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The Doug Davidson Interview – The Young and the Restless

Courtesy/CBS

Who doesn’t love to see one of the veterans of daytime getting handed the ball and a great emotional story, and then give it such a heartfelt delivery that it leaves us reaching for the hankies?  Well, in recent weeks on The Young and the Restless, long-time stalwart Doug Davidson (Paul Williams) has been chewing the scenery with some powerful performances that really took off when Paul shot his son Ricky, which sent the evil one crashing through a window to his death!  What has followed has not been good for poor Paul!  Eden, who was about to be sliced to death by Ricky before Paul shot his son, can’t remember what happened.  And, the knife, which is a key piece of evidence, is missing!  Now Paul has been arrested for the murder of his psychotic son, and his ex-wife has come back into the picture to defend him!  And that is only half of the story!

On-Air On-Soaps chatted with Doug Davidson to get his thoughts on taking front and center stage again, and how it has been working with his most recent on-screen offsprings, Peter Porte (Ex-Ricky) and Jennifer Landon (Nu-Heather).  Doug also reveals if he would like to see a rekindling of the Paul and Christine (Lauralee Bell) romance, what he feels about all the actresses who have embodied Heather, and how he managed to rationalize playing the distraught father to an irredeemable character, and the challenges it presented him.

In addition, find out what Doug would like to see happen in the next the arc of the story if he had the opportunity to write it.  We actually loved his suggestion and hope you will too!  One thing is for certain, Doug is that dependable performer who can make us smile or break us down in tears.  It’s always a joy to catch up with him and hear what he has to say about it all.  So with that, here’s Doug!

MICHAEL:

Doug, your performances have been amazing and so moving.  Fans and critics have given you well-deserved kudos and recognition.  When you saw the script that said Paul shoots his son, Ricky in the shoulder who then crashes through a window to his death, what was your initial reaction?

DOUG:

Courtesy/CBS

The first thing I thought was, “OK. I have work to do!” (Laughs)  Because it has been kind of spotty story wise for Paul, for awhile.  Secondly, I thought fear and worry.  If it wasn’t handled properly it could backfire.  So I was kind of nervous.  We had an instance where Chris and Paul had a rather violent lovemaking session, and because it wasn’t explained, did kind of backfire.  I was pretty nervous about it, but once I saw how well crafted it was, then it was just performance anxiety! (Laughs)

MICHAEL:

Peter Porte (Ricky) had pushback from the audience at the beginning of his time on Y&R, but by the end of his run, people loved him and his performance!  How was your experience working with Peter?

DOUG:

My experience with him was outstanding.  I read with him when he got the job, and to his credit, once they gave him something to run with, he certainly was loaded and ready to go.  It is kind of a difficult situation when you are not exactly sure what they want from you, and by the time they figured out the direction, then Peter knew where they were going with it, and he could give it to them.  And he did, in spades.

MICHAEL:

On last Friday’s episode, when you as Paul were talking to Christine and Nina at Ricky’s gravesite talking about the father’s day card, it was so sad.  It was my favorite part of your speech, even more than when Paul was alone in front of Ricky’s grave.  In your portrayal, did you reconcile why Paul was a MIA dad to Ricky?

Courtesy/CBS

DOUG:

They did not write it in, and they did not explain it.  I made the assumption that Paul would make periodic trips to see him, and so I had to have that in my own head to play.   I think Paul, as a responsible father, would have done things like that.  By the same token, once I realized that was not what their past was, you validate it by you saying you own your business, and that it is never a good time to getaway.  Out of sight and out of mind.  You might send an email here and there.  And of course, they aged him to a point to where, in reality, Ricky would be 12.  Faced with that, then I try to validate the fact that I was not as attentive as I might have been.  Even doing it 24/7 with my own kids, you second guess your actions.  Even with my own parents and their aging, I don’t always make the best, or admirable choice, in retrospect.  I would probably push my kids too hard, or not hard enough.  I was angry or not angry enough, and you can second guess it.  So how I validate it in real life is come hell or high water, I did the best of my capabilities.  But there were plenty of areas to play the guilt of Paul with regard to Ricky, because he is not the only kid to be raised by his grandparents.  You know the history of this is not good anyway!  Michael set up Isabella.  She got herself pregnant.  Then we got married.  I think it went something like that! (Laughs)

MICHAEL:

So did Paul truly reconcile he had a psycho son?

DOUG:

Right, but then there was a period of time where Paul knew before anyone else!  So then that discovery is painful too.  You feel it in your heart, and it’s supported by the things you discover with logic.  It’s hard to ignore when people are disappearing or dropping dead.  And, he is acting strangely, and tormenting me, and all these things you pointed out were true as well.

Photo Credit: Kathy Hutchins

MICHAEL:

Then what is interesting is how Y&R is crafting things with Christine back in Paul’s orbit.  Now, she is defending him in his murder rap.  However, then there is that little ditty of Phyllis mowing down Christine years ago in a hit and run.  That has come to light, which then forced Christine to admit to Paul that she kissed Danny on the night of their wedding years ago.  Paul took it quite well, I thought.  What did you think about the way Paul reacted to that bit of news?

DOUG:

It happened so far down the road, and she even admitted it.  Why would she lie? Christine admitted it was a goodbye kiss to Danny, as I recall.  If she really had any hesitation she wouldn’t have gone through with the wedding.  So her actions to Paul at the time suggested that what she was saying was definitely true.  It was a goodbye kiss to her that was misinterpreted by psycho Phyllis.  Whether or not I think it would have made a difference to me if I was the one who was seeing it, and had the visual and been a witness to the kiss, at that period of time, it might have upset Paul more.  But that too would not have derailed it.  Christine had a full-blown relationship and first-love.  It would be hard to imagine that there weren’t’ still residual feelings for Danny as she enters a new relationship.  Certainly, now we are both adults, or I like to think so! (Laughs)

MICHAEL:

Do you remember the details of the hit and run?

DOUG:

Christine and Paul were crossing the street and the car came out of nowhere.  Paul was leaving and Christine was crossing the street, and Paul saw the car coming.  He raced back to Christine and was not able to push her out of the way in time, if I remember this correctly.

MICHAEL:

Paul is in heap of trouble!  He has been arrested because they cannot find the knife Ricky used to attack Eden.  So it looks like Christine will help Paul and save him.  Eventually, would you like to see the two former lovebirds get back together?

Photo Credit: Getty Images

DOUG:

It would certainly be welcome.  I don’t know if Lauralee is going to be around.  She is the middle of her child and family rearing, and I don’t know if it is something that will fit into her schedule.  But I do know she is coming back from her summer vacation, and we have more scenes to come.  I am always open to working with her. We spent over a decade working together side by side.  So when they were calling us during the weeks we were shooting those episodes, they would call our name to the set, “Doug and Lauralee!” and it was just like the old days.  It felt really good, and so of course.  I would be open to it, and then there would be something to play with Tricia Cast (Nina) too.

MICHAEL:

Tricia Cast is such a fantastic actress to work with.  Wasn’t there a romantic relationship going on with Nina and Paul?  It seems it’s not being played that way anymore!  What gives?

DOUG:

They have not been really playing the romantic thing between them at all, recently.  So when people say it would be nice for Nina to have a romantic relationship with Paul, I too forget that I am in one! (Laughs)

MICHAEL:

At the gravesite during Ricky’s funeral, Nina was not holding Paul’s hand, or standing next to him.  It was if their relationship was being played so non-committal!

DOUG:

Photo Credit: Getty Images

Usually the scenes we have we are talking about our offspring.  And way early on, we were going to the movies and stuff like that.  It has not been focused on in our relationship at all as of late, and any of those things that you might find in one.

MICHAEL:

Let’s talk about the “Heathers” in your life.   You had Vail Bloom, then Eden Riegel and now Jennifer Landon play your on-screen daughter Heather Stevens.  I think Jennifer possesses the sexiness of Vail and the acting chops of Eden!  What do you think about my assessment?

DOUG:

I agree.  I did not have any issues with Vail at all.  I thought she was fabulous, and her dismissal shocked and surprised me, to tell you the truth.  So I can’t really comment on that because I am not on the production side.  I did not have to deal with the fact that she wasn’t on set.  I know she had some serious medical issues that she was dealing with at the time.  Eden, by her own admission, never really attached herself to the role.  I think they liked her so much they wanted to give her a role and that was the one.  But I think they were casting a couple of things at that time, and they gave that role to one and this to the other.  I don’t think it ever jelled there.  I don’t think it’s a talent thing; it’s the wrong part for a talented actress.  And, I have to agree with you, that for me I feel that Jennifer is terrific.  She is funny, she is smart, and she is great to work with.  She is organic and free, and that is the part I connect to.   She also has one degree of separation from me, because she is really good friends with my best friend and his family.  We get along really well. 

MICHAEL:

What is Heather and Paul’s relationship now?  Are they close?

Photo Credit: Kathy Hutchins

DOUG:

The most recent thing with Ricky showed Heather that Paul is committed to being a father.  He is trying to make up for the mistakes he made in the past.  And the first time Paul had a huge run-in with Ricky was in the coffee house, when he found out Ricky was the one who took the pictures of Heather and took advantage of his sister’s position to raise his own.  It was thoughtless and heartless.  I think Heather saw how Paul supported her through it.  She is beginning to understand who Paul is, besides who she thought he was.  The relationship issue there with Heather was that April had decided she would rather raise her with Heather’s step-father and make her believe she was begat out of that relationship.  So that was not Paul’s decision.  Then when the time arose, we had a tearful scene in the coffee house when we were indeed related, and Paul was not just a family friend.  So I think Heather is on board now.  I am sure Heather has residual feelings and hurt, but also beginning to get it now and feel that Paul is a real father to her.

MICHAEL:

You have had some very emotional scenes during your years on Y&R.  Several times you have been Emmy nominated.  You are one of the best male criers on daytime and the tears just flow, and so effortlessly it seems.  Are those big emotional payoff scenes tough for you to do, such as the recent big moments in the aftermath of Paul shooting his son?

DOUG:

The performance anxiety that arose out of that was the changing face of daytime, and that they are going to give me a shot at it.  It was suggested by one of our producers and the network, and then our executive producer and head writer, Maria Arena Bell, jumped at the idea.  Then they told me about it.  So there is always a bit of doubt, when it’s three o’clock in the morning and I am alone where I will say to myself, “I hope this all works out.”  There was no net.  I had new performers and I must say, once it kicked in and I saw the scripts and got into it, it is about the work.  Any performer, when they look at it with their left brain, will be nervous about it until they get into the material.  Doug is different than Paul, and Paul did fine with it. (Laughs)

Courtesy/CBS

MICHAEL:

From the beginning of your time on Y&R till now, you have told me in past interviews you have become a better actor.  When you look at your body of work now, do you ever think, “I am a very fine actor in this medium?”

DOUG:

It is really hard for me to do that.  It’s funny, because when I am doing it, it’s not part of me.  I am trying to connect with what they have written, and who Paul is.  It really is a kind of brainwashing.  You are fooling your own mechanism that this is true, and this is happening, and you are this person.  My technique is so refined; it is not something I think about.  When you look at a concert violinist or a pianist, they are not thinking where their fingers go.  They just go because they have been doing it for so long.  Acting is one of the things that I know how to do.  I think it is part of my personality.  So when I look back, there are so many forces involved.  I just don’t have that ego.  I do remember when Y&R went to number one.  I had the number one TVQ rating and Entertainment Tonight came out to my house!  To take credit for it is not really fair.  That is why when people win awards for their work, there are these long lists of people to thank.  That’s because you really don’t do it on your own, unless you are an author of a book.  I do give credit to all the people in my past from Brett Hadley and Carolyn Conwell, who played my on-screen parents, and the things I learned a long the way.  I hope I do the same thing for young people in this business, and let them know they are not doing this alone.  I am sure not. 

MICHAEL:

What can fans expect coming up in the perils of Paul?

DOUG:

Paul will be out on bail, and Eden is going through hypnosis to help her memory to trigger where the missing knife is.  And being under Bill Bell (Creator, Y&R) all these years, I don’t even question where they take us.  My job is to sell it! 

Courtesy/CBS

MICHAEL:

What would you love to see happen to Paul?

DOUG:

I think it would be incredibly hard to come to terms with what happened, even if it is true.  There are so many ‘what ifs.’  It would be a dark place for the rest of Paul’s life when he thinks of Ricky.  It’s like a war veteran.  It’s like a part of your life that you have to deal with and go on.  So there are some interesting stories there.  I thought it would be nice to have Ricky come to Paul and Paul find a kid who is orphaned or homeless who has the same name, and is 10 or 12 years old. and does not have a dad.  Paul then becomes a big brother to the kid, and tries to make up for the errors of the past with someone who still does need attention and help.  I think it would be fun to bring Peter Porte back and redeem his character as a ghost or a spirit, and maybe Paul does not see him.  But Ricky sees so much of his spirit working, and through the young kid who comes to Paul.  Paul asks the kid his name, and he says, “Ricky”!   Then it’s about how his relationship with his son and what happened changed him permanently.

MICHAEL:

Do you still like being the P.I.?

DOUG:

Photo Credit: Denice Duff

Yeah, but they don’t always write it.  In the old days, Paul had cases he worked on without any need for the police department.  For instance, the Cassandra storyline had the duality of having a case and a mysterious woman that happened to be part of the case, unbeknownst to Paul at the beginning.  Things like that.  But that is when we had isolated stories per character, and it was a completely different format than what we have today!

MICHAEL:

I was glad to see Paul had a scene with Phyllis where he lets her have it for running over Christine eons ago!

DOUG:

Yes, but it’s very short.  But yes, we have one scene in the hallway at the police department where he does confront her.

MICHAEL:

I really wanted Paul to have a few choice words for her!  (Laughs)

DOUG:

(Laughs) There is a bit of confrontation, and working with Michelle Stafford (Phyllis) is wonderful.  I have nothing but superlatives for her.  She brings it.  She is great and fabulous.

MICHAEL:

Photo Credit: Kathy Hutchins

In closing Doug, I just want to tell you it has been wonderful to see you being given some very heavy material and you have done an amazing job with it.  Have you seen or felt the feedback from the fans and the longtime viewers of Y&R?

DOUG:

I am so flattered.  I loved doing this story and it was a pleasure.  I have to tell you the response has been so positive and overwhelming … and even on the message boards, which is unheard of.  I cannot express the thanks and the gratitude I have for the fans and the people who have watched, and who have been supportive all along, and the new folks.  And, the ratings went up!

 

 

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43 Comments

  1. Debra

    July 22, 2012 at 11:29 am

    Just wanted to say that the Paul/Ricky showdown has easily been the best part of Y&R this year. Doug & Peter deserve some major props from making yet another psycho story actually matter to the audience.

  2. Kristen

    July 22, 2012 at 12:52 pm

    Doug soooo brought it in this story line! I wept. I have missed you. You are still very hot btw : )

  3. MBmomof3

    July 22, 2012 at 2:57 pm

    Doug Davidson was simpy amazing in this story. Emmy worthy material. I think all the players brought their A game.

    Thanks for another great interview Mr. Fairman.

  4. kay/kay

    July 22, 2012 at 3:04 pm

    My man Doug Davidson is and always has been one of the reasons I watched Y&R. He is a sweetheart like I said before give us a good story and we will come back MAB. Mr Fairman thank you for this interview this guy is so overlooked. I would have liked to have seen more scenes of Doug with his son before we went down this road but I will take anything I can get of DD, now lets keep him out of mothballs and on the front burner where he has always belonged. As Jeanne Cooper said when he had the storyline with Nina Arvenson who played Cassandra Rawlins in the 80’s they had the best chemistry of anyone on the show ever. And she was right!!

  5. kay/kay

    July 22, 2012 at 3:42 pm

    I also forgot to add his comments about the actresses who played Heather were spot on. What a true gentleman the only comment about JL I have is tone the harir down otherwise I am warming up to her portrayal it was definitely not the role for Eden Riegel.

  6. Sally D

    July 22, 2012 at 7:11 pm

    I’ve enjoyed Doug Davidson as Paul from the very beginning when he started,
    hanging out with Nikki. I can’t always catch Y & R, but whenever I see that
    Paul is on, I know that I will enjoy DD’s performance–he is always very natural
    and believable, no matter what kind of storyline is going on! And I like how he
    can do both heavy and more fun material with equal skill. Glad Y & R is using
    Davidson more now, and I hope that continues! I also like him having some
    storyline with Tricia Cast, who always is a gem to watch, as well.

    Thanks for posting this interview. It was a real treat!

  7. LisaZee

    July 22, 2012 at 9:00 pm

    Doug is a wonderful actor. Those scenes proved he has what it takes and I wish TPTB hadn’t waited so long to showcase his talent again. He is doing an awesome job! He also has always, in real life, seemed like a great guy, which is nice to know too!

  8. Mel

    July 23, 2012 at 9:24 am

    Doug has been amazing in this storyline and definitely deserves an Emmy next year! I started watching Y&R 25 years ago and Paul has always been one of my favorite characters so it’s wonderful to finally see Doug Davidson on the frontburner again where he belongs. He makes everything feel so real and believable. I just love him!

  9. Bart

    July 23, 2012 at 10:10 am

    While I have always liked Doug Davidson as Paul, his character’s “Juicy story” rings as very hollow and phony, which is pretty much everything as crafted by Maria Arena Bell. Paul has knowingly admitted not knowing his SORAS’ed son Ricky and never ever being there for him yet, so his graveside scenes didn’t produce any emotions for this long-time viewer.

    The SORAS’ing of his son (and of MANY MANY “Y & R” offspring have ruined many past timelines as created by the late great William J. Bell and his staff. By SORAS’ing Ricky to a 20-something young man negates everything that Phyllis did to Paul & Christine back in 1994 – 18 years ago – yet, Ricky was born AFTER Phyllis’ “joyride” – thereby retcon’ing and destroying Bill Bell’s story structure.

    Doug Davidson deserves better – so does the viewer.

  10. Chaz

    July 23, 2012 at 11:39 am

    Doug Davidson has deserved story for so long that I am thrilled he has finally gotten one that proves what an asset he is to Y&R. My partner, who is not a Y&R viewer, came in while I was watching the show on DVR and commented what a powerhouse performance Doug Davidson was giving.

    Beef up Doug & Nina’s story….it is nice to see older couples having a relationship. Plus, Tricia Cast is a gem.

    • mjlynn

      July 25, 2012 at 7:50 pm

      Chaz, any relation to Cher? Seriously, I totally agree. It’s about time Y&R writers are writing OUR DOUGIE back into the scripts. He’s been the MAIN reason I’ve been a dedicated viewer for 34 years! I loved his old story-lines, back when he dated April and impregnated her with Heather, and then when he went undercover into the mafia to trip up and take down the bad guys. His parents were always a huge part of the plot and I miss them both. Also, the original Patty, the blond teenager gal, cannot recall her name, anyone know, she was an excellent actress. I often think that the writers re-use so many of the old plots, such as there are two Pattys… and two Cathryn Chancellor’s… and how Victor took a prisoner in his basement in the Seventies and Paul was paid to go down to this dungeon and feed the guy, like caged animal, and then they had Daisy lock up Jana and Lauren in outdoor cage, similar to old Victor story-line. Ah, the similarities… I LOVE Y& R!!!

  11. DDfan4life

    July 23, 2012 at 1:44 pm

    Doug’s portrayal of Paul Williams was the reason I started watching over 30 yrs. ago. I never stopped and think he is an incredible actor. I would love to see him front and center more often. When an actor can make me cry when they cry, laugh when they laugh, and smile just by their presence on a tv screen… they’ve got something special, that’s for sure! Now, Doug… have Paul go out there and investigate this hit and run from so long ago!

  12. Mandy

    July 24, 2012 at 10:01 am

    I love that you now have a good story line and wish more for you and Nena, as I like to see the older players return with a few new ones. I have watched this story since the first of Y&R when the Brooks family was on. That has been many moons ago. Love it and if they take off the two stories left, I will stop watching CBS daytime . We do not need another game show or talk show. You are a great actor, and I love the show.

  13. nan williams

    July 24, 2012 at 10:52 am

    Doug u r a fantastic actor…ur fans all behind u n support u in whatever story line ur given ….best of luck to u in whatever u do.God Bless u n urs. The writers should get this knife found

    • mjlynn

      July 25, 2012 at 7:42 pm

      Agreed! Where could have a huge knife like the one missing have gone? Some homeless guy walks by and picks it up to shave off his matted hair>? LOL. Certainly, it will be the KEY to SOLVE the issue and set Paul free! Then again, I think Paul should get his PI office back and have his story-line multiplied to what it once was! Also, Jennifer Landon is a great actress, she’s the daughter of Michael Landon, correct???

  14. Linda Lou Boehl

    July 25, 2012 at 1:17 pm

    Paul has always been a great actor, glad to see him doing more of it, always been a favorite of mine, keep up the great work my friend… love ya Y&R is the very Best!!!
    All are such great actors on there….. from Linda Lou

  15. Gayle Trent

    July 25, 2012 at 1:23 pm

    Great interview!

  16. Donna

    July 25, 2012 at 1:39 pm

    Doug Davidson was simpy amazing in this story. Emmy worthy material. I think all the writer team is doing best wrting in a long time and hope they keep it up. I hope to see more of Chris and him month head too they are best time and Nina too all three of them .keep of the good work doug as paul williams

  17. DEANNA JO KNIGHT

    July 25, 2012 at 1:48 pm

    IT DOES MY HEART GOOD, TO KNOW THAT I AM NOT THE ONLY ONE THAT LOVES DD & PAUL. HE HAS BEEN MY FAVORITE ACTOR FROM THE BEGINNING AND ALWAYS WANTED MORE STORY LINES FOR HIM. THIS STORY LINE IS GREAT, BUT IT SEEMS TO BE GOING TO FAST. SLOW DOWN SO DD/PAUL CAN REMAIN ON THE FRONT BURNER LONGER.
    I TOO LIKE HAVING CHRIS & NINA BACK. INFACT, I HOPE THEY BRING MORE OF THE OLD CAST BACK. MAKES FOR GOOD STORY LINES.
    THIS WAS SUCH AN ENJOYABLE INTERVIEW HOPE TO SEE MANY MORE OF THESE.
    WE NEED TO DO EVERYTHING POSSIBLE TO KEEP Y&R IN THE SPOT LIGHT.
    I DON’T WANT IT TO BE CANCELED. I LOOK FORWARD TO WATCHING EVERY DAY.

  18. Jane

    July 25, 2012 at 2:15 pm

    Doug,There are not enough words in Websters dictionary to tell you what a fantastic actor you are. I have followed you for years.

    I totally missed you when my husband and I were stationed in Germany,that I didn’t see you. It was like loosing my best friend. I did get newspaper cli[ppings of The Young And Restless. It was during the winter of 1989 up to Nov.of 1991.

    I used to brag to my sister’s whenever I would get a new postcard or letter from you. I always had your picture hanging on my hutch in the kitchen. Now I send them the emails that you send me. I know they love the Young and Restless also.

    You keep up the fabulous acting and I will keep watching . Sometimes I feel like I am right there. If you cry, I cry. When you laugh I do too. I love you, Doug Davidson,for making such wonderful daytime acting. Jane Salles

  19. Delores

    July 25, 2012 at 2:50 pm

    Every now and then on Y & R, we are blessed with a story that just knocks it out of the park and that’s what happened with Doug when Paul shot his son. I rarely cry at stories (even when I’m supposed to feel sad) but Doug’s performance was so real that I found myself sobbing. He rarely gets “meaty” stories so I’m grateful for this one; it reminded me what an amazing actor he is.

  20. Laura

    July 25, 2012 at 3:09 pm

    Awesome interview! I love that Paul finally has a storyline 🙂

  21. Jeanne Curnow

    July 25, 2012 at 5:07 pm

    Love the interview! Always enjoy seeing Doug perform on Y&R [awesome story line these days].Sure wish you the best always !

  22. CONI

    July 25, 2012 at 6:21 pm

    doug is a fantastic actor and i’ve watched him on y & r since day one. had the chance to meet him personally a couple of times and he’s so wonderful to talk to. his warm kindness and that smile just melts anyones heart. he has a great personality that out shines his talent. the best storyline he’s ever done and deserves an emmy for was the ricky & paul storyline. that storyline really touched my heart and yes brought tears to my eyes also. all the years he’s acted on y & r can’t ever be replaced by anyone else. great job doug! bravo, bravo, bravo—your the best. i love you DOUG DAVIDSON!!!

  23. Joanne

    July 25, 2012 at 6:49 pm

    I have watched Doug play Paul Williams from the very beginning. So many great story lines over the years but I honestly think this is one of his best. I was kinda losing faith a bit in Y&R lately because I was seeing less and less of Paul and some of the other veteran actors. So happy to see he has another great story line his character can really sink his teeth into! Hope this leads to another Emmy nomination. Way to go Doug! Keep up the exceptional work and we will keep watching!!

  24. mjlynn

    July 25, 2012 at 7:37 pm

    I want to laugh because I’ve loved this guy since his entrance onto Y&R in ’78, when my pal Rick Springfield told me Doug was going to star on show! These new fans who’ve started liking him because of the RS cruises, behave as if they’re his biggest fans… and then there’s those, like me, who have loved this guy since his face was youthful and rounded, and his long blond hair was thick and…made fans long to run their fingers through it… Now I’m like, “I’m an original fan” and some of these young girls didn’t even know who the guy was until the past several RS cruises. This interview is funny because it seems as if the interviewer was one of those ‘newbie’ fans…causes happy crinkle laughter… a GOOD thing!! All in all, quite cutely done. I love you, Dougie!

  25. Cheryl Pederson

    July 25, 2012 at 9:30 pm

    Well, of course the ratings went up! How long have people waited for a story for Paul? I do like the idea, in moving forward, of this being a “war wound” for Paul — and that is takes some time for the understanding and a measure of peace in the soul. Doug has learned so much over the years, but he has always been great — and I really do miss a great PI story because I love the adventure! So here’s hoping,
    Love to Paul and Doug!
    Cheryl P

  26. lori

    July 25, 2012 at 9:33 pm

    hi
    an excellent interview. love lori

  27. Phyllis

    July 25, 2012 at 10:28 pm

    FINALLY the recognition he deserves! Long time in the waiting .. Doug has always been the greatest actor.. Never changes in looks, still as handsome as ever. These last few months you have done an awesome job. Thank you wrighters for giving Doug more and more in the story. He does deserve another emmy. Wow fantastic father an son acting. Keep it up Doug! Armenian hugs an kisses:)

  28. Diane

    July 26, 2012 at 1:09 pm

    Why does Phyllis get out a jail free card and forgiven by everybody except Paul and Cricket? Phyllis is just like Daisy and Ricky(demented). She needs to pay for all of her dirt. Didn’t she kill the nurse named Sasha back in the day because the nurse knew about her dirty deeds involving the baby and Danny situation? Also, Michael and Ronan should be taken off the case. They are warning the killer and sticking up for her.

  29. David-Edwsard

    July 26, 2012 at 1:28 pm

    Doug,

    I would like to see your performance with Ricky. I would love to see you in action now to find out that Ricky isn’t actually dead. Your are an amazing character. You need to stop hidding behind your shield and let Christine (Lauralee Bell) know that she needs to focus on your case and attempt to prosecute Phyllis later. The writers need to allow you and Ricky’s mother unite and then allow her to go off the deep end after seeing you with Christine. The storyline is great and you do well at it.

  30. lisa

    July 27, 2012 at 4:35 am

    I have always loved Paul, his amazing way of turning on and off those tears are incredible.. When he cries I cry because of the realness of it. He truely makes the show. I would love to see him and Cricket back together.. but poor Nina would be distraught.. Hopefully they will find her a good man in the future she sure needs it. I never liked Ricky..Not happy about the ex- returning- definitely hoping he dos not rekindle with her.

  31. Laura

    July 27, 2012 at 12:37 pm

    I am so glad that Doug has such a great role to play. He is an awesome actor and it’s great that he has a meaty storyline to portray. Very excited for him & the show.

  32. Cilla

    July 28, 2012 at 11:48 am

    Great interview! Thank you Micheal! Doug is the unsung hero of this show. Those of us who have watched him over the years know he can completely knock it out of the park whenever the writers give him a chance. His acting in the Ricky story line was mesmerizing. I just wish he would be featured in front burner stories more often.
    Doug is the one who puts the heart and soul back into Y & R with his amazing ability to convey deep and totally genuine emotion. That’s the essence of soap operas for me. I really hope Paul’s story of emotional healing continues – I like the idea Doug came up with about mentoring a young boy as part of his healing process.
    I started watching this show years ago because of Paul Williams and will continue to do so as long as he is on my screen!

  33. Ginger

    July 28, 2012 at 6:55 pm

    Doug Davidson is a tremendous talent and a sweet person. He is hilarious in person. This interview was terrific and I hope to see more. I am glad the ratings went up for Y&R. Paul DESERVES it! Paul is effortlessly emotional and it does come naturally, like riding a bike. To Doug, never question yourself, you are right about just letting Paulie steer! ***I just want to see more Paul on Y & R!!! You deserve a very Special EMMY award! 🙂 Great Q & A. Thanks!!!!

  34. Joy Mathys

    July 29, 2012 at 2:40 am

    Thanks for this great interview. Doug Davidson is the heart and the soul of the show. I love his suggestion about a young kid coming to Paul. How about this boy being Maggie Sullivan’s son and asking Paul to find his mother who just vanished (like Carl Williams years ago)? Paul would bond with the boy who could even be his son.

  35. Tammy Ross

    July 29, 2012 at 7:27 pm

    I really would like to see paul (Doug Davidson) and christina (Lauralee Bell) rekindle there romance I think they make a good c on the show. its time to see more on the show Y& R

  36. Karen

    August 4, 2012 at 2:17 am

    Thank you y and r for giving Paul a great storyline. He is a great actor that doesn’t get much screen time! Outstanding performance!

  37. Bobbie

    August 6, 2012 at 3:31 pm

    I think Paul is a great guy, great acting, made me have tears. I think he should be best male actor. He is a great looking guy, great personality.

  38. Cynthia

    August 8, 2012 at 1:27 am

    I love Paul and Chris together, their love and emotion seem so real.

  39. Carolyn

    September 5, 2012 at 7:32 pm

    Doug you do a great job just wish you were on there more often. You play a good role and I can’t miss a day without seeing this. I like you and Christine on here togather. Thanks for all the Pictures you have sent me and I am waiting for another photo of you. Your are a very handsome man. Keep the good work up. Can’t wait to the show to come on in the daytime. take care.

  40. MP

    September 20, 2012 at 11:31 am

    Doug has done a marvelous job with the Ricky storyline. Hope he is featured more in the future.

  41. CAROL

    June 24, 2014 at 10:15 pm

    Doug Davidson has played the role of Paul Williams for an amazingly long time and he has had 2 children Heather and Ricky to come back into his life as adults and then he ends up having his daughter leave town and his son dies. He is a strong person, who endures so many unhappy periods in his life; but he is still able to go on with his life and I know that his TV father and mother would be very proud of all he has accomplished (the chief of police no less). What a GUY!!!! Paul Williams needs to stay on the show because
    he and Christine are not done Y-E-T?

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Interviews

Y&R’s Executive Producer Anthony Morina Talks On Daytime Emmy Drama Series Win For Neil’s Memorial & Honoring Kristoff St. John

Last Friday night, The Young and the Restless was named the Outstanding Drama Series at the 47th annual Daytime Emmy Awards broadcast on CBS. The show won on the strength of their submissions, which centered on the death of Neil Winters; including when the residents of Genoa City find out of his passing, and the subsequent heartbreaking memorial service in his honor.

However, what made those hours of television unlike anything seldom seen; were not only was Genoa City saying goodbye to Neil, but the cast was saying their goodbyes to their beloved friend and colleague, Kristoff St. John (Neil) who had passed away suddenly back in February of 2019.

Y&R’s executive producer, Anthony (Tony) Morina accepted the award for the top-rated CBS Daytime drama during the Emmy telecast, which now makes Morina a five-time Daytime Emmy winner himself!

Michael Fairman TV chatted with Tony on the series emotional Emmy win, and what it meant for him to win the gold for these incredibly moving and special episodes that were at its epicenter paying tribute to Kristoff in the best way the soap opera could. Here’s what Tony shared on the Y&R Drama Series victory and more.

Photo: JPI

Congratulations on your Outstanding Drama Series win. The episodes that you submitted were at every level, so gut-wrenching, sincere, and beautiful.  What did you think about the process that you went through to make these right for Kristoff and the character of Neil?

TONY:  Occasionally, when you are in this business, as you know, you work so hard to achieve certain things, sometimes you think you’re achieving something, and you’re not, and sometimes something shows up that surprises the heck out of you, and this was kind of it for me.  But what didn’t surprise me, of course, were the actors’ ability, the director’s ability, and the crews’ ability, and for these episodes it was at such a high level.  Sometimes there is an emotional element, or an otherworldliness thing that takes over.

Photo: CBS

Yes, because it was all so real and raw; in that we were watching the characters who loved Neil Winters mourn him, but we were also watching all the actors who loved their co-star.

TONY: When everybody was in that church set and were giving their eulogies, it felt like everybody was so behind each other, and everybody just cared for each other so much because they cared so much for Kristoff.  All the eulogies that people were doing were a page and a half to two pages.  They were really long, but you could feel the emotional tension, and you could feel how people just felt.  Kristoff was a very unique special person, who ended up going through some rough times, but he really was beloved.  Sometimes you love people, and sometimes you say somebody is beloved.  Whenever you saw him, he put a smile on your face.  He made you feel like he really cared about you.  Those shows came together really out of this feeling of love.  We did two whole shows that day.  We did that whole show and the show that came after it.  I don’t know how many hours of a day it was, but people had so much emotion attached to it that those shows really kind of took over themselves with everybody just trusting and letting go and supporting each other.  I got a text from Peter Bergman (Jack, Y&R) saying how it was one of the greatest experiences he’d ever had in terms of how it all came together.  Those shows just meant a lot to us, and I really felt that if we didn’t win, I’d be perfectly fine with that, because I was just so glad that we were able to do these episodes, and people got to see it.

Photo: JPI

At what point did you decide, “We are going with this to submit for the Emmy!”

TONY:  I actually knew that day.  I think, I actually said to Josh Griffith (head writer and Co-EP Y&R), “This is going to be our Emmy show … or one of our Emmy shows.”  The other show when everybody finds out Neil died was an incredibly powerful show to me too, but I knew that day when we shot the funeral that you rarely see that kind of rawness.  When you get into this business, and you want to become an actor, it’s tough, but you know that in the end what you want is to get into a position where you can share who you are as a person in an artistic way.  I think the Neil memorial gave people a way to say, “This is why I do this because I get to really share myself, and I get to express how passionate I am and how much I care about other people.”

Photo: JPI

Shemar Moore (Ex-Malcolm) came back to honor his dear friend and on-screen Y&R brother.  How was it having him on set with you to share this experience?

TONY:  Shemar was amazing.  He was there until the bitter end of our tape day.  He could not have been kinder and more supportive of everybody, and really laid out his emotions, and it was like that with everybody.  I would say this was the the most amazing experience I have ever had.

What do you think Kristoff would say?  I think he would be very proud that you gave Neil a real proper sendoff.

TONY:  Absolutely.  I also think Kristoff, would have thought that Neil deserved it, and would have loved it, a, it’s an interesting question because you have got to say to yourself, “Does Kristoff feel he deserves it?” As a character, he’d definitely feel he deserved it.  He was a part of that community.  He was a part of Genoa City.  Those were his friends and his family.  Would Kristoff feel he deserves that?  I don’t know if he would have felt he deserved it, but I know he would have loved knowing how much people cared for him.  I think that would have meant the world to him.  I really do.

Photo: CBS

I loved your acceptance speech.  I thought it was one of the better ones of Emmy night. 

TONY:  Thanks so much.  Matt Kane (publicist, Y&R) has been amazing.   He gave me a lot of guidance on where to go, and my wife, Sally (Sussman Morina) really helped write the speech because the rules were you’ve got 30 seconds.  I really believe in the notion that when you have an opportunity to speak in front of people about something, it has some meaning to you and to other people.  I think you have to put thought into it because how many opportunities do you get in life to share about yourself and how you feel about people?  So, I really appreciate you saying that.

Photo: CBS

What did you think of your Y&R actors: Bryton James’ (Devon) and Jason Thompson’s (Billy) major Emmy victories?

TONY:  Well, personally, I am enormous fans of both people.  I like when nice, good people have nice things happen to them, and you know them.  First off, I was so happy for Bryton because I know he and Kristoff were close, and I know he was deeply affected, as Christel Khalil (Lily, Y&R) was, as everybody was, but they were like family.  I love Bryton personally, and he laid his heart out there.  As for Jason Thompson, people think the world of him, and I think he is an unbelievable actor.  I taught for years, and I have worked with a lot of actors, and I think Jason has such control of his work.  I’m impressed by him.  I’m just as impressed by who Jason is.  I think he’s deserved it other times too, and this was his first win; which must be very special for him.

Photo: deCazotteFacebookPage

During the In-Memoriam tribute on the Emmy broadcast, former producer, Lisa de Cazotte was also featured.  What can you say about your time working with her at Y&R and over your career?

TONY: I’ve known Lisa De Cazotte since Santa Barbara when Paul Rauch (former executive producer) brought her there, and that’s where we first met. Lisa was probably my favorite producer to ever be in the booth with because she let you be yourself, and she let you do your job, and yet, she still had control over the room and the studio.  She was a great touchstone for me, because when you are in this position, you need someone to bounce stuff off of or just say, “Am I really being an idiot here?” because we were old friends, she could say, “Tony, you’re being an idiot.”  (Laughs)  We miss her terribly.  She was really a loved person, and she was just fantastic at what she did.  I just miss her as a friend.

Photo: JPI

And of course, the In-Memoriam featured the late Y&R co-creator, Lee Philip Bell who also passed recently. 

TONY:  Yes, and that’s what was interesting about that speech I gave, because you had to mention those three people: Lee, of course, Kristoff, and Lisa – three truly linchpin important people in daytime drama for many years. Losing all three made it a particularly rough year for The Young and the Restless family.

I also wanted to talk about Eve LaRue (Ex-Celeste Rosales), who had never won a Daytime Emmy but she did for her work on Y&R! She was very emotional and moved by her win as Outstanding Guest Performer in a Drama Series.  What can you say about Eva?

TONY:  She is such a lovely person and she did a great job for us.  I’m just glad for her because I know she had ever won before.

Photo: JPI

One of the clips shown on the Emmy broadcast that Y&R chose for air from Neil’s memorial was Victor’s emotional eulogy; which Eric Braeden delivered so beautifully.   I know how found he was of Kristoff; so it made that on-screen moment all the more heartbreaking. What can you say about Eric?

TONY:  Eric feels as deeply as anybody who I have ever known.  Really, he can come across sometimes as a certain kind of image for people on-screen, but he cares deeply, and is the most supportive actor of every other actor.  Eric has a depth and is a fantastic actor, and he knows how to use his talent.  He actually called me last night and left a message.  He just said, “Hey, I saw you on TV,” and then he just laughed for 5 minutes.  It was really very funny.  He’s not used to seeing me on TV, and so he just laughed.  It was hilarious.

What did you think of Y&R’s win for Outstanding Drama Series knowing they submitted the episodes of Genoa City finding out Neil had passed, and his funeral? Share your thoughts on Tony’s remarks via the comment section below.

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Interviews

Daytime Emmy Winners: Jacqueline MacInnes Wood, Scott Clifton & Heather Tom Talk Winning the Gold & Returning to Work at B&B

This week, The Bold and the Beautiful has been airing encore presentation of Daytime Emmy-winning performances from some of the cast over the years as a prelude to tomorrow night’s 47th annual Daytime Emmy Awards on CBS.

The weeklong Emmy celebration concludes tomorrow with Jacqueline MacInnes Wood’s (Steffy) Emmy-winning performance from last year which won the Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series prize for the first-time in her daytime career.

Michael Fairman chatted with Jacqui, along with five-time Daytime Emmy-winner and a nominee for Lead Actress again this year, Heather Tom (Katie) and three-time Daytime Emmy winner, Scott Clifton (Liam).  As daytime soap fans know, Heather and Scott hold the distinction of being the only actors to win in all three acting categories: Younger, Supporting and Lead.

In this candid and fun conversation on the Michael Fairman Channel on You Tube, Jacqui, Scott and Heather remember the nights the won Emmy gold, their acceptance speeches, things they wish they would have said, and what it was like waiting for their names to be called, plus taking a stroll down memory lane and remembering when they taped their Emmy-winning performances.

Scott reveals why he chose not to submit himself in Lead Actor this year, even though he has some of the finest performances throughout the Baby Beth baby switch storyline,.

Later the trio talk about The Bold and the Beautiful being the first U.S. soap opera and first U.S. broadcast show back in production following the shutdown during the coronavirus pandemic and how B&B is looking to shoot episodes during the times we live.

Watch the full video interview below.

Then let us know, what was your favorite part of the moments shared by Jacqui, Scott, and Heather in the Emmy conversation?  Do you think Heather might tie Erika Slezak (Ex-Viki, OLTL) tomorrow night with her sixth win in the Lead Actress category?  What do you think of B&B’s return to production following the sentiments shared.

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Days Of Our Lives

DAYS Thaao Penghlis Chats on His Daytime Emmy Nomination & How He Makes Tony DiMera One of a Kind

He has been one of the longstanding cast members of Days of our Lives and certainly of Salem’s notorious DiMera Clan; and while Thaao Penghlis may be off our screens for a time and then comes back again; though the years one thing has been true, he delivers top-notch performances in a way that is uniquely ‘Thaao’.

This year at the 47th annual Daytime Emmy Awards to be broadcast on Friday night, June 26th at 8 p. m. EST, Thaao is vying for the Outstanding Lead Actor prize amongst a formidable group of other daytime favorites.  And this makes it two years in a row that Penghlis has received an Emmy nomination although this time in a different category.

As fans know, Penghlis takes the art of acting seriously, and expects other he works with to bring their A-game, just as he does time and time again; whether it be playing DAYS dashing Tony or the evil Andre or when he portrayed Victor Cassadine on General Hospital.

Michael Fairman TV spoke to Thaao to get his thoughts on: receiving the Emmy recognition and what it means to him what he thought about his nominated scenes, plus what he might be doing at home during the ceremony, and where he hopes Tony DiMera’s future is headed.   Here’s what Thaao shared.

Photo: JPI

Tell me about what scenes you submitted that landed you a Lead Actor Emmy nod!

THAAO:  Well, the week I came back to DAYS, I had 11 shows, and this material was from one show of three I did one day!  When you think of other actors doing 150 shows, and I did less than 50 this past year, my choice is kind of limited.  So, when I came across these particular scenes, which were with Eric Martsolf (Brady) and with Arianne Zucker (Nicole), what I liked about it is that usually when you see other peoples’ work, its histrionic, it’s great tears, it’s drama – and what I was able to put together had a through line and an arc from beginning to end.  It makes it very logical when somebody is following your story, and you can show a whole ebb that makes sense.  I had some lines that were really difficult to say, like, “Coming back from the dead is not easy.”  When I get lines like that, I throw it away, and because of that, it becomes humorous.  I have to say I work well with Arianne.  She was great.  I found in the past, when I have worked with some actors, they step on your lines.  I found the best way to stop that is I put my hand up, and I say, “Hey!” and everything goes silent.  They go into shock mode, and I say, “I haven’t finished,” and then I go on.  (Laughs)  So, when Kristen as Nicole starts to talk to Tony the way she does, and she says, “You’d better behave…” I thought, “This is a DiMera you are talking to,” so, I just snapped back at her.  I gave her a, “Hey!”  So, she shut up, froze, and I went on.

Photo: JPI

Would you say your reel was more comedic … or both funny and serious?

THAAO:  It is both.  There are subtleties to it.  There is a teacher I know in Australia, and she is very critical.  She said, “I want to see your work.”  I showed it to her, and she wrote back, “Oh my, God.  How did you make those transitions so readily?”  I went, “Oh.  How did I do it?”  I didn’t think of that.  I think it’s an old technique.  It’s called having to do 3 shows in one day, and you had better get your stuff right, and it’s about how do you make a scene work?  There is one director who I did a miniseries with who said to me, “Where did you get your training from?”  I said, “Daytime.”  He said, “My God.  You certainly know how to have a camera follow you,”   Well, the camera has to follow your movement.  So, when I finished a transition, I’d move to another spot, and the camera had to follow me.  So, what happened in the arc of this Emmy-nominated piece is that I took charge and controlled the scene so that it became a scene of lots of transitions. And of course, charm, I did all of what I thought Tony would be.  He is a DiMera.  I have one of those looks. I don’t know where it comes from, maybe it’s as I get older, but I’ve learned how to work the camera where I may slam something first to get your attention, and then the camera comes onto your face, and you’re going, “Oh, what the hell is he thinking?”  So, I can play the dark side quite readily, and yet in my real life, I’m not so bad. (Laughs)

Courtesy/ABC

You have Thorsten Kaye (Ridge, B&B) and Steve Burton (Jason, GH) also in your category, and these guys who are obviously been soap veterans like yourself.  What do you think about the group you have been nominated with? 

THAAO:  I never worked with Steve Burton, but hear good things.  I know Jon Lindstrom (Kevin/Ryan, GH).  He’s a lovely actor.  I have worked with Jason Thompson (Billy, Y&R).  He’s a lovely actor.  He is well-trained.  So, it is nice to see that the nominees are all vets.

Right, they are all vets.  It seems like a good group to be with. 

THAAO:  I agree, and I love that the Daytime Emmys are coming back to television.  I think it is an upswing when they think of daytime dying.  I think whoever made this happen is taking on the responsibility of taking daytime back.  It is why people love novellas.  People love the story, they love to follow the characters, and we’ve got fantastic fans.  I mean, what would we do without them?  You can’t sustain the show without them, and you pay a price, you have to know how to entertain them because once they know who you are and what you’re about, they get bored.  So, you have to be ahead of your audience all of the time.  That’s what I have always tried to do with both characters that I’ve played on DAYS

Photo: JPI

They’re doing a virtual ceremony this year.  How do you think you would dress while watching the ceremony?

THAAO:  You don’t wear a tux in your house, do you? So, I’ve invited some people for a celebratory time.  Lauren Koslow (Kate, DAYS) and her husband Nick Schillace (head of make-up, DAYS) and Leann Hunley (Anna, DAYS) are some of my great friends who have been very supportive of me through some tough times this year, and I’ve got a friend who has got  a wonderful restaurant, and he is going to cater it.  Probably it will be a group of 10.  You know, could you imagine being here on your own, in a tuxedo, with a glass of champagne? (Laughs)

I know, kind of awkward! (Laughs)  You’ll put something nice on for the big night, right?

THAAO:  Yes, you know me.  I’m always dressed.  What would you suggest?  Sweatpants on the bottom and a tuxedo jacket!  How about that? (Laughs)

Photo: JPI

Now, you have been previously nominated for Daytime Emmys, too!

THAAO:  Yes, and last year I was nominated as well for Outstanding Guest Performer.  So, it’s kind of nice to be back-to-back, and in 2008, I was nominated for Lead Actor when I played the clown in the Tony and Andre storyline.  Thank God, DAYS recently DAYS had James Reynolds (Abe) wining in the Lead Actor category.  I thought, “Wow.”  That was for years and years of good work that he’s done, and also, Greg Vaughan (Eric) wining for Supporting Actor was very nice, but we haven’t had that many wins in the acting categories over the years.

Photo: JPI

DAYS tapes so far ahead of air; that what was once a seemingly major concern has paid off swimmingly during the coronavirus pandemic.  The soap is the only show to have enough episodes in the bank for months ahead when production shut down and enough even when other shows go back into production.  Who would have thought?

THAAO:  We used to think it was ridiculous that DAYS taped eight months ahead, but look at us now! Who would have thought is right?

What would you love to see happen with Tony when DAYS does resume filming new episodes again? 

THAAO:  I’d like to go back and play the head of the DiMera family.  I’ve never been granted that, and I think, at this stage, with the way I worked with Joe Mascolo (Ex-Stefano) it would be nice to see the transition just like Michael Corleone did in Godfather.

So will you be rooting for Thaao to take home the gold as Lead Actor in a Drama Series come Emmy night?  Do you hope DAYS writes Tony into upcoming story, and if so, how would you like to see him on the canvas? Comment below.

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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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