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The Daniel Goddard Interview – The Young and the Restless

Photo Credit: Kathie Huchins

Photo Credit: Russell Bear

Happy Valentine’s Day from On-Air On-Soaps!  And who better to celebrate this romantic of all holidays with then The Young and the Restless resident heartthrob, Daniel Goddard!  Today his alter-ego, Genoa City’s Cane Ashby, gets set to walk down the aisle in what the number one daytime drama is promising to be a beautiful heartfelt and stirring ceremony to his beloved Lily, played by Christel Khalil.

After so many twists and turns including: Cane being shot “dead” in front of the church steps, an evil twin, Lily thinking she is going bonkers, Cane’s bizarre family background being revealed, constant familial interference, a possible Danny Romalotti and Lily romantic re-teaming, (and that’s just for starters), the invincible couple known lovingly to its fans as LANE will finally have their special day.

To preview the wedding drama and what’s next for Cane, we had the opportunity to speak to one of our favorite gents in the business, Mr. Daniel Goddard.  So, what makes Cane and Lily the couple to root for?  How did Daniel feel about the road it took for these two lovers to find there way back to each other?  How does he feel about Cane’s relationship now with Genevieve and working with the legendary Genie Francis?  And how should men treat their wives on Valentine’s Day?  Find out when you read our very special interview with Daniel on this double occasion, Valentine’s Day, and the second wedding of Cane and Lily!

MICHAEL:

Are you excited about the pay-off for long time LANE fans?  Finally, they get to see their favorite duo get hitched … again!

DANIEL:

Photo Credit: Kathie Huchins

I am really excited about the whole wedding.  I am excited about the storyline and that it is a two episode arc.  Viewers found out on yesterday’s episode about the gift from Katherine that Cane and Lily will be heading off to France for their nuptials, and today’s air show is the first episode of the two-part wedding.  Today is actually a big day in general!  I am also doing The Price is Right for Valentine’s Day, and then Christel Khalil and I are doing The Talk live!

MICHAEL:

Cane and Lily have had everything but the kitchen sink thrown at them over the course of the last few years.  Do you like how the story has played out?  Do you think their relationship has finally come full-circle?

DANIEL:

I think it’s come full circle and I think this is being done well.  Certainly, Cane and Lily have had a lot of ups and downs.  I think through all of that, the fans have stayed true and they have expressed their desire for what they want to see.  I think a wedding of this caliber will make the fans very, very happy and that is what this is about.

MICHAEL:

Where did you film the wedding episodes?  I know you did not go to France!

DANIEL:

We shot the wedding at Greystone which is in Los Angeles. It’s a huge estate and mansion which was chosen to look like France.  And to be honest with you, it’s such a wonderful location that you would never know it isn’t France!  The full crew was there so we had a great lavish look to it and it was a great production.  It’s going to be wonderful.

MICHAEL:

So when you and Christel say the wedding vows as Cane and Lily, are they different this time out in their feeling and delivery?  Fans love great heartfelt wedding vows between two long suffering star-crossed lovers, you know?

DANIEL:

Courtesy/CBS

Yes.  The vows this time are different because the last wedding had more of the, “I will always love you” type of vows.  This one is our second wedding and so the vows are more about having fun and understanding where they have been and understanding what they have gone through.  Basically it has the sentiment of, “Let’s make sure we never have to go through that again, and let’s have fun.”  It has a great light-hearted feel to the whole thing.

MICHAEL:

Daniel, you had the beginnings of such meaty story when Cane’s mother, Genevieve was added to the mix. Then it seemed like all of a sudden that whole story got wiped out pretty quickly.  Will we finally see Cane and Genevieve dealing with their feelings for each other as mother and son?

DANIEL:

I think it’s come full circle between Cane and Genevieve now.  Genevieve coming to town and using Cane in sort of a puppet master kind of way to have her desires to get back at Colin fulfilled is over with,  and where does that leave Cane and Genevieve’s relationship?  The next stage is about to be delved into.  Cane has gotten this job offer from Ashley and Jabot, and of course, we will end up seeing the trials and tribulations on how that affects his relationship with his mother, while she works at “Beauty of Nature.”  So it’s good stuff.  It has some legs.

MICHAEL:

How has it been working with soap icon Genie Francis (Genevieve)?

DANIEL:

It’s great.  What is interesting about Y&R is that everybody has different relationships with each other on the show, and I think that comes across on camera.  So, my relationship with Jess Walton (Jill) is very different than my relationship with Genie.  And what is wonderful about that is that we all have a great working relationship and a great off-set working relationship, but because the dynamics are so different, you see it play out on screen.  I have a lot of respect for Genie Francis.  I love working with her.  It’s interesting that we have an opportunity to build this relationship on-screen, and that we don’t have the history off-screen.  Cane and Genevieve have this back-story.  I have always tried to maintain a certain level of ambiguity with my relationship with Genie Francis, because I know that carries over into the ambiguity and the history of Cane and Genevieve.

MICHAEL:

Courtesy/CBS

From having spoken to you and many of your cast mates over the years, I know you have a very thoughtful process to your acting approach.  So I am wondering, what does Cane really think of this woman, Genevieve?  I know she is his mother, but she has done some horrendous things for god sakes!

DANIEL:

Exactly!  But I think at the same time Cane does genuinely feels like he wishes that his mother could step up, and be the mother she should be to him.  I think he is at that stage of his life where he will always give her the benefit of the doubt.  But when it becomes emotionally exhausting, he has to then step away for his sanity and his family’s sanity.

MICHAEL:

There is also such sweetness and pure love in scenes between Cane and Katherine played by Jeanne Cooper.  Katherine always seems to be there for Cane, no matter what he has done to her family in the past!  How is it having Jeanne back on the set after her medical leave?

DANIEL:

I love having Jeanne back.  She is doing great.  Jeanne Cooper is the glue that holds this show together.  I think that when she was not here, she was greatly missed, and you could feel that throughout the set.

MICHAEL:

There is a surprise visitor at the nuptials!  Will that cause a wedding day ripple? Or, is it a little blip in the road?

DANIEL:

Photo Credit: Getty Images

I think it sets up the impending drama that we understand that Genevieve truly does love Cane even though she is incapable of taking herself out of the equation.  She will still do things for her own purpose and cause, but by her showing up at the wedding, the audience knows her heart is in the right place. Now it’s about seeing if they can overcome their history and their inability to make it work.  It allows the show the ability to rectify things between them down the road.

MICHAEL:

Will Cane’s sister Samantha get brought up again?  It was dropped all of a sudden, too!

DANIEL:

I don’t know, but that would be interesting.  Who knows what they will do with that? She is a keystone part of the relationship between Cane and Genevieve.  I think her death led to the unfolding of everybody’s relationship…. Colin and Cane…Caleb and Cane …. Genevieve and Caleb and vice versa … and so I think Sam is very integral to their dysfunctional relationship.

MICHAEL:

I thought your scenes with Tristan Rogers (Ex-Colin, Y&R, now Robert, GH) were interesting.  Was it hard to see Tristan all of a sudden leaving the canvas?

DANIEL:

Whenever somebody leaves a show that you love working with, and you have a great rapport with, it’s always hard.

MICHAEL:

Christel and you are so beloved by the fans and the Y&R audience.  What is it about Christel that you enjoy working with, and why do you think it translates on screen for LANE?

DANIEL:

Photo Credit: Kathie Huchins

I think Christel and I have a frivolous sense of humor when it comes to things that most people take seriously.  We will be doing scenes where we know we have to say certain dialog, and while we run the words we want to change them, but we don’t.  So in the middle of a scene, when we get to that place, you will notice every now and then that we will stop and kind of smile and have a laugh and keep going.  That is because we bring the frivolity with regards to the way we perceive things through our scenes.  We have a very tongue and cheek way with certain things we find funny.  We have a very bawdy sense of humor about it.  Our sense of humor is very similar.  Christel is just great to work with.  I really enjoy the spontaneity of it!

MICHAEL:

It is Valentines Day, and you are married in real life.  So do you think Valentine’s Day is an important day for a couple or a big excuse for a commercial holiday?

DANIEL:

My feelings on Valentine’s Day are that you have to see if for what it is. It is a Hallmark sort of holiday created for that reason.  But, I am a big believer that everyday should be Valentine’s Day.  I don’t think you should cruise through the year and then say, “Oh, it’s February 14th.  I have to buy some flowers and be nice to my wife.” You know what I mean?

MICHAEL:

Of course I know what you mean.  But here is the million dollar question … will you be buying flowers and being nice to your wife today on Valentine’s Day? (Laughs)

DANIEL:

(Laughs)  The other thing I have learned is that every now and then when you have that inside voice saying, “You should buy your wife some flowers”…  buy the flowers.  If you are in the supermarket and you see the flowers … buy the flowers.  I am a detail guy.   So for me it’s all about the little things.  I always look for the details and how can we fix this or that.  I think you can have a great foundation and a great exterior, but when you do a photo shoot in a house and you don’t have the flowers on the table, and the little bits and pieces that make it looked lived in, it looks like a home that no one lives in.  Men, always buy the flowers when you think you should get them, not just on Valentine’s Day!

MICHAEL:

Photo Credit: PR Photo

Do you ever look back at all of Cane’s “power jobs” and go, “How the hell could this happen?”  I say that in light of Cane’s true and sometimes questionable background! (Laughs)

DANIEL:

I know!  If you do a Fortune 500 search for a lot of college dropouts in Fortune 500 companies, you will find that it’s something like 40%.  At the end of the day, you can go to school and just because you answer the questions right does not mean you have the wherewithal or the capacity to run a business.  I don’t think Cane has the book learning skills side of it, but I think he has the life lessons side of it, based on who he is and where he has come from.  The way he does business with people, he kind of understands who they are as people.  Cane at Jabot is very enthusiastic and cautious about falling into a family business which is an Abbott company.  I think he is sensitive about that.  However, that being said, he has no fears in doing business with anybody because if you can come from a family of gangsters than business people don’t really measure up.

MICHAEL:

So as the wedding of Cane and Lily unfolds, will members of the Winters, Abbotts, and Chancellor clans be supportive of their union? Or, should we expect much bickering and those snarky looks from various wedding guests throughout the ceremony?

DANIEL:

I think you get a very good feeling from the beginning of the wedding that it is going to have a happy ending.  I was talking to our executive producer and head writer, Maria Arena Bell while we were on location at Greystone and she said, “You know, this is really the first wedding we have had in a long long time that doesn’t end in a tragedy!” That is so true because recently Jack got shot at his wedding. Then remember, Victoria got arrested at her wedding, and at Cane and Lily’s first wedding after they leave, Cane looks up to the heavens and says, “Please forgive me for what I have to do.”  Maria said this wedding is something she wants the fans to get behind.  It’s going to be just a beautiful occasion between two very loved characters who have gone through so much, in the form of Cane and Lily, and they deserve to be happy together.

MICHAEL:

Photo Credit: Getty Images

Do you like the opportunity to get to dress up in character, and do the GQ look in tuxedos and suits, etc?

DANIEL:

I am a jeans and t-shirt type of a guy.  However, at the end of a day I enjoy shooting on location because we shoot in doors so much.  So I am a big believer in that any type of change from the norm is fun.

MICHAEL:

You have an amazing fan base that you consistently stay in touch with on your Twitter page.  Often, I find you chatting with them and engaging with them in conversation.  Do you think that is important for an actor to do in 2012 as a key ingredient to their success and staying power with a continuing series like Y&R?

DANIEL:

I think it’s important.  I think if you nurture something I think it grows on its own and then you find a way to allow it to be the best it can be.   Cane and Lily had a grass root fan base.  I remember back in 2007 when we started. The CBS Soaps in Depth polls were there and we were in the polls as couple number five, and we weren’t yet ranking in the individual actor polls.  I remember going to our former EP, Josh Griffith’s office going, “Dude, Dude, Dude, look at this!”  We next went from number five, then to number four, then to number three, and then to the individual actor polls. Then, TV Guide did this feature on the top people in daytime for both men and women.  I think I came in at number one for the men, and Christel came in at one of the top two spots for the women. I think for me I feel an obligation to allow the fans to get what they give to you. I think it’s selfish of an actor if he has a fan base, not to give the fans something really special because you touch so many lives. To bring so much joy and so much happiness to people, I mean, why not?  The fans have been amazing!

MICHAEL:

Can you comment on what you think some of Cane and Lily best and worst moments in story have been through the years?  

DANIEL:

Photo Credit: Kathie Huchins

I love the scenes where you have an honest conversation between Cane and Lily, and you turn to the person and you go, “This is happening. How do I do this? How do I fix this?” The reason I like that is because that is what happens in real life!  I think as long as scenes have a truth to them, they are always well done.  I think that is what Christel and I always look for … that honesty.  You can look back at the history of the scenes we have had together and you can see the ones where there is a genuine love that the characters have for each other.  It does come from the writing, and there have been a lot of scenes like that.

MICHAEL:

Didn’t you think it might have been a tad tricky when viewers didn’t know if it was Cane or Caleb crawling into bed with poor Lily?

DANIEL:

Yeah, it was interesting.  I did not know when Caleb was Caleb and Cane was Cane until a certain point through it.  I had to play it ambiguously.  And for me it was difficult because I did not want it to look like Cane was ever manipulating Lily.  That is the sort of the thing whether you have to fake your death or whatever it is, you would deliberately not want to hurt the person you love in the process.  But it allowed for great drama that the fans could get behind, and then they were led out of that portion of the story to where we are now.  So I think it inadvertently allowed the audience to unify with a common voice which is now being repaid to them.

MICHAEL:

Do you love, hate, or were you on the fence, about playing twins?

DANIEL:

I loved it.  I really enjoyed it because when you play a twin they should not be diametrically opposed to one another. I think a lot of the time in life it should be, “Well, which one is it?” because a lot of twins grew up like that.  I enjoyed getting away from Cane and playing Caleb, and then coming back to Cane.  I love my character and my job.  I am very fortunate.

MICHAEL:

Photo Credit: PR Photo

Now, after the wedding will Cane will remain a good guy?  I assume he might be tinkering with some things for the greater good for whatever business he is involved with and to protect his family.

DANIEL:

I don’t think at this point you will see Cane being played any other way than how he deals with different obstacles to overcome and having different missions to accomplish.  I think we have established everything he has gone through from faking that he is Phillip Chancellor III …

MICHAEL:

Geez Daniel! You have had so many, “interesting” stories, to say the least!

DANIEL:

Yeah, I know. (Laughs)  Someone the other day said, “So tell me about your character?” And I was like, “Hmmm. Well….”  I think where we go now is giving the fans what they want which is a strong home based relationship and trials and tribulations occurring outside of that.

MICHAEL:

Do you have any problem at this point in your career in providing what you do for the daytime audience, and that is being the strong romantic leading man that can act?

DANIEL:

Well first, thank you.  No, I have no problem with that label.  I went the other route earlier in my career where I wanted to be the character actor.  I wanted to be the Viggo Mortensen and Sean Penn characters.  I have always come across this hurdle which is: if you look like the character, then you get to play the character guy type of roles.  So I think this is a niche that I have arrived at because I think this is where everything has led me towards.

MICHAEL:

You know when a soap couple ties the knot it often times spells disaster for their characters.  They can end up stalled in story, back-burnered, or they become incredibly boring because often times writers can’t seem to figure out what to do with a couple once they are happy.  Have you and Christel had a conversation about that?

DANIEL:

Photo Credit: Steven Bergman

No, no, no.  I think she and I could read the phone books together and make them fun.  I am not concerned at all.  But to be honest with you, every single fan I meet – whether at a personal appearance or walking down street – the first thing they say to me is, “God, we love Cane and Lily.   We love Cane and Lily together.  When are they going to be together?”  So, if you are talking about a couple where they don’t have the history and they don’t have the chemistry, then it’s doomed, because then the show has them get married and then they sit there looking at each other and go, “Well, what do we do now?” You could put Christel and me in a scene together about stuffing pillows with polystyrene, and we would find a way to make that funny and interesting because that is where she and I are at with our lives now.

MICHAEL:

Maria Arena Bell once told me that she would never have Michael and Lauren knowingly cheat on each other. (Of course, Lauren’s doppelganger was another story!)  So do you think with Cane and Lily in the future, and to protect the integrity of their characters and their marriage, the problems will come from an outside source?  I hope Cane won’t end up by accident in some women’s bed!

DANIEL:

Well, I did that already with Chloe when I woke up drunk in the car!  I think that you will find that you give the fans what they want, they stay watching the show, and then you give the fans something extra and then they tell new people who then start to watch the show.  That is a true tested historical fact and formula with any television show that has ever been on the air.

MICHAEL:

Daniel, you had some pretty heavy ups and downs with Y&R.  You were off the show at one point then brought back on.  Are there any hard feelings leftover from that whole set of circumstances?

DANIEL:

I have no hard feelings. I am just so happy to be a part of the show.  I love everything about the show, and to be honest with you, every single time I get a script, the first thing I do is read it.  I read the entire script, not just my part.  I am just so honored and pleased to be part of the Y&R family.

MICHAEL:

So, should we bring our hankies when we sit-down to watch the wedding of Cane and Lily today and tomorrow?

DANIEL:

Always bring your hankies … and your hanky-panky and some cake!  And make sure to watch the Price is Right, we are giving away a good trip, and The Talk  because whenever Christel and I do a talk show it is a lot of fun.

Photo Credit: Kathie Huchins

MICHAEL:

Wow!  This is good.  They are pimping you guys out! (Laughs)

DANIEL:

Yeah! But Christel and I on a talk show is fun.  We have a very interesting relationship and I think our dynamic plays well.

MICHAEL:

Finally, what do you think your on-screen partner-in-crime Christel Khalil, would say about you if I asked her what it is like to work with you?

DANIEL:

She would smile and shake her head (laughs) and say we have a great time together.

 

 

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Enuf!Twit&TwatWriters
Enuf!Twit&TwatWriters

Thanks Michael for another DG interview! We Love Him!

Still waiting for a Christel Adnana interview; been waiting for years! What’s up with that–surely not a bit of sexism is it? LOL!!! Seriously we want to hear from both actors who comprise LANE–Lily and Cane and Christel does have a voice, an outlook to share!

Cassondra Brotzman
Cassondra Brotzman

lovely article

Christina
Christina

Awesome interview! I am so happy I was part of the campaign to keep Daniel Goddard on YR.

mandy
mandy

Great interview. Enjoyed it. Love Cane & Lily!

Michelle
Michelle

Thanks Michael for another AWESOME Daniel Goddard Interview! I enjoyed reading every minute of it!!

Linda
Linda

Great Post Loved it

tasneem
tasneem

Thanx Michael I love ur Daniel. Interviews. Can u plz interview Christel next

Peggy
Peggy

Another great interview with Daniel Goddard! Loved reading every bit of it! Thanks. Maybe at some point you could interview Christel Khalil.

Sammie
Sammie

That was an awesome interview Michael! Can you please interview Christel next? We want to hear from the whole LANE, not just half of LANE! LOL!

Sheryl
Sheryl

Thanks Michael for another great interview.

Jenna
Jenna

That was great, Michael. Thank you for posting this interview.

I like Daniel Goddard and have lurked on his Twitter before. He usually posts a shirtless photo of himself and makes me scratch my head as to why, but this interview put him in a different light. He sounded very down-to-Earth. I enjoyed it.

I do, however, still feel bad that they had to make Tristan Rogers’ character so evil to make Cane look good. It was such a waste of another amazing actor. I guess it is General Hospital’s gain … for a little while.

Barbara
Barbara

Based on the comments, it sounds like I may be in the minority. But I don’t like Cane. The character has done nothing but repeatedly lie the entire time that he has been on Y&R yet everyone, especially Kay and Jill, are dazzled by him. While I like Lily slightly more (which is not saying much), the character’s romantic partner is boring. I struggle to remain interested in scenes between these two. There is no way that I could root for them as “THE” couple on Y&R.

I feel like the writers keep pushing Cane and Lily on us, trying to get us to like them. It sounds like most of you do like them. Personally, I feel like the show is constantly shoving them down my throat in an effort to make them popular.

DeeDee
DeeDee

The writers made him lie silly girl! Bravo to TPTB for finally getting it RIGHT!
Lane Rocks Y&R!!!

Barbara
Barbara

Thanks for your well reasoned and very intellectually response. After fully considering your view, I’ll stick with my original opinion:

Both Cane and Lily blow. The show should immediately dump the actor playing Cane (hopefully, in a plot in which the character lies again and is killed as a result) and send Lily into the land of recurring character seen only at holidays.

kay killgore
kay killgore

When MAB took over the helm she was going to undo everything LML did the character of Cane was originated by LML this character should have just been left alone as is . MAB just kept changing his story I really liked Cane and I still like the actor I just think their were so many holes in the storyline fans were just frustrated.

Carolyn
Carolyn

Thanks for the article Michael! I enjoyed reading the interview with Daniel! Cane and Lily are my favorite couple on the show! I want them to stay and work together against any angst or problems that they encounter! I also helped in the campaign to keep Daniel on the show! Want to see more Cane and Lily!

Syreeta
Syreeta

Thanks. Great interview! I can’t wait to see what’s ahead for my favorite daytime couple , Cane and Lily.

Maya
Maya

Loved reading the interview on Daniel . Now please interview Christel.
Love Cane and Lily there are the BEST couple Y&R has ever had.

Angela Coleman
Angela Coleman

Loved this interview. A year later. A Great read in the face of the ridiculous writing that is occurring for Lane right now where married Lily is pursuing another man. Utterly unbelievable and out of character. I have stopped watching Y&R as a result. Ms, phelps, new executive producer, arrogantly said recently that viewers don’t know what they want to see. Maybe. But we definitely know what we don’t want to see. Destroying the integrity of the Lane love story tops the list. It is only a matter of time before this new leadership regime fails. Mark my words as a longtime viewer. The show is on a destructive path.

General Hospital

Dominic Zamprogna Talks Dante’s Torment, His Daytime Emmy Nomination, And If He Might Be Back To GH

If you caught last week’s episodes of General Hospital, you witnessed the heartbreaking goodbye (the second time around) between Dante Falconeri (Dominic Zamprogna) and his wife Lulu (Emme Rylan), after it had been revealed that Dante is suffering deeply and disturbingly from his time in captivity in Turkey, and the mission that sent him away from Port Charles in the first place.  Of course, GH fans know that leg of the story served to facilitate the exit of fan favorite, Zamprogna, who departed the ABC daytime drama series back in 2018.

But since his original exit, Zamprogna has popped up on the series a few times.  First, as bad Dante in the special standalone episode celebrating Maurice Benard’s (Sonny) 25th anniversary with the series, and then again, a few weeks ago with his ten-episode run that set the stage for what might become of the duo known as “Lante”.

In addition, Dominic also learned a few weeks back, that he received a Daytime Emmy nomination for his performances in 2018 in the Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Daytime Drama category.

Michael Fairman TV spoke to Zamprogna while he was in Tuscany, Italy on the first leg of his three-week European trip with his family (which will also take him to France and Germany) to get his thoughts on: this just completed guest return on General Hospital, receiving the Emmy nod from his peers, and what the future holds for him in, or out, of the world of soaps.

When you came back for this ten-episode run, did you know what the story would be?

DOMINIC:  I knew it would be kind of a Brody from Homeland kind of story.  Frank Valentini (executive producer, GH) and I had a conversation, and he said, “Sonny is going to rescue you,” and I said, “With all due respect to Sonny, Dante got himself into this mess.  Let’s kind of help them, help each other get out of this mess,” and he was like, “I like it.”  That’s kind of how that came to fruition.  Then,  he said something along the lines of: how they were going to make it like Dante got messed while he was away, and that he had seen some crazy stuff, and that Dante had to do so some crazy stuff, and he brings it home with him.  So, we knew the story arc would be a little messy, for sure.

Courtesy/ABC

The impetus was to bring Dante back to Lulu, then to separate them again while you were off the canvas, because they left the character of Dante dangling out there previously, right?

DOMINIC:  Frank said, “We don’t believe that this guy would ever take off on his family in this way for this length of time,” and I said, “Oh, I agree with you, so let’s figure out a way to wrap it up.”  So, this is where we ended up.

I’ve been seeing many tweets from fans, like, “Dante’s the best,” and “You’ve got to bring Dominic back full-time.”   The story was very emotional, and I thought it was a good opportunity for you to remind everyone of your acting chops.  And, the writers made a point of making sure Dante said to Lulu, “Don’t wait for me,” which leaves her story kind of open, as well.

DOMINIC:  I know what I want, and that is a good story, and around the time that I left before, we didn’t have a lot of great stuff going on.  I think Dante needed a good shakeup.  Maybe this is a blessing in disguise for a lot of the fans, but I don’t know.  I know that there have been some negative reactions too … like, “Why bring this guy back if he’s going to leave again?”

Yes.  I have seen those reactions as well. 

DOMINIC:  I’d say that you bring this guy back because he did leave thinking he was going to come back sooner than he did, and stuff got a little too crazy, and maybe you can’t leave him hanging out there like that.  You do have to address that.  Dante wouldn’t have left his family for that long, knowingly.  It was ten months.  I think it is valid to bring him back and address it, and then realize that if the actor, or the show, isn’t ready to commit to what’s next, you do whatever creates the most drama.  Isn’t that why people watch these things … to yell at the TV? (Laughs) 

Courtesy/ABC

Let’s talk about the tears Emme Rylan shed in those goodbye scenes that just aired!

DOMINIC:  I think she was really angry at me! (Laughs)

Probably!  She was like, “What are you doing!?”  (Laughs)

DOMINIC:  She was like, “What the hell is happening?” (Laughs)  I think that’s what people watch GH for.  I went on twitter and saw the clip of General Hospital from 56 years ago in honor of their anniversary.  It makes you give pause and think:  “What are you watching this show for?  Are you watching it to feel resolve at the end of it?”  Probably not!  As much as people don’t want to admit it, you don’t really want to feel fantastic after watching the show.  Nine times out of ten, you want to feel conflict and unresolved.  Otherwise, why would you come back the next day?  I feel like we kind of achieved that.  Which is why when you posed the question on Twitter, “What did you think of Dante’s return story arc?”,  I responded by saying, “I thought it was pretty good,” because a lot of fans are going to be pissed off.  However, a lot of viewers are going to be happy with seeing some good drama and some emotional scenes, and a cool arc (because I thought it was a good arc for Dante).

Photo: ABC

When you played Dante on this recent return, he’s obviously been tortured.

DOMINIC:  Yes, he’s been tortured, and he’s had to torture people to prove his worth.  As easily as he killed Raj, he’s probably had to kill other people during this time.  I think that’s a big step for Dante, because he’s never really had to do that.  In the time that he’s been on GH, he’s always been very black and white. I thought it was very good for me to be able to play that, because maybe he’s been pushed to the limit, and in those situations, you have to justify things that you probably would never have had to justify before.

Right!  I thought it was really sad, because you see people with PTSD who have been tortured.  Did you do any research on how being in captivity and how the condition may manifest itself in cases such as this, or someone under mind control?

Photo: ABC

DOMINIC:  I think PTSD is a pretty wide-ranging thing.  There are people who deal with PTSD who haven’t had to kill people and haven’t been tortured.  I think there is PTSD that people deal with in everyday life.  I think for a lot of people, if you had to go back and examine things, you’d be like, “Wait a sec, maybe that’s what this feels like,” and it’s not a comfortable place to be, but for this role, you kind of do go to places like that.

I think there’s been a silver lining for you in a few things since your exit from GH last year.  1) Since you’ve left, you came back, and got to play a bad guy version of Dante in the “Sonny-centric” episode. 2)  You received a Daytime Emmy nomination in the Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series category.  What do you think about what has happened since you have been away from Port Charles?

DOMINIC:  That’s also about betting on yourself …  because it’s kind of like rolling the dice.  It can go either way.  It can be: “Hey, if I step away and no one cares, that’s cool too,” but you have got to be okay with that.  It’s like when I first started the show, and everyone said not to read the message boards, because if you read the good stuff, you’ve got to read the bad stuff, too.  Well, if you roll the dice on yourself, you’ve got to be able to look in the mirror and say, “Hey, it didn’t work out.”  Fortunately for me, in this situation, I rolled the dice, and it worked in my favor.

Courtesy/ABC

Did you love the “Sonny-centric” episode when you got to play mobster Dante?

DOMINIC:  I did.  I thought it was great.  Honestly, Michael, I loved this story too.   It was an experience for me.  It was a cool journey.  I felt like it was a neat exercise as an actor.  It was a cool development for the character.  I had interesting scenes with Sonny, I had interesting scenes with Anna (Finola Hughes), and I had good scenes with Mike (Max Gail), and the stuff with Lulu.  I thought the end of the arc was interesting too, because I’ve already played these goodbyes.  So, as an actor you’re like, “Man, we’ve already done this,” but as the character you still have to protect something.  So, when people ask why he didn’t say certain things to Lulu that he did to Anna, it’s because it’s so much more difficult to say those things to the person who you’re married to, and go to bed with at night, who supposedly knows everything about you.  It’s almost more difficult to reveal that vulnerability that he realized that he had been brainwashed!  You don’t want to admit that you’re at your weakest to the woman who looks to you for all of the strength.  That’s massively important.  I thought it was really interesting.

You received your third Daytime Emmy nomination. Previously you were nominated in 2014 and 2016 in this category.  I was so happy for you.  What scenes did you submit that have you going for gold on May 5th?

DOMINIC:  First off, this year felt kind of extra special.  I think because I left the show and only had four months of material that I could submit within the guidelines of the rules.  I sent the scenes with: Mike in the stables where he is talking with Avery, a scene where Nathan (Ryan Paevey) is dying, one scene with Peter (Wes Ramsey) in the interrogation room at the PCPD, and then the material where Dante says goodbye to Lulu to go off on his mission.

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

You’re in with a good group of actors in the Supporting Actor category.  Max Gail is in there, too.

DOMINIC:  Yeah, and I’m so rooting for Max.  He’s one of those guys, like with Maurice Benard, where it just takes very little trying in a scene.  You’re in a place with a person and you’re just speaking, and good things happen.  The other guys who I’m up against, I’ve heard they’re all good dudes and good actors.  I’m not expecting anything.  I just want to go and have a fun night and enjoy being around everybody, and the group who is nominated from GH.  And … we’ve got Maurice, finally, back in the Lead Actor category which I am very happy about.

So, in terms of where you are now with GH, what would like to see happen down the line?

DOMINIC:  I don’t know.  When I left, Frank said, “Let’s have a chat about that future.”   However, I don’t know where I’m at as far as coming back goes.  I’ve been enjoying the freedom of being able to take a little control of my moves, so we’ll have to see.  I miss my friends and my family there, and we’re in a good place on both sides.  I think the story has been received well.

Photo: ABC

So, if GH gives Lulu a new love interest, how would you feel?

DOMINIC:  Oh, totally fine.  She’s dead to me at that point, but I mean, whatever. (Laughs)  Lulu better find somebody at some point.  I think in the long run whatever happens can only create more material for everyone to play, if we do revisit another appearance in town.

For the drama, Lulu will have had to have had sex with somebody by the time Dante reappears.

DOMINIC:  Oh, for sure.  If she doesn’t, I’ll be like, “What are you waiting for? (Laughs)  I told you forever is a long time,” but as long as it’s not like Peter, or Valentin (James Patrick Stuart), then I think Dante would fully expecting her to be with….

Photo: ABC

… Chase (Josh Swickard)?!

DOMINIC:  Oh, Chase.  Yeah, what about that jerk?  (Laughs)  I forgot about him.  You know, if Lulu did do that, it would kind of feel like almost like a “Top Gun” kind of thing … like if Maverick slept with Goose’s wife, or something like that.  Then, if Dante showed up and they were like, “Well, you were gone, and she needed help,” and Dante would be like, “Whatever Chase!  That’s low!”  It would be expected, right?  Chase is a good dude, and Dante left very messed up, so it’s kind of his fault, but I think in the long-run as a human being, she needs to have her needs met.  If it happened right away, then it’s like, “Wow! You didn’t wait forever at all.  Forever was two weeks for you? (Laughs)”

Photo: JPI Studios

So, what did you think of Dante’s return and the performances of Domininc Zamprogna? Are you rooting for Dom to take home the Daytime Emmy for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series?  Who do you think Lulu might fall for while Dante is off the canvas?  Are you hoping Dominic returns on-contract with GH at some point down the line?  Share your thoughts and theories via the comment section below!

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General Hospital

Bryan Craig Talks Javi In ‘Grand Hotel’, Recasting GH’s Morgan, And His Post-Daytime Career

When Grand Hotel finally makes its highly-anticipated debut this summer (Monday night, June 17th) on ABC, soap opera fans will see some very familiar faces in primo roles as this sudsy drama, based on the Spanish series Gran Hotel, tells the story of a family-owned hotel in Miami, the people who run it, and all of the secrets they keep from one another.

Brought to you by executive producers Eva Longoria and Ben Spector, the show explores the family dynamic of the Mendoza family. Longoria herself will play a mother in four episodes of the show, as well.

General Hospital fans will take note that Daytime Emmy-winner, Bryan Craig (Ex-Morgan Corinthos) is front and center in the cast as Javi Mendoza, the troubled son of the family who has some major obstacles in front of him.

Michael Fairman TV caught up with Craig during the recent ABC TCA’s Press Tour for the network to get some insight into his new role, how he would feel if GH would recast the role of Morgan (he recently propped up former DAYS star Billy Flynn as a potential viable candidate) and what it has been like post-daytime in his burgeoning career in film and TV.  Here’s what he had to say about his TV life past and present.

What has this experience been like for you taping the episodes of Grand Hotel and working with such a stellar cast?

BRYAN:  It’s been incredible   It feels like it went by so fast.  It’s an awesome group of people.  We’ve got a fun show.

How would you say your character of Javi Mendoza stacks up against GH’s Morgan Corinthos?

BRYAN:  I think it’s one of the most layered characters that I’ve ever played.  There’s a lot going on with Javi.  He has a big disability, kind of like Morgan did.  It’s a physical disability, and there are a lot of challenges that come along with that.  He also has a substance problem.  So, some of the same issues and in the same world that Morgan was in.  Javi is a very troubled character, but he is also a lot of fun, and a ladies’ man … and sleeps with a lot of women! (Laughs)

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

Do you think the audience will care for Javi, though?  

BRYAN:  Oh yeah, one hundred percent.  He was written in a very kind-hearted manner.  He’s a great guy, who has had a tough life.

Did they put you through a audition process to nab the role in Grand Hotel?

BRYAN:  They had read hundreds and hundreds of people for this role.  I came in at the tail end of it, and then the process went pretty quickly.  I read once, and the next think I knew, I was in a room with Eva Longoria and director, Ken Olin.  Then two days later, I was testing with Eva, and then I got the call that I had the part.

You’re a part of the core family, the Mendozas, on Grand Hotel, and on GH, you were part of the Corinthos clan.  How do the family dynamics stack-up?

BRYAN:  It’s pretty special.  There are a lot of similarities.  It feels like we have kind of shifted GH into prime-time.  In Grand Hotel, we have Demián Bichir, who plays Santiago Mendoza, and he is my Sonny Corinthos now.   They gave us a very heavy, heavy storyline … just like they gave Maurice Benard (Sonny, GH) and me.   So, I think the fans are really going to buy into it.   ABC, (I think) wanted to marry that bond a little bit, and I feel it was very apparent in the writing.  This network has been very good to me.

Courresy/ABC

Did you know that your co-star Denyse Tontz was in Prospect Park’s All My Children reboot as Miranda Montgomery and had a soap past, as well?

BRYAN:  Yes! I did know that.  Denyse plays my sister on Grand Hotel and we work together a lot on the show.  There were quite a few people on the show who came from soaps.  Even some guest stars who came in were big in soap at points.

So, this kind of all  worked out for you!  You left General Hospital, and landed a major primetime series, plus your other movie roles!

BRYAN:  It was a scary move, but it worked out.  I did a few things; a couple of movies, and I did a show for CW for a while, and then this.  So, it’s been back-to-back.  I’ve been fortunate.

Courtesy/ABC

How would you feel if General Hospital, ultimately, recast the role of Morgan?

BRYAN:  You know, if it was to behoove the show, then so be it.   I feel like it was a pretty nice end for me there, but I can’t sit here and be selfish and be like, “I’m the last person who could play that role!”  Would that be awesome?  I mean, yeah!  But, who knows?  They’ve got to do what’s best for the show.

GH’s Maurice Benard had great story in 2018 with the Alzheimer’s storyline involving Sonny’s dad, Mike Corbin (Max Gail).  Had you been checking it out at all?

BRYAN:  I know!   I do keep up with Maurice a lot.   We are good friends.

To remind those who have not seen the trailer to Grand Hotel check it out below.  Will you be watching Bryan in his exciting new role on Grand Hotel? Will you be OK with a Morgan recast on GH, or hope the show will wait for Bryan to return one day? Share your thoughts via the comment section below.

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Interviews

Melody Thomas Scott Chats On 40 Years As The Young and the Restless’ Incomparable Nikki: The Men, The Booze, The Drama

Today marks Y&R icon Melody Thomas Scott’s 40th anniversary with the top-rated daytime drama series.  While CBS plans to air a special standalone episode (Nikki is in the slammer for confessing to J.T.’s murder, and she will reflect on her life in an emotional look-back), Michael Fairman sat down with the popular and beloved star for a deep dive into four decades in the life of stripper-turned-socialite, Nikki Newman for The Michael Fairman Channel.

During the interview, Melody first addresses her sadness at the loss of her longtime friend and co-star Kristoff St. John (Neil Winters): “I adored him.  I love him to bits.  I loved working with him; such a wonderful actor.  I don’t even know if he knew how good he was.”

When discussing Nikki’s colorful past, and when Y&R planned to have Nikki strip again decades later, Melody revealed she did refuse to play it: “That’s right, and I very rarely put the kibosh on anything on this show,  I was 48-years-old.  The head writer called me and I was up in hair and make-up.  They heard me say, ‘I’m 48-years-old .. that’s just not happening.”‘

Photo: TheMichaelFairmanChannel

Over the years, Nikki has faced many battles, perils ,and demons including her addiction to alcohol which has provided many a juicy story for Thomas Scott.  As to the fans always loving to see a ‘boozy’ Nikki, Melody remarked;  “Yes!  They love it!  I have great fun with it and I think it’s wonderful.”

During a segment of the conversation, Michael shows Melody some photos of Nikki’s past loves, and gets her thoughts on why Nikki fell for those men, and what it was like working with her co-stars through the years: John Enos (Bobby), Doug Davidson (Paul), Heath Kizzier (Joshua), Wings Hauser (Greg), Don Diamont (Brad), Vincent Irizarry (David), Peter Bergman (Jack), Sean Kanan (Deacon, and of course, her longtime on-screen partner Eric Braeden (Victor).

Later, Melody reminisces about her time working with the late great Jeanne Cooper (Katherine) and when asked by Fairman what she thinks Jeanne would say about her 40th anniversary milestone, Melody replied: “She would say, ‘I’m (bleeping) proud of you Mel!”‘

Photo: CBS

Check out the entire interview with Melody below (make sure to also subscribe to the Michael Fairman Channel on You Tube for more feature interviews), and following that the special CBS promo honoring Melody’s 40th anniversary with Y&R.  Then let us know, what has been your favorite Nikki Newman moment over the last 40 years? Share your thoughts via the comment section below,

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GH icon Genie Francis chats with Michael Fairman about her return to the soap as Laura after being taken off-contract earlier this year. Leave A Comment

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