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The Florencia Lozano Interview – One Life to Live

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Want a sexy spitfire who can handle every thing thrown at her including the kitchen sink?  Look no further than One Life to Live’s Florencia Lozano. As legal eagle Téa Delgado, her ‘woman on the edge’ performances have been nothing short of remarkable.   And if you follow the shenanigans in Llanview, then you know Téa has a big elephant in the room, her daughter Danielle, who the man Téa loves never knew existed, till now   So the stage is set for more of the stormy and twisted drama in the never-a-dull moment relationship between Téa Delgado and Todd Manning.  This couple spells dysfunction with a capitol, “D”.   Over the last month, soap fans have been introduced to Danielle, the newest member of the Manning clan.  And the teen seems like a chip off the old block….hating every one that wronged her.  Sound familiar?  Now the question is, when will Dani find out the man she hates is her dad?

As Christmas time approaches, after the “supposed” sudden death of Ross Rayburn (who Danielle believed to be her biological father) went over a bridge with the help from Todd and an assist from a bullet, this family is all over the map for the holidays.  Blair wants to console Todd, Eli wants to console Téa and Todd wants to tell Dani the truth, and all the while Todd and Téa seem to truly love each other, even though they cannot stop hurting one another.  In this On-Air On-Soaps interview, Florencia Lozano talks about working with the brilliant Trevor St. John (Todd), what propels Téa to “act” up, and we get a small sneak peek into life in Llanview in 2010!

MICHAEL:

Your storyline has been so dramatic for months, and whenever I watch Téa I need to take two Xanax when her scenes are over. (Laughs) Her histrionics alone are enough to make me grab for the bottle.  But I love her.  Do you think she is slightly, shall we say, “over-the-top”?

FLORENCIA:

I missed the showing of the OLTL Christmas reel, which apparently I am the star of! (Laughs)  Apparently, there was a part where I was screaming and screaming, and screaming hysterically, and then immediately was like, “Was that over-the-top?” (Laughs)  I guess I see it as melodrama that we are doing with heightened emotion.  I do have fun pushing that to the extreme and pushing myself emotionally to extremes.  Certainly, Téa has been in situations that have warranted that.  Imagine if you were fighting with someone and they went out the window.  How would you feel?  How horrifying would that moment be?  That’s all I can say. (Laughs)

Tea and Todd Fight

Courtesy/ABC

MICHAEL:

You had left the show in 2002 and came back a year ago.  How has it been different this time out?

FLORENCIA:

I am different, and am happy to say that.  I have learned a few things over the years and feel more grounded, and more appreciative, and more comfortable with myself.  I am enjoying myself more than I did before… not that I did not have a great time with Roger Howarth (Ex-Todd, Paul ATWT).  I did.  But working with Trevor St. John is equally wonderful.  I am getting to do a lot of material with Kassie DePaiva, (Blair) which is terrific.  It’s a good team over here.

MICHAEL:

Did you know when you were going in this time, that Téa was going to have a daughter?

FLORENCIA:

I don’t think anybody knew that.  I did not know.  And it has been cool to have that dimension added to my character, because I don’t have a child in real-life.  It’s been satisfying to imagine that I am responsible for this person.

MICHAEL:

You were not, “Oh God, I am too young to have a teenage daughter?”

FLORENCIA:

No, I wasn’t.  It’s a soap… all kinds of stuff happen in terms of the age thing.  I was honestly curious to explore another dimension of Téa, because for so long it’s been Todd and Téa.  This idea that she was hurt as a child by her circumstance, so therefore she is attracted to men who are troubled like herself, was refreshing to play something outside of that paradigm.  So, I was glad.

Todd and Tea Wedding

Courtesy/ABC

MICHAEL:

Téa’s background… I don’t feel the show has re-established that in recent months as to why Téa is the way she is.  Can you give On-Air On-Soaps readers a refresher course?  Was she abused as a child?

FLORENCIA:

It’s less about abuse and more about abandonment.  I guess abandonment is sort of abuse. Her dad was a super who was very busy and lonely. Téa’s mother abandoned her and him.  So, Téa grew up with a dad who always had a lot on his mind, and was struggling really, really hard.  I think she felt very isolated in this Park Avenue world that she didn’t feel she belonged in, but she felt that she was determined that she was going to fit in, too.  She is used to thinking about love as something that she has to work really, really hard to get.  There is a real tortured relationship for her of getting love and being loved.  

MICHAEL:

Do you ever go, “OMG!  Now Téa’s going back to Todd… again?”  Do you think you and the audience have to suspend belief?  Or, do you think somebody would keep going back into this dark and murky territory?

FLORENCIA:

Listen, I think all kinds of things happen in the world and truth is stranger than fiction.  I could totally see that she would keep going back to Todd.  Going back and forth with Todd is basically what Téa has been doing, and it’s tiring, but I think it’s the truth of love/hate relationships and a lot of people are like that.

MICHAEL:

Do you ever get exhausted after those emotionally-packed performances and carry it with you off the set?  Can you just let it go and walk home?  Or, is it so draining that it affects your life?

Tea Freaked

Courtesy/ABC

FLORENCIA:

It’s draining.  It’s cathartic sometimes too, because you get to express, rage, or sadness, or grief or pain, that as a person there is not always the appropriate time or place to do that.  And to get to express that, and to know that people will watch it, and then they get in touch with their own feelings of sorrow, is sort of the cool cathartic thing as an actor to think.  So I say to myself, “Yeah, that was tiring (and at times I am knocked out) but in a kind of uplifting way.”  I enjoy it, and that is why I became an actor.

MICHAEL:

How is playing with your on-screen daughter, Danielle, Kelley Massal?  Or as Téa says, “Dan-yell-ah.” (Roll of the tongue, too)

FLORENCIA:

(Laughs) Trevor always makes fun of me with my pronunciation.   She is wonderful!

MICHAEL:

Were you involved in the casting?

FLORENCIA:

I screen tested with all of them.  Kelly is still a kid, and it’s easy to forget that because of the work that she delivers.  It’s cool to pretend to be a mom, to touch her hair and feel I can comfort her or protect her.  I like keeping an eye on her and making sure she is all right.  It’s a lot to be here.  And to take the pace of soaps is hard at that age, with the emotion it calls for.  I think for Kelly it’s also been a lot of fun for her to get to play the rebellious teen.  You know, the Todd Manning teen!  I have actually been in awe of what she has done.

MICHAEL:

So, right now Danielle hates her mother and her father.  What do you think we can look forward to?  Any resolution?

Todd and Dani

Courtesy/ABC

FLORENCIA:

She is a teenager, and for a couple years there, it’s really a true test of faith. Adolescence, if you remember, (I vaguely do) it’s a really hard time.  Mothers often times get the brunt of that, especially with daughters.  There is a lot of separating from the mother yet wanting to stay merged with the mother.  In our case, she is about to find out her father is not who she thought he was.  So we are definitely going to have a struggle.  But I would hope our love would win out.

MICHAEL:

Todd comes to Téa soon, and tells her he loves her.  Does Téa still love Todd?

FLORENCIA:

What do you think? 

MICHAEL:

I think she still loves him!

FLORENCIA:

You are right, and as we go into the New Year, things will happen.

MICHAEL:

Every one in the cast touts, and rightfully so, working with Trevor.  Can you shed some light on working with such a dynamic actor, day in and day out?

FLORENCIA:

He is very funny, and that cannot be underestimated…. the joy of that amidst all this as tragic melodrama…. to have someone who is sort of poking fun at every direction, at everyone including himself, is a real joy.  I find that very attractive.  It gives some relief.  He is very grounded and smart, and so it allows me to be able to go off into the stratosphere emotionally, because he is asking questions that are really helpful and plotting our path through all of this material.  He is very open to being in the moment. We have so few takes in daytime, and if we try something and it’s captured and it takes well, that’s the best.  We do rehearse when we can.

Trevorsolo width=

Courtesy/ABC

MICHAEL:

If you were to say three things about Trevor off the top of your head, what would you say?  He is …

FLORENCIA:

He is unique and marches to his own beat, and he is perceptive and playful.

MICHAEL:

Tell me about working with your sworn enemy on-screen and best bud off-screen, Kassie DePaiva?

FLORENCIA:

We also share a dressing room and she is one of my closest friends here.  She is so different than me as a person and we are so different as characters, that I think our pairing really works well.  Kassie tends to have a lighter touch and a more flippant attitude, which lends itself to comedy and good dynamics for Téa and Blair.  Kassie is a really good person and a light, and brings upbeat energy into the room.

MICHAEL:

What did you think of Téa’s handling of Matthew’s case during the trial of Matthew suing his parents, Bo and Nora, for the right to have his life-threatening surgery?  Is performing the legalese in courtroom scenes difficult for you?

FLORENCIA:

I like it.  It’s a cool challenge, and it’s the opposite of the emotional dramatic feelings and this and that.  It’s very objective, and black and white, and technical terms are kind of fun to crunch your mouth around.  It brings out a side of Téa that is objective.

MICHAEL:

In a court of law, she is clever and shifty!  So watch out!

FLORENCIA:

Oh yeah… and I love doing that stuff!  As far her defending Matthew, I was telling someone this the other day; Téa is able to compartmentalize herself, and the self that is a lawyer has a large acting component to it.  It is something Téa feels safe in… in terms of, “There is a law, and I abide by that law.”  Now, there are all types of interpretations of the law, but that structure gives her a lot of leeway.  I don’t think she allowed herself the possibility with Matthew that anything was going to happen to him.  Later, seeing something could happen to her own daughter in a different way, she thought, “Oh My God!  What did I just put Nora through?  What could have happened to Matthew?  What if I was helping his surgery along and he could have possibly died?”  But at the time, Téa was invested in, “I am being hired here to defend what this person wants to do, which is legal, and he has every legal right to do it.”  So, Téa barreled ahead with her blinders on. (Laughs)

Remote

Courtesy/ABC

MICHAEL:

You just did a remote in New Jersey for the climatic scenes that aired earlier this week.  New Jersey doubled as a backdrop for the Washington state border, heading into Canada.  What did you think of how those remote scenes turned out?

FLORENCIA:

It’s pretty ambitious.  And what I like about remotes is every one is on their toes, because they are doing it for the first time.   It’s not the safety of the studio where they can say, “We have done this a million times,” and they go on autopilot.  And it was cold outside!   I loved going on a field trip and staying overnight with everyone in Jersey, or wherever the heck we were, Canada! (Laughs)   I enjoyed working with Hillary B. Smith (Nora) and Bob Woods (Bo).

MICHAEL:

Speaking of Nora, Téa has only a few female friends in town in Viki and Rachel.  The rest of the town of Llanview is not too keen on her.

FLORENCIA:

That’s about it, and now sort of, Nora.  Circumstances throw us together in times where we need each other.  I think Téa really likes Nora, but she keeps her at arms length for a lot of reasons.  And yes, there is an uneasy alliance between them.

MICHAEL:

One of the best Téa moments was recently, when she along with Blair were trapped and almost gassed to death by Powell Lord.  Was that one of your all-time favorite soap gems?

Blair and Tea

Courtesy/ABC

FLORENCIA:

I did enjoy playing that because we got to go places like, “We are about to die here,” and this is an extreme, extreme, circumstance that I love to play.  We had just been through this ordeal with this psycho who has kidnapped us all, threatened to kill us all… Todd is tied to a bedpost, and we are brought down to a basement, and there is a gas leak!  We think we are going to die, and what happens in those last moments of wanting to connect… what would your last words be?  It was cool to also not have to look that great. I like those moments where we have bruises and scratches. We have been there for two days and our clothes are all haggard, and I find that fun, instead of looking ‘just-so’. Usually, in soaps there is a lot of lip gloss going on!

MICHAEL:

Talking about the Powell Lord story, brings me around to asking if have you seen or stayed in touch with your original Todd, Roger Howarth?

FLORENCIA:

I haven’t.  I saw him at Phil Carey’s (Asa) memorial service awhile ago, but I have not seen him since then.  I hope he is all right, now that As the World Turns was cancelled.

MICHAEL:

Now I see more romantic entanglements in your future.   What about Elijah Clarke?   My thoughts were that he took a liking to Téa and now he seems to be hooking up with Blair.  Do I see a quadrangle developing?

FLORENCIA:

You may be right.  I am not sure how that is going to shake down.

MICHAEL:

But Eli likes Téa?

Eli and Tea

Courtesy/ABC

FLORENCIA:

Yes, he does, but I think Téa is so distracted by Danielle that I honestly don’t think she even kind of registered anything.

MICHAEL:

How is working with Matt Walton (Eli)?

FLORENCIA:

He is laid back and a lot of fun.

MICHAEL:

I think down the line, we may see ‘lawyers in love’?  After all, they had some sparks when they went at it in the courtroom when he first showed up in Llanview.

FLORENCIA:

Yeah, exactly.  We have a lot of similarities that we are down to business in a certain legalese sort of way, and I have a lot of fun with him.  I had fun when we first met and Eli had secrets that he was holding over her head, and now he has switched to being my friend.

MICHAEL:

Does Téa believe Todd 100% loves her, and that part of him does not want to be back with Blair?

FLORENCIA:

He totally does love her; I think at a deep level that she may not be conscious that she knows this.  I think she can’t tolerate total intimacy, but she can tolerate the push and pull of love, because that feels tolerable to her.  The idea that they could love each other without that is terrifying for her.

MICHAEL:

You are still telling Todd not to reveal himself to Danielle.  Why?

Ross and Dani

Courtesy/ABC

FLORENCIA:

Initially, it came out in a very unhelpful way in the hotel room in Seattle and Danielle was not able to process it.  Tea screwed this up so badly on so many different levels!  She screwed Ross up.  He was a good guy, and he thought he was her father and he ripped her out of his world.  I hurt Danielle and Todd a lot.  So now, Téa is trying to do things the right way, which would not be just sort of saying, to Danielle, “Hey, this is your dad.”  She wants to find someway to connect with her daughter and get some trust going with her before she just drops it on her.

MICHAEL:

How is she going to explain it away?  Have you taped some scenes when the reveal to Dani comes to light?

FLORENCIA:

You shall see, and we have taped some of it.

MICHAEL:

Did you like how the revelation comes out?

FLORENCIA:

Florenzia-black-jpi-cropped

©JPI Studios

It’s surprising how it comes out. 

MICHAEL:

For those who may just be tuning in to OLTL, what were Téa’s reasons again for not telling Todd she had his child?

FLORENCIA:

For a long time she did not know and she then realized, “OMG!  I had sex with the guy once and I think he actually might be the father.”  She came back to Llanview a year ago and got the DNA test.  Then a couple months later, Téa walked in on Todd and Blair, so that was not the right time to tell him.  Things kept happening and they are all excuses.  She was terrified of his reaction. Then she was terrified when they got married that he would be marrying her just because she was the mother of his child, and not because he loved her, just for her.  I think she has run out of excuses. This coming year will be very telling for Téa!

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Jordan Hudson
Jordan Hudson

I just want to thank you guys for this interview. Ms. Lozano is a favorite and the reason that I started watching OLTL again. I co-host the Pine Valley Podcast where we talk more about OLTL and I said it in our last podcast. I never understood how Florencia was never acknowledge with recognition for her work during her first tenure on the show. I only hope that not only will she be recognized with a nomination next year but that she actually wins. The incredible work that she does as an actress, never making the predictable choice but always going with her gut. Never afraid to be real, raw, exposed. I’m in awe of her ever day.
I’m so glad you back Florencia and on the Best Soap Opera on the air right now. OLTL as a whole is just outstanding and I’m disgusted that this talented cast , hard working crew led by an E.P. and head writer who obviously love there jobs, and this show get no recognition and support from the Network and Brian Frons. Soaps started on radio we don’t need special effects, inferno’s and a tornado, We just need characters who we care about in well written stories that do not insult the audiences intelligence or make a mockery of the history of the show we care about. So to OLTL for showing that one doesn’t need to reinvent the wheel in order for a Soap to be relevant and that there is still life left in this genre. I salute you.

TREY
TREY

GREATT INTERVIEW!

Dean
Dean

Love her!

SueMatt
SueMatt

This is a real nice post i also bookmarked your site and look for more updates.

Pilar
Pilar

Great interview, thanks.

I love that classy and gracious an actress Florencia is, she always gives co-stars so much credit. How refreshing!

Always excited to read her insights into Tea’s motivations, she plays her with so much more layers than dialogue often allows.

Mamita
Mamita

Great interview! I really like Florencia, I hope she gets an Emmy next year.

Elaine
Elaine

I do think that Tea is a bit over the top ,, with her crying and screaming,,it is just a bit too much,,, but otherwise I lke her

melissa
melissa

I love Florencia so much and this interview just makes me love her even more!!! She is so humble and graceful giving such high praise for all of her co-stars and its obvious she is having a great time on One Life right now and I am having a great time watching her!! I also think she understands her character so well and I love the way she can delve into Tea’s motivation and give such a great explanation and rationale of her character!! So, thanks so much for this interview and showcasing Florencia’s wonderful spirit and beautiful heart and her amazing talent. And she deserves the emmy next year!! She has simply shined this past year!!

Cathy S.
Cathy S.

What a wonderful interview!!! I really enjoyed reading this interview and I just am in awe of everything that Florencia brings to OLTL! She is an amazingly talented actress. I tune in everyday to OLTL because of HER! She has become my favorite actress and has inspired me so much. I love that she credits her fellow cast mates with high praise. She just seems very sincere and a kind hearted person inside and out. I have really enjoyed watching OLTL because of what she brings to the character Tea Delgado. I feel after this year she will definately be getting an emmy for her talent she’s brought to the show. I hope she knows how many of us fans are out there and how talented we think she is. Thank You Florencia for what you do by gracing my tv screen on OLTL I see such hard work and talent shining through!

Sara
Sara

This is one of Florencia’s best interviews! She is a definite class-act. The many layers of Tea Delgado make her one of the best soap characters, and I truly appreciate Florencia’s take on everything.

I absolutely love what Flo says about TREVOR ST. JOHN!!! They both seem to challenge each other and definitely have some amazing chemistry going on!! We fans can only hope that TnT relationship continues into 2010.

Jamie
Jamie

THANK YOU for the great Florencia interview! I only watch OLTL these days because of the wonderfully complex relationship between Todd & Tea.

Trevor and Florencia are ^^MAGIC^^ together and I hope they both stay with the show!!!

Florencia has such great insight into her character which I enjoy reading about. Kudos on such a good interview.

Stacy A.
Stacy A.

Great interview, Love some Florencia and the character Tea Delgado.

Katie
Katie

Love the interview and love FL. Her return as Tea has kept me on the edge of my seat watching OLTL this year. I can’t wait to see what’s to come for her character in 2010. She’s an amazing actress and we’re so blessed to have her back on daytime. Thank you for your phenomenal portrayal of Tea Delgado, Florencia!

Ann
Ann

Thank you for the insightful interview! I enjoyed reading Florencia’s take on things. I also enjoyed her comments about her co-stars, especially what she had to say about Trevor St. John!

I love TnT and I want to see a great deal more of them on my screen! The addition of a daughter is icing on the cake–a TnT family!

I hope that FL does get the recognition she deserves for her work. TSJ deserves to be recognized as well. I just love the fact that TPTB had the wisdom to put these two actors together–now they have to keep them that way!

Thanks again for the great interview!

iowahawkeye
iowahawkeye

Great interview Michael, i can’t say more than what’s already been said. She deserves a nomination and win! Everyone please check out my Florencia page on Facebook!
http://www.facebook.com/#/group.php?gid=157394258906&ref=ts

anna
anna

That seems like a cool inteview. I hope they get to have a new TnT child though by that is just my own opinion.

Destiny Livingston
Destiny Livingston

i wish i can meet her seems like she really like trevor and kassie is her best friend if they were togeter in rl they will be an awesome couple she seem so laughful like me 🙂

Interviews

Mishael Morgan Talks on Her Return to Y&R and Tackling the New Role of Amanda Sinclair

So, just how did The Young and the Restless lure back one of the series most powerhouse actresses to take on a brand-new role? Mishael Morgan, who earlier this year was nominated for a Daytime Emmy for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series for her gut-wrenching final performances as Hilary Curtis, reveals in a new interview with Michael Fairman TV, what went down to bring her back to the CBS Daytime drama.

As fans know thus far, after appearing as ‘Ghost Hilary” through the late spring and summer, Y&R’s creatives worked behind the scenes to get Morgan back on screen without tainting Hilary’s ultimate demise.  That is when they came up with the role of the sexy yet tough lawyer, Amanda Sinclair.

So, enter Mishael in a new wig and style that defines Amanda as her own character.  Question is, since Amanda is a dead-ringer for the late Hilary, are they related? And, what will ultimately be proven to be in her DNA?  In story, Amanda entered the scene as the often-mentioned Chance Chancellor’s attorney.  She shows up in Genoa City to contest the legitimacy of the late great Katherine Chancellor’s will and the fortune she left to Devon (Bryton James).  With Devon directly in Amanda’s line of fire it sets the stage for potential fireworks down the line.

We sat down with Mishael backstage at Y&R for this informative and entertaining chat as we officially welcome back this truly kick-ass performer.  Here’s what Mishael shared below.

Photo: JPI

What transpired behind the scenes to make it possible for you to come back to Y&R?

MISHAEL:  Tony Morina (executive producer, Y&R) kind of gave me a little bit of a heads up.  They called me back to come in and do the ghost episodes as Hilary, and it happened really quickly.  It was like, “Hey, Mishael, do you think you can do this?  Yeah?  Okay.  We’ll work it out with your team.  Alright.  We’ll see you tomorrow.” (Laughs) It was really, really fast.  I was hesitant for a second about the whole Hilary ‘ghost thing’, because I felt good about how we wrapped up Hilary’s storyline.  I’d only left for a couple of months, and I still felt funny about it, but I was like, “I’ll do it.  She’s a ghost … so she hasn’t returned from the dead.  So, it’s fine.”

Originally, I was concerned that they were going to have you as Hilary keep popping up as a ghost to Devon for an indefinite amount of time; when the show has already done that with Jack Abbott (Peter Bergman) and his father, John (Jerry Douglas).  Because of your previous performances, and Emmy-nominated performance for the final arc of Hilary’s story, I thought, in the end, it might detract from that.

MISHAEL:  Yes, and I think that’s how I felt too, but I agreed to do it because they said that it was going to be a max of seven episodes.  So, while I was doing that, Tony was on set watching the scenes.  Next, he just called me up and said, “Well, how do you feel about coming back?”  I was like, “Coming back?  Hilary is dead.  Like, Hilary is dead-dead.  Is this going to be an alternate universe?” (Laughs) He said, “Well, no.  You’d be coming back as a different character.”  That was really intriguing to me, because one of the reasons why I left was because I felt like creatively I’d played a character from beginning to end, and it felt like it would just be nice to go off and play somebody new.  I never in a million years thought that I could come back to Y&R and actually play someone new!  That was weird to wrap my head around when they said, “You’d play a new character,” but then when they said she was going to me a lawyer, my ears really perked up! I’ve always wanted to play a lawyer, because I have the background where I wanted to be a lawyer in real life.  So, then I’m like, “OK. Now I get to play a lawyer on TV.”  They really got their hooks in to me with that … and just hooked me in from there.  Then, I got open to the idea and the story that Josh Griffith (head writer, Y&R) wanted to tell.

Photo: JPI

Once you learned the idea of the story from Josh, it seemed that things happened very quickly!  We all found out about your return via a social media post where you got to tell the fans yourself that you were coming back … but as a new character.

MISHAEL:  It happened relatively quickly in terms of me tentatively coming back, but then they still had to write the story.  So, everything wasn’t really confirmed until a couple of weeks before I started taping again.  We were in talks for about two months, and we worked it all out.  I said, “I’d do it,” and then it was 100% confirmed around August of this year, and I was airing in September.  It was kept was very, very quiet.

Are you still figuring out what Amanda’s back-story is?

MISHAEL:  I am.  I feel like every writer is a little different, and I feel like Josh likes to keep things very close and tight to his chest so that you kind of don’t know what’s happening.  Josh gives you enough information to play a little bit of something that is coming down the pike, but he doesn’t really disclose everything.   I’ve gotten little hints, and I kind of know where we are going, but I still don’t know the whole back-story of Amanda.  I’m still trying to figure her out.  If she’d been the polar opposite of Hilary, I think it might have been easier, but if you read her description, she’s very much like Hilary: A-type, strong, driven, all of those things.  Hilary had this very malicious, unscrupulous side to her, but I don’t know if Amanda has that.  In terms of the general description of the character, they’re very similar, which I was happy about just because I like playing strong women on TV.  If they had said, “We’re bringing on this character, and she is homeless” … or somebody who was super quiet… that would pose a different set of things for me as an actress.  I think seeing strong women of all different colors, shapes, and sizes is so important right now on TV, and it is very relevant.  I am happy to be a part of that.

Photo: JPI

What was it like playing all of these entrance scenes as Amanda where your former and current scene partners had to suspend belief? There’s Bryton James, Christel Khalil, Daniel Goddard, Jess Walton, and you, and Amanda walks in like, “Hey there!” (Laughs)

MISHAEL:  We just laughed about it.  It’s one of those things that is so funny, and it can only happen in the world of soaps.  A lot of the fans said, “This is weird,” in the beginning, but the fans love the show, and they accept it, and they do suspend their disbelief, and then it becomes normal.   We just had fun with it.

You’re like, “Hi, do you like my new hair?” (Laughs)

MISHAEL:  That was the thing too.  (Laughs) I don’t even think Christel even saw my hair until she came to set, and she was like, “Oh wow! I like your new hair.”

Photo: JPI

What happened when you and Christel taped the scenes where Lily sees Amanda for the first time, after the former contentious relationship of Lily and Hilary that ultimately changed the course of both their lives?

MISHAEL:  For me, it was super fun and easy because I don’t know any of the Hilary/Lily back-story.  I just play very oblivious like,“Hi, I’m just here.” (Laughs)  So, it’s very easy for me, but I almost envy a lot of the other characters who have to play all of these layers because Lily does have that back-story because she was charged for Hilary’s death, and the guilt associated with doing something like that, and also the hate that she had for Hilary.  Then overcoming that hate, and then going on that entire beautiful journey that they had together as women.  But now having that as a layer, and adding on top of it this woman who looks exactly like Hilary, but is a completely different person, is really interesting. Even for Bryton, I feel like he has a golden opportunity as well, because to have that love of your life, and then a new love of your life there in Elena, and then see a woman who looks just like your ex-wife is, I’m sure, really difficult.  Your mind would just be exploding!

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How did Bryton find out that you were coming back, and what was his reaction to the news?

MISHAEL:   Well, I came in for the ghost episodes, and I just couldn’t hold it in any longer.  I told him before we finalized this new deal.  He’s a friend of mine.  I wanted to get his opinion, and he was like, “You should do it!”  I was like, “Really?  It feels so weird because I just left a year ago, and I was so happy and content with leaving, so it feels weird to come back.”  He was like, “No, it will be fine.”  He’s like, “The fans will love you either way.  They’ll want you back.”   I was worried about how the fans would feel because it is such a quick return.

Photo: JPI

What is the feedback you’re getting from the fans thus far on your transformation from Hilary to now Amanda?

MISHAEL:  I feel like it’s pretty positive for the most part.  There are always going to be a couple of fans who are skeptical … or who don’t like the storyline … and even if they don’t like it they say, “This is kind of weird to bring her back as a different character.  We miss Hilary, but we love that Mishael Morgan is back, so, that kind of makes it all OK.”

The story that brings Amanda to Genoa City revolves around the legitimacy of Katherine Chancellor’s (the late Jeanne Cooper) will, and she comes in and says there was a counterfeit will etc.  She’s the messenger at this point and her client is Chance, correct?

MISHAEL:  Yes, Amanda’s client is Chance.

Isn’t she starting to question the legitimacy of her client?

MISHAEL:  Yes, but I think she still believes that it was Chance.  She’s kind of wondering now … because she even accuses Jill (Jess Walton).  She’s like, “It’s your grandson.  He’s all out to lunch.  He’s not getting back to anybody.”  Jill is very much in the headspace where she is like, “Well, this is probably not my grandson.”  Amanda is like, “I’m pretty sure it is.”  So, I think Amanda still thinks that it is Chance, even if he is a criminal, and even if he is doing something tricky.

Photo: JPI

How did Amanda get contacted by Chance in the first place to take this case?

MISHAEL:  It was an email, and then Amanda spoke to him on the phone …  or at least to who she believed was Chance.  He signed the papers, he scanned them over, and he forwarded Amanda the retainer. She had no reason not to believe that it was him.

So, when Amanda came to see Devon and company, she had no idea that there was this lookalike of her that was intertwined with this family?

MISHAEL:  No, but then after Devon tells Amanda about all of this, she sees pictures of Hilary online, but this is all done off-camera.

Does Amanda now suspect that she could be a twin? 

MISHAEL:  I think so.  I’m kind of playing that or keeping that there.  I’m kind of playing that as part of the reason why I want to stay in town because Amanda is intrigued by this other person who looks like her.  This could possibly be family.  I think it adds an extra layer as to why she wants to stay on Genoa City.  It is not just because she likes this person, or that person.  I think it is because she wants to figure out her connection to this person who looks just like her.

Photo JPI

We’ve seen Amanda be a little shifty.

MISHAEL:  Maybe a little bit. (Laughs)

What do you think we, as the audience, should be feeling at this point about Amanda?

MISHAEL:  I think we just have to wait and see.  Hilary had a lot going on before I left, and this is a new character who is slowly building.

I think that one of the things that daytime shows often have done wrong is that when they bring in a new character, they shove them down the audience’s throats too fast that they get sick of them.  I don’t know if that’s the tactic for the emergence of Amanda, more of a slow burn?

MISHAEL:  I feel like they are definitely doing a good job of building her character slowly and adding layers.  It’s not all coming out right away.  I feel like people should be feeling excited to try and figure out who this woman is because that is what it is eventually going to be leading to.  Right now, we are all just together in trying to figure out who she is.  I feel like everybody is really excited (and I am too) to get going, but even when Hilary came to Genoa City, it took about a year for her to catch her stride.  I think it’s going to take a while to really understand the meat of this character and how she fits into everyone’s lives.

Photo: JPI

Do you think Amanda feels badly about what is going on with Cane and Devon with the will, and how it would change both their lives forever?

MISHAEL:  Yes.  I definitely think that she feels badly about that.  In the beginning, it was very much her job.  I think when Devon is contemplating giving over his fortune, it makes Amanda see him in a different light, and her empathy for him starts to increase because she sees that he is a good guy, and that there wasn’t anything that he did that was malicious.

I think there is an attraction brewing here between Devon and Amanda.

MISHAEL:  Possibly.  I mean … Devon was attracted to someone who looked like Amanda.

Photo: JPI

Will she like him if he has no money, though?

MISHAEL:  I don’t know… I mean, Hilary definitely wouldn’t. (Laughs)

What do you think about working with Brytni Sarpy (Elena)? I see a triangle or quadrangle brewing and I see catfights in your future!

MISHAEL:  I love Brytni.  I definitely see that because Elena is definitely in the state of mind where she can’t stand this Amanda character.  The second she walked through the door, she couldn’t stand her.  I’m sure there are going to be some catfights coming.  I’m sure that it is going to be very entertaining for everybody! We’ll see.

Because you were considering being a lawyer … wait until you get into the courtroom set for some scenes!

MISHAEL:  I know, I’m excited for that!

Christian LeBlanc (Michael) always loves the courtroom monologues because he says it’s like doing a stage play.  Will you be up for that?

MISHAEL:  I think it’ll be ready for it.  I had a little one already to kind of warm up.  I won’t tell you what it was about.  I was like, “I can do this,” and I think it would have been even more fulfilling if there were an actual jury there where it feels like you’re performing.

Photo: JPI

What kind of lawyer is Amanda?  Does anyone know? (Laughs)

MISHAEL:  Well, right now she specializes in estates and trusts, but the one thing that I do know about attorneys is that technically with your license you can kind of do anything.  It is just that your experience will be in a specific area.  So, certain people may not want you to defend them, because you’ve never defended people in these cases.  I feel like it is not the same as a surgeon.  A surgeon specializes in the heart, and they don’t really do anything else, but as an attorney, you can kind of do anything.  You can defend anyone if the price is right and you feel confident.

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When you were thinking of being a lawyer, did you think of the kind of lawyer you wanted to be?

MISHAEL:  Well, when I wanted to be a lawyer, I wanted to be an international human rights lawyer.  So, something very different.  I wanted to save the world.

You know what they should do?  Maybe Amanda could have a courtroom show.  Instead of Judge Judy, it could be called Judge “Mandy”!

MISHAEL:  Put people in their places.

That’s if Amanda doesn’t get a talk show gig on the side, like Hilary did with GC Buzz! (Laughs)

MISHAEL:  With the courtroom cases, and the talk show, that would be a lot.

Photo: JPI

We talked about Hilary and taking her through everything she had gone through, and it really was the perfect ending when she passed.   Do you look back on that time and that work which we all loved so much?

MISHAEL:  Yes, I do.  I still look back on it, and I feel so blessed to have gone through that journey with her and to have created such a great character.  There are times when I’m like, “Yeah, coming back as Hilary would have been a lot of fun,” because I read the lines, and I know how Hilary would say everything, and now I have to figure out how Amanda says it – and it never feels the same, because I got so used to this being Hilary’s home.  I feel like Amanda is a little more like me, so there is a little less playfulness happening.

You want more of that which is reminiscent of Hilary, or not as much with Amanda?

MISHAEL:  I feel like naturally there is not as much now with Amanda, but I do want more of the playfulness to happen. It’s fun to play that on camera.  I feel that’s the fun of acting and pretending in that you get to be less of yourself, and more like a character.  Hilary was so different from me that it was just so fun to play her.  I feel like I’ve got to find those things in Amanda that make her unique and different that I can indulge in.

Photo: MMorganInstagram

In real-life you’re now a mom of two.  When you leave your kids to come to work, is it hard for you?

MISHAEL:  It is, but it’s okay because my husband stays at home with them.  We bounce back and forth.  He doesn’t work when I am working, and the days when I am not working, I am at home, and I get to enjoy time with them.  Then, when I am working, he stays home, and he gets to enjoy time with them.  It sucks to leave them, but at the same time it’s great to know that they are getting to spend time with their father, and I’m getting some ‘me time’.  I think that is necessary, because being a stay at home mom was a lot harder than I thought.  It is exhausting, and you are always on call.  You feel like you’re a surgeon.  It is just too much at times.

You always have the best Instagram photos with your kids and their outfits.  Are you going to have them dressed for Halloween?

MISHAEL:  Oh, yes.  They are going to dress up.   My son is going to be a firefighter, and I am going to be the fire, and my husband is going to be the fire hydrant, and my daughter is going to be the fire dog, the little Dalmatian!

Were you thrilled that you had a daughter this time, after previously having a son?

MISHAEL:  Yes.  At the time, I was okay with whatever the gender turned out to be.  I know everybody says it, but as long as they’re healthy, that is the most important thing.  I even thought about if I did have another boy, there would be that brother bond.  I grew up with sisters so to give him a brother would have been great, too.  Everybody always wants to have one of each because you want to be able to see what a boy would look like, and what a girl would look like, and their temperaments and all of that.  So, it’s nice that we got one of each.  We are happy.  We are good.  No more kids in my future.  (Laughs)  I shouldn’t say that too much because what if I do get pregnant, and my kid is like, “I was definitely an accident, Mom?” (Laughs)

We don’t know who Amanda has ties to at this point, but would you like to see her in another romantic relationship with some guy who is not Devon?

MISHAEL:  I would like to see that just because it would be something that kind of defines her as her own kind of person with her own journey and her own likes and her own dislikes.  I even feel that if she just ends up with Devon, it would be kind of weird.  We don’t know if Hilary and Amanda are related, but if they are related somehow, you would not have the same experiences, you would not have the same connections as this person.  As far as who I would want to work with, I don’t know.  I don’t know how to judge.  Well, Sean Dominic (Nate) has been awesome.  It would be kind of cool to be with Sean character-wise, because if Amanda ends up with Nate, that’s a relative of Devon, so Devon would have to see that all of the time … so that’s interesting.

Photo JPI

How is working with Sean?

MISHAEL:  Lots of fun.  He actually has the same birthday as my dad.  He’s a really cool guy, and we get along great.  That is half the battle because every now and again (and you rarely hear about it) you can’t stand the person you’re working with, and every time you get into scene work with another character, you’re always wondering, “Am I going to get along with this person?”  I love Bryton because we definitely have a special connection when we are on camera and when we are working together.  We’ve known each other for so long, and we’ve done so many amazing scenes together, and I think there is a lot of trust there.  It’s easy to just work with him.  That being said, the challenge of working with another character would be great as well.  We’ll just see where the chips fall.  Either way; I’m going to have a blast.

So, Camryn Grimes (Mariah) and you obviously have this great relationship together on-screen.  Mariah was Hilary’s dear friend.  Did you ever see her performance after Hilary died and her heartbreaking monologue on the set of GC Buzz?

MISHAEL:  Yes, I did.  It was amazing.  She’s an amazing actress.  She’s an amazing person.  I was so happy to work with her, and I am so happy to be back, because we are such good friends.  My first day back on set when I walked in, Camryn was the first person I saw.

Photo: JPI

Did Camryn know you were coming back to the show as Amanda?

MISHAEL:  Yes, she knew I was coming back.  We had a big hug and everything like that, and we were laughing about the fact that she’d come back to Y&R too as a whole different character.  So, I was like, “What pointers can you give me?” I would really love to figure out how Amanda and Mariah can work together.

The big question … I wonder if Amanda will have friends in Genoa City? (Laughs)

MISHAEL:  I think she would.  I mean, I know she is a little uptight, but I think she’ll have friends.  I hope so.  I don’t know who though. Guess everyone will have to stay tuned to see.

So, are you happy to see Mishael back at The Young and the Restless? What do you think of the character of Amanda Sinclair thus far? Do you want to see her with Nate, Devon, or someone else on the canvas romantically?  Do you think it will turn out that Hilary and Amanda were twins? Share your thoughts via the comment section below.

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Interviews

B&B’s Matthew Atkinson Talks On Thomas’ Vendetta With Brooke & Playing The Manipulative Bad Boy Of The Forrester Clan

Since coming to The Bold and the Beautiful earlier this year, Matthew Atkinson is making his mark in the role of Taylor (Hunter Tylo) and Ridge’s (Thorsten Kaye) son, Thomas Forrester.  But while Matthew was a recast for his predecessor Pierson Fodé, his Thomas is quite different.  The new Thomas is a bad boy capable of horrific manipulations to get what he wants, and a young man who has caused so much suffering already for the Logans, Spencers, and the Forresters  But is there a heart underneath that often volatile exterior?

After all, Thomas went to great lengths to keep Hope (Annika Noelle) in a relationship with him and for her to be a “mother” to his son, following the death of Caroline.  So, what did he do? He covered-up and blackmailed many people to keep their mouths shut to the truth – that his sister Steffy’s (Jacqueline MacInnes Wood) little girl, Phoebe, was actually baby Beth, the child Hope and Liam (Scott Clifton) believed had died at birth!

Following the big reveal, and getting a bit of comeuppance, Thomas landed in the hospital with a questionable push from Brooke (Katherine Kelly Lang) after a fall.  After promising to change his ways, looks like Thomas is back to scheming and conniving – this time to make sure Brooke gets payback and that her marriage to his father blows up to smithereens.  Meanwhile, Thomas needs to be a better father to his little boy, Douglas (Henry Joseph Samiri), but will the Logans and the Spencers come between father and son?

Michael Fairman TV chatted with Matthew Atkinson to get his take on: the emotional make-up of his incarnation of Thomas Forrester, what his ultimate takedown of Brooke would be, and how he thinks Thomas can find a way back into the family good graces, and more.  Here’s what Matthew had to say about it all.

Photo: JPI

Thomas really has a vendetta with Brooke.  The scene where Brooke slaps him illustrated just how deep-rooted his issues apparently are with her. What did you think about what Thomas said to Brooke that came to a boiling point with the slap, and what was it like performing the material with Katherine Kelly Lang?

MATTHEW:  Katherine rocks every chance I get to be around her.  She is such a sweet human being and so fun to work with and takes her job seriously and puts a lot of work in, and I think it shows.  As far as the scene goes, every chance that I get to work with her is fun.  She’s just a great actress.  Brooke basically had this vendetta against Thomas for a while now, and she was the one who unjustifiably went a little crazy about Thomas before anybody knew Thomas was off the rails.  So, it’s kind of this interesting culmination of having that where she has built herself up to hating Thomas at this point, and she is just scared of him and what he could possibly do.  Then you have Thomas, who has hated Brooke ever since she came in and destroyed his family.  There is so much emotion there and so many levels to it.  It’s just so much fun to play around with, and in those scenes especially, it is kind of like neither one of them really has a filter.  They are both just going at each other.

He is punctuating his plan by telling Brooke that she may, “Have his father tied around her slutty little finger, but her reign of terror ends with him!”  I was just like, “Uh-oh.” (Laughs)

MATTHEW:  Yeah, and that’s how Thomas sees Brooke.  He sees her as this slutty woman who came in and kind of giggles her way into his dad’s life and flirted with him and destroyed his entire family.  Thomas sees her and all of her sisters as these air-headed women who are kind of just family-destroying kind of people.  They come in, they do whatever they can to get what they want, and he doesn’t care about them at all.  I think he has kind of gotten to this point, especially with Brooke … considering what happened with Hope and that he has this genuine love for Hope.  Brooke won’t even accept that, or think about that as a possibility with how she views him.   It’s that crazy dynamic and those scenes were definitely an emotional peak for both of them.

Photo: JPI

Thomas seems to become obsessed, and laser-focused on people like Hope, and now Brooke.  What has happened to him?  How are you playing this behavior pattern of his that we are seeing established?

MATTHEW:  Some of the most successful people in the world are people who obsess over things.  I think Thomas is like that, but I think that since Caroline’s death, his obsessive nature has been so focused on things other than fashion.  They aren’t his job and what his talents are, which is where he should focus all of that energy, but instead it’s been on his son needing a mother.  So, getting Hope in his life was key to him, and with Brooke, it’s a woman who has destroyed his entire family.  He wants his dad to be better off.  He wants his entire family to be better off.  He honestly feels that they would be better off without Brooke in their lives, and so that is what he is focused on.  I don’t think it’s necessarily a bad attribute to have when it is focused in the right direction, but for Thomas, since the death of Caroline, his focus has been on things that are a little abstract and are not necessarily objectively sound decisions.

Photo: JPI

What was interesting was that I did not know how they were going to be able to save the character of Thomas on the B&B canvas after all that he has perpetrated.  But then, there were scenes in the hospital where he is recovering from his “fall”, and Thomas is having big emotional scenes with Ridge and Steffy.  In those moments as the viewer, you say to yourself: “Oh, they’re going to redeem him,” but then they don’t.  He goes right back to a new vendetta.  What did you think of those plot twists?

MATTHEW:  The interesting thing about this character is that I don’t think this guy is a bad guy.  I think he is a guy who is doing a lot of bad things, but I think a lot of people can relate to him and the struggles that he is dealing with: being a single father and having a rough childhood with his family being broken up.  This is a guy who wants his father to approve of him and respect him and he has never really felt that way.  I think a lot of people out there know what it’s like to have a parent who they just want approval from but can’t get it … couple that with the fact that he let his sister down.  Everybody knows what it is like to think that they are making the right decision and end up making the wrong decision and possibly hurting someone in the process … and the kind of shame that you feel from doing something like that.  I think this makes Thomas an interesting character where viewers could say, “Well, he is doing bad things, and I don’t agree with anything that he is doing, but I can relate to him, and I want him to be better, and I want him to get better and become the good person we all know he can be.”  Yet, Thomas just keeps making all of the wrong decisions.

Photo: JPI

I predict that in short order, Thomas will be in cahoots with Shauna (Denise Richards)!

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B&B's Matthew Atkinson Talks On Thomas' Vendetta With Brooke & Playing The Manipulative Bad Boy Of The Forrester Clan

MATTHEW:  Okay, we shall see.  (Laughs)  They have aligned interests; especially at the moment, when it comes to removing Brooke from that situation.  I think with Shauna, it’s fun that Denise Richards has come into this role and what she has done with this character.

Denise Richards is doing a great job in the role.

MATTHEW:  She’s amazing, but I think that behind the thought process she has is this woman, Shauna, who is not so dissimilar from Thomas, and is willing to blur the lines of what is acceptable and morally sound to make sure that she gets what she wants.

Photo: JPI

When you were taping those emotional hospital scenes where Thomas admits he has lost his way, and reaching out to his dad to try to find forgiveness, how were playing those scenes with Thorsten Kaye?

MATTHEW:  I respect Thorsten a lot as an actor.  I just love having scenes with him because I feel like we play off of each together so well.  When we enter a scene together, we are both in it.  When you are both in it, something real happens from that, and those real moments are kind of magical in a way, and it makes you feel great about the work that you do.  Thorsten shows up, and he’s prepared, he knows what he is doing, and at the same time, there is this connection between father and son.   I think Thorsten and I have definitely done that as father and son, and Jacqui and I have done that as brother and sister.

Since the show usually has you shirtless or sneering in scenes (laughs), I was so happy that they finally let you have some crying scenes.  It was at the point that the audience was able to see you bring another emotional level and dimension to the character.

MATTHEW:  I think he is not a guy who breaks down and cries very often.  It takes something very serious (especially for him) to get to that point.  For Thomas, the most important thing in the world is family, and he has kind of destroyed his relationship with his own family with what he has done, and I think that from the inside out is what breaks him.

Photo: JPI

Speaking of shirtless scenes; in a short amount of time you have been with the show, I think you may have set a record there.

MATTHEW:  (Laughs) Yep.  It’s all the time because the wardrobe sends me mostly pants – no shirts (Laughs).

Obviously, there is the issue of Thomas’s son, Douglas … and will he lose him because Hope and Liam want to gain custody of him. Brooke wants Thomas out of Douglas’ life for good.   This poses a major obstacle for Thomas moving forward. Agree?

MATTHEW:  Sure.  However, Brooke has no legal right to stand on.  You can’t just take a guy’s son.  There’s no legal way to do that, but they can try their hardest to either sign adoption papers or sign over custody, or something like that, but there’s not a legal way they can go and just take his son.  There are a lot of people who I understandably think Douglas would be better off with being raised by Hope and Liam, but I think Thomas has a point of view too, and just because he is going through a bad part of his life at this time, doesn’t mean that he is unfit to be a father.  I think Thomas will prove that he is fit to be father and all the while, a great force to be reckoned with,

Photo JPI

But, Thomas hasn’t been so great to Douglas, either.  Hasn’t he yelled at his son, manipulated him for his own gain, etc?

MATTHEW: Right, this was kind of right before the truth about Beth came out, and Thomas was on this massive downward swirl where he wasn’t thinking clearly; he wasn’t himself. I  think in reality, you have a person who went off the rails, he wasn’t being himself, he found the person he wasn’t, and I think that the “accident” of Brooke pushing him off a cliff, the slip, kind of clarified his intention in life to be a good, standup person from here on out.  So, I think his priorities are straight now, and I think he is thinking clearly.  I don’t think he is in the same mental state that he was before, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that he won’t be manipulative and that he won’t get what he wants, because he will.  There was a time that he went through a headspace when nothing was really clear for a minute, and he didn’t really have any moral backbone, but I don’t think that moving forward you’re going to see a Thomas Forrester that would hurt his son.  You’re going to see a Thomas Forrester who will stop at nothing to protect his son.

How does Thomas feel about Hope now, especially since Hope wants to raise Douglas? 

MATTHEW:  Well, here is what I will say; I think that Thomas has always had a love for Hope. I think he respects her as a person, I think he has seen her be a mother to his child, and that is undeniable … how much of a connection that she has to Douglas, and she is incredibly important to him.  Thomas can basically discard any Logan except Hope.  Hope is kind of his kryptonite.  So, going forward, I think you’ll maybe see a guy who wants to discard Hope as a person who he cares for (her and the rest of the Logans), but he may not be able to do that, because she has got a place in his heart that he can’t compartmentalize and leave behind.

Photo: JPI

What can you say about working with Annika Noelle, because you as Thomas had been terrorizing Hope for many months?

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MATTHEW:  Well, she’s a sweetheart, but also, secondly, she is a badass.  She could kick my butt any day of the week.  So, I just had to make sure that in between takes I said, “You understand that I wouldn’t do this to you.”  She’s so sweet, and she was actually one of the first people to talk to me about taking over a role on the show, because she had been one of the most recent people to take over a role, and that was something that was really hard for me.  Coming into a character that has already been there for 30 years, you have a lot to live up to.  She was amazing from the beginning just helping me through that process.

On that note, what did you think of the epic fight scene on the rooftop opposite Scott Clifton; right before all the truth came out to Hope that Beth is alive and Thomas was lying to Hope and up to no good?

MATTHEW:  So much fun.  The shots they got were incredible.  Shooting those fight scenes was so much fun and I love Scott to death.  So, every time we get to work together it’s fun, but just getting outside and literally pretending to beat the crap out of each other is a blast.  We got to go out to Malibu, and I got to fall over a cliff.  What else can you say about that? (Laughs)

Photo: JPI

There is another interesting relationship Thomas has on B&B, and that is with his friend, Vinny.  How has it been creating the on-screen dynamic with Joe LoCicero (Vinny) as these two scheming dudes?

MATTHEW:  I like it, and I love Joe.  This dynamic between these two guys is really funny because you have this shrewd, alpha male, Thomas Forrester, who is extremely driven, and insanely smart, but also very manipulative and he has got a thousand things going on.  On the flipside, you’ve got Vinny, who is just this guy who he has been friends with for a really, really long time, who just kind of lives life.  He is living in his apartment in Venice, he sells some not so legal substances just to his friends, and he’s a decent guy.  It’s just fun when we have these scenes together, because essentially you’ve got him looking at me like I’m an alien creature, and thinking, “I don’t understand this guy.  I don’t know why he is acting this way, but who cares; I’m going to eat my Chinese food.”  (Laughs) I think it kind of grounds some of those scenes especially when you see Thomas going off that rails, and his friend doesn’t even seem to notice. (Laughs)

I know! (Laughs) Thomas has got his own sidekick.

MATTHEW: I think Vinny wants to give sound advice, but he gives all the worst advice.  He’s like, “Well, the way you described it Thomas, it sounds like a good idea, so yeah, go ahead with that,” but maybe doing a little behavioral cognitive therapy and questioning would be good for Vinny.  He just kind of goes, “okay,” (laughs) but I think that’s what makes those scenes so much fun.

Photo: JPI

Having appeared on The Young and the Restless previously you know how soaps go.  There is always this fear of: “Will they kill me off if my character has gone too far?” Did at any point in Thomas’ storyline, and as you got the scripts and read all the terrible things Thomas was doing, that the character might get murdered, kicking off a murder mystery, and you’d have to make an exit?

MATTHEW:  I’d had discussions with Brad Bell (executive producer and head writer, B&B) and I kind of knew where the character was going, so I kind of knew that he was going down a rabbit hole, but that Thomas wasn’t a lost cause.  I knew that he would at least be present for the upcoming short future that I know of, that Thomas wasn’t going to find his demise, which was very nice of Brad to give me that insight into the character to not only know what was coming up, but also know where his head is at by this point.  It helps me with the character work that I do for each scene and prep for each day; because I know where Thomas’ head is going to be at two weeks from now.

Photo: JPI

Have you had any interactions with fans, or are you checking out on social media what the viewers are saying about Thomas?  Do they love him?  Hate him?  Is there a great debate going on?  What is your take on where Thomas sits with the audience?

MATTHEW:  Oh, yeah.  I definitely pay attention.  The fans are the reason I have the job that I have.  All the feedback that I have seen is positive, and by positive, I mean that it is emotionally effective.  Now, that doesn’t necessarily mean that people are happy with Thomas because most people are not happy with Thomas.  They don’t like what he is doing, and that obviously gets them angry or sad or whatever, but that is kind of the point of the show.  If you’re watching a bunch of characters who are all great people and who all do nice things, then it wouldn’t be that much fun to watch.  You’d be watching 40 Liam’s talk to each other, and it would be like, “Yeah, it’s just another day in Happy World.”  (Laughs)  I think that Thomas especially has been such a driving force in the last couple of months and caused a lot of drama.  I think there are a lot of storylines that people have connected to in the past that are really making people enjoy the drama happening now. You have the people who hated Ridge getting together with Brooke in the beginning that are happy with what Thomas is doing now.  You have the people who are pro – Liam and Steffy.  Thomas has been a big advocate of that since the beginning.  There are some people who just can’t stand Thomas and don’t like him, and he makes them mad, but the reality of it is that there is a thin line between love and hate.  So, as long as they love me or hate me, I’m happy.

So, have you been enjoying Matthew’s portrayal of Thomas? Do you think he will rip Brooke and Ridge apart for good and succeed in his plans? Do you think he should somehow pay for his manipulations? Share your thoughts on the current B&B storyline involving Thomas via the comment section below.

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Interviews

Eileen Davidson & Vincent Van Patten Talk ‘7 Days to Vegas’, Their Relationship and Y&R, DAYS & RHOBH

Today’s the day for the highly-anticipated film, 7 Days to Vegas which bows in selected theaters. The motion picture which stars Vincent Van Patten and his real-life wife, two-time Daytime Emmy winning actress Eileen Davidson (Y&R’s Ashley and former Kristen/Susan Banks, Days) is a comedic gambling romp, centering around the character of Duke (Van Patten), an out-of-work actor turned poker player who makes a prop bet that he walk from the San Fernando Valley in California to Sin City, Las Vegas in 7 days.

There are some catches to this bet that make it even more challenging  … Duke has to wear a suit the entire time in scorching heat.  The events in the movie are loosely based on Van Patten’s Hollywood Poker game nights.  7 Days to Vegas features a fictional gang of betting entertainment industry bigwigs, who are hardcore gamblers and of course, jealousy strikes.  Davidson plays Duke’s wife, KC.

Michael Fairman sat down with Eileen and Vincent at their home, and at their famed poker table for the Michael Fairman Channel, to chat about the making of the movie, their relationship and some intriguing tidbits for fans of Eileen’s work on The Young and the Restless, Days of our Lives and her time on Bravo’s hit reality franchise, The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.

In 7 Days to Vegas, Eileen says that Vincent fashioned her role of KC after their real-life relationship adding, “They are in it together. This is a lifestyle that they both enjoy.  That is what somebody does when there is a home game; you call people up, and make sure who is going to be there.  Van Patten said, “There is a host of the game, and that is her role in the movie.”

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Eileen Davidson & Vincent Van Patten Talk '7 Days to Vegas', Their Relationship and Y&R, DAYS & RHOBH

As to the scenes where Duke is walking to Vegas, Van Patten shared, “We shot the film in Santa Clarita, California in the hills and the mountains and all of that, and then we out five days after with a second unit shoot and shot with drones in the desert.  So, I must have walked 10 miles a day, shooting, sweating, but you don’t feel it, because when it’s your baby, it’s a labor of love.”

When asked if she would go back to daytime, Eileen shared she would be back for more Ashley on Y&R: “I am supposed to go back to Y&R in a couple of more weeks. So I am popping in and out at this point.”  Davidson also shared she wishes nothing but the best to Stacy Haiduk who inherited her roles on Days of our Lives as Kristen DiMera and Susan Banks. Eileen said she does not watch the episodes of the show anymore, because it makes her feel sad.  The roles of Kristen and Susan were so close to Davidson’s heart.

In speaking of her time on RHOBH, Van Patten shared, “I think she (Eileen) did a great job. It went by real quick. I think she did like three years on it.  I was in the background carrying her purse, going, ‘Yes, yes, here I come.”  (Laughs)  Davidson expressed: “Listen, reality TV … it’s a crazy, wild, Wild West.”  When Michael asked about the time a drink was thrown in her face, Eileen explained:  “I think Brandi (Granville) felt she needed to be relevant to be on the show, and her role was to be a troublemaker. I understand more of it now.  At the time, I was a deer in the headlights for the first couple of years.”  Vincent shared, “People always ask if this stuff is scripted, and it’s actually not, but you can spice it up”   As to if ‘Housewives’ makes up the drama, Davidson elaborated, “Before the season starts they will ask, ‘What is going on in your life?’, and maybe there is some of that behind-the-scenes stuff.  It didn’t happen with me.  I’m not saying it doesn’t happen, but it is a reality show, but it is also entertainment, and if all we did was sit around, how fun would that be?”

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Crystal Hunt and Donna Mills Headline New PureFlix Streaming Comedy Series, 'Mood Swings'

Watch the full interview below with Eileen and Vincent and make sure to “subscribe” to The Michael Fairman Channel for more celebrity interview features.

Now let us know, will you be checking out 7 Days to Vegas, which will also be available on iTunes and VOD come September 24th? Do you hope there will be more Ashley on Y&R? Share your thoughts via the comment section.

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Y&&’s Eileen Davidson and her husband Vincent Van Patten chat with Michael Fairman about their new film “7 Days to Vegas”, her time on Y&R, DAYS, The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills and their relationship. Leave A Comment

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