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The Sean Kanan Interview – The Bold and the Beautiful

Courtesy/B&B

Courtesy/B&B

Who doesn’t love seeing badass Deacon Sharpe back on The Bold and the Beautiful? Soap survivor Sean Kanan (Deacon) has been able to navigate his daytime career through the good times and the bad, always landing on his feet! After being killed-off of General Hospital as AJ Quartermaine, which didn’t sit well with many fans of the ABC soap opera, B&B was like coming home.  And this time, when Deacon arrived back in the world of the Forresters, the Logans, and the Spencers, it was the mighty Quinn (Rena Sofer) who he first encountered.  Imagine that!  Two people that are for all intent and purposes cut from the same cloth … with some clear differences.

Now as Deacon and Quinn have schemed and maneuvered for the love and attentions of Brooke (Katherine Kelly Lang) and Bill (Don Diamont), respectively, and both seemingly have lost those two for good, where else do you turn … but to each other! Feeling jilted, recently the two shared some passionate moments! And the kicker, Quinn’s son Wyatt (Darin Brooks) is now married to Deacon’s daughter Hope (Kim Matula), and the young duo are expecting their first child! Will it be Grandpa Deacon and Grandma Quinn?

On-Air On-Soaps sat down with Sean Kanan to get his take and insights on: returning to the CBS soap opera, working with long time pal Rena Sofer, what he thinks of Deacon as a dad, and what story he would like to explore.  In addition, while B&B co-star Katherine Kelly Lang is currently a celebrity contestant on Dancing with the Stars Italy, Kanan who also appeared on the show a few years back, weighs-in on just how grueling the ballroom dance floor routines and experience can be!  But, what all his fans want to know is if Sean is happy where he is now, after his big return to GH came to quite a disappointing end.  So, here is what the always charming, always funny, and always intriguing, Mr. Kanan had to share.

MICHAEL:

So to reset the stage, all of a sudden things change at General Hospital, and you are back on The Bold and the Beautiful as Deacon.  Would you say for the most part there was an open door policy that if you were available again. and the time was right, you could return to B&B?

SEAN: 

Courtesy/ABC

I’ve always kept in touch with (B&B executive producer and head writer) Brad Bell. Brad is not only a terrific boss, but he is a great guy.  We would communicate from time to time, and at some point we had a conversation where he said, “If it looks like you’re going to be free and no longer doing General Hospital, let me know.”  I said, “I will.  I don’t know when that is going to be,” but I kept that in the back of my head.  When I had the discussions over at ABC with General Hospital, and they wanted to kill off the character of AJ, I called up Brad immediately and put the ball in motion pretty quick, and here I am.

MICHAEL:

And on your first episodes back this time, Deacon bumps into Quinn (Rena Sofer)! And of course, the two of you have worked together previously, so it has been a treat for soap aficionados!

SEAN: 

Rena and I met in 1993, and we met when we were both working on General Hospital.  Then, Rena was one of three lead actresses in my film “March”.

MICHAEL:

What do you think of Rena’s performance in the role of Quinn? And what do you think about the composition of the relationship between Quinn and Deacon … two people who have certainly entertained and executed, shall we say,  not so nice things on others to get what they want?

SEAN:

Photo Credit: HutchinsPhoto.com

I think it’s a terrific part for Rena.  I think there are a lot of similarities between Deacon and Quinn.  They are both survivors, and they are certainly not above scheming and a little bit of larceny to get what they need.  I think they both care a tremendous amount about their children, and they have been persona non grata for a very long time.  They are very much operating on the fringes of B&B society which is the Forresters, the Logans, and the Spencers.  They kind of orbit around that, but what is interesting is that Quinn is a beautiful and attractive woman, but at the beginning, although Deacon never misses an opportunity to appreciate a beautiful woman … he needed a place to stay! (Laughs)  The minute he realized he had something she needed, which was his relationship with Hope, he parlayed that to get a place to stay. Once he was there, I think he was also smart enough not to pursue her.  She obviously has a mercurial personality, and if she gets pissed off, she is going to throw him on the street!  I always joke that Deacon has a very expensive wardrobe, and wears a very expensive watch, but he doesn’t have pot to piss in! (Laughs)  He has no money.  Then there is the other secondary layer; that this woman could possibly be extremely dangerous.  He is like, “What am I getting myself into … and who am I sleeping down the hall from?”  It’s like you better be real careful what you do, or this chick might end up taking out a sword with your name on it! (Laughs)

MICHAEL:

It seems like Quinn is one very formidable opponent for Deacon, but as we have seen where there is opposition there ends up being attraction!

SEAN:

Courtesy/CBS

Absolutely!  However, Deacon is not a guy that shows fear easily. He has been in prison and had been around the block.  He was being cautious.  That being said, there relationship of pursuing common interests certainly has brought them closer!  We all wind up sleeping with each other on The Bold and the Beautiful!  I remember the time they put me with John McCook (Eric).  It was ugly, but damn it, we made it work! (Laughs)

MICHAEL:

Thus far, what has been your favorite scene with Rena?  I am assuming given the nature of your characters; you might have some good laughs on set?

SEAN:

We laugh a lot. We also fight like a brother and a sister, and in her case, a really sexy sister!  We butt heads in a loving fun way, and not in an antagonistic way.  Rena always makes interesting choices. We have a long history together, and that history builds a safety net of “let’s try some new stuff.”  We take what’s on the script which is usually terrific, and we may tweak it a little here and there, and put our own signature on it, and make it the best it can be.  We did this one scene where I ad-libbed and I called her “crazy pants”! (Laughs)  Sometimes I listen as Deacon to Quinn, and it’s such bat-crazy logic she uses, and such overkill about smothering her son.  As a character I felt obliged to go, “Did you hear yourself? You sound INSANE!”  That is sometimes the stuff that drives the scenes.

MICHAEL:

So, Deacon came back on to the canvas and set his sights on Brooke (Katherine Kelly Lang).  Did Deacon really love Brooke?

SEAN:

Courtesy/Global

Yes!  I think Deacon really loved Brooke.  There is a line that Deacon has that I think is true.  He says, “Any man that has ever been with Brooke Logan still carries a torch for her.”   That is kind of the spell she casts over the men she has been with, and a couple years in prison is a longtime to think about things.  I think what is a fundamental flaw of Deacon’s life is that he has never had a sense of family.  He has had this mother who was a stripper in Vegas, and he had this abusive stepfather.  I think that the concept of having some semblance of a nuclear family anchored by Hope is extremely attractive to him.  I think he is a guy that gets caught up in the romance of that.  I think part of pursuing Brooke was creating a family with her.  Deacon thinks if he does that, it can be the springboard to fix everything else that is wrong …  if he can just fix that part of his life that was never there for him a child, psychologically.  That is my guess, anyway.  And that doesn’t work out!  Brooke wasn’t interested in that, or if she was momentarily interested in that, she then decided what she had with Bill was where she wanted to go.

MICHAEL:

Is Deacon truly OK with that?

SEAN:

Courtesy/CBS

I think Deacon has a big ego.  I think he covers, and he doesn’t show his vulnerability a lot.  I also think prison has taught him to be patient, and that life is not a sprint, it’s a marathon.

MICHAEL:

I would love to find out just who Deacon’s bio-dad is! That would be a great story to tell!

SEAN:

This is the story; again and again I have said I would love to tell.  I think it would be very interesting to find out who his parents are, and they could be anybody!  He could be related to anybody.   He could have brothers and sisters he doesn’t know about.  I think it would be hilarious if Steve Burton (Dylan, Y&R) and I were brothers… and there was a cross-over story! (Laughs)

MICHAEL:

How was working with Katherine Kelly Lang (Brooke)?  She is now off the canvas for a bit hitting the ballroom dance floor on Dancing with the Stars Italy!

SEAN:

Courtesy/PureDWTS

I wish her luck on Dancing with the Stars!  It’s such an amazing experience to live over there in Italy … and over there like that!  It’s great when you are being whisked around and whined and dined, although the flip side of that is you’re training your ass off.  Thank God, Katherine is a triathlete.  I am sure she will do every well, because it’s physically daunting.

MICHAEL:

And now another former B&B and GH castmate of yours, Antonio Sabato Jr., is trying to stay in the ballroom dance competition on the American version of Dancing with the Stars!

SEAN:

It’s funny; Antonio and I both have a background in Martial Arts.  You would think Martial Arts would help you in dancing, but it doesn’t really, because Martial Arts tends to be in some respects more rigid than dance does, and some of the basic stances are counter-intuitive to dancing.   So, I thought this was going to really help me, but it didn’t.  Antonio is also a gymnast.  How is Antonio doing?  I have not seen him on “Dancing” yet.

MICHAEL:

The first week was rough on him. They made him dance first of all the celebrities’ right out of the gate. Antonio has gotten some harsh criticism from the judges and has had some challenges with executing some of the moves, but he is still in the competition.

SEAN:

Photo: CBurkeTwitter

The hardest part of this is: the men have to lead, and my teacher was 48th in the world, and I had to lead!  So I am having to learn the dance, and the choreography, and then lead her because she can’t lead.  But with all do respect to the women out there, the reality is two-fold!  Most little girls at some point or another, study some sort of dance, and they either study ballet, or dance, or the basics, and not all of them.  I am not trying to make generalizations, but that generalization does hold weight!  But then you have some guy like Maxim Chmerkovskiy who is phenomenal dancer, who if you are missing a step or are slow, he can literally pull you and move you around, and if you are the guy, you are … SOL man! (Laughs)  Not to digress, but the most fun part of being on Dancing with the Stars Italy was; we would wrap the show at 1AM in Rome and go out clubbing. I was on the show like four or five years ago, and I remember everyone had just watched the live show.  Then we would all show up at a club and people would go nuts!   It wasn’t for the celebrities, but more for the professional dance teachers!  We would go out there and they would make a schmuck like me look like I knew what I was doing.  (Laughs)  It was so much fun; we would dance till five in the morning.

MICHAEL:

Was there a moment when you were in the middle of Dancing with the Stars Italy that you said to yourself, “What have I gotten myself into?” (Laughs)

SEAN:

Here is what was really hard: My Italian when I did the show was not great, and my Italian now is much better. The other thing is; not to take anything away from Ronn Moss (Ex-Ridge, B&B), but he used am ear piece.  So they were feeding him what the Italian meant.  I had to listen to the judges, and had tremendous difficulty in understanding what they were saying, and I had to learn how to dance in Italian.  Now that wasn’t so bad, because I could understand that, but when they would ask a question on the live show, and a lot of it is that you are appealing to the home audience.  I had to do it in Italian.  It was very difficult and a tremendous disadvantage to me to not be able to speak English, but even so I lost after 9 weeks.

MICHAEL:

Courtesy/B&B

Back to B&B, as for your on-screen daughter Kim Matula (Hope), where does Deacon sit with her current choice to be with Liam (Scott Clifton) or Wyatt (Darin Brooks)?

SEAN:

I think Deacon likes Wyatt. They cracked a bottle of scotch together and in a lot of respects they are cut from a similar cloth. Deacon sees that Wyatt has pulled himself up from his boot straps.  I think that also, Deacon recognizes Liam is a good guy.   He wants what makes his daughter happy, and Liam is a guy who follows his heart.  Deacon wants either one of those two guys to take care of her.  I also think that Wyatt had the diamond, and he is a hustler, and things like that are not lost upon Deacon.

MICHAEL:

Do you think Deacon has changed from being such a “hustler”?

SEAN:

I think Deacon has refined his game.  He’s smoother than he used to be, but at his core he’s a guy who is always looking for the angle. You know, it’s funny. I have been a guy in my own life that has been blessed with tremendous opportunities in my life.  I don’t know what it is like to grow up without certain advantages.  The only thing I could equate it to is coming out to Hollywood as young guy and making a lot of mistakes, and trying to see where the water is flowing and do what I could.  I had a safety net with my family, and I knew I had my college education, whereas a guy like Deacon had none of that.  I can’t be very judgmental of this character, because I don’t know what it is like to walk in his footsteps.  He’s a guy just doing what he has to do.

MICHAEL:

Hope finds herself pregnant! What does dad Deacon think of it?

SEAN:

Photo Credit: HutchinsPhoto.com

She’s married.  I don’t think he can’t go anymore, “This is my little girl!”  It’s like, “Look, I have made a lot of mistakes.  I have been in jail and around the block, and if you are willing to overlook that, and see me as the man I am today, I am not going to see you as this idealized fantasy of how you should be in my head as a daughter. This is your life. I am going to accept you as you are.”  I think Deacon is incredibly proud of her. He’s “Team Hope” and supportive of that.  He is like, “You’re happy and in love with Wyatt, I will support that. If it winds up being Liam that makes you happy, then I will support that.”

MICHAEL:

Is there someone that you have not mixed it up with on-screen at B&B this time that you would like to have story with sometime in the future?

SEAN:

I had a fun energy with Heather Tom (Katie).  For some reason, Katie has this visceral dislike of Deacon!  I don’t know where it comes from, other than the fact that Deacon had been in prison, and that’s not the most palatable thing for a woman. I get that. Deacon also tries to assert his sexuality when he can with women, and he certainly likes younger gals and older gals.  Katie is also Brooke’s sister, so she is also privy to a lot of stuff!  I think there is something interesting there, and not a romantic interesting, but I think there is an interesting give and take that I like. Heather is a terrific actress.  I would love to work with Jacob Young (Rick) too!  I have always loved working with John McCook (Eric)!  The more I watch Karla Mosley who plays Maya, she looks like this pretty little deer with those big eyes going, ”Who me?” And the character is a total bitch! (Laughs)  I love that! (Laughs)  I think Deacon and Maya would be so unlikely, but so great!   In story, I also would really be interested in seeing Deacon pull off some coup where he is able to form a financial power base and really go after Bill (Don Diamont) and do a hostile takeover of Bill’s company.

MICHAEL:

Since another one of your talent is stand-up comedy and improv, do you ever improv your lines at B&B?

SEAN:

The new thing I do when there is a last line, or ending moment in a script, is that I will ad-lib a line knowing that probably they will keep it twenty percent of the time.  Sometimes, something is a little racy that pushes the boundaries of what we are allowed to say, but I will say it so that they will have it in the editing room, and they will keep it sometimes.

MICHAEL:

Courtesy/GH Pinterest

B&B has been very successful in its format with being a half hour soap compared to the other American daytime dramas.  Do you think that it helps the overall vibe when being a working actor here?

SEAN:

Having come from Y&R and GH, where between them there are 60 contract actors, you are always fighting for real estate, and you are competing with four or five other guys that are in your bracket.  I am so happy to be here.  I know I started over at GH, but I have always felt like it was home here at B&B.  It’s not just the actors, it’s the crew and it’s kind of like a family owned business with the Bells, and it’s a smaller cast. I think it just creates a little less corporate of a place. You don’t get more corporate than GH, and that show has clearly a different business paradigm, which had to stress the hell out of the executives, because they were getting breathed on all the time by ABC/Disney to keep the show alive. There is such gravitas to every single thing, and then have that trickle down from the top, it’s stressful.  The Bold and the Beautiful has such a huge presence internationally, and so I don’t feel like you are in intimate danger of being taken off the air.

MICHAEL:

It seems like you feel that you are appreciated here at The Bold and the Beautiful!

SEAN:

So appreciated!  The way this organization treats their actors, I have never encountered in my entire acting career, and I have worked with every major studio and network. B&B is fantastic, and not just for going on great trips overseas, but the day to day, in and out, of how people act here.  There is a civility and respect here that we all try to show each other.  It creates a great environment.

MICHAEL:

Now that you have been back for awhile, what are your fans saying to you on Twitter and social media?  Do they tell you they want more of Quinn and Deacon?  What feedback are you getting?

SEAN:

Courtesy/CBS

I think people like Quinn and Deacon together in whatever capacity that is.  It is a compliment that people like what we are doing together, which means there will then be more of it, usually. The fans are happy I’m back, which is really nice.  I am back this time and I am back on contract, which is different, so that hopefully I will be sticking around for quite awhile.  I think it allows me to invest a little more, and of course any job I have I am going to invest him, but when you are not on contract you’re always keeping an eye out, and thinking, “What am I going to do next if this winds up ending? “ It allows you to breathe a little and to start looking a couple miles down the road.  At this part of my life, there are a lot of things I want to do, but at B&B we have plenty of tine off per year.  So being at B&B allows me to think to myself: “If I am going to be here for awhile which I like at this point in my life, God willing if they want to keep me, I would like to stay here for awhile.”   I am not looking for something else.  If something else comes, and it fits into the schedule, that’s great.  But when I was 25, you are always looking for … when is that call from Spielberg?  And you know what?  I am really happy here. It has given me an amazing life. I have a career in Italy too.  It really doesn’t get a whole lot better.

 

 

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dmrLiaRobinTimmmNat9 Recent comment authors
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B&B Fan
Guest
B&B Fan

I love Deacon & Quinn together.

jaybird369
Guest
jaybird369

Oh, yes…me, too!!!!!

harry
Guest
harry

Michael Fairman, I don’t know you, but I love you. Thank you for this wonderful review. It helps alleviate the pain I feel abou tAJ’s unfair, unfortunate and horrible demise from this dark world that is GH.
I don’t know Deacon either but would like to think, based on your description of him, that he is the Phoenix (rhymes with Deacon) rising from the ashes that was once AJ.
I love Heather Tom and could see Kate with Deacon–easily.
I am happy to hear Sean is doing so well and is with people who appreciate what a gem he is.

harry
Guest
harry

Forgive me–I seem to have gotten carried away. Deacon doesn’t rhyme with Phoenix. At its best, it is a case of assonance–the first syllable of the word is something with which I am well versed on.

louisa
Guest
louisa

Love him. The GH insight was interesting. I still can’t believe they killed off AJ. So disappointed in GH.

jaybird369
Guest
jaybird369

AWESOME INTERVIEW!!!!! As usual, Sean Kanan TRULY ROCKS!!!!! Thanks for the AWESOME INTERVIEW, Mr. Fairman!!!!!!

Peace.

Silo
Guest
Silo

Thank you! As horrible as that SL was, KKL and SK had AMAZING chemistry. I am currently rooting for BRILL. But ultimately, I just want Brooke to be happy, FAR AWAY from Ridge! Even Deacon would be better than Ridge.

sarah
Guest
sarah

I wish they would bring back Adrienne frantz because amber and deacon had crazy chemistry I know they had a really sucky storyline with them on Y&R but on B&B they were amazing

elm51
Guest
elm51

what a down to earth interview!! sean seems so happy & content now that is on b&b – i am happy for him as he certainly deserves it………………

brenda
Guest
brenda

I’m still pissed at GH for killing off AJ. Stupid move. That being said I love Deacon and am glad he is back on BB. Too many newbies on GH.

janet
Guest
janet

This was a great interview. I am very happy to hear he is happy. Funny a lot of people mentioned are actors the GH iic were not smart enough to keep. Heather Thom is a very talented actress ,and I am sure after he has his fun with Quinn, they would be terrific on screen. I hope BB ‘S ratings stay up, with what he says about the writing and the actors are happy. Great. I was really sorry ,but not really surprised at AJ’s death the show “s being written by six grade mean girls .I expect nothing more.

Scott (ATWT Fan)
Guest
Scott (ATWT Fan)

B&B definitely are handling Sean and Deacon better than GH ever did with his return as AJ; GH obviously wanted him to reprise AJ to make up for the loss of Jason, and once they knew they could get Jason back, then AJ was expendable. I am liking Deacon the most this time around, despite always hating the character, so I hope his return to B&B is long worth the while.

k/kay
Guest
k/kay

Always loved SK as bad boy Deacon but Brad forgot I guess that Deacon is a alcoholic. Like we forgot Brooke is a grandmother and we forgot that Ridge was happily married to Taylor and had three kids.

MBmomof3
Guest
MBmomof3

The interview I’ve been waiting for! I miss Sean Kanan’s AJ so much. He is just as awesome as Deacon Sharpe. I’m not a regular B&B viewer, but I’m watching it more now because of Sean Kanan. I love his chemistry with Rena Sofer’s Quinn. Brilliant casting on B&B’s part. Deacon makes Hope tolerable (to a point). lol. GH…you can’t see the talent you have because you’re always looking for the next big thing. Letting SK go and killing AJ was unforgivable for this viewer. Even worse were RC’s constant digs at the actor and character. I had been a… Read more »

knighthawk
Guest
knighthawk

I love Deacon but I really want him to be a good dad for Hope. I think Deacon and Katie would be interesting. There were a couple of scenes with them and the dialogue crackled, there was chemistry. It would be fun if Katie and Bill were still together and Deacon came between them, because Don Diamont and Sean make great adversaries.

Nat9
Guest
Nat9

Katie and Ridge are better together.

Timmm
Guest
Timmm

I met Sean before and he was one of the nicest guys ever! At the time he was on Y&R and I asked him if he would ever consider going back to GH and play AJ again. He said never say never. Well, he ended back at GH after he was done at Y&R and GH screwed him royally! Not only did they lose a great actor, they killed off ANOTHER Q!

Robin
Guest
Robin

Micheal:
Another excellent interview. You asked the questions I would have 🙂 I too would love to see Amber back and where’s “Little D”? Ready too to bring back Jack Wagner (Nick) and Bridget ( hmmm she and Deacon had a past too) so many interesting options. You rock as always. And I do know you! Xo

Lia
Guest
Lia

I’m glad he’s back where he and his work are appreciated. B&B is a great show, because it’s written well. The acting is top notch, and I too love that their international fans adore the show just as much as we do. I miss Sean on GH because I love AJ Quartermaine, but the team over there never appreciated the character, so he’s lost to us. Thank God Brad Bell loves Sean and Deacon. Lol I don’t want him with Quinn however. I would like to see Deacon mix it up with bad girl Alison.

dmr
Guest
dmr

Such a wasted opportunity for General Hospital to bring back a good, kind, loving AJ and to resurrect the Quartermain Family. I’ve always loved Sean Kanan as AJ Quartermaine-thought Billy Warlock was awful in the role. I hate what the writers have done to AJ over the years. I was beginning to like AJ and Elizabeth together, too. Best of luck to Sean. He’s very handsome and very talented.

Interviews

Digital Drama Daytime Emmy Preview: Patrika Darbo Talks On Her Nominated Performance in ‘Studio City’

In Sunday night’s Digital Drama Daytime Emmys (9 p.m. EST/6 p.m. PST) former Days of our Lives and The Bold and the Beautiful star, Patrika Darbo (Ex-Nancy, Ex-Shirley, respectively) is one of the notable nominees of the night for her powerhouse performance as Violet in Studio City.

Darbo is always working on projects in Hollywood, and her resume is long … whether it is in sitcoms like Seinfeld, series like Desperate Housewives, daytime dramas, the hottest digital drama, commercials, and more.

Having a complicated history with the Emmys; Patrika has won a Primetime Emmy for her work in Acting Dead, had her previous Daytime Emmy for The Bay rescinded, and now has a shot at another one when the winner is revealed in the Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Digital Drama Series category in which she is nominated.

Studio City was nominated for 8 Daytime Emmys this year including for Darbo, and series creator and star, Sean Kanan (Ex-GH, B&B, Y&R).  The show tells the tale of the cast of a fictional daytime drama as they navigate through the chaotic world of soap operas and their own very messy personal lives.  In it, Darbo delivers a tour de force monologue which just might have sealed the deal for Emmy voters.  She has already won, along with Studio City castmate, Carolyn Hennesy (Diane, GH), an Indie Series Award for her work, when the two actresses tied in their category.  They are both nominated together again for the Daytime Emmy.

Michael Fairman TV caught up with Patrika to talk playing those heavy emotional moments in Studio City, longevity in Hollywood, and Emmy night.  To watch the first season of Studio City via Amazon Prime Video click here, and to watch the Digital Drama Daytime Emmys click here.  Now here’s what Patrika shared with us.

Photo; JPI

We all knew that your memorable scene in Studio City was so strong.  Your performance is really such a standout that I just thought, “Of course she is going to get nominated for this,” and you did!  How did you feel about this nomination?

PATRIKA:  I have been through the many ways that Sean Kanan has put this show together.  I mean, he has worked on it for a long time.  I read for it with him, as his mom, being a comedy, and now we’ve gone all the way to the dramatic. I think Sean did some pretty good rewrites and gave me some great, meaty material. I so appreciate the fact that he recognized the fact that I am not just a comedic actress, that there is a dramatic part of me.  

Photo: StudioCity

The big moment in Studio City for your character was just so heartbreaking.  Did you deliver that performance in one take?

PATRIKA:  Yes, and then of course I had to do it a couple of times because we had to see it from Sean’s side for his reaction shots to what I was doing.  I come from the school that even though the camera is on my back, it is now on my partner’s front.  So, I tried to give Sean as much to react to when the camera was on him as when it was on me, and I got the same from him, so it was a very nice collaboration.

I watched Sean in that scene.  He was so good in it.  So, whatever you were doing, it triggered such honest reactions from him.

PATRIKA:  I think just as far as actors go; it is not that we always have to remember that it is not about us as an individual.  It is about the end product, and the end product is about who you are working with.  I got from Sean things to work with that made Violet’s emotion’s there, and then I wanted me to be able to take my emotions and give them back to him.

 

Photo: StudioCity

Was it hard to go there for you, to that deep emotional place; that Violent had been traumatized in her not so humble beginnings in Hollywood?

PATRIKA:  You know, I have great admiration for all of these women who have come forward in the whole #MeToo movement.  I have always been a short, round, fat, little character woman, who was never approached in those ways.  So, there were things I couldn’t relate to.  I had to go to my own personal darkness, which is mine to use when I need it, but to try to be sure that I made sure that women who had faced what I was talking about could appreciate that I was showing tribute to them, because that is a horrible thing, and any kind of situation when you are bullied into something that you don’t want to do or taken advantage of, those kind of situations.

For Violet, all of this stemmed from her desire to be in show business; that at an early age she found herself in a horrible situation with a scuzzy show biz type.

PATRIKA:  Yes, she got into town and it was like a dream come true. She got invited to parties, and everything was wonderful, and “Oh, he’s going to put me in the movies,” you know.  I think that’s what happens: Hollywood is so glorious, and kids come in and get off the bus to be a star, and the first thing you have to do is wait tables … and the second thing is sometimes when you are very pretty, and thin, and attractive, and bad things happen, and I’m not just saying it happens just to women.  It happens to young men as well, and it can happen to some older people.  It’s just a thing that we have now identified, and I think people are being made aware of it.

Photo: JPI

It almost seems like you get nominated for all sorts of things in you career: primetime, daytime, stage etc.  Have you ever figured out in your own mind, why you think you get the recognition? 

PATRIKA:  I think because people know me, and I try to give out what I want back.  You know, I treat people the way I want to be treated, which means that if there are a thousand things you’ve got to watch, and you go, “Oh, there’s Patrika, let’s see what she is doing now!  She’s always so nice to me,” they take a look at my work.  Do you know what I am saying?  It’s a numbers game.  We think about how many are in primetime at this moment, and even though there are only four soaps left on the major daytime calendar, there are still the new digital shows that are coming up.  I think I am very fortunate that people know my name, they know me, and they want to take a look and see what I am up to again, and the young actors and actresses that I mentor, and kids who I’ve work with, the most important thing, I always say, is to be nice.  No one should have to tell you that, but sometimes you have to reinforce it and say, “You know what?  The casting assistant today is the casting director tomorrow, the assistant director today is the director tomorrow.  The kid over here is the writer today, and tomorrow he is the show runner.”  I don’t think you should approach your life like “What’s in it for me?”

Photo: wireimage

What did you think of the whole of Studio City?  I think it’s a little gem.  I loved its look and feel, as well.

PATRIKA:  As we go along in this digital world, it is becoming more film-like, more real life looking.  We’ve kind of gotten away from the flat, three-camera take.  It’s bringing more things to life, and people are just enthralled with it. This is the new genre of the hour-long soap.  I think with the attention span of people these days; digital drama they may wind up enjoying more and because it looks more real, they will enjoy it more.

You were in a middle of a firestorm, in 2018, when your Daytime Emmy win for your wok in The Bay was revoked.  Did you at all think about that when you found out you got nominated For Studio City?

PATRIKA:  At first, you kind of go, “Are they giving me this nomination for this reason?” but then you kind of go, “You know what?  It really has nothing to do with NATAS.  It has to do with my peers appreciating my work.  So, I know even though I had some problems in the past, NATAS was so apologetic and they’ve made a lot of changes to try to make sure that things like that don’t happen to anyone else, which I am so appreciative of, but this nomination came from my peers.  So I feel I earned it, and I don’t think it has anything to do with what happened in the past except for the fact that there are changes that are for the good.

Photo: Studio City

Now, you are nominated in the Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Digital Drama Series category along with your Studio City co-star, GH’s Carolyn Hennesy.  You both tied in this category at the recent 11th annual Indie Series Awards as well.

PATRIKA:  Carolyn is wonderful in anything that she does.  I wish Sarah Brown had been nominated for her work in Studio City, too.  She is a wonderful actress. You kind of go, “Oh, they didn’t acknowledge her this time,”  but it’s like she is still in the show, the show is going to keep going, so she will have another opportunity for people to recognize her work.  Listen, Carolyn and I could cancel each other out this time, because people know us and like us and appreciate our work.

Photo: JPI

As a working actress in Hollywood, how to you feel about production starting back now for several shows, and concerns amidst the coronavirus pandemic that has crippled the show business community with the loss of so many jobs over the last several months?

PATRIKA:  I think there are still going to be concerns.  Listen, my husband has a heart problem.  He’s had a couple of stints, so he is going to be a high-risk.  So, if I am asked to go to work, I want it to be very safe where I am going, so when I come home, I don’t bring something to him, or I don’t get anything.  I think we are all going to be a lot more careful, but I think what people have to realize in general is that it is not just the actors who did not have work.  There are the camera people, there’s the director, there’s props, there are the electricians, there are a lot of people involved to make a show, whether it’s a daytime show or it’s a film.  So, things will be a little different.  There are going to be a lot of changes, but I’m hoping that we will at least get back, and are safe, and that we take care of each other.

On virtual Emmy night this Sunday, will you be participating and watching from home?

PATRIKA:  I’ll be at home, absolutely.  I’ll be trying to figure out how to push the Zoom button or the what button, and trying to figure out the computers. I’m a dinosaur in a digital world, but I’ll be doing my best!

So, will you be rooting for Patrika in the Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Digital Drama Series category on tomorrow night’s Digital Drama Emmys? Did you see Studio City and if so, what did you think of it?  Do you hope Patrika comes back to daytime soon? Comment below.

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Interviews

Digital Drama Daytime Emmys Preview: Graham Sibley Talks On His Nominated Performance In ‘Dark/Web’

In one of the hotly contested contests on Sunday night’s Digital Drama Daytime Emmys, Graham Sibley is going for gold for his riveting and tense performance in the 7-time nominated series, Dark/Web. Sibley’s work had been recognized in the Outstanding Guest Performer in a Digital Drama Series category.

In Dark/Web, Sibley plays Leland, a ride share driver who’s just trying to make it through the night when the app on his phone takes on a frightening intelligence and tells him he has to make the world a better place, even if it means he has to kill to do it.

Michael Fairman TV caught up with Mr. Sibley to get his thoughts on: playing a ride share driver, being given this tour de force role in such a unique series which landed him an Emmy nod, and much more.

And, don’t miss the Digital Drama Daytime Emmys beginning at 9 pm EST/6 pm PST here, and you can watch the entire Emmy-nominated season of Dark/Web via Amazon Prime Video here.

Now here’s what Graham had to share with us below.

Photo: Dark/Web

In Dark/Web, you were in the first installment of the season, correct?

GRAHAM:  Yep, so it’s an anthology show, and there is a narrative through in that goes through it as well. I’m in the first episode.  It’s called, “Rideshare,” and it sort of explores this ride share driver named Leland Adler.

What can you share about your interpretation of what happens in your Emmy-nominated performance?

GRAHAM:  First, I have to say, Boman Modine, Matthew Modine’s son, is a real talent.  He’s just a really adept storyteller, and he wrote a fantastic script for “Rideshare”.  In Dark/Web, each one of these anthology episodes are written and directed by different people. There is an overarching narrative that goes through that, and there are these individual episodes which are directed by other artists, guest writers, and directors.  So, Boman wrote and directed our episode.  He wrote a really complex character who is a new husband and father, who loses his job and is forced to get into the ride share business, and he is kind of desperate, and he needs to provide for his family, and there is sort of dark web that starts to infiltrate this app.  Leland starts hearing a voice through his earbuds, and you don’t know if he is going crazy … or if he is really hearing these things.  You’re assuming he is really hearing these things.  This character is sort of victimized by this presence.  Over the episode, he starts to give into this because the messages he is getting through his earbuds, through this voice, through the dark web, is information about who these people are who are his passengers, and the terrible things that they have done.  He starts to get messages that he should maybe start to get rid of some of these people, and so he takes the leap and does, and that causes this reaction in him.

Photo: IMDB

Dark/Web in its totality is about a genius programmer whose disappearance leads to these strange stories that are interconnected.  When you speak of the ride share theme and episode, it harkens me back to the character of Travis Bickle played by Robert DeNiro in the classic, Scorsese film,Taxi Driver.

GRAHAM:  Oh yeah, of course.  I think as you go through the journey of “Rideshare,” at the beginning of it, you don’t think Leland is troubled.  He is okay, and then by the end of it, you’re like, “This guy is okay, but something is happening, and now he is on this mission, and now he has done these things that he can’t ever go back on.”  It’s interesting, and it’s interesting that you’re making a parallel with Taxi Driver because Travis was convinced what he was doing was right.  I don’t know if my character at first is.

Photo: Dark/Web

You have not been a ride share driver in real life at some point … or have you?

GRAHAM:  You know… I haven’t.  But, I did sign up when I booked this job.  I went through the process of it just so I would know what it was going to be like.

When you submitted your reel for the Daytime Emmys, did you submit a few scenes, or how did you put your submission together for the competition?

GRAHAM:  I had so much material to choose from.  I was so fortunate to be the lead in this episode, and the episode I think is 25 minutes. It was really hard to pare it down, but I got it down to about 9 or 10 minutes that I felt told the arc of his story.

It’s always important to tell an arc because it does feel like, for the most part, the winning reels are the ones where somebody who doesn’t know the show or your character, could literally follow from point A to point B, if they’re a judge.  You have some solid competition in your category as well! 

GRAHAM:  There are some really amazing performances and some really great actors in the guest performer category, so I’m just honored to be in with their names. Rene Hagler had a couple of different episodes in Dark/Web, so we did not share any scenes together, but he is great.  Lin Shaye and I did a movie together a couple of years ago called Grow House, and then I’ve seen Scott Turner Schofield’s work in Studio City, who is amazing, and Mary Beth Pell, … she’s a legend!

Photo: GSibleyInstagram

Of course, you end up nominated the year that it’s the virtual Emmys. So, what will you wear to the virtual Digital Drama Emmys?

GRAHAM:  I don’t know!  I’ll send you a picture! (Laughs)  If you look on my Instagram, my wife. Marilyn and I staged a picture, because we were like, “Well, we are never going to be able to go to the Emmys,” so we staged a picture with our boys in our backyard with a kiddie pool and us lounging with drinks, and I was in a tuxedo, and she was in this beautiful yellow dress.

What are the names of your boys?

GRAHAM:  They are twins, Lyon and KP, and they just had their first birthday on July 2nd.

Photo: GettyImages

Now, let me ask you this. If they say, “The Emmy goes to Graham Sibley,” what would it mean to you if you were awarded a Daytime Emmy? 

GRAHAM:  I think what it would mean to me is that it would sort of be a pat on the back to say, “You did something that made someone else feel something.”  I hope that’s what we are all aspiring to is to either, be in our own lives trying to make someone feel something, or in cinema or in television or the web.  I’d just be like, “I was honored for being truthful, and that’s cool!”

So, intrigued to see Graham’s performance in Dark/Web?  Who do you think will take home the gold in the Outstanding Guest Performer in a Digital Drama Series on Sunday night? Comment below.

But first check out this promo for the Dark/Web series featuring Graham which has been nominated in multiple Digital Drama categories for the Daytime Emmys.

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Interviews

Y&R’s Greg Rikaart Talks The Complex Life of Kevin Fisher, His Co-Stars, and COVID-19

This week, fans of The Young and the Restless are getting to go back in time and see some of the memorable moments from the dysfunctional, complicated, yet loveable Baldwin-Fisher clan in encore episodes.

Daytime Emmy-winner, Greg Rikaart has brought his A-game for years as the misunderstood, often misguided, but beautifully redeemable flawed character, Kevin Fisher. From his troubled past to his relationships with his brother, Michael (Christian LeBlanc) and his mother, Gloria (Judith Chapman), Kevin has been one of Y&R’s more intriguing characters always bouncing from the  heavy drama to the comedic, all in the more than capable hands of Rikaart.

Michael Fairman TV chatted with Greg to get his thoughts on: looking back at some of these key episodes in Kevin’s past, what it was like working with former on-screen love interest Emily O’Brien (Jana), his current on-screen love Elizabeth Hendrickson (Chloe), and first meeting his on-screen family.

As many are aware, back in March, Greg came down with the coronavirus and it took quite a toll on him. With what is happening now in our country with the spike in the pandemic, he also shares his perspective on what he went through, and reminds us all that COVID-19 is no joke; it’s real and taking people down with it.  One of the best guys we know … and one of the finest actors we know … here’s what Greg shared.

Photo: JPI

It is Baldwin-Fisher week on Y&R.  What do you remember when you first came to the show?  And what was your recollection of first meeting Christian LeBlanc?

GREG:  When I first came on, it wasn’t to be Michael’s brother.  So, I had been there already, and the first story that I was involved with was the internet predator storyline with Christel Khalil (Lily).  So, I had been there a while, and then I think Christian and I had, of course, crossed paths in the hallways, and we had a mutual friend, so we had even gotten together for lunch, and he kind of gave me the lay of the land a little bit.  It wasn’t until we had a fan event, and Jack Smith’s (Ex-writer and producer, Y&R) daughter, Asia, who had worked on the show for a little while, saw Christian and me sitting next to one another.  She said, “I never noticed that the two of them look like brothers,” and I think that’s where the impulse came from to make us related as brothers, Then after we found out that was happening, that’s when Christian and I got to know each other better and said, “Hey, let’s invest a lot of time and effort into making this relationship real.”  There was so much bad blood and history and a lot of stuff to play.  We really spent a lot of time really working on those early scenes when we were trying to figure out what the dynamic was.  I have really fond memories of all of that.  I think I have a great time working with Christian and developing the relationship, and also, it was so nice becoming a part of a family.  I think having a family on the show made me feel like a more integral part of Y&R.  It was a really great time.

Photo: CBS

What do you recall when Judith Chapman first came on to the show as your mother, Gloria?  

GREG:  Briefly, we had Joan Van Ark playing Gloria, and then, when they had cast Judith, I didn’t read with her.  I think Christian was the one, who had auditioned with Judith, but then I happened to be up in the office one day, and I saw her, and I kind of put two and two together, and I said, “Hey, wait, I think we are going to be working together!”  I also remember the way she jumped right in and filled some pretty big shoes epically … and really made the character her own, and again, added a fantastic layer to what the family dynamic was.  It was really wonderful.

Photo: CBS

I’ll never forget the scene when Kevin says goodbye to Gloria, which was your exit from Y&R.  It was a five-hankie moment.

GREG:  Oh, yeah.  It was so easy to play because I was leaving, and the hardest scenes were the ones where I had to say goodbye to Christian and to Judith because like I mentioned, we had invested so much into the relationships and into the characters, and so there is a lot of love, and I think the boundaries get blurred.  There is love between me, and Christian, and Judith, and love between Kevin, and Michael, and Gloria.  It was hard of all of those different reasons.  So, it was easy to channel it into Kevin having to say goodbye to Gloria.

On today’s encore episode of Y&R, we are going to see the ashram wedding between Jana (Emily O’Brien) and Kevin.  I loved you and Emily together!

GREG:  Me too!

Photo: JPI

What can you say about working with Emily and the whole Kevin and Jana story because it was crazy! Jana was so quirky and off-kilter and so, at times, is Kevin.

GREG:  I think Emily came on when Lynn Latham was head writing the show, and Lynn, who I think is wonderful, is a bit off-kilter herself, and I mean that in the best possible way.  Lynn always had streaks of wild colors in her hair.  I think in some ways, Jana may have been a manifestation of some part of Lynn.  Every week or two, Jana would say something, and we found out some other absurd thing in her past where she had been a paraglider at one point, for example, and all of these strange things, and you can sort of throw everything into the kitchen sink with that character, and it all sort of worked.  That was sort of happening when Kevin was very early on in his road of rehabilitation; I think it made sense for him to be with someone like that, although I think Jana’s off- kilter was certainly a little more straight and narrow than his. Jana was a good influence on him.  I loved their dynamic; I loved their relationship.

Photo: JPI

What do you remember about filming the ashram wedding?

GREG: I remember how beautiful the set was. It took up half of the stage.  Emily looked so great, and I remember not wanting to see her before Kevin would have seen her.  I remember the vows being really nice.  I believe it’s the episode where they first meet, Michael’s dad, who is the minister played by Michael Gross.  It was fun that we had a great centerpiece of a story, but it also propelled story for the rest of the family.

Photo: CBS

Coming up on Friday’s encore episode of Y&R: Kevin defends his relationship with Chloe (Elizabeth Hendrickson) to Gloria when is mother makes a “festive” return.  What was your initial reaction to being paired with Liz, who you were already good friends with?

GREG:  I was excited.  I think Liz is great.  We had wanted to be working together.  For a long time, we had lobbied for it.  I didn’t know what capacity it was going to happen in, but I think linking us romantically was really fun.  I think the world of her, so I love working with her.

Photo: JPI

When you look back at winning your Daytime Emmy, and all of the early storylines, do you wish Kevin were more like how he was then with his dark side, or do you like how the character has evolved? It would be hard to sustain a character being destructive and so dark for years and years on a soap without being shipped off the canvas at some point for crimes. 

GREG:  It’s kind of a mixed bag.  I think, certainly some of the stuff earlier on was more challenging, but I also appreciate and really love some of the more lighthearted stuff that Kevin gets to do.  I think when any combination of the Fisher/Baldwins are called in to be a bit more of the comic relief, I think that provides a fun element too and works nicely on the show.  I am absolutely grateful for the longevity.  It might be hard to sustain a character like Kevin the way he was early on, but it sure is fun to do stuff like blowing up restaurants or burning them down.

Photo: JPI

Have you watched any of the episodes so far this week on Y&R … and watched yourself in your earlier years? If so, what did you think?

GREG:  I watched Monday’s episode.  On one hand, it’s really fun to take a trip down memory lane, and there are moments that I remember, and then there are moments that I don’t.  So, it’s fun to rediscover things that way.  Also, I think I had maybe a false sense of my ability early on and what I was capable of.  Watching some of those earlier shows reminds me of how much I’ve grown, not just with Christian and Judith, but everyone there who I have continued to work with.  I think I feel a lot more confident about my acting ability today than when I look back.

You got the opportunity to come back to Y&R after being let go, how does it feel now?

GREG:  I was thrilled to come back.  I think Josh Griffith (head writer, and co-executive producer, Y&R)  really took some big swings to right the ship by bringing back Melissa Claire Egan (Chelsea), Michelle Stafford (Phyllis), and Mishael Morgan (Amanda), and me, and Liz. I was grateful to be included in all of that and just thrilled to come home.  I’m glad that the last chapter wasn’t the last chapter for me.

Photo: RikaartG

You came down with the coronavirus and publicly let people know what happened to you and how you were feeling along the way.  As someone who has gone through getting very sick; how frustrated are you right now with what you see going on in California and Los Angeles, and the rest of the country as this pandemic has spiked, and there are new daily all-time highs in deaths and cases?

GREG:  I’m pretty frustrated.   It’s not over.  I’m negative now for the virus.  I am well on my road to recovery, but this is not a two-week recovery, and then you’re in the free-and-clear.  I’ve had some substantial post-viral issues that I was dealing with for a while.  It is insanely frustrating to see people not taking this seriously, and I continue to take it as seriously as I did in the beginning because there is no guarantee that antibodies really protect you from anything.  I feel just as vulnerable as the next person to get sick.  It’s mind-bogging to me that something as simple as wearing a mask over your face became politicized. I think we should all look to New York to follow their model for how to get back on track because they did it right.  California is different in the sense that New York had one epicenter for the entire state.  It was New York City where the battle was happening, whereas in California, we are a larger state geographically and population wise, and there are different heavily populated areas like Orange County versus Los Angeles, and San Francisco, and every place in between.  It is hard to shepherd 50+ million people through it as opposed to maybe a more tightly packed group of 10 million New Yorkers, but I still think Governor Cuomo of New York deserves all of the credit he is getting for handling this.  He is really the only one, the only politician who is kind of getting his people through it… at least in America.

Photo: RikaartIG

As a father, how do you feel about what you see happening with opening schools vs. not opening schools, and this debate?  Safety should come first, but you see how this is being politicized as well. Parents need to get back to work, and want their children safely in schools, but how can that be when the pandemic is raging?

GREG:  There is no decision that anyone can make in today’s world where there is not some level of risk that you take on; whether it is going to the grocery store, going back to work, or sending your kid to school.  I understand that there are parents who need to work and don’t have the luxury of childcare, and they need their kids to be in school.  I know there is a lot of evidence suggesting that kids are not specific transmitters of coronavirus, and even if they are, even if they do come down with it, they tend to fare quite well.  So, of course, no judgement on any parent who makes different decisions if they are well thought out, educated decisions and you’re using science to arrive at your conclusion. But for us and my family, I think we have a very intimate understanding of how serious this is.  You know, Monte is only in preschool, but his preschool went back last week, and we are just going to keep him home until we feel like we are ready to send him back.  At his age, I’m not concerned about there being things that he’s not learning.  I’m concerned about him socially, and developmentally with what he is missing out on, but we are finding ways to do things socially-distanced with friends and to socialize him that way, and we are fortunate in that we have childcare.  So, we have two extra hands on deck, 40 hours a week, which is super helpful, as there are no easy choices these days.

Photo: JPI

Y&R is going back into production this week.  Knowing what you went through with COVID-19, any trepidation on your part?

GREG:  I think going back to work would for sure do me some good emotionally, but like I was saying earlier, there is no decision that you can make these days where you are not taking on some level of risk.  So, I am excited.  I am also a little anxious.  We will see how it goes.

I was so concerned for you, as so many of your colleagues and friends were too, when we saw how you were kicked by this virus.

GREG:  It was awful, truly awful, and I hate to complain about it when I have a lot of gratitude for how much better I fared than so many other people.  I am out of the woods for sure, but if I exert myself a little too hard for a few days in a row, I have a day where it can be hard to get out of bed.  I have some friends who are dealing with even more substantial post-viral fatigue.  One friend of mine, he hasn’t gotten his taste or smell back for over three months, and doctors are skeptical that he ever will now.  So, fortunately, I’m not dealing with any of that, but you know, it’s hard to not wish that it just never happened, and that I was physically who I was a few months ago.

Photo: JPI

Closing out our conversation on Kevin Fisher, if you had to explain to another human being who doesn’t watch Y&R, who Kevin is, what would you say?

GREG:  I would say that he is the lovable ne’er do well.  Someone who messes up often, but I think he has earned a place in people’s hearts where they are forgiving of him when he does mess up, or they’re rooting for him to make better choices. When he does make good choices, they are into his choices.  I think that’s a good handle on who he is.

So, what is your favorite moment or story in the history of Kevin Fisher? Are you enjoying this week’s encore episodes on The Young and the Restless?  What do you think about the views shared by Greg, as someone who has gone through battling the coronavirus? Share your thoughts in the comment section 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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