be told. He needs to help in the bullying story. I liked him with Phylis.

Leisha
Leisha

The legacy character that should be living in Genoa City is Phillip Chancellor the IV (Chance). We watched his grandfather, his father, and little Phillip as a child with Nina, Jill and Katherine. Decades of Y&R story was written around the Chancellor heir, where is he?

Ronan should be story for Phillip4, Nina, and the crew living in the Chancellor mansion. Without those ties he was a generic male character, a random detective, and Phyllis’s bed buddy. The new NYPD detective is gorgeous so I’m not missing Ronan one bit.

Laurie Alain
Laurie Alain

Crazy to let him go I would love to see the phyliss line with him they would be the next power couple of genoa city.Such a waste of a great storyline.

Nadine
Nadine

Absolutely loved this guy! A loss for y&r!

Linda
Linda

I would have liked the Nina and Ronan story to play out, but I can’t say I will miss Ronan. And I am glad that Michael and Lauren (and possibly Paul) are the adult characters working with the teen set in the bullying storyline. This plays so much better into Michael and Lauren’s history and they can actually tap into decades of history and finally give Christian Le Blanc and Tracey Bregman some meaty material. They were given too little to do for too long while recent additions were given much more story. Jeff is classy in how he handled leaving, but I have to admit I like that Michael and not Ronan is heavily involved in the bullying story.

Chris
Chris

I do miss Ronan and was really diappointed in the sl with Nina /Ronan/Chance being dropped. Sorry not missing Phonan crap one bit,it totally ruined the character,what love story could possibly be told,Phyliss didn’t give a crap about Ronan,she used him from the get-go. If they bring Jeff back I hope that we don’ t get more of the Phonan sl,there re are so many ways t hey could tell his story with Tricia Cast back on and a new Chance,cause the other one I heard has enlisted in the army,so he won’t be back. If they want to give Ronan a new love interest ,or maybe an old one maybe they should put he and Chloe back together,they were never given a chance,first they put Ronan with Heather,then with Phyliss,yuk,yuk,yuk!!!!!Neither made a bit of sense,although at least he and Heather had a little in common. He was made into a man-whore for Phyliss and then a dirty cop-fbi agent,where’s the love in that? they didn’t even let Ronan and Nina go out to dinner for his birthday,wth was that about,especially after he wrote Nina that nice letter and said he loved her and called her mom for the first time,that made absolutely no sense in the sl at all. Whoever meseed that up I hope got fired. Miss JB bring him back t o rescue Chloe from Kevin.

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