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The Crystal Chappell, Jessica Leccia, and Nadia Bjorlin Interview – Venice

Courtesy/Venice

Courtesy/Venice

On August 7th, the wait is over for legions of fans when Crystal Chappell’s Venice, returns to the web with season four of the hit series, and all new episodes!  Venice and Chappell have been groundbreaking.  If you look at all the many web soap series and concepts that sprung from the success of Venice, Chappell had foreshadowed where the industry was going, and found a place where series creators can show their visions and their stories without having the constraints of network television and its censors.

Venice season four will continue to center the story on three women, two of whom are vying for the same girl!  Will Gina finally reunite with Ani?  Will Lara and Ani say their “I do’s?”  Will secrets, lies, Lara’s drinking, Gina’s past, or perhaps Ani’s brother come to tear everyone’s chance for happiness apart in different ways?  Chappell promises much drama with many characters on the canvas in season four, while providing answers to the season three cliffhangers! And, if you watched the just released promo for season four, there is a shocker at the end of it, when it looks like Gina is hit by a car!  Who’s driving? How will it all come about?

On-Air On-Soaps visited the set of Venice during its final week of production on season four, and sat down with its three leading ladies: Crystal Chappell (Gina), Jessica Leccia (Ani) and Nadia Bjorlin (Lara) who have sent hearts-a-flutter to many of their female viewers, and we are sure many men, too!  Venice fans have loyally supported this same-sex love story interwoven with complex relationships and family ties … and to think it all started from the love of Guiding Light supercouple, Otalia!

As you would expect when chatting with Crystal, Jessica, and Nadia, there was plenty of laughs and witty sarcasm, but what we came away with was speaking to three women who have great understanding of the human condition.  And that my friends, is one of the reasons we have fallen in love with their performances and Venice.  Here now, with a look into what is to come in season four, are Crystal, Jessica and Nadia!

MICHAEL:

Crystal, how was it working with these ladies again for season four of Venice?

NADIA:

Courtesy/Venice

She is ready to stab her eyes out!  (Laughs)

CRYSTAL:

They are extremely difficult women, because they are pretty. (Laughs) They are in my head year round, and it’s true.  I love them both as friends, and this is such a fun journey this show has taken, and it’s largely based on having Nadia and Jessica.  It works.  So it’s fun to sit down and see where story can go, and then watch them do their work, and then it becomes fantastic!

MICHAEL:

How much ahead did you gals get your scripts from Crystal so you knew what is going on this season, and what you had to play?

JESSICA:

She gives us some time to peruse and look through it.

NADIA:

Well, if you’re Shawn Christian (Brandon, Venice, Daniel, DAYS), he looks at it and goes, “Am I in that scene?”  And I go, “Did you not read the script?”  (Laughs)

MICHAEL:

What did you think about this year’s scripts?

Courtesy/Venice

JESSICA:

Not only is the show about the three of us, but we branch out with these other characters. I feel like the stories are a lot more interwoven, and the stories come together more.  I get more of a background, and an insight as to why Ani is the way she is, and her insecurities.  There is a lot of story.

MICHAEL:

Nadia, originally and some still may feel, Lara is positioned as the interloper.  But, do you think now there are people rooting for Lara and Ani to be together?

NADIA:

I think it’s an intriguing and interesting balance.  It’s so well written that you are going to see both sides of the coin.  Some people are going to root for Lara and Ani, and some are going to root for Ani and Gini to get together.  I think people are into both sides.  And, whether you read that on Twitter or the Internet, there are a lot people shouting, “Lara is the bad guy!”  But, what is interesting in this storytelling is there is not necessarily a bad guy in all of this.  These are just people who are trying to figure out their lives.

CRYSTAL:

They are all good people.  Ani would be lucky to have either one of them!

JESSICA:

Photo Credit: Getty Images

If she doesn’t get her act together she is not going to have either of them! (Laughs)

NADIA:

There is no one that is a clear villain, which is not the intention.  You don’t have this villain who is trying to poison somebody.  Here you have people all dealing with their own issues and problems, and their own path in life and wanting to find love.  And, in this situation it might be that two people on this planet have found love in the same place.

CRYSTAL:

I like Ani and Lara together, and I like Gina and Ani together.  I think timing is everything, and what is right for you today may not be right for you tomorrow.  You just have to be ready for something.  Lara and Ani have a very sweet connection, and Gina and Ani have a history and a connection, as well.  That is what makes it interesting.  There is no right or wrong.  Connection is connection.  It’s about timing, and how you react to it.

MICHAEL:

Are you still shocked that after almost five years since Guiding Light’s Otalia, and what you have done with Venice, that Jessica and Crystal on-screen are still one of the main “It” couples of soaps no matter what the platform, TV or the web?

JESSICA:

Well, the way I used to look at soap structure is: you can’t have this thing go on for too long … this has to happen … and this formula has to happen.  I think Venice has been going on long enough that we don’t need those formulas, or to use the soap scenarios such as … that person who breaks up the couple.  I don’t feel we are stuck with that.   I think that is what keeps the fans coming to watch it!  It never got stale for us.  I hope it never got stale for the viewers.

Courtesy/Venice

CRYSTAL:

We are seasonal.  We don’t have to produce five days a week.  I think that gives us more time, and people time to anticipate and want, and then we are on for three months a year, and then we can take our time telling the story, too.  We started the script well over a year ago.  There will be 12 episodes.  I think on average the episodes will run longer than usual.  Last year they ran anywhere from 10 minutes to 26 minutes.

NADIA:

There was emotionally so much content this year when we shot it.  I thought, “Wow! These episodes are going to be long!”

CRYSTAL:

They are about 20 minutes each.  They are more balanced with the time and length.  It’s just packed with a lot!  There are so many twists and turns, and so much happens that you won’t expect.  I will say this season is very heart-wrenching and touching.

NADIA:

I do agree it is touching, and just when you think one thing is happening something else drives a wedge into that.

MICHAEL:

Was there a particular moment in the shooting of the script for season four that was the most memorable, or surprised you the most?  I know we are top secret on story details! 

CRYSTAL:

Courtesy/Venice

This season has been better than I expected.  I had Susan Flannery (Ex-Stephanie B&B, who is a director on Venice) say, “Well, that didn’t work,” or “That connection is not there anymore.”   But this has been satisfying all the way through with everybody.   I think we are all more comfortable with each other.  I think we have a very solid crew.  The actors have been amazing and brought their A-game.  Every character has something to lose and something to gain.  It just makes the stakes higher, and makes the show more interesting.

JESSICA:

I will say I have trouble answering the question as I don’t want to blow anything, but I will say, the way Crystal produces it, and the locations she picks are gorgeous!  The show looks so pretty, and I didn’t expect it to be as grand as it is.  I get excited about that when I come to the set.  Now as far as story, what I will say is: I was surprised when I read things.  I was more surprised watching them play out, whether it be in my story or other people’s story, with whom I don’t get to work with as often.

MICHAEL:

Is Y&R’s Christian LeBlanc in Venice a lot this season, as Ani’s brother Jake?

CRYSTAL:

Well, I didn’t write for him, but he showed up! (Laughs)

NADIA:

Courtesy/Venice

Basically, he kept showing up and was just there! (Laughs) So, we were like, “Oh, alright.”   And Crystal is like, “Well, I gotta give him something to say.”   He is just standing in the scenes and “bogarting”!  She is like, “We didn’t even ask him to be on the show, but we’ve got to give him something.” (Laughs)  Now, I have never met anybody who won’t stop talking.  (Laughs)  It’s pretty amazing, and it would be interesting to do a science experiment on Christian.  But yeah, I get to work with him quite a bit, which has been so fun, which is why I am joking about it.

CRYSTAL:

Christian LeBlanc has taken creepy to a new art…  (Laughs)

NADIA:

…Without realizing it! (Laughs) Christian is like the least creepy person in the world, which is so funny.  He is such a close personal friend, that it has been fun to work with him, and been fun to watch him do stuff, because it’s interesting to see someone who is a really good friend of yours do something that is completely surprising.  And then I went, “Oh, yeah.  That’s why you have all of those Emmys!” (Laughs)

CRYSTAL:

Well, there is a reason for that.  You can give Christian anything, and he can put a spin on it that you don’t expect, and it’s fun.  We were laughing doing some scenes in this stairway …

NADIA:

Courtesy/Venice

… There is a scene that was very integral to the story, but weird in the location we had to work with.  I did not get it.  I did not know how it would work here.  And I thought, “This is not going to work without it feeling cheesy or weird.”  And all of a sudden, I am literally witness to this, because I am above the other characters in a stairwell.  I am watching this scene happen, and I go, “Holy Shit! These people have just made this really work!”  I was so convinced.  The scenes were so sincere and beautiful, that it’s hard not to root for Gina!  (Laughs) There was something that Christian did in the scene, when he came into it, and I was kind of blown away.  Sometimes you see something on the page, and you don’t know how it’s going to work when you put it into real life context.

CRYSTAL:

This is the first season that I feel most confident that everything that is written, works.  It is largely due to the actors.  There is something very cohesive about the group.  There is not a wasted shot in this show, no one tries to slide through anything … they all care. Most people wouldn’t survive this group, quite frankly! (Laughs)

MICHAEL:

So, what would you define as ultimately what things will be building and building to this season?

CRYSTAL:

Courtesy/Venice

It comes down to a choice.

MICHAEL:

Ani can be so wishy-washy, sometimes.   I mean, how many women would like to be in the position you are Jessica, with these two beautiful women fighting over you?

JESSICA:

Yes, I do know how many women, children, babies and animals, would love to be in my position.  I get it.  I totally get it. (Laughs)

NADIA:

She can do no wrong in this triangle.   Everybody is gushing over Jessica … and Jessica as Ani!

JESSICA:

She had done some things wrong!

MICHAEL:

Like what, binge on chocolate? (Laughs)

JESSICA:

Courtesy/VeniceTumblr

Yes, binge on chocolate (laughs).  No, she does make a lot of mistakes, and then has to figure it out.  It comes from a place of being in-love, insecurity, and that love can cloud your judgment.  That is just how it is.

CRYSTAL:

Ani is the eternal optimist.  She is always trying to see the best in people.  I really feel she is trying to make the best decision for herself based on past experience, and she is really trying.  She is working at something this season.  Ani is not being passive about what feels right to her.

MICHAEL:

Is Gina more in touch with her own feelings this season?

CRYSTAL:

Oh, yeah.  She comes out of something, and then falls right back into it, that is her consistency.  She gets hit with a lot, and has to make some choices that send her in Ani’s direction, but Ani has gone off and is making it work with Lara, and made some very strong choices for herself.  It’s all about the timing.

MICHAEL:

Does Lara have a drinking problem this season?

Courtesy/VenicetheSeries

CRYSTAL:

No, drinking is never a problem. (Laughs)

NADIA:

On a serious note, I think one of Lara’s main struggles is being so afraid to ask for help, because she is so afraid she will lose this love of her life, eventually.  I think Ani to her is her anchor, and the one person she has ever seen in her life as her stability.  Lara is so afraid of being abandoned by her.  She is afraid to admit she is fallible, and does not want to ask for help.  She wants to sweep everything under the rug and go, “OK.  I am going to prove to you that I am perfect,” because I think that is also her story growing up in that she was always having to prove she was perfect.  She was then a best-selling author, and she is always doing well, and there is no kink in the armor.  Then, we start to see her degrade again after we see her pretending it is so easy.  I think a lot of people can relate to that in some aspects, whatever that may be.  It may not be a drinking problem, but it could be anything else. It is feeling like you have to be perfect, or you are not good enough.  I think that is very sad, and I think that is a very human problem.  I think you start to see in season four how Lara deals with that, and how she deals with her thinking that she can handle everything on her own.

MICHAEL:

Crystal, what do you want everyone to know as a preview to season four, without telling anybody anything?  (Laughs)

CRYSTAL:

Courtesy/Venice

For people who are invested in these three women, you are going to see an amazing journey and the rest of the characters have so much they are going through.  Season four is about family, and love, and life, and loss, and moving on, and living.  It’s how time changes things, and how things can change in a blink of an eye, and that is what this season of Venice is really about.  You have to watch, or you are going to miss something.

MICHAEL:

Do the three of you believe in soul mates?   I think Ani and Gina are soul mates.

CRYSTAL:

I think it all comes down again to timing.  Your soul mate could be somebody who is giving you something so pure, and lovely, and wonderful, but what if something happens and somebody else comes along?  How does anybody measure up to that?  It seems so absolute.  I think you have many soul mates in a lifetime.  You’re lucky if it’s not a romantic relationship, that it is a connection and what a blessing that is.  Yes, I think these two women are soul mates, but again it’s life and timing, and will it let them find their way to each other?

JESSICA:

Also, I don’t know if soul mates are forever.  You may get a window of time with a soul mate, or it could last a lifetime!

MICHAEL:

Life is so complicated!

CRYSTAL:

Courtesy/Venice

We are getting so heady for you. (Laughs)

JESSICA:

I am not sure how other people see a soul mate, but that is how I see it.  Some people will think Gina and Ani are soul mates, and other people might think Lara and Ani might be.

CRYSTAL:

But honestly, I can say this season Ani and Gina have some very truthful talks.  I think people want to see that, and I think they are going talk some very important things out!

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anothercc
Guest
anothercc

Michael, thank you for an awesome interview as always. I cannot wait for Venice Season 4 !!! Is it August 7th yet ??? #TeamGiAni

BS
Guest
BS

I was so beaten down by the end of Season 3 that I wasn’t sure if I would be returning for V4. After the promo and this interview, I’m leaning towards giving it another try but I’m just not sure. So much momentum was lost and so little focus was placed on what should have been the core characters and stories. Ani and Gina have barely spent any real time onscreen together. It sounds like that might have changed. I like the triangle in theory but so much time has been spent (in interviews, not onscreen) trying to sell me… Read more »

ann
Guest
ann

Lara is not abusive, the whole incident with ani was unfortunate, but accidental. She has never been portrayed as abusive before or after the incident, so I think you’re just seeing what you want. Thankfully cc and rest of cast of show see it differently than you about the character of Lara.
You may want Gianni but myself and others love ani/lara and are invested in their love story too. If you don’t like the direction of the show then stop watching, no one owes you anything especially not cc and the rest of cast/crew of this show.

BS
Guest
BS

Which part was an accident? The one where she got wasted.. The part where she grabbed her head with both hands and shoved her away? Or the part where the wall was there to break her fall? In season 2, CC and Company started to tell an interesting and complex story about a dysfunctional and like I said, arguably abusive relationship and in Season 3 and subsequent interviews have tried to sweep that under the rug. I am not telling you what to like. If you like toxic, pretty couples, so be it. I think Venice wasted an opportunity to… Read more »

molsongrrrl
Guest
molsongrrrl

I have to agree, Lara was abusive and didn’t she hook up with that other chick? I don’t know why I’m supposed to be invested in Ani/Lara at all. I do happen to believe the Ani/Gina tease has gone on way too long. Because as mentioned above, they didn’t even share scenes last year! We were promised some forward motion with them last year and got nothing and here we are again hearing the same thing. I already bought my sub to the next season – so obviously I’m watching, but overall I’ve been a bit disappointed. Especially when reading… Read more »

Jesslover
Guest
Jesslover

I hate to disagree with Jessica but yeah the audience is getting tired of it, has grown tired and some fans may never come back. 4 seasons to wait for Giani is way too many. And Crystal is still being wishy washy about it. You can’t have it both ways. I agree with the poster, Lara is an abusive lying partner and Venice has all but forgotten the fact that Ani has been abused. Great message to send out to the audience. FYI, domestic abuse does occur between 2 women and it’s not ok just because the woman is pretty.… Read more »

BS
Guest
BS

I feel like CC has tried to play both sides of the fence. I would say about 25% of the fans are Lani fans and don’t seem to be as invested in the show as a whole as they are in Lani. It feels like CC knows they would walk if she ended Lani outright and she knows Giani fans can and will hang on regardless hoping for a Giani endgame. The problem is, Venice has gone on for years and there has been no forward movement in Giani and no reason for some to switch loyalties to Lani, so… Read more »

Amy
Guest
Amy

I just started watching the show this summer and have really enjoyed it. I think that what CC and the other writers are trying to do in entertain and give us a story of what does happen in a relationship. It does not matter if you are male or female. Yes that main story is about 3 women, however we also need to look a the story line of Owen, Van and Sammi and how that turned out. I see the focus to be about family, love and life, how these things intertwine together. Family is the most important thing,… Read more »

Perla
Guest
Perla

Awesome interview, this season is gonna be the bomb.

Rdblaz
Guest
Rdblaz

Thanks MF for posting this interview. It’s great to have some press for VTS. We go so long between seasons it’s hard for most to keep engaged. Your continued support and access to Crystal help with keeping fans around.
Appreciate it.

PalmGirl73
Guest
PalmGirl73

Loved the Interview, Love where this story is going and the way Crystal is writing it, I am looking forward to continuing the journey in season 4.!

Denise
Guest
Denise

I am looking forward to some good story!!!

Egolf
Guest
Egolf

Guess some of you forgot its about the journey in soaps. I for one can’t wait for the new season of Venice. Is it August 7th.

Ed
Guest
Ed

Thanks for the interview. Looking forward to the show. You can please some of the people some of the time, but some people are never happy unless they’re complaining. Good for them. Hope that works out for you.

I, for one, am looking forward to some good angsty story. It’ s a frickin show for god’s sake, not the moral compass for the entire universe.

That’s entertainment.

Thanks again Michael, Crystal, Jessica and Nadia.

PB
Guest
PB

Venice has gotten a bit cold. Drawn to it in the beginning because of how screwed up the way Otalia was handled. Even though Venice will be new characters for CC & JL, I was looking forward to seeing them work together again to keep that spark of Otalia alive. I think alot of the fans wanted that and were looking for it. I didn’t even like GL but I loved that storyline. That’s why I gave money and purchased items. I was hoping to see that wonderful love story in a new format, one where same sex relationships isn’t… Read more »

npa
Guest
npa

I too was drawn to Venice because of GL. I was intrigued by the Otalia storyline because it was so different from the usual storylines of a soap. Although I knew the characters and story would not be those of GL, I must say I was expecting to be drawn in by the story (probably because of the actors) but sadly that does not seem to be the case. I am a sponsor and have bought merchandise in support of the show but I am well over the seemingly never ending triangle. I am not new to soaps and know… Read more »

Jacinta
Guest
Jacinta

Hmmm not sure what to make of this interview. I think I’m going to have to wait before subscribing for Season 4 to hear what the reviews are. I really didn’t enjoy Seasons 2 or 3 and have been greatly disappointed by the storylines. Hopefully Season 4 lives up to the hype otherwise I’m afraid they will have lost this viewer forever.

Blake
Guest
Blake

So great to see the new season. And so glad that it’s still going, kudos to CC and the gang there!

sushe12
Guest
sushe12

Great interview Michael. I for one can’t wait for season 4 to begin. The promo added to the anticipation. This is soap and like Crystal said ” it’s about time and how you react to it”… I just hope that certain issues from last season get resolved like the infamous “letter”.

bookchick
Guest
bookchick

Venice technically isn’t a soap. It is a weekly serial drama with long hiatuses between seasons. Therefore, they don’t have the luxury of viewer patience and can’t waste any scenes, storylines, or characters on filler. If they don’t grab viewers, they lose viewers. Season 3 felt like a waste of time and did nothing to move stories forward. Now, over one year later, here we go again with another season and hopefully this one is more compelling and more tightly woven but we’ll see. This interview didn’t do much to assure me that CC gets it but maybe I will… Read more »

VB
Guest
VB

Lara y Ani ♥

LA
Guest
LA

Awesome interview i cant wait for season 4. Last season i was rooting for a giani reunion and for ani to see the letter, now i’m not so sure. Gina and ani do seem like soulmates but i don’t trust gina has completely changed and will not push ani away again, esp after seein the trailer and logan is sniffing around. Ani despite her insecurities is the perfect type of girlfriend and doesn’t deserve for her heart to be broken by gina again. She seems to have strong feelings for lara too and despite lara not being perfect, is only… Read more »

jocelyne
Guest
jocelyne

I am waiting patiently for Gina and Ani to end together.
But, it’s really tough and my heart sometimes bleeds.
Anyway, congrats to all the staff! And respect from France.

LW
Guest
LW

Anyone who took the time to comment here is certainly going to continue to watch. CC and her team have done what good storytelling does, they’ve crafted a story that illicits a strong reaction. For some, that reaction is so strong that they want to protest the show in order to get what they want from the characters. But I am just a spectator. I am not invested, one way or the other, in Ani’s love choices. But I am invested in the skillful way the characters are connected and how this family lives, loves, and works together. I found… Read more »

ann
Guest
ann

This was a nice comment LW :). I agree completely.

Sharonda Price(blueruby r pinkribbon price)
Guest
Sharonda Price(blueruby r pinkribbon price)

To Whom it May Concern Dear Crystal,Jessica,Nadia and the rest of the Actor’s/Actress’s I sharonda price just wanna say to you all that I wish you well on your Acting Career’s and May God bless you all with everything that your Heart Desire and Desired for in life and I also wanna say to you all that I’ve enjoyed watching you all on T.V. and on the website’s as well as watching your show and I Admit that I had a Blast of this whole darn thang and I hope that You 3 lovely Lady”s(Laddies-Ladies)Will keep up the good job/work… Read more »

imane assi
Guest
imane assi

Thank you.To be honest the only reason Im watchingb it is Lara.Her journey is the only interesting thing for me.She’s not abusive.She just pushed Ani ,who was trying to force herself on her ,away.She pushed her too hard because of her driking issue,but she never beated Ani before or After.It was an incident.What I wish for is Lara to end it with Ani and find someone who actually love her and care about her.Not someone who’s just using her until she finds her way back to her ex.I hope that Lara will find someone who will help her accept that… Read more »

raquel
Guest
raquel

I agree. Otalia fans have to stop thinking venice is otalia re cap. Lara and Ani

Maureen
Guest
Maureen

I so agree! I don’t think Gina wants Ani, I think that Gina just doesn’t want anyone else to have her. Ani is beuatiful and soft, and she doesn;t have enough backbone. Lara deserves someone better, that will actually emobrace her and help her with her addiction by truly loving her, and not thinking about her lost lover. Seems the writers have Gina tied to every storyline here. It all revolves around, and comes back to Gina.

Lisa
Guest
Lisa

Thank you Michael for the interview, but I really didn’t learn anything new about what is going to happen on V4. I pretty much got the same with the promo and other interviews. Sorry. I also love the triangle — there really is no bad combination, really! The decision has always been for Ani to make…whether, it is right or wrong, it’s for her and her alone. As for soul mates…I’m not quite sure about that. I believe there are soul mates and there is a place and time for them to meet; however, I also believe there are people… Read more »

whirl
Guest
whirl

I’ve watched all of “Otalia”, all of Venice to date, and The Grove pilot (awesome!)… I will probably keep watching these no matter what the direction of the storyline (barring our 3 leads going straight! 🙂 I love it all! And– the promo looks great- sexy and heart-wrenching…

livelifestrong
Guest
livelifestrong

Most of the videos on YouTube featuring Lani (Lara and ani) are the most viewed then giani ( Gina and ani) so you tell me what the Venice audience wants?

Oviously Team lani !

raquel
Guest
raquel

True 😉

CnK
Guest
CnK

Turn up the heat on those make out scenes! Push the envelope even more. The first scene of the first episode on S1 was H-O-T! Besides the shower scene w/ Lara and Ani, nothing has really followed suit. Give us more ‘throw caution to the wind’ impromptu heavy make out scenes, PLEASE!! Use the online medium to turn it up a lot more.

– sincerely, married lesbian from Ca

kelltwomyn
Guest
kelltwomyn

Thank you, Michael, for this interview. It is a pleasure to watch Nadia Bjorlin stretch her acting wings on Venice and I look forward to that each season. I enjoy the high production values on the show and the beautiful cinematography. For me, the show is a visual treat and the entertainment value of the stories is high. I am looking forward to V4.

I would like to read an interview with Susan Flannery on her directing work with Venice. That would be a fascinating interview!

Alex
Guest
Alex

I’m wondering since they mentioned Ani’s insecurities that might explain why she stays with Lara. Lara is beautiful and Ani can’t believe that someone like Lara would fall in love with her. You know, the “this amazingly hot person is into me?” syndrome. However, it’s also showing that even the beautiful people such as Lara deal with insecurities as well. Lara’s insecurities regarding perfection manifest through her alcoholism. Gina did a number on Ani and that led her into another toxic relationship with Lara. I believe Crystal is trying to convey that we can love more than one person and… Read more »

Anita
Guest
Anita

I kind of feel sorry for Lara Character. There are so many women in this world that don’t want to be alone because of bad relationships that made them feel a certain way or just struggles that they are having and they felt alone their whole life because they had expectations growing up and it was just rough for them. I would like to see Lara and Ani together. Have Ani see that Lara loves her and really needs her, let their relationship be like Bo and Hope from days of our lives. “huge fan” but with a twist of… Read more »

Dee
Guest
Dee

I was not watching until I heard Christian LeBlanc had joined the cast and Bam I didnt waste any time starting to watch Venice. He is such a great actor and great person I just cannot get enough of watching him. He brought a special something to Venice and I love watching Jake (CLB) He is naughty. I love him on Y&R my favorite of all time. He is who got me hooked on Y&R and now knowing he is an integral part of Venice Yo bet I am gonna watch. Paid to see him Season 4 Venice would do… Read more »

General Hospital

GH’s Chloe Lanier Talks On Nelle’s Twisted Plots, Her Co-Stars & That Cliffhanger “Ending”

Recently on ABC’s General Hospital, Chloe Lanier’s Nelle Benson created even more havoc for Carly (Laura Wright), Michael (Chad Duell), Julian (William deVry), Brook Lynn (Briana Lane), and of course, her son, Wiley.

However, is Nelle really gone after her ‘fall,’ which has left her MIA and Carly believing she is responsible for her sister’s ‘death’? But as we know with Nelle, she keeps secretly planning her next move and loves to slowly torture those who she believes have wronged her. There is also the ongoing mystery of just who is Nina’s (Cynthia Watros) daughter, especially since Nelle has the other half of the necklace so near and dear to Nina; leaving viewers pondering if it could mean they are mother and child, or is this all a red-herring?

One thing is for sure, Daytime Emmy winner, Chloe Lanier brings it each and every time she returns to GH. She gives always give the storylines a much needed injection of drama, drama and more drama. No one is quite like Lanier in the soaps either; she can play tough, vulnerable, manipulative, and street smart, like nobody’s business.

Michael Fairman TV caught up with Chloe to get her answers to some of our burning questions for her and her portrayal of naughty Nelle, and how one of her co-stars helped her through a very difficult time in her life.  Here’s what she had to say about it all.

Courtesy/ABC

What did you think of the courtroom antics of Nelle during the custody hearing for Wiley?

CHLOE:  I mean, showing up in a wedding dress was her first mistake. Then antagonizing everyone in the room was probably her second. But she’s so wounded—so broken from her childhood. She doesn’t have the proper emotional tools to combat her self-destructive behavior.

Which showdown or confrontation between Nelle and Michael stands out to you?

CHLOE:  I particularly loved the scenes where Nelle, nine months pregnant, leaves Michael in the rigged car, hoping it would explode. It’s rare that you’re given comedic material on a soap, so that was particularly exciting for me. Also, Chad’s reactions always make me laugh. He’s great.

Photo: ABC

What is it like working with Chad Duell as feuding exes and parents of Wiley? 

CHLOE:  Chad is so easy to work with. He’s been doing the show for so long and is very technically gifted. The writers graced us with some meaty material that we were able to sink our teeth into.

Photo: JPI

What does Nelle think of Willow (Katelyn MacMullen)? She really hates her, huh?

CHLOE: I don’t believe she hates her. She’s envious. Willow is the exact opposite and oftentimes we’re afraid of what we don’t understand. Particularly someone like Nelle, who was raised by a con artist and taught to exploit and manipulate anyone she comes across. So when she sees someone so pure, so innocent, she immediately distrusts her because that behavior is so far outside the lines of how she operates.

What was it like taping the fight scenes between Carly and Nelle, where Nelle “Plummets” to her death?  

CHLOE:  Shout out to Amanda Hall and Heather Bonomo, our amazing stunt doubles for those scenes. They were fantastic.

Courtesy/ABC

When you and Laura Wright get the scripts; where Carly and Nelle are having a huge showdown, are you thrilled about getting the chance to play the emotional beats of those moments? What if it’s a fight scene?

CHLOE:  Those scenes were such a joy, because we got to explore some of the deep roots of Nelle’s trauma, and Carly explicitly said, “I believe you love your son.” That, for me, was important.  Because despite all of her failings, she truly did love her son—in her own warped, off kilter, way.

Photo: Paul Smith

Nelle has really been blackmailing Julian, until he turned the tables on her on the pier?  What has it been like acting opposite Will deVry in those scenes?

CHLOE:  I love Will. He and I actually have the same acting coach, so our prep and how we’re working is from a similar place. What I love about Will is the confidence he has in his stillness. He’s lovely on camera, so connected.

Photo: ABC

Nelle has the other half of the necklace belonging to Nina.  What do you think if it turns out that Nelle is Nina’s daughter?  It is quite possible, tho, that she is not, and it’s all a red herring. How has it been working with Cynthia Watros?

CHLOE:  Cynthia is one of the kindest human beings I’ve ever met, truly. We haven’t known each other for long, but earlier this year, and not many people know this other than my close friends, I was having glaring mental health issues stemming from unresolved trauma. I was going going going for so long that I couldn’t run away from it anymore. I had never dealt with any of it. She saw it and could tell I was silently struggling and reached out. You don’t forget kindness like that. So I’m very grateful for Cynthia—and of course, therapy. I would be flattered if they decided to make Nelle Nina’s daughter.

Photo:ABC

What do you think about how the writers have kept finding ways to have plot points that get all the other characters in trouble and make it look like they did something to Nelle, but she ultimately has her own diabolical plans for them with her actions? She is pretty smart!

CHLOE:  Nelle is the perfect victim, and her love language is sabotage. She’s also a narcissist, so she’s always going to think she’s the smartest person in the room. She’s basically a walking version of Taylor Swift’s song, Look What You Made Me Do. I love that the writers gifted me the opportunity work with almost everyone on the show. Josh (Swickard) and I always had a great time together. And Maurice (Benard)—god he’s hilarious. I would have loved to work with Briana Nicole Henry (Jordan) more though. I love watching her work. She’s going to have an amazing career.

Photo: ABC

Do you think Nelle can ever be redeemed at this point?

CHLOE:  Redemption is a weird one for me, because I don’t believe that people are inherently good or bad. We’re all human. We all have flaws, make mistakes, have regrets, experience shame. We have the ability to grow and we learn from our past. Nelle has done and felt all of those things, to a degree, but continued to do the same thing over and over again while expecting a different result. A character either has to change or they die. So, I’ll say this—if Nelle is alive out there somewhere, I hope she’s going to therapy.

Photo: JPI

What has been the hardest scene for you to play emotionally in the time you have been playing Nelle?

CHLOE:  Probably the scene with the newborn, where Nelle runs into Brad on the side of the road. I had never held a newborn baby before, so I was TERRIFIED. I realized I was the only thing in that moment keeping that baby alive…a very bizarre and life altering feeling, I’ll say.

So, have you enjoyed Chloe’s performances? Do you think Nelle is plotting from afar?  What would you like to see happen in the storylines with  baby Wiley, Nina’s child, and more? Comment below.

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Days Of Our Lives

Chandler Massey & Freddie Smith Discuss Their Departure From DAYS, New Beginnings & WilSon’s Journey

This week, Days of our Lives viewers saw the highly-anticipated exit off the canvas, for now,  of Daytime Emmy-winners, Chandler Massey and Freddie Smith as Will and Sonny.

Tuesday marked their final airshow, while the actors found out they were being written-out of the show and had filmed their last six episodes over seven months ago, because at that time and before the pandemic, DAYS was taping far in advance of air.

Now with this leg of their journey complete as the popular Salem duo, Chandler and Freddie are embarking on new chapters of their lives, as Chandler details his move to Atlanta and Freddie in a few weeks to Florida.  But as they discuss in this very special conversation with Michael Fairman on You Tube’s Michael Fairman Channel, they are not stopping acting either.

During this “farewell for now” interview with Michael, the two actors open up about their final scripts, their last tape day, how both characters helped many individuals come out and come to terms with who they are via watching Will’s coming out story, Will and Sonny’s on-screen relationship and more.

In addition, Freddie discusses what happened when he auditioned for the role of Sonny and what he thinks helped land him the gig; Chandler shares a story about a fan that is very moving, and that his biggest regret was not getting to play the wedding scenes between Will and Sonny (Guy Wilson at that time had stepped into the role of Will).   The duo also reveal their favorite and least favorite storylines they were involved in, and much more.

Watch the full interview below.

So, what do you think about what Freddie and Chandler had to share during our conversation? Share your thoughts via the comment section below.

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Interviews

Y&R’s Melody Thomas Scott Talks Harrowing Childhood, Growing Up In Hollywood, Nikki’s Storylines

This week, The Young and the Restless’ iconic, Melody Thomas Scott (Nikki Newman) new memoir, Always Young & Restless: My Life on and Off off America’s #1 Daytime Drama,” from Diversion Books, is available everywhere.

For everyone that follows Melody, this book has been several years in the making with some starts and stops, but in it she does not hold back and reveals some very painful details and moments from her upbringing when she was raised by her unstable grandmother and more.

Courtesy/DiversionBooks

Melody also talks about reuniting with her estranged father when he suddenly awoke from his coma while she was by his side.  Throughout her lengthy career in Hollywood, Melody has worked with some of the greats including: Clint Eastwood, Brian DePalma and Alfred Hitchcock.

Now in a conversation with Michael Fairman on The Michael Fairman Channel on You Tube, Melody opens about her decision on the stories she told in the books, her favorite and least favorite storylines as Nikki on Y&R, working with Eric Braeden (Victor) and the entire company of the CBS daytime drama where she has been for over 40 years, and how she hopes her memoir might help others; including those stage moms and children considering life in front of the camera and more.

To watch the full interview with Melody, check it out below.

Then let us know, what have you been most surprised to learn about Melody this past week as her memoir has come out? What is your favorite or least favorite storylines of Nikki’s on Y&R over the years? Share your thoughts in the comment section.

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B&B’s Heather Tom talks with Michael Fairman immediately following her record-tying win in the Lead Actress category during the 47th annual Daytime Emmy Awards.  Heather and Erika now hold the most wins for an actress with 6! Leave A Comment

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