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Michael Graziadei On Gina Tognoni As Y&R's New Phyllis: "I Would Love To Get In There And Work With Her At Some Point!"

Photo Credit: Kathy Hutchins

Photo Credit: Kathy Hutchins

Former The Young and the Restless star Michael Graziadei has been off the number one soap opera since the end of 2012 as Daniel Romalotti, or as many people may also know him as … the son of Phyllis!  Graziadei returned to Y&R in 2013 for a short stint, but these days Michael can be seen starring in Lifetime’s new series, The Lottery!

In a new interview out in this week’s Soap Opera Digest (on newsstands now), the talented young star offers up his thoughts on Gina Tognoni now taking over the role of Phyllis from Michelle Stafford, who Michael worked with for many years.

Graziadei stated: “Gina is awesome! She’s fantastic and will do a great job.  I’d love to get in there and work with her at some point!  But isn’t Gina really young? (Laughs)  It’s not so much me coming back (that would be the problem), it’s if she would want me to come there and say, ‘Hey Mom!'”

So, would you like to see Michael return to Y&R for a visit when Phyllis finally wakes up out of her coma?  What do you think about Michael’s sentiments on Gina Tognoni?  Let us know!

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Mary SF
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Mary SF

I know it might look silly, but for the story to fly, one would expect Daniel to be a part of Phyllis’s return — so I hope he can come back for a return engagement — but perhaps they will recast Daniel, since this show can’t seem to go a month without recasting someone. Another Adam reject they want to give a job to no doubt if they did go that route.

Mark Y
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Mark Y

Michael ie an excellent young actor.

Erica
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Erica

he has a point! he looks too old to play Gina’s son. which is why they should have hired someone older.

Sammie Jo
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Sammie Jo

Ever noticed, the parents never age as fast as the kids do? lol

jimh(leave it to beaver)
Guest
jimh(leave it to beaver)

If only that was true in real life…lol

Sammie Jo
Guest
Sammie Jo

No kidding! lol

michael
Guest
michael

he’s 35, Michelle Stafford is 49, so he was too old to be her son as well unless, of course, she had him when she was 14. it’s called suspension of disbelief people! Gina Tognoni is one of the few name actresses in the right age category that will be able to make this part her own. Stafford is an incredibly tough act to follow, but Gina’s gonna rock it! EVEN in scenes with her son

su0000
Guest
su0000

Gina Tognoni is a bit too young for the role of Phyllis..
Y&R has a horrible casting dept aha..
But what can you do .. I’m sure she will be fine ..

Timmm
Guest
Timmm

High School plays are casted better! Heres the thing, Gina is too young to play Daniels mother but for the other characters like Summer, Jack, Nick, and Sharon, she will fit in, age wise.

Ricky
Guest
Ricky

I think they ( Grazadei and Tognoni ) are only 6 years apart so I get where he is coming from! Can’t wait until Gina’s first airdate she is going to be a pleasure to watch! Pretty much the only thing I’m looking forward to on Y&R right now, if you don’t count Eileen Davidson returning in September.

davlestev1
Guest
davlestev1

LMAO..cuz in the real world this phyllis would have had him when she was 6 years old and Michelle’s Phyllis would have had him when she was 14. He is so right that would be incredibly awkward to play son to an actress who is only 6 years older than you. Makes no sense and now there will most definately be a new younger Daniel to incite fans unhappiness with those show even more. Phyllis wakes up..Daniel MUST be there. Or they’ll do what I suspect and keep on writing as if it makes no difference what so ever and… Read more »

davlestev1
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davlestev1

this not those

Nicole
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Nicole

On GH the actor who played Trey was only 4 years younger than yge actress who played Connie, his mother.

Tv shows and movies have always had tons of actors who while that playef parents and the actorswho played their kids were less than 10 years apart in real life. It is no big deal.

Lew S.
Guest
Lew S.

Graziadei is 34 and Michelle Stafford is 47/48. She was also too young to play his mom. I think Gina Tognoni is talented enough to carry this off.

Cinnamon
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Cinnamon

I love the Y&R but I like all the old cast.. I don’t like that you change the actors so much.. And the story line drags out to much…I am starting to watch Day of our Lives that’s on the same time as Y&R..

su0000
Guest
su0000

the now Y&R opening credits- doesn’t even look like Y&R any longer..
when I see the opening credits I just cringe at the newly appointed stars (newbies..

Traci
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Traci

I love Gina so much, but I scratched my head when they cast her as Phyllis. She is MUCH too young for that role! I didn’t realize that Gina and Michael are only 6 years apart, but um…yeah…having him come back with Phyllis’s return would be awkward. What are they thinking at Y&R casting? The last 2 Billy’s have been horrible and Cady McClain isn’t right for the Kelly role (I love her, by Cynthia Watros was much better. With the re-cast, her sleeping with Billy isn’t realistic.),

Darlene
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Darlene

I have never heard of her! Where was she prior to landing the gig on Y&R?

su0000
Guest
su0000

put ‘ Gina Tognoni ‘ in your search; google her .. you find all .. 🙂

jimh(leave it to beaver)
Guest
jimh(leave it to beaver)

One Life To Live and Guilding Light was some of her previous work…you can always google actors unfamiliar to you and learn about them…

sonniorsolita
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sonniorsolita

She’s a fantastic and charismatic actress who won a Daytime Emmy as Dinah Marler on Guiding Light (a spitfire character who didn’t always do the right thing, much like Phyllis). She also played Kelly Cramer on One Life to Live. She’s one of daytime’s best.

Omar
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Omar

I agree..She is one of daytime’s best..Every role she takes, she is great..I am sure regardless of the age issue, she will deliver and kick ass as Phyllis…Y&R is back on track!!!

Lawrence
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Lawrence

He’s right. Gina is 40 and Michael is 34.

Diane A.
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Diane A.

Would love to see Michael return at some point. I miss him.

mike
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mike

Jack Wagner played the son of Lesley Anne Down on B&B and he looked older than she did. Gina is the only good casting choice Y&R has made. New Billy is terrible.

Lew S.
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Lew S.

Exactly Jack Wagner is 54 and Lesley Anne Down is 60 and they played mother and son! It was a stretch, but they pulled it off for years.

Timmm
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Timmm

The new Billy looks like Jack Wagner.

Scott (ATWT Fan)
Guest
Scott (ATWT Fan)

I would love to see Michael return as Daniel, even in a guest capacity, and have some scenes with Gina’s Phyllis! I miss Daniel somewhat, and cannot await for Phyllis’ return to Genoa City!

su0000
Guest
su0000

Gina and Michael would like weird lol
She would come off as a cougar with a younger stud .. but not mother and son..

casting has been terrible, both Bill’s=awful..
hope Gina can pull off being thee Phyllis..

Beacon
Guest
Beacon

Gina is an old soul. She will be able to play Phyllis 10-15 years older to her actual age, I have no doubt. Even when she was on OLTL, her character Kelly was like a nutty old lady in a beautiful young woman’s body. Gina can pull it off. I hope Graz comes back!

Sue Long
Guest
Sue Long

He was always one of my favorites on the show and I was very disappointed when you cut him out! He had his own style, he is adorable and he played his role great. I miss him.

k/kay
Guest
k/kay

It was his choice and it was a good one he is having much success away from Y&R.

Timmm
Guest
Timmm

Stay away Daniel! I know Phyliss is his mother but we havent missed the character. You have to ask yourself with people like him, what can he bring to the show to make it better? NOTHING! Think about it, Daniel, Chloe, Ronan, Phillip, Kyle, Fen, none of these characters matter. I would like to see Heather [Eden Riegel] come back now that Paul and his new family are center stage.

Jimmy
Guest
Jimmy

Eden Reigel was completely miscast in that role, she looks absolutely nothing like Paul or her new brother, Dylan. Sure, Reigel is a good actress, but not for the role of Heather. The only actress able to pull that role off well was Vail Bloom, the original actress. Jennifer Landon was good, but she was only on for 5 months and has nothing in terms of substantial material to make a lasting impression.

Timmm
Guest
Timmm

Your right Jimmy, Vail Bloom was excellent.

Janie
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Janie

Timmm, I totally agree with you. Eden Reigel was TOTALLY MISCAST in the role of Heather….in fact I hated her in that role. She will always be Bianca to me. Same thing with Billy Miller, Michelle Stafford and Michael M. They WERE Billy A., Phyliss N. and Adam N. Wish all three would return. It would certainly improve the show. I did not care for David Tom in the role of Billy…he was too young and came across as a whiny kid. I like the actor now playing Billy. Granted, he is not Billy Miller, but he is doing an… Read more »

Jimmy
Guest
Jimmy

Most actors and actresses can play roles 5-10 years younger or older than they actually are – Michael Graziadei is 34 but can easily play 25… Billy Miller is 35 but can play 40-45. And the problem isn’t so much Gina T’s casting, its that Daniel was SORASed. He was born originally in 1994, making him 20 in real life. But he’s in his high-twenties because that’s what the writers needed when they were writing story for him. The same thing is happening with Noah right now – he was born in 1997, making him a teenager now, but he’s… Read more »

davlestev1
Guest
davlestev1

No amount of number crunching can change the fact they’re only six years apart. Especially on camera and i’m sure she didn’t allow herself to be even slightly aged with make up for the role.

su0000
Guest
su0000

they could never pull of being mother and son ((another horrible casting)
but-
Daniel and Gina most likely will never be on screen together..

sonniorsolita
Guest
sonniorsolita

Sorry, but there’s no way to think of landing Gina Tognoni, a breath of fresh air in any role, as horrible casting. Do you think they should have cast the role around an actor who quit the show years ago? Gina is age appropriate to be Phyllis. It’s not her fault, nor the fault of Michael G., that the character of Daniel was aged so drastically. This is the result of SORASing, and it happens all over the soaps.

Mary SF
Guest
Mary SF

Yes, SORASing has wreck havoc with many a soap’s time line– by next summer we should have teenage Reed and Faith to add to that list.

Chaz
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Chaz

The problem with bringing Daniel back in part is outside of being there when his mother comes out of her coma, there is little story possibility for him. All the age appropriate characters are matched up to others so what could they tie him into? Of course, I think he would be perfect to put together with Kevin if they ever were brave enough to do a gay story with him. They were good friends, both been in tumultuous relationships with women and could end up turning that friendship into more. I am sure many people would go off the… Read more »

Jimmy
Guest
Jimmy

That’s the problem, there are not many late-twenty to early-thirty characters on this show. Other than Lily, Cane, Devon, Kevin and Tyler, the other characters either fall into the late-teen to early-twenties (Summer, Noah, Abby, Mariah), late-thirties to forties (Billy, Victoria, Nick, Sharon, Phyllis, etc) or 50+ (Victor, Nikki, Jack, etc). Chance, Ronan, Chloe, Heather, Daniel… all of these well-established characters that fit this age block are off the show, which doesn’t make any sense from a story standpoint because characters this age are the show’s future, and ones like Chance, for example, will one day be the head of… Read more »

Bill
Guest
Bill

The MOST laughable re-cast was Jed Allan’s brief stint as Edward Quartermaine. He was but two years older than son Alan!

davlestev1
Guest
davlestev1

And it was a bad idea and showed on camera. Never worked.

Linda
Guest
Linda

This is just another STELLAR (NOT!) casting job by CBS/SONY and JFP! JFP is notorious for getting it wrong–Hunter King (Summer), David Tom (Billy), Melissa Ordway (Abby), Max Ehrich (Fen) …. Getting the appropriate age would have only mattered had the leadership had a brain! They have shown consistently they are only worried about this particular minute. To Hell with the Long Term fit of a character! JFP and Angelica (at CBS) ARE RUINING THIS SHOW! Hire a 30+ or 40+ year-long FAN for the EP job and it could be saved! SMH

su0000
Guest
su0000

JFP doesn’t do the casting ..
The casting dept casts the characters..
I’m not sure if JFP has much say about it..
Nonetheless; the casting has been horrible ..

Mary SF
Guest
Mary SF

Are you serious? The Executive Producer has final say on every aspect on the show, including casting. The casting people are there to give the EP all the options and their recommendations, they do the interviews and audtions, but in the end it is the EP and Sony who have to sign off on it– no JFP has a lot a say in casting otherwise Steve Burton wouldn’t be on the show.

sonniorsolita
Guest
sonniorsolita

I have to disagree with you, Linda. Getting Emmy-winner Gina Tognoni is actually a casting coup for Y&R. And as a bonus it’s a nice nod to CBS soaps fans, who have missed her since “Guiding Light” was cancelled. As other posters have eloquently pointed out: These little age discrepancies happen all over daytime, and Gina is actually the correct age for Phyllis. The problem is the character of Daniel was aged too much.

k/kay
Guest
k/kay

JFP has everything to do with the casting!! Who the heck do you think hired Steve Burton and brought him on to totally revamp the history of Nikki. Little Bo Peep?

k/kay
Guest
k/kay

Other JFP castings Melissa Ordway/Abby, Hunter King/Summer, Robert Adamson/Noah, Burgess Jenkins/nu/nu/Billy and trust me if they ever cast Adam it will be an FOJ.

Jimmy
Guest
Jimmy

Gina T is a great actress and will fit well with the rest of the cast, Phyllis is an important character and Gina’s talents will no doubt shine in the role. Yes, there have been some questionable casting choices recently, but Gina is not one of them.

k/kay
Guest
k/kay

He will never share a scene with her he is no longer on the show. All of these kids go up the stairs at age 7 and walk down age 18. The fact that Phyllis was made a grandma under MAB was so stupid that fact will never be mentioned. They will have a phone call or two then no mention of them again if even that. GT is a fine actress sorry she signed on for this mess of a show I guess she needs the pay check.

T
Guest
T

He’s absolutely right. Gina is beautiful and talented and now Phyllis will be played by someone who is much younger and looks much younger. Phyllis well looked into middle age when played by Michelle Stafford, who just was no longer convincing–sorry, but some people age well and others don’t, and it was absolutely impossible, and laughable, to see her as possibly being involved with Nick. The de-SORASed Phyllis will have so many new opportunities for storylines and will also look to be in the same decade of age as Sharon. She will look like a young mom if MG comes… Read more »

su0000
Guest
su0000

Michelle Stafford is knocking it out of the park at GH.. great acting!
she is doing an excellent performance..
Y&R loss GH’s gain..

Michelle Stafford (Nina) GH.. Rocks! .. two thumbs up!
Gina’s (Phyllis ) to two thumbs down.. .. 🙂

MS will always hold Phyllis ..

Laurel Twist
Guest
Laurel Twist

What I would like is for Jill Farren Phelps and Angelica McDaniel to be fired. Sweep the writing staff, fire ALL of the newbies, & hire people who truly care about the characters, of the show, who will write a balanced ensemble show, period.

su0000
Guest
su0000

ALL the great loved characters are gone..
Y&R is not recognizable– look at the opening credits!! all newbies or dullards ..

Looks like they are getting rid of the old and in with younger new..
they are trying to put the ”young” back into Y&R..

Janie
Guest
Janie

From your lips to God’s ear su0000. Love your idea. Cannot stand the new Abby. I get so tired of hearing her laugh after every stupid sentence she utters. and PLEASE FIRE JILL FARREN PHELPS. She is a total DIASTER as EP. I did read a few months ago that both Michael M and Michelle S were offered their jobs back and both declined. What a shame. Michael should never have been fired…….Billy Miller would have stayed if they had just given him the “outs” he requested to do other things and IMO Michelle and JFP must have clashed big… Read more »

jo
Guest
jo

Let JFP start a new soap online with her Y&R newbies. Get a new EP, rehire what & who made this show so special. Bring back the beloved actors- Miller, Muhney; Adrienne Franz as Amber with Michael Graz, I loved. Gina T should have been hired as Victoria, Amelia did not have a big following. Vail Bloom looked like DD Paul, who needs Dylan? Back to the topic, MG was so natural as Daniel, he would be lovely with Gina T and as I said, bring Amber back to create a storyline. They do need a gay sl. Kevvie is… Read more »

Donna Pifferini
Guest
Donna Pifferini

I would love to see Daniel again!!! Anytime!!! Anywhere!!! But as far as this new Phyllis goes… she sucks!!! She could never hold a candle to Michelle Stafford… NO ONE COULD!!!

Joseph
Guest
Joseph

Both Michael and Gina are great at their craft and would be a great to each other if Michael would return. Frankly I miss seeing him on Y&R. (hint..hint)

Keith
Guest
Keith

I would love to see Michael Graziadei back on Y&R if only for a short visit. Only he can play Daniel. Phyllis is awake and Daniel should be present.

Breaking News

‘Port Charles’ Star Jay Pickett Dead at 60

UPDATED:  Just heartbreaking news over the weekend.  Former Port Charles star and soap veteran, Jay Pickett died suddenly while filming a movie.  His cause of death was not immediately known, although in a post on Sunday from Travis Mills it appears to have been from a heart attack. Pickett was 60-years-old.

In addition to his most remembered role on daytime as Frank Scanlon on the GH spinoff, Port Charles, where he appeared in over 762 episodes, Pickett also appeared on GH replacing Ted King as Lorenzo Alcazar and came back to the show in 2006-07 in the recurring role of Detective David Harper.  Jay also spent time on Days of our Lives as Dr. Chip Lakin and appeared on primetime’s Desperate Housewives and Queen Sugar countless other TV series and films.

Word of Pickett’s death first came via Facebook from Jim Heffel who is the film’s co-producer, who shared along with these images (see below): “Yesterday I lost a good friend and the world lost a great person. Jay Pickett decided to ride off into the Heavens. Jay died sitting on a horse ready to rope a steer in the movie Treasure Valley in Idaho. The way of a true cowboy. Jay wrote the story and starred in it. He was also coproducer with myself and Vernon Walker. He will be truly missed. Ride like the wind partner.”

Photo: ABC/Getty

Michael Dietz, who played Pickett’s on-screen brother, Joe Scanlon on Port Charles shared his grief on the news on Facebook, expressing: “My greatest friend has sadly left this world. We met when we were cast as brothers on Port Charles many, many years ago. He played my big brother on TV but that carried over into real life and an amazing friendship that was one of a kind. He was an incredible husband, father, friend, and godfather to my daughter. Everyone that knew him loved him. I love you, Jay. Keep smiling my friend. All my love to his family, who truly became our family as well. You will be forever missed.”

Kin Shriner (Scott, GH) and Jay’s former co-star at Port Charles shared: “The sudden passing of my pal Jay Pickett Is very sad . He loved acting and Westerns , and when we got together we laughed a lot . R.I.P. Jay”

Kelly Monaco (Ex-Livvie, PC and now Sam, GH) shared on her Instagram:  “My heart goes out to the family and friends of Jay Pickett. If you knew him, you loved him. Words can’t describe…”

Travis Mills from the film Treasure Valley, in which Pickett was filming at the time of his death, shared on Sunday morning this updated message on Facebook: “Many of you have already heard about the tragedy that happened two days ago. Jay Pickett, our leading man, writer, producer, and creator of this movie passed away suddenly while we were on location preparing to film a scene. There is no official explanation for the cause of his death but it appears to have been a heart attack. Everyone present tried as hard as they could to keep him alive. Our hearts are broken and we grieve for his family who are so devastated by this shocking tragedy.  As so many of us know, Jay was an incredible man. He was kind, sweet, and generous. He was one of the best actors I ever worked with and it was an honor to collaborate with him. Everyone who met him, even for the briefest moment, could feel his warmth, his wonderful spirit. It is difficult to find the words right now to say more. His closest friends have said that he was very happy making Treasure Valley and my hope is that he truly was. He was doing what he loved: acting, riding horses, making movies. And he was magnificent.”

Jay is survived by his wife, Elena, and their three children, Maegan, Michaela and Tyler.

We will have more on this continuing story as remembrances for Pickett are shared, and updated on news of his passing.

Share your condolences and thoughts on Jay via the comment section below.

 

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Guiding Light

Soap Alums: Helgenberger, Bonilla, and Ilonzeh Cast in New Drama Pilot ‘Getaway’

Three very familiar faces to daytime fans have their new potentially new nighttime gig!  E.J. Bonilla (Ex-Rafe, Guiding Light) has been added as as series regulars opposite Annie Ilonzeh (Ex-Maya, GH) along with former Ryan’s Hope favorite Marg Helgenberger (Ex-Siohan) to the NBC drama pilot, Getaway.

In Getaway, the loglines for the series read that the proposed seriescenters on a destination wedding at an isolated luxury resort that quickly descends into chaos after a group of dangerous criminals takes the island hostage. The small group of guests, led by a fearless female Army vet (Ilonzeh), will do everything they can to stay alive.

According to Deadline: Helgenberger will play Sen. Charlotte Pierce. As a senior Democratic senator from New York, Charlotte is used to calling the shots. She’s happy to see her son, Jack (played by Matt Long), settle down with his bride, Grace (Jasmine Mathew), but there are darker forces at play she has yet to fully understand. Charlotte will soon have to choose between her family and the political career for which she’s worked so hard.  Bonilla will play Rafi Salinas. Rafi claims to be a fisherman on the run with his friends from a gang of cartel members, but he’s hiding a dark secret that will put everyone at the resort in danger.

So, what do you think of the concept for this new drama pilot for NBC and the cast? Comment below.

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All My Children

Chrishell Stause and Her ‘Selling Sunset’ Boss Jason Oppenheim Make Relationship Instagram Official

There’s a new man in soap veteran and Selling Sunset star, Chrishell Stause’s life.  And it is … none other than her boss at the Oppenheim Group, a real estate company, in Los Angeles which is at the epicenter of the Netflix reality series.

Stause who is also a real estate agent at the firm, made her relationship with Jason Oppenheim Instagram official when she posted a pic of the two of them while the cast of Selling Sunset were in Italy.

Oppenheim told PEOPLE: “Chrishell and I became close friends and it has developed into an amazing relationship. I care about her deeply and we are very happy together.”

Previously Stause was married to This is Us star, Justin Hartley and following their divorce, was briefly dating Dancing with the Stars pro dancer, Keo Motsepe.

So, what do you think of the love connection between Chrishell and Jason? Comment below.

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GH’s Kelly Thiebaud (Britt) chats with Michael Fairman about Britt being on the run with Jason, their burgeoning romance, working with Steve Burton and her other co-star and Britt’s diagnosis of Huntington’s Disease. .Leave A Comment

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