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GH's Maurice Benard Talks Sonny Drama, Modeling To Acting & Mental Health On A Spoonful Of Paolo!

Photo: A Spoonful of Paolo

Photo: A Spoonful of Paolo

Maurice Benard (Sonny, GH) has continued to rack up rave reviews for his performances over the last few months as Sonny attempts to cope with the death of his son Morgan.

The storyline has provided Benard with material worthy of his talents.  Now, in a brand new sit-down video interview at his home, Maurice talks with Paolo Presta on his online series, A Spoonful of Paolo!

Presta, whose life changed in 2005 thanks to Oprah Winfrey when his dream came true to come to Hollywood, and got a part on General Hospital. shared a throwback moment with Benard, when he recalls Maurice delivering the news that he would get to be on the ABC soap opera.

Years later, Paolo now interviews Maurice and a wide variety of topics are discussed.  From Benard’s 23 years as Sonny, to his early years as a model-turned-actor, to bringing attention to mental health issues, in particular bipolar disorder, and more, Maurice offers more insight to the man who has played the loveable mobster on and off the screen.

At the end of the episode, Presta tests Maurice’s knowledge with some rapid-fire questions.  Watch the interview after the jump. Then. let us know what you thought of it, and your favorite moment contained in it, via the comment section below!

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Dan SAshleyJimh(leave it to beaver)cooks7570Kein Recent comment authors
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su0000
Guest
su0000

GH has been too morbid and depressing, not a good thing to bring all that downtrodden overly sad and junk into one’s life, daily for months. It is not entertaining it is depressing and not all that mentally healthy to be tapped with dark emotions over and over again, every day for a length of time. GH has not balance– no lightness, happiness, laughter it has been total mentally draining and filled with dark.. My family can’t believe I watch this stuff lol .. I am the Only one to ever watch soaps. I’m usually getting feedback because I come… Read more »

Ashley
Guest
Ashley

Wow that was a great interview with Maurice. He was very down to earth and humble. He is also entertaining/funny to watch. I have always said that I admire him for being an advocate spokesperson for mental health. This interview makes me adore him even more (if that was possible). I also can’t get enough of that gorgeous smile.

Violet Lemm
Guest
Violet Lemm

I agree with you totally. He is so real, just as he is on the show. Would sure like to have him send some of those dimples my way, but I’ll have to be satisfied in getting them via the TV screen. We love you Maurice/Sonny

Ashley
Guest
Ashley

Thanks for the reply friend. Maurice is awesome and still has a irresistible smile.

Toni Idowu
Guest
Toni Idowu

Great interview with Maurice Benard. Love seeing him out of character. Paolo was great too. So enthusiastic . Loved it❤️

Dylan
Guest
Dylan

The character of Sonny needs to go. He has overstayed his welcome by about 20 years. Nothing against MB…who does what is asked of him. Serial killers like Sonny, Jason, Franco etc. are not entertaining in the least. While on topic…Billy Miller as Jason is a complete and epic fail on every level…from the writing…to his lackluster marbles in mouth portrayal….to the complete lack of chemistry with Kelly Monaco. I cant see Miller sticking around much longer.

Dan S
Guest
Dan S

completely agree

Tea
Guest
Tea

OMG… I loved this interview!!! Maurice Benard is so awesome! Sonny is my favorite character and has been for over 20 years. Hoping for 20 more years of this awesome character. Can’t wait for Sonny and Carson to reunite. btw… I love the mob!!!!

Tania Oakley
Guest
Tania Oakley

I LOVED THIS INTERVIEW SOOOOO MUCH MICHAEL!!! Thank you for sharing. It made my day and I love how the host gave you a shout out!

Jimh(leave it to beaver)
Guest
Jimh(leave it to beaver)

I only come back because bipolor disorder is something i have in common with BM plus we were both born in March…i have struggled with depression much of my life…recent stressful events involving a near death of a family member. illnesses. my father becoming bedridden and early stages of dementia and too much more to mention and the possibility i may end up homeless is a major cause of my struggle with my bipolor disorder-i stopped commenting taking time to deal with all this anf hopefully turn things around-my biggest fear is the homeless part buhopefully i can prevent thatt… Read more »

Dan
Guest
Dan

My mom has bipolar, so I know what you’re going through and sympathize with you, Jim. The meds do help her stay regulated, but it’s a constant roller coaster ride and battle every day. Unless a person has it themselves or knows someone that does, they have no clue how bad it is. It’s another reason, aside from the fact that he’s a great actor, why I respect and admire Maurice Benard. All the best to you, Jim. I hope you’re able to get the meds you need. If you’re not, there are programs out there to help with that… Read more »

Jimh(leave it to beaver)
Guest
Jimh(leave it to beaver)

i try to stay positive but then something else happens and even on meds the stress is overpowering and i have very little hope left,,,

Rebecca1
Guest
Rebecca1

Jim…do you see a therapist? I assume you consult with a psychiatrist who dispenses your meds…but it would be great to have frequent visits with a psychologist or social worker to discuss your worries. Just speaking about things is cathartic. And while they can’t change your life it’s a place to be heard, unburden yourself, release the thoughts that go round and round in your mind. Perhaps a support group, too. Not sure if up you have insurance but their are sliding scale places and probably free clinics, etc. feel better…

Jimh(leave it to beaver)
Guest
Jimh(leave it to beaver)

Yes…i do but so much keeps happening with our family its been a struggle…and i could even end up homeless if we dont get thinggs straighten out…too loose everything i couldnt take it…id rather not be around great pain most days…hopefully me and my sister will work things out-she keeps getting ill and nearly died a few months ago…her husband and son and she all had heart surgeries…their dog died..my dad had to replace his car…water in the basement destroyed stuff…i briefly thought i had a brain tumor because of a month long headache…my dad fell and is bedridden..i fell… Read more »

Jimh(leave it to beaver)
Guest
Jimh(leave it to beaver)

sorry about typos and misplaced words…pain was suppose to come after my arm injury…its the stress

Tomas Torquemada
Guest
Tomas Torquemada

Be well. My thoughts and prayers attend.

Jimh(leave it to beaver)
Guest
Jimh(leave it to beaver)

Thank you…

Joann Garner
Guest
Joann Garner

I love the interview with Sonny. I really love him on GH, he is one of my most favorite. He does seem so down to earth. Thanks for sharing.

Violet Lemm
Guest
Violet Lemm

Just a little note to the Sonny haters. Don’t watch the show if you dislike the characters so much. Maybe the green eyed monster has gotten you , do you think?

cooks7570
Guest
cooks7570

I hate to be told not to watch something if I hate it. I think some of the viewers have a right to complain about the unevenness of the storylines and the uneveness of airtime of characters. And shouldn’t be told what to do.

Ashley
Guest
Ashley

Cooks, you have every right to your own opinion regarding a character on GH. I believe Violet was just stating that many of us long time Maurice fans are tired of anti Sonny viewers consistently stating how much they dislike him. Ask yourself why do viewers who dislike him so much continue to read articles written about him. Just so you or someone else can post over and over again how much you don’t like him. At times I don’t like Sonny’s actions, but I don’t make it my mission to leave negative comments all the time. No matter how… Read more »

Kein
Guest
Kein

I taught runway modeling classes in S.F. on Sutter Street at John Casablancas in the early 1980’s. One of the students was Maurice Bernard. I introduced a very young and very good looking Maurice to my agent, Jimmy Grimme. The Grimme Agency signed and represented Maurice where he began his modeling career and was very successful in the S.F. market. Who knew at the time he would play both Ricky Ricardo and Sonny Corinthos on television? Bravo, Maurice!!

General Hospital

GENERAL HOSPITAL: “I’m Alexis Davis, and I’m a Fighter, and an Idealist, and an Advocate”; Nancy Lee Grahn Gives Masterful Performance In Special Episode

When you combine superb direction, writing, production, and acting in a special episode of a daytime drama, viewers can see and understand the thought and care that went into it.

This was more than on display during Thursday’s highly-anticipated ‘Alexis-Centric’ episode honoring the 25th anniversary of Alexis’ portrayer, two-time Daytime Emmy winner, Nancy Lee Grahn, on General Hospital.

Courtesy/ABC

In the story, symbolism was apparent and used for dramatic impact and it worked beautifully throughout, and best of all, Nancy received a script worthy of her immeasurable talents, and showed us once again why she remains one of the gold standards of our genre.  If you have not seen the episode DO NOT read any further as it contains spoilers.

It begins with an emotional Alexis looking at her mother’s watch which was still frozen from the time of her death.  While playing one of her mother’s records very loudly, she recalls Mikkos Cassadine kissing and dancing with her mom as a young Alexis (Natasha) looked on from the staircase.  When Sam asks her about it, Alexis shares that she sees the watch as sort of a representation for her own life being frozen over the last three years; which has included Alexis’ battle with booze taking over her life and her being disbarred, when being a lawyer was the way she identified herself and what gave her purpose.

Overwhelmed and anxiety-ridden, Alexis hightails it to Kevin’s office for a therapy session knowing she is going to Pentonville in the morning to serve her sentence.  She says she does not know who she is anymore.  Then, Kevin asks her how she spent her day thus far.  She flashes back to lunch with the good men in her life, Finn, Valentin, Jax and Ned.  Valentin tells Alexis she is proud of her for honing up to her mistakes.

Back at the therapy session, Alexis she was an attorney who stood for something and her life has derailed, and that she was a fighter, an idealist, and an advocate.  She knows she has to find a purpose in prison to make it through the three-year term and asks Kevin to help her find one.

Kevin wants to go back to when she was a little girl and her memories that are flooding back to her of Mikkos and her mother.  Just then, the younger version of Alexis is huddled in the corner of Kevin’s office, an image of her from the past.  Alexis tries to come to terms with her father and the choice of dangerous men and relationships that have marred her own happiness  … recalling Julian holding a knife to her throat like Mikkos did to her mother. She says he was one of the toxic men in her life, but Kevin reminds her all of the men in her life were not toxic.

Alexis starts with Ned as one who was good for her saying he was always stable, but she ruined that by recently sleeping with him and putting a wedge in his marriage to her long-time friend, Olivia.

We then flashback to earlier in the day, where Alexis ends up in an almost confrontation with Olivia.  However, Olivia tells her she misses the Alexis Davis she used to be and to get her back.

Now back with Kevin, a guilt-ridden Alexis relays she feels responsible for Neil’s death.  Kevin interjects she is not, nor what happened with Julian.  When Kevin attempts to bring up Mikkos again, Alexis rejects it and is angry that he is making her problem about daddy issues; like so many other women.  She vehemently shouts that the men in her life do not define who she is.

Then, Alexis flashes back to hurtful memories she has buried of a young Natasha witnessing Mikkos calling her mother a “greedy little bitch”.  She recalls it was on Christmas Eve and that Mikkos stopped by to give them gifts. That is when he presented her mother with the watch.  However, things took an ugly turn when he tried to leave, and she threatened to tell Helena all about her and Natasha. Next, Mikkos slapped her and that is when the watch shattered. As all this was going down, a young Natasha watched from the stairs and was horrified that she couldn’t stop her father from beating her mother and remembers how helpless she felt.

However, Alexis reveals to Kevin she thought this would be the last of Mikkos coming by, but he returned on New Year’s Eve and her mother took him back into their lives.  Alexis is beside herself that she could not protect her mother, but Kevin reassures her to remember she was just a child.

Courtesy/ABC

It is then we come to the crux of the story.  Alexis looks over in the corner and sees her younger self crying. She goes to her younger self and tells her nothing that happened was her fault, and that their father was damaged and cruel. She tells the young Natasha this shouldn’t have been her burden to carry alone, and that she deserves to be happy. Then in the moment of strength and coming full circle, Alexis introduces herself to the young Natasha, “I’m Alexis Davis, a fighter, an advocate, and an idealist … and I will take care of everything from her on out.”  In that moment, Alexis embraced herself, and forgave herself, so she could move on with her life.

Alexis then flashes back to earlier that night, as the Davis girls gather for a faux graduation ceremony so Alexis could see Molly in her cap and gown and they hug. Back in her session, Kevin remarks that Alexis has repeatedly defined herself as a fighter, an idealist, and an advocate, and reminds her she has three daughters who have those qualities, and that all she needs to be is Alexis Davis.

Then, we get a heart-warming montage of Alexis though the years in honor of Nancy’s 25th anniversary with GH.

Courtesy/ABC

As the episode concludes, it is the next morning, and Alexis enters Pentonville and enters her jail cell. There she meets her fellow inmate, who is studying law books to prep for her upcoming parole hearing. Alexis introduces herself as “Alexis Davis” and as someone who can help her.  We then go back to her mother’s watch which now begins ticking at Alexis’ home.  The show fades to black.

Kudos to Daytime Emmy winner, Phideaux Xavier for his outstanding direction, head writers: Chris Van Etten and Dan O’Connor and script writer, Scott Sickles for the thoughtful episode, EP Frank Valentini and his production crew for putting it all together, and the one and only Nancy Lee Grahn for a performance that will be remembered as a classic.

Share your thoughts on today’s on Nancy’s ‘Alexis-Centric’ episode via the comment section below.

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General Hospital

GH’s Kin Shriner Talks on Franco’s Demise, Scott’s Budding Romance with Obrecht, and His Enduring On-Screen Partnership with Genie Francis

One of the most beloved actors in the history of General Hospital, Kin Shriner, currently finds his alter-ego, Scott Baldwin, in a new budding on-screen romance with none other than Liesl Obrecht (Kathleen Gati).

This comes on the heels of Scott learning the devastating news that his son, Franco Baldwin was shot and killed, thus writing-off the ABC daytime drama series, for now, popular actor, Roger Howarth.

Photo: JPI

Throughout his now almost 44-year-run on the ABC daytime drama series, Kin Shriner has brought his unique acting chops that helped mold the character of legal eagle Scott Baldwin into the humorous, at times cutthroat, endearing and many times heartbreaking character we have all come to love.’

 

In a brand new exclusive virtual sit-down interview with Michael Fairman on You Tube’s The Michael Fairman Channel, Shriner opens up about his history with GH and the times he stepped away to take on roles on Texas and As the World Turns, and then back again to the town of Port Charles and GH.

Photo: ABC

As well, Kin reveals his reaction to learning the news that Roger Howarth would be exiting the show as his TV son and how he shot the key emotional scene where Laura (Genie Francis) tells Scott that Franco had died.  Shriner shares that he does not see how when Howarth returns to the show in as a yet-to-be-revealed character, that it would be a stretch if the two were some how related, but that he will miss working with the talented Howarth as a scene-partner.

Photo: JPI

As to the women in Scott’s life, Kin addresses each of them from: Lucy (Lynn Herring), Bobbie (Jackie Zeman), Dominque (Shell Danielson), Laura (Francis), Ava (Maura West) – to which the character could never get that close to – and now Liesl (Gati), and working opposite all the powerhouse actresses who portray them.

Photo: ABC

For fans of General Hospital who have watched the series for decades, Kin also shares memories of working with his late TV parents, Peter Hansen (Lee), Susan Brown (Gail) and his friend and former GH castmate John Reilly (Sean), plus backstage stories with his longtime scene partner, Genie Francis.

Watch the entire conversation with Kin below.

Now let us know, are you all for the Scott and Liesl romance? Will you miss scenes between Scott and Franco?  Would you ever want to see Scott and Laura reunite romantically? Share your thoughts in the comment section.

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Breaking News

Cameron Mathison Joins General Hospital

Big casting news! Daytime favorite, Cameron Mathison (Ex-Ryan Lavery, All My Children) is heading to General Hospital.  

Mathison, who will finish up his run as co-host of Hallmark Channel’s Home & Family when its final season ends in August, will be joining the ABC soap opera.

No word yet on what role Cameron will play and when he will debut.  Deadline broke the news of the newest GH cast member,

Throughout his acting career, Mathison has earned two Daytime Emmy Supporting Actor nominations in 2002 and 2004 for his work on AMC.

In a statement on joining the legacy series, Cameron said, “I am absolutely thrilled to be part of the General Hospital family!  Incredibly grateful to (Executive Producer) Frank Valentini and the writers at GH for including me in such an iconic show.  I feel like a kid at Christmas, as I’ll also be continuing making Hallmark movies and be part of that family as well.  So so excited… thank you!”

So excited that Cameron is coming to Port Charles? What role will he or should he play? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.

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Y&R’s Joshua Morrow, Amelie Heinle, Mark Grossman, Hunter King and Melissa Ordway chat with Michael Fairman about being a part of and portraying the Newman Children as the show celebrates its 48th anniversary.Leave A Comment

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Michael Easton and Finola Hughes as Finn & Anna

General Hospital

Airdates: 3-4/5-2021

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