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THE BRANDON BEEMER INTERVIEW – THE BOLD AND THE BEAUTIFUL

beemermain1.jpgBy Michael Fairman

TV SOAP:

I was speaking with your girlfriend, Nada Bjorlin (Chloe, “DAYS”) recently. She was saying she currently liked the character you play on “B&B”, Owen Knight, as opposed to your last role, Shawn Brady,
on “DAYS”.  Nadia commented that on “DAYS” your character became watered down, but at “B&B” you get to be sexy, mysterious and have more colors.

BRANDON:

I think Owen Knight is a lot of fun, and Shawn was fun, too. I never got to play a character like Owen before, but at the end of the day they are different characters. Shawn was fun when I started, but with Owen, it’s so much fun because there is no telling. He is such a blank slate, and there is no history on him as to how he was brought up. So, I can make it up off the top of my head and create things the way I would like to create them. You can’t say now, “Owen would never say that.” Whereas, before it would be, “Shawn would never do that!” Shawn would never hook up with a prostitute. That’s so out of character, and now I am not being compared to anyone.

TV SOAPS:

Owen and Donna, played by Jennifer Gareis, have shared a kiss! How does your character truly feel about her?

BRANDON:

I think Owen is interested in her and cares deeply for her, and he wants more at the end of the day. He is very driven and he wants what he wants, and he won’t take no for an answer. So therefore, that is what he is acting on; the feeling that she has for him. Donna does not want to be with him, totally. But, Owen thinks he still has a chance.

brandonJennifer.jpgTV SOAP:

How is working with Jennifer?

BRANDON:

She is great and a lot of fun! She has different sides to her. I get to experience these different sides of her every week. She is a lot of fun, and we work well together. She works hard, and is always open to suggestions, and she makes me laugh.

TV SOAPS:

Do the writers and producers lay out for you, what’s going to happen to Owen in the future? I think some soap fans are under the impression the actors know what’s going to happen to their characters.

BRANDON:

I think that certain actors find out because they like to know. They don’t mind going upstairs to Brad Bell (executive producer and head writer, “B&B”) and finding out the information. I am happy to have a job, and I understand in this industry its ebb and flow, and comes in waves. You work all the time and then sometimes you don’t. Maybe I should just accept it and go upstairs and ask, and have something to look forward to!

TV SOAP:

You have had some heavy-duty moments with “B&B” stalwart Susan Flannery, (Stephanie) in the jail scenes. How was working with Susan?

BRANDON:

Working with Susan is interesting, because I had heard stories. I did not know what to expect and had no idea. The first day we are working, I was told, “Susan wants to run lines with you.” She was standing there waiting for me. She is so accommodating and gave me great suggestions, because she knows what she’s doing… and she does it so well that her suggestions just fit well.

SusanBrandon.jpgTV SOAP:

Does she tell you how to play a scene?

BRANDON:

She doesn’t say, “Do this!” She just suggests it. She won’t change something of hers’ without discussing it with you and seeing how you feel. I was happy with the material we did together.

TV SOAP:

How have you played Owen’s back-story? What motivates this guy?

BRANDON:

I just look at what motivates every human being. You look at something and go after it and get it. He’s not related to anyone, but there are a lot of things he likes.

I look at it as a man who sees no boundaries, who is smart and can figure out a way to get what he wants. I don’t necessarily think he would do anything to hurt anyone. At the end of the day, he is living his life like everyone else, and wants to do what he wants to do.

TV SOAP:

How did Marcus and Owen meet up?

BRANDON:

They did not even know each other, really. My story is that Marcus lived in Texas and Owen lived in San Diego, and Marcus found Owen through the Internet. Marcus was looking up people who were good at finding people. Marcus had run up against dead ends looking for his mother. With Owen, he likes the challenge and knows he could do it, so he did it and found her. I think Marcus looked up Owen on a website for people who work at locating people.

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TV SOAP:

What is Owen supposed to do, career wise?

BRANDON:

I think he is a jack-of –all-trades. He is a paralegal.

TV SOAP:

…..And a paramedic? (Laughs)

BRANDON:

…. And a cook (He laughs)…. I think Owen is just curious about life. He is educated and wants to be a lawyer. He is a paralegal, and he was in training to become a lawyer. That’s what I made up as his background!

TV SOAP:

Things looked pretty bad for Owen, as all the evidence mounted up that he was the bad boy that poisoned Eric Forrester. Did you have to play guilty, even though you were not?

BRANDON:

I didn’t have to play it. I was purposely left trying to be vague in certain areas about how Owen felt about things, and the way he came into the show trying to make the $200,000 dollars by trying to break up Eric and Donna’s marriage. That put him in the bad guy category right away. Eric was like, “It’s the new guy, and he is the bad guy!”

TV SOAP:

Are there some actresses on the show you think would be fun to work with, or for Owen to be paired with?

BRANDON:

There are a couple people. I have not worked much with Lesli Kay (Felicia) or Ashley Jones (Bridget). Owen can go any route. It’s not that hard to pick here. There are a lot of beautiful women here. Lesli and Ashley would be good candidates for Owen.

TV SOAP:

Have there been any memorable scenes for you with the male side of the cast that you have enjoyed?

BRANDON:

I liked the scenes with Ridge in the jail. Working with Ronn Moss (Ridge) is great! I would like to work with John McCook (Eric) more than just having him at me while he is lying in a hospital bed.

DAYS.jpgTV SOAPS:

You are now a veteran of several soaps: “GH”, “DAYS,” and now “B&B”. Is there a difference being on these different shows?

BRANDON:

I think it’s like anything; it’s like going into different neighborhoods.

TV SOAPS:

Since you and Nadia are both in the soap acting biz, do you give each other acting notes at home when watching your work?

BRANDON:

She will tell me,” I did not believe you there.” Then, Nadia gives me a reason why. I also think because I know her so well, that it’s hard to watch somebody you know so well in a different light, because you see right though it. We don’t tell each other what to do or how to act; we just call each other out on it. It’s not often. I watch her and she watches me, sometimes. Because, if I have to turn it on, I have to watch her making out with Lucas!

TV SOAPS:

What do you think of the pairing of Nadia and Brian Dattilo (Lucas,”DAYS”)?

BRANDON:

She loves Brian, and I love Brian, but it’s an odd pairing. We went to his birthday awhile back, and he is so much fun and down to earth and cool, though.

TV SOAPS:

You are always voted number one on all the soap hunk lists…all the time… Nadia told me, “If he wasn’t number one, I wouldn’t be with him.” Of course, she said that jokingly.

BRANDON:

I was 19th in the TV Guide Soaps Sexiest Men list! So, I am not always at the top. You know what? I am just flattered that I was considered.

TV SOAPS:

When the two of you go out together, does it stop traffic?

BRANDON:

When we go out and have dinner, it’s pretty rare you run into the die-hard daytime fans that literally start going crazy. But, it does happen. We ran into people recently at a Blockbuster Video store, and they yelled loudly through the whole store and they said, “It’s Chloe and Shawn from Days! My mom’s in the car and she is a huge fan, would you like to meet her?” It was a Friday night and the whole store was packed. We could not get out of the front door without saying, “Hello.” Most times people are really cool and discreet about it, and you don’t even know they are a fan of the show. One time, we were on a plane and the stewardess was doing her job, and right at the tail end of the flight she kneels down and says, “I am a huge fan of the show. My kids would love a picture.” We go, “Who, Us?” It’s flattering. I like putting smiles on the fans faces.

Brandonnadia.jpgTV SOAPS:

You and Nadia were recently on the cover of “Fixation” magazine. How did that come about?

BRANDON:

A friend of mine came to me and said, “Would you be interested in meeting with them?” I said I would, and we had lunch with one of the owners who said they wanted to put me on the cover, but they wanted to find a girl. We have to find a girl, or maybe we could hire a model. And I go, “Well, you could always put Nadia Bjorlin on the cover?” It turned out perfectly, because they knew who she was and then it was hers. I was very happy.

TV SOAPS:

What would you love to see Owen go through storyline-wise, in the future?

BRANDON:

Honestly, I try to live in the moment and not get too caught up, and then later be disappointed. It’s unlikely that Owen would be able to do some of the things I would want to do.

TV SOAPS:

Since you are the good- looking guy, the pretty boy, and the hunk, does it sometimes limit you from getting meatier acting roles?

BRANDON:

It does at the end of the day. I think you have to force yourself to find the opportunity in daytime or outside of daytime. You have to force it sometimes, to show you can do other roles, and a place where people can see you in a whole different light. Then, in the future, they will be open to giving you an opportunity. Look at how Brad Pitt started.

TV SOAPS:

But sometimes, the hunks can play sinister on primetime episodes.

BRANDON:

It is tough! If they think of me as a hunk. and they want me to be the hunk, then I will do my best to think of myself as the hunk they want.

gymbody.jpgTV SOAPS:

How often do you go to the gym? All of your fans want to know how you keep in shape?

BRANDON:

I don’t go to the gym very often. What you have to be is the leading man and the hero as much as possible, and hope that you are written
well to pull off these types of roles.

TV SOAPS:

Many people may not be aware of your very cool, ‘sense of humor’!

BRANDON:

I think that people who know me know I have a sense of humor. But, because of what is written for me work-wise, I don’t get too much humor written for me. It’s either brooding or the romantic guy. I think certain fans that know me, know I am completely different than the characters I play.

TV SOAPS:

On “B&B” the schedule is different than other soaps. You have long stretches of time where you may be on hiatus. When you have a small cast, sometimes, actors don’t always work as much. Do you prefer being busy all the time or the more laid back approach to acting?

BRANDON:

I like working. I am a workaholic. I like to work and have the weekends off. Some people like lots of time off, and if I am home a week, I go crazy.

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TV SOAPS:

Have you been home to Oregon? Is your family following you on “B&B”?

BRANDON:

I went home for a wedding. My dad is out of town. I got him a Tivo so he could catch up. Next month, I am going to Portland, Oregon for a personal appearance. My mom, dad, and sister are going to come to the event.

TV SOAPS:

What comments does mom say when she is watching?

BRANDON:

She is always like, “Oh, you are so cute. Oh, I really liked it when you did this.”

TV SOAPS:

What about when you are making out with a girl on television. What does mom or dad say then?

BRANDON:

They enjoy watching this character because they don’t know what to expect. My dad wad fooled. He would say, “You gotta be the guy who drugged Eric. Don’t tell me. I don’t want to know if it’s you. But, it can’t be you, because they wouldn’t do that to your character. Don’t tell me!” My grandma is the same way. They get really excited and into it, and they want to know what’s going on. My step-mom is just the opposite. She is like, “Give me a little tidbit? Just give me one.” I go, “No.”

TV SOAPS:

Do you and Nadia run lines together?

BRANDON:

We work lines together every once in awhile, and it’s very interesting. I am a very patient person, and I will read lines with her until the cow’s come home. When I ask her to read lines with me, she has a short attention span, and she will go, “You don’t have those whole 48 pages already? I only have to read through it once or twice. Well, I can’t believe you don’t have the lines.” Nadia gets impatient with me, because she is extremely smart and she soaks up the information much quicker than I do. With me, she will ask me to read lines with her, but it takes a little bit longer for me.

TV SOAPS:

I was speaking to James Scott, (EJ, “DAYS) that as an actor, he can remember 50 pages of dialog, but he can’t remember where he put his car keys!

BRANDON:

You will forget things like that, and it’s funny James said that. James and I were supposed to play tennis yesterday and I said, “Let’s play it by ear, and I will talk to you on Thursday,” and then I forgot. I will say I can memorize the entire dialog. However, I cannot remember names. Nadia has a memory like you would not believe. Names like you would not believe. I think it’s because English is not her first language, so mentally, she is more in-tune with soaking things up. If I see something, and I know I will not remember, I tell it to Nadia and she will remember it. I look at her and go, “How the hell did you remember that?”

TV SOAPS:

Your website is finally up and running!

BRANDON:

http://brandonbeemer.com is finally up! I got so busy that I never got around to updating it, and finally it’s up and running. It was a long work in process. But, it’s going now and it’s nice to have something for people to see, because I had so many complaints and scathing emails, saying, “That is no excuse. It’s been a year and half! You need to have something up… and you’re crazy.”

TV SOAPS:

Do you answer all your own emails/messages or letters from fans?

BRANDON:

I answer all my messages on the message boards and my Myspace page. I have it all. I think the website looks good and it’s working well, and I hope the fans like it. We put in tidbits, and even things I never knew existed! The site has lots of photos and other fun things, too

kyleAri.jpgTV SOAPS:

You and Kyle Lowder (Rick, “B&B”) and his real life wife Ariane Zuker, (Nicole, “DAYS”) along with Nadia, are very close
in real life!

BRANDON:

We had dinner last night. It was burrito night. It is a lot of fun because we all have something to say, now that we are the guys on one soap and the girls are on another. The shows are similar but different. “B&B” is quieter. We don’t have any of the upper management changes at “DAYS”. It was even changing when I was there, in respect to the changes in writers and executive producers. It’s nice to be at a place that is quiet and stable.

TV SOAPS:

So last night, I am happy to announce that you, Nadia, Kyle and Ariane, ate “Half-Baked Flavor” Ben and Jerry’s ice cream! Tell us about it?

BRANDON:

Kyle and Ariane brought over 6 pints of ice cream for dessert last night. I am still recovering from it because last night it was burrito and taco night, and Ben and Jerry’s afterward. They brought ice cream and fresh fruit and I don’t think the fresh fruit even came out of the refrigerator.

TV SOAPS:

We love to know that daytime soap stars actually eat ice cream! That’s so good to know.

BRANDON:

I actually sent Ariane home with a couple pints of ice cream. I did not want to get stuck with 6 of them because I would eat them. I love Oreos and Chocolate Chip cookies, too and my motto is, “If it’s in the house I will eat it.” So, that is why I keep nothing in the house. Nadia is on this discipline trip right now. She never took a bite of it. She is right, you have to just do it. I will not eat Ben and Jerry’s for quite awhile, and I am over Ben and Jerry’s for right now, because I ate tons of it last night.

beemernightbefore.jpgTV SOAPS:

So, what is ice cream night at your house like?

BRANDON:

I have a small house with a small table, so we sat on plastic chairs. Kyle ate the ice cream that he loves, “Cherry-Garcia.” My favorite is, “Cookies and Cream”… that’s my classic favorite. Kyle and Ariane did
not bring that, so “Half-Baked” is the new flavor. It’s sugar in a cup! Not fat but, sugar in a cup.

Interviews

B&B’s Scott Clifton and Don Diamont Talk on the Plight of Liam & Bill and Their Cover-Up of Vinny’s Death

If you are watching current episodes of The Bold and the Beautiful then you know that Scott Clifton (Liam) and his on-screen father, Don Diamont (Bill Spencer) have been spending plenty of time together in scenes in very dramatic and intense fashion.

In story, Liam is guilt-ridden over running down Vinny Carter (Joe LoCicero) by accident when he was driving Bill’s car.  Since the moment that Vinny was killed, Bill leapt into action, destroying any evidence tying the two to the scene of the crime and continually demanding that Liam let this go and move on with his life, or the implications for the both of them could certainly be a long jail sentence, or worse.

Photo: JPI

Now as Liam is finally making headway in a reconciliation with Hope (remember his last secret – sleeping with Steffy – was quite the doozy), this new secret of what he has done, and hiding, could up the stakes even more and take him away from his family for good … or would Hope (Annika Noelle) after finding out what Liam did be the nail in his coffin that ends their relationship once and for all and kicks him to the curb?

Courtesy/CBS

Both, Scott Clifton and Don Diamont chatted virtually with Michael Fairman exclusively for You Tube’s Michael Fairman Channel to offer up for viewers and fans of The Bold and the Beautiful: an inside look at what goes on when they tape their scenes, how they see their characters motivations, and they serve up a preview of what may lie ahead in this tangled web that Bill and Liam have unfortunately weaved.

Photo: JPI

Check out the humorous, candid, and enlightening conversation with two of the leads and mainstays of this CBS Daytime drama series below.

Then let us know; how do you think Liam and Bill can get out of the mess they find themselves in? Will Liam crumble and spill the beans? Will everyone in town get on to them and figure out the secret they have been keeping? Share your thoughts and theories via the comment section after taking a look at the virtual conversation.

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Days Of Our Lives

Kevin Spirtas Talks ‘After Forever’s’ Digital Special ‘Riley’s Unforgettable School Project’, The Loss of Michael Slade, and a Chance to Reprise DAYS Craig Wesley

The coronavirus pandemic has put to the test many content creators on just how they would keep their projects moving forward in ways they never dreamed of. However, out of that situation has come some of the most compelling, unique series, specials, and features currently streaming for viewers. One of which is Riley’s Unforgettable School Project, brought to you by the team from the six-time Daytime Emmy Award-winning series, After Forever.

Former Days of our Lives star, Kevin Spirtas (Ex-Craig Wesley) has starred in and created the first two seasons of what has become the most honored Emmy-awarded LGBTQ-themed drama series on any platform.  Along with his ‘After Forever’ writing/producing partner, the late Michael Slade (DAYS, OLTL, Passions, Another World), the two also conceptualized and delivered this latest documentary-style offering now on Amazon Prime Video.

What makes Riley’s Unforgettable School Project so noteworthy is not just how they were able to execute the series based on fictional 11-year-old Riley’s virtual school project and utilize its cast, which includes: Spirtas, Cady Huffman, Jamison Stern, Lenny Wolpe, Erin Cherry, Anita Gillette, Christopher J. Hanke, and Finn Douglas, but that it was made while Slade was succumbing to his battle with cancer, and that this special marks the final script from this talented writer.

 

Michael Fairman TV spoke with Spirtas about making the special during Covid-19, how the death of Michael Slade has made a lasting impact on his life, what After Forever has personally meant to him, and how an official third season is still in the works, and … if he would consider a return to Salem and Days of our Lives, should they come a-calling.  Here’s what Kevin had to say about it all.

Photo: AfterForever

I think the entire story of this digital special has become even more meaningful with Michael Slade’s passing. What was the genesis of the concept? You wanted to continue the telling of the story of After Forever … but we are all in the middle of a pandemic?

KEVIN:  Yes and… when we filmed season 2, we had the scripts for season 3 already completed. It was our hope and desire to film them at the same time, back-to-back, so that we would have had all of our cast and crew together, and we could have gotten through it because we’ve always imagined this story being told in a trilogy so to speak – a beginning, middle, and end to Brian (Spirtas) and Jason, (Mitchell Anderson) and Brian’s healing or his steps towards healing through grief.  Schedules turned out that they couldn’t really work out for us to hold all the people and hold all of the sets for that amount of time.  So, we thought, “We’ve got the scripts for season 3 ready.  We’ll come back to it in the following year,” and that was always the intention, and then the pandemic hit.  So, it was shut down immediately that we weren’t going to do anything, but we wanted to stay current, and instead of going back in and telling the third installment of After Forever as a Covid-19 story as well, Michael and I sat down and looked at a way of staying relevant and current with a story within COVID, and there was born the idea to do this documentary style story/special about the characters of After Forever told through the lens of the character of Riley, the 11-year-old boy, who is now being homeschooled during the pandemic. He gets an assignment to do a project about the most unforgettable person he has ever met, and he, of course, chooses his best friend, the late Jason Adams, and he enlists all of Jason’s friends and family to join in.  Michael actually said, “What if we tell a story about Riley being homeschooled?” And, not only is Riley a technical genius at 11-years-old in the story, but Finn Douglas, who plays Riley, is a technical genius.

And didn’t Finn perform and write the song “Forever There” contained within the special?

KEVIN. Yes. He is this incredible musician.  Michael thought, “What would it be like if we asked to have the character of Finn sing a song for Jason?”  I said, “Well, what kind of song would we have him sing?”  Finn could play anything, I’m sure, because he’s self-taught, he plays by ear – guitar, piano, and drums.  Michael said, “What if we ask him to see if he could write a song?” and when we heard this song, we all called each other and we all got on Zoom and went, “Can you believe this song?  Can you believe this came out of this 11-year-old?”  It’s pretty incredible.  Michael did a gorgeous job of weaving the stories in and out and how they just sort of dove-tailed into each other, and then it was framed by Riley opening the project and ending the project.  During the Zoom reading we wanted to hear the song out loud.  We said to Finn, “Would you want to sing the song?”  We all just watched everybody on that Zoom call just fall apart.  It was just so beautiful. He’s an amazing talent.

Where is your character within this?

KEVIN:  I still stand in the center of the story of Jason because my character, Brian, was married to Jason, and it sort of connects us all, and through Riley’s understanding of how we all connect to Jason, is how we are all sort of spread out throughout the story.  Michael jokingly said, “You know, you’re not going to be the star of this special,” and I said, “I don’t think it’s about being the star.  It’s really about the storytelling.”  The beauty of Riley’s Unforgettable School Project is that we get to see moments of each person’s relationship with Jason, which Riley sets out to say, “Answer these three questions: What did you like most about Jason?  What did you like least about Jason? And what’s your favorite memory?”  Those three things, cut back and forth is where we all kind of fit in.  Nobody has more of a story than the next person, and it’s all telling honest portrayals of how they’re dealing with their loss of their good friend, or their child, or partner.

It’s a very inventive idea during Covid-19 to continue it in a way where you weren’t having to go shoot a full season of episodes.

KEVIN:  Well, we couldn’t. I have to say, Allison Vanore, who not only produced this special, but she also stepped up saying, “I’d love to direct this,” and I said, “Yes, please!”  She knows the characters.  She understands the story because she’s been a part of it for the last two seasons.  Allison also has this extraordinary amount of knowledge and expertise with the camera and what was needed for a remote shoot, and to also be able to organize filming 13 people in 2 different countries and 5 different cities… that’s just the technical side of it, but having that in our back pocket, knowing that it was a remote shoot, we had to send the camera, the computer, the ring light, and the microphone to each person’s house.  We had to location scout over Zoom.  We had to do wardrobe over Zoom.  It was all this big puzzle putting it together, and once you look at that board of storytelling and how we were going to do it, it kind of fell into place.  I feel blessed that a) we still had Michael with us, at that point, and b) Allison had the know-how to do this.  We all feel that at least this pandemic didn’t keep us from doing what we love.

Photo: AfterForever

In terms of the contribution of Michael Slade in this special, was it the construction of the story, and how was he able to work and write this during his illness?

KEVIN:  Michael’s contribution to the special was no less than the contribution to season 1 and season 2, and the future of season 3, because the scripts are written.  We did everything on Zoom, and we worked around his schedule of treatment.  We scheduled 2 people per day, and we spread them out over two weeks.  He was very present, and when there would be a day where he would say, “I’m going to be an hour late, let’s just push that call time,” I would ask, “Is this too much right now?  We can shelve it; we can stop it.” He’d then say, “Absolutely not, otherwise cancer will win.”  He was determined to stay focused and to stay active because it took his mind off of what was happening to him.

Photo: AfterForever

It would be lovely moment if you both were to win a Daytime Emmy for this project. 

KEVIN:  It’s our last collaboration together as a team, as I said, season 3 has been scripted, and it is on the calendar to get made.  We are just waiting for the COVID restrictions to lift a little bit and everyone to get vaccinated.  Michael was really hit hard with cancer – to stay healthy was so challenging for him.  Sadly, he didn’t make it to see the final edit of the special, and he died four days before we launched, but he had seen the cuts before that and was very approving of it, and had made some decisions, and offered some suggestions, and if God gives him an Emmy for this, it’s not because he died.  It’s because it’s great work.  It just happens to be that the work that was involved in this particular special was very tricky.  It brought up everything, like life itself to have to deal with.  Here we are dealing with the loss of a colleague, the loss of a friend, someone’s brother, someone’s son, this is life imitating art, imitating art imitating life. I can’t tell you the darkness that I went through just experiencing the need to stay focused on getting everything edited, and everything ready, and everything aligned for a release of this project that we had put into motion.  On top of it, our editor lost his mother just before Michael passed, and Allison’s mom was sick at the time, as well.  It took a lot of heavy deep breaths with Michael’s death, and the pandemic, and the loss has, for me, on a personal level, sent me back to really questioning my spiritual muscle and to help remind me that we have to come out of this better than we went into this.  I had many dark nights of the soul this last year, and December was probably the darkest.  I feel like I’m just kind of coming out of it now with the spring revealing itself.

Photo: AfterForever

It must have been extraordinarily difficult for you to also go to New York during a pandemic and also knowing Michael did not have much time left.

KEVIN:  I will say this: I am grateful that I was able to stay in touch with my heart and my instinct and go out to New York to let that be my remote location.  Yes, maybe there was some risk involved.  I wore my mask; I was Covid-19 negative, and I was determined to be fine.  Once I got to New York, I would visit him very protectively with our masks and our gloves, and I’d sit across the room, and then I’d go back to the house I was at.  It was a gift that I was able to see him at that time.  We had some good talks then about how he was feeling, and I think he was still being optimistic, and then once we got the project in the can there was maybe this psychic letting go. That’s when everything really started to reveal itself as this could be the end.  I did go back to see him when he was in hospice.  I think I was there the last two days that he really was able to really stay coherent.  He would close his eyes and be at peace and quiet for a minute, and he would finish a conversation and sort of close his eyes, not to sleep and not to go away, but I remember watching him going, “Look how peaceful he is,” and then he’d open his eyes and he’d remember that he is in this body that has been given a time limit of life, and he’s on his way out.  I’d watch the fear go back in his eyes.  At one point, he did say, “I’m so scared,” and I just held his hand, and I said, “I’m scared too.  Let’s be scared through this together.”  I don’t know how to navigate grief like that.  We are all going to be in a position at some point where we are going to be on the other side of the hand holding.  The wonderful thing is that we were able to have honest communication about our feelings.  I thanked him for everything that he has done for me and how he believed in my talent and creativity and our partnership.  I will always take that with me.  I waved my finger at him, and I said, “Listen.  Now, we wrote a series about a man talking to his deceased husband.  You’d better talk to me!”  So, we laughed about that.

Photo: AfterForever

You’ve done a lot of things in your career from Broadway to television, and of course, daytime fans know you best as Dr. Craig Wesley on DAYS.  How does the entire After Forever project stack up to you within all that you have done?

KEVIN:  Former DAYS casting director Fran Bascom, sought me out and offered me this 2-day role on Days of Our Lives, and those 2 days turned into 8 years, and unbeknownst to me at the time, the final 3 months of that contract of those 8 years, Michael Slade was brought in to write.  We didn’t cross paths at that point, but years later, when we did cross paths in New York, and then After Forever was born, that was that universal crossing point.  I am most proud of the fact that we were able create something fresh, and real, and personal to ourselves that we didn’t have to cater to any “powers that be” that had their vision and their tinkering, that they thought that it could be better in this way or that way.  Then for After Forever to gain such recognition, within the film festivals, and the Emmys, and then, just after Michael died, we won the GLAAD award for Special Recognition this year.  We don’t even fit into one of their categories!  They found a way to acknowledge this project.  If another Emmy happens again, that might be another one to put up on the shelf for After Forever that would be beautiful, and I couldn’t have done it without Michael.

For the Daytime Emmys this year, what category have you entered Riley’s Unforgettable School Project?

KEVIN:  We are not a series this year, we are a daytime fiction special, and the “Daytime Fiction Special” category is a special class.  It’s anything that’s digital in the construct of less than 40 minutes.  NATAS (National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences) is being bombarded with so much content, they’re trying to find ways to put categories together.

Photo: JPI

So, now, when we last saw Days of Lives’ Dr. Craig Wesley, where was he? (Laughs)

KEVIN: (Laughs) He was in a flash from the past or something in the DOOL app’s Last Blast Reunion series. I had a fun time working with Patrika Darbo (Nancy) and Nadia Bjorlin (Chloe), once again.

So, if they were to want Craig to come back to DAYS, would you be all for it?

KEVIN:  Hell yes!

Photo: JPI

Now, what story would you want to be told involving Craig? 

KEVIN:  When Craig was first on the canvas in Salem, there was a lot of mustache twirling and a lot of hand wringing.  He was always plotting; most of the time with Nancy.  It was kind of this high drama, evil villain storyline being told, but when the writers created an opportunity for us to be on after those first three months by bringing on Chloe without a father, there was something real about it.  It may have been told under the construct of soap opera storytelling, but there was a reality-based story about, “You have a daughter, and we are just now finding out about it?”  Then, finding a cure to her health was another realistic story, and finding out that Craig was her real father.  Anything that’s reality based is what I’m getting to.  I would welcome any job that brings me back and gives me an opportunity to dive into something real.

Photo: JPI

Would you welcome the opportunity to play a gay character on daytime; in a medium where there are very few represented in storylines?

KEVIN:  I’d have no problem with that.  Do you know anybody who is starting that?  Let’s do it!  (Laughs) First of all, there’s nothing to hide anymore.  There’s nothing to pretend you’re not anymore.  I would think that bringing in a storyline that deals with anything outside the norm that we are used to seeing would be interesting.  How many times can you retell a story?  How many times can you set the same story up with another couple?  So, why not be diverse and have a stylized story being told through the lens of a gay person.

Photo: AfterForever

In closing, so many go through life without acknowledging people who had an impact them.  We don’t give pats on the back, often enough, and especially in Hollywood, where people can be very self-involved.  You have already paid tribute to Michael Slade in our discussion, but what gift from him is your personal takeaway?

KEVIN:  The gift that Michael really gave to me is to remember to be kind to myself and to others, and to acknowledge and salute the person who is in front of us, because we don’t know when we will have, or if we will have, another moment to do that.

Now below, check out the trailer for Riley’s Unforgettable School Project.  Then let us know, what do you think of its concept? Kevin’s thoughts on the passing of his collaborator on the project, Michael Slade? And, do you hope DAYS brings back Dr. Craig Wesley? Share your thoughts via the comment section.

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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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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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