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THE SHARON CASE INTERVIEW – THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS

sharon_case_main.jpgPoor Sharon Newman Abbott! It’s been a series of devastating events that have led one of Genoa City’s heroines to begin acting out in ways we have not seen before.

I mean, what would you do? The love of your life rekindles your relationship with a night of passion, only to go back to the woman who stole him from you in the first place. Your best friend professes his love for you and you send him away into a snowstorm. He ends up dead by saving your son who has fallen through the ice and almost dies, too. Your second marriage has fallen apart through a series of lies and manipulations and you realize everything you touch… you lose.

Well, Daytime Emmy Award winning actress Sharon Case, tells me what’s behind Sharon’s emotional turmoil. As many “Y&R” fans know, just this past week she spent a drunken night of passion
with Billy Abbott and has begun to steal
items and put them in her purse. Hmmm…

MICHAEL:

Many fans were overjoyed that Nick and Sharon finally reconnected and made love in the cabin! What are your feelings on the story?

SHARON:

I loved the storyline because it has so much conflict in it. I can speak for the actors that nobody wanted to see Nick and Sharon get back together and live happily ever after in one episode. Our audience wants to see them together, and so do we, but not all in one episode. It misses the point. I love that Nick and Sharon slept together and they are playing Sharon and Nick’s feelings for each other. Because for years, where was Sharon and Nick’s feelings for each other? Why weren’t they ever in the same room with each other? What happened? Well, we are back, and that does not mean Sharon and Nick should get together tomorrow, but we should be in the same room together, because there is conflict. In my opinion, this is what should have been playing out all along.

MICHAEL:

They have their son, Noah, but it seemed like over the past few years the show was not playing those storyline beats as parents. Not until recently, however.

france_sharon.jpgSHARON:

We have a son! Where has this storyline been for the past two years? Thank God, we are back and Nick and Sharon had sex together. One of my favorite scenes was when we ran into each other in the office and Nick told me he wants to stay with Phyllis. Oh, my word, after everything we have been through and Sharon’s hopes were high, this was tragic! She has already filed for divorce from Jack and she is thinking, this is it. Once again, he says he is going to stay with Phyllis. He cheated, and now to hear this, how do you ever get past this?

MICHAEL:

Obviously, Phyllis’s manipulations made an impact on Nick.

SHARON:

When Sharon spoke with Nick in the office, he did not come out and say it. Sharon dragged it out of him, and pressure-cooked him into talking, and he was wondering what is going on, and not saying anything. So, I don’t know how you overcome that. I don’t know how any one gets over that. I guess you get over it by doing exactly what Sharon is doing… having a nervous breakdown and acting very unlike her.

MICHAEL:

She is acting so bizarre!

sharon_set.jpgSHARON:

It’s stress that causes her to do weird things and panic. These are really extreme circumstances, where people can blank out or do things unlike themselves, or freak out. They even could go blind, temporarily.

MICHAEL:

Yes, hysterical blindness!

SHARON:

I heard someone who was having a nervous breakdown got hysterical blindness in real life. I know of people who have gone blind from stress or illness, and things can happen temporarily to you. With Sharon, she does not remember moments of time, here and there.

MICHAEL:

I remember after my major back-surgery and the stress of the recovery, I was forgetting things and I didn’t know why, but I think it was because of the stress it put on my mind and body.

SHARON:

People think it’s the illness or surgery, and it’s really the stress that’s connected to the illness or surgery or personal loss, or things like that.

MICHAEL:

So, it makes perfect sense. Sharon had lossed so much. Here she slept with Nick. He does not go back to her. Noah almost died, and Brad’s dead!

SHARON:

Can you imagine? Her child is saved and Brad dies, and she had sent Brad away! She was not that nice to him leading up to that day. She had to stop him from having any hope, but that does not matter now because he is dead. She feels bad about that. It’s awful! Jack was another horrible loss, a tragic loss. She tried everything she could possibly do to make her marriage work. She said, “Jack you are a liar, and I am going to have to adjust myself to live with that.” She tried to deal with Jack’s broken promises again and again. One thing is for sure; a promise from Jack doesn’t mean anything. How do you live with that in a marriage? It’s so disheartening.

foursome.jpgMICHAEL:

And, Phyllis is just so mean to her!

SHARON:

She is a mean girl and she does not like Sharon, and she is mean to her.

MICHAEL:

Do you think Sharon can handle Phyllis’s machinations?

SHARON:

Look at the things that Sharon has handled in her life. Of course she can!

MICHAEL:

So, with all of this heartbreak the time was ripe to break her to pieces. It’s very interesting how they are taking apart Sharon’s spirit and mental stability.

SHARON:

I am interested in how they are doing it, too. One thing about Maria Arena Bell’s (co head-writer, “Y&R”) writing is that when you have a breakdown, it’s not only for an hour in a day you have a breakdown, and then life goes on. This is something that happens here and there a little bit each day, over periods of time, and over weeks. That’s how breakdowns happen. I think when people talk about a nervous breakdown they say, “I had a nervous breakdown between 12 noon and one, and now I am all better.” (She laughs) It does not also mean you are in a straightjacket full time. It just means you are going to act bizarre and you are going to have panic attacks at different intervals. It will be hard to deal with.

MICHAEL:

So, what is going on in Sharon’s mind? How are you playing this?

sharon_glamour.jpgSHARON:

It’s a loss. This is the second marriage she has lost. She has almost lost her second child, which reminds her and reactivates Cassie’s death for her. Then, Nick does not want her and her friend has died. So, every time she thinks, ”Now I have my life together and now I can see a vision of where my future will lie.” You can see the future and it gives you hope. Every time Sharon has mapped it out it has been torn to pieces. She has to overcome it, restart it, and redraw it, not only with her first marriage, but her second, and also with her child, Cassie. That’s why Sharon is in this place right now. It makes you so fearful that you are going to be alone for the rest of your life; that no matter what you go out in life to create, it’s going to be ruined anyway.

MICHAEL:

Will there be a ‘night in shining armor’ along the way?

SHARON:

Isn’t that the hope in life that we all have? I hope so, and I don’t know who it will be.

MICHAEL:

Nick!

SHARON:

What you hope is that Nick will come around and be a good man. What you want to have happen is Nick to snap out of it one day and be the man he needs to be, and who Sharon wants him to be, so they can live happily ever after.

MICHAEL:

As the character of Sharon, what would you still love to do with her, or get a chance to play that you haven’t had in all of your time here at “Y&R”? I mean, Sharon has been through almost every soap storyline imaginable.

don_diamont.jpgSHARON:

You know what I wanted to do? This will probably never happen, but before I knew Brad’s character was dying I did not know where they were going with Sharon and Brad’s storyline. Recently before he died, it looked like they might put us together again because Jack and Sharon were getting a divorce, and Brad was sneaking into my world with Phyllis’s assistance. I thought, “Huh, maybe they are putting us back together. If we were a couple, what kind of couple would we be?” I had this idea that Brad is this dual personality, or dual person assassin guy. What if we had this very cool, “Mr. and Mrs. Smith” relationship, and I get involved as an action hero. If you ask me, anything I would like to do with the character that I haven’t done? It would be “Sharon Action Hero”. I would have this matrix and dominatrix outfit and I would be really good at firing weapons!
(She laughs)

MICHAEL:

Have you noticed a difference in the writing, now that Maria Arena Bell is heading up the team?

SHARON:

Absolutely, and stories are better. Maria is just amazing. It’s got a bit of the old days in it, and every one of the actors feels like it’s the old days and everyone is happy. It’s so nice, and we deserved this. The cast and the show have been through a lot, and I am so happy for everyone here now that we have Maria. It’s what we needed and what we are looking for, someone who is a talented writer and knows the backbone of the show.

MICHAEL:

I know many of your cast mates who I have interviewed and posed this question to have responded the same way. Tell me a few words about working with Joshua Morrow (Nick).

SHARON:

I feel most comfortable when I am working with him. We have worked together for so many years, and even if I have not worked with him in a long time, I go right back into a groove with him that’s familiar and easy.

MICHAEL:

How about working with Peter Bergman, as Jack?

SHARON:

Peter is great to work with. He is very professional and always prepared. He has brought a lot to the scenes. He had a lot of great creative ideas, and a lot of what he brought to it was what that marriage was about. I feel like that marriage was really an awesome representation of modern marriage today. You don’t see a lot of that on soaps; it was not that thunderstorm marriage where kids were dying and house burning down. These were representing every day real problems that marriages have, such as dishonesty and how that whittles away at the marriage, and what that does to two people. It was a different story of marriage, and I really liked that. I liked that Sharon ran into Jack after her marriage to Nick fell apart. She lost her entire identity after that happened, and needed a new one.

kevin_sharon.jpgMICHAEL:

How is working with your on-screen SORAS’d son, Kevin Schmidt as Noah?

SHARON:

He is a very talented actor. As a guy, he is silly and funny. When I look at him, I can’t believe I have an older son now on the show. I guess in reality, I could have a son that age, I think. No! I could have a son Noah’s age, but not like the actor’s age. He is so great and with Camyrn Grimes (Ex-Cassie) we did not age her. She was a very talented actress and we just watched her grow up. I have been lucky with the casting of my on-screen kids.

MICHAEL:

How was seeing your friend Don Diamont (Brad) depart the show? Have you spoken with him since he left?

SHARON:

No, I haven’t, not since his going away party here. It was hard for me. Everyone was sad. Don was great through it. He went through every different kind of emotion at the party, and he gave a very moving speech.

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Days Of Our Lives

DAYS Head Writer Ron Carlivati Talks On: Ben Weston, Soap Amnesia, Doppelgängers, and the Time Jump

Days of our Lives viewers have been going through some changes over the past month since the launch of the innovative time jump from the creative mind of the series and Daytime Emmy-winning head writer, Ron Carlivati.  As episode after episode unfolds, the audience has been finding out just where their favorite Salem residents have landed and with whom, in the one year flash-forward.  There have been shocking deaths revealed, longtime couples facing different kinds of obstacles that could change their relationships forever, and some characters brought back on the canvas, in one form or the other, to shake things up.

On the series finale of the Inside Salem: Days of our Lives Podcast,  Ron Carlivati was the very special guest and addressed many of the decisions that went into making the flash- forward happen starting with when Jennifer (Melissa Reeves) wakes up from her coma after her fall, thanks to Princess Gina (Kristian Alfonso), and how it impacts the canvas.  You can listen to the can’t-miss interview here via iTunes or at NBC.com/Inside Salem.

Due to the length of our conversation with the talented head scribe, some of the questions and answers did not make it into the podcast finale due to time constraints.  So, we have brought you the rest the interview here as Ron discusses: the popularity of  #Cin, back-from-the-dead storylines, writing for the original series on the DOOL app and further creative decisions that went into crafting the one-year time jump.  Check out what Ron had to say below.

Photo: JPI

You have been able to make #Cin, the hottest duo on daytime by taking a now reformed serial killer, Ben Weston (Rob Scott Wilson) and pairing him with the daughter of one of DAYS all-time supercouples, Bo and Hope in Ciara Brady (Victoria Konefal).  Were you ever  concerned as to how this story/romance would play to the audience at home, because in reality no parent would ever just stand by and let their child get involved with a man who strangled and killed women, previously? 

Ron:  To sort of try to glorify a guy who strangled women and make him into a romantic lead, we don’t do that lightly.  Not unlike, Todd Manning (Roger Howarth) on One Life to Live who was a rapist, and who became sort of an anti-hero, but also a romantic lea.  And in this day and age, it’s even a bigger decision to do something like that, I think.  So, that said, it is a soap opera and there are certain things where we know we are pushing the envelope.  We know in the real world that no mother would ever get past her daughter being with a guy who murdered, killed, and strangled three women or strangled and shot one, but the pairing worked so well.

Photo: JPI

In the time jump, you gave Ben an intriguing prison cell mate in Will Horton, given that Ben had “killed” him previously.  Add to that you brought back Ben’s criminal father, Clyde back into the mix.  There’s lots of prison orange these days on the screen.

Ron:  When we knew we were sending Ben to prison, then obviously father and son have to cross path. It just added another element, so it wasn’t just going to be Ben and Will (Chandler Massey) talking to each other, and making a shawl together like Martha Stewart. (Laughs). Ben’s relationship with Clyde was interesting to me.  As horrible as Clyde was and is – there does seem to be some sort of love that he has for Ben.

Photo: JPI

On the soaps, and as has been part of DAYS enduring legacy, characters are killed off, only to be brought back to life somewhere down the road. Many return with classic soap amnesia as a vehicle to drive story.  Is there ever a time when as a writer, or as a soap fan, you think “enough is enough”, and characters should just stay dead?  Many fans who watch daytime dramas get very invested in tragic death stories, where characters have these shocking or sudden, or long goodbyes, and the viewers goes through the grieving process; along with the other characters, for what then seems like a waste of an emotional investment when said character turns back up alive.

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Ron:  We were talking about bringing Jack (Matthew Ashford) back right around that same time we had the Will story.  We couldn’t bring two people back from the dead at the same time, and that’s why Jack’s return kind of got put on the back-burner, so we could do the ‘Will is alive’ story arc.  Look, the audience will go with you, especially if they want somebody back desperately.  They will overlook how did it happen, and how could they be alive.  They will accept almost any explanation, but I think you’re right, if you do it too much, you tend to water down the permanence of death … especially deaths that you saw on-camera.

Photo: JPI

Viewers know you love doppelgänger storylines.  And, in the time jump you brought back none other than Hattie Adams (Deidre Hall).  Why the decision to bring Hattie back at this time?  I know Deidre loves playing her.

Ron:  I think Deidre likes playing something different than Marlena, because she played Marlena for many, many years, and she knows her like the back of her hand.  Hattie is an escape and something fun, and the chance to do and say outrageous things that Marlena would never do.  So, we bring her back whenever we can to have fun with, and again, it seemed to work because  she was in prison, and we set Eve in prison when we started the time jump off, and we’re like, “Who’s Eve (Kassie DePaiva) going to be talking to?” and we’re like, “Oh, well of course.  It has to be Hattie.” (Laughs)

When do you first see the fruits of your labor?  Do you see a feed from the set as the show is taping? Do you receive episodes where you see how what was written has come to life? 

Ron:  In prior shows, One Life to Live and on GH, I saw it when it aired. At One Life, I was in the studio, so I often saw production shooting scenes.  Here, they send me the completed shows once it has been completely edited, the music has been put into it, and it’s all ready to roll, and they email me the link to 5 or 6 shows.  So, I could in theory watch a couple of weeks ahead of the audience, but I tend to (unless I’m so, so curious about how a certain thing turned out) watch it when it’s on TV.

Photo: JPI

The “Lani (Sal Stowers) and Kristen (Stacy Haiduk) joining a convent” storyline is at a critical point in story.  How did you come up with the decision to put Lani, and of all people, Kristen together and about to take their vows as nuns, and kind of becoming bff’s?

Ron:  I mean, you can’t imagine sort of two more unlikely friends as Kristen and Lani.  We grew to really love the relationship that developed between the two of them.  I think we sat down and said about the time jump, “There have to be enough big changes that you do the double-take.”  Like, Will is Ben’s cell mate, Adrienne is dead, and Justin and Kayla are together now.  You had to have enough of those WTF moments to justify passing a year of time.

You have also been writing series for the DOOL app.  What did you think of Chad and Abby in Paris with that being the initial one and how it all came to pass?

Ron:   It was fun.  I had no time.  I was writing six episodes a week of DAYS, and I was asked “By the way, can you write two seasons of a web/app show for us?” (Laughs) Greg Meng (Co-executive producer, Days of our Lives) has really been the mastermind behind this app and developing this app into something.  I love all of the stuff you guys came up with for all the behind the scenes content, but I know that Greg really wanted original series content on it, too.  Chad (Billy Flynn) and Abigail (Kate Mansi) just seemed like the logical couple to do that with.  You wanted somebody tied to Salem that wasn’t currently on the campus, but you know the audience cares about what their up to, and Chad and Abby just seemed perfect.  The process was totally different because I’m used to writing six outlines a week that are 15 pages long, and all of the sudden, I’m like, “She comes in, this happens, and this happens.” .  That’s like a whole episode of an app series right there.  Corday Productions produced it while they were producing the regular show, and they made a special set into Chad and Abigail’s apartment, which I thought looked incredible.

Photo: JPI

Chad & Abby in Paris had a bit of a different look and feel then the regular airshows, which I think made it enticing.

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Ron:  I loved the look of it.  I felt it was just a little bit different than Salem.  We had the establishing shots of the Eiffel Tower and all of that stuff, and look, we had to keep it simple, but we added in Austin (Austin Peck).  We had Tony (Thaao Penghlis) come in season 2.  We had the new characters of Juliette (Rachele Schank) and Sylvie (Shawna Della-Ricca).  So, it was fun, and it weirdly just timed out so perfectly because we did 8, took like a week off, did another 8, and that last episode was posted right when Jennifer fell.

Right, so it timed perfect to get Chad & Abby back on the airshows.

Ron:  It timed out perfectly so that we could have Abigail get a call: “Something has happened to my mother.  We have to go back to Salem.”  So, you last saw Chad and Abby in Paris, and then the following week they were back in Salem.

Photo: JPI

Now, with the kind of massive move for DAYS with the time jump, you have to figure out: “Who are the casualties?  Who am I going to lose?” Viewers learned in short order that: Adrienne (Judi Evans) isn’t alive, Haley (Thia Megia) isn’t alive, and Jordan (Chrishell Stause) isn’t alive.  What went into the decision-making process to kill those characters?  I’m assuming it was to further the story of others on the canvas.

Ron:  Yes.  Anytime we kill somebody, it breaks my heart every time, because these are like my babies.  You fall in love with these characters, and you care about them a lot, and you care about the people who play them.  So, it’s a big decision to say, “Let’s kill them.”  It may be a great story, like, “I’m going to get this amazing story if I kill X,” but that’s a person and a job, and it’s not something we ever do lightly.  That said, in a year of passage of time, you know that life and death is going to happen, and to us, it felt like to really signify the passage of time, there had to be at least one or two people who are no longer alive, and then show how that affects our story.

Photo: JPI

Did you ever think that instead of 1 year that you’d do a bigger jump?  Like, “What if I did 5 years?”  Because it’s interesting, I was reading some comments on social media from fans who are like, “What year is it?  Is it just 1 year?  Why didn’t they do 5?” (Laughs)

Ron:  5 seemed like a lot.  I think people change physically a lot in 5 years. I wasn’t prepared to cast little children as teenagers… that would be a lot. (Laughs)  I think you run the risk of it being almost too disorienting for the audience.  Also, then it would be me having to figure out what happened over 5 years instead of just 1. (Laughs)  So, 1 year just kind of seemed perfect, and it had to be an even year so that even though it’s a crazy coincidence that Jennifer woke up 1 year to the day she fell into the coma, you needed Thanksgiving to still be Thanksgiving, and Christmas to still fall on Christmas, and that kind of thing.  So, it had to be an even year.  I think it worked out great and I hope the audience continues to go on the journey with us, because there is a lot more to come!

So, have you been enjoying the DAYS time jump thus far? Which storyline has piqued your interest most? Let us know via the comment section below.

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Days Of Our Lives

Rob Scott Wilson and Victoria Konefal Interview – Day of Days 2019

Days of our Lives stars Rob Scott Wilson (Ben) and Victoria Konefal (Victoria) talk with Michael Fairman at Day of Days 2019.

During the conversation, the on-screen duo known as “Cin” share their thoughts on the series time jump, and the shocking developments that find Ben in prison for the murder of his sister, Jordan.

In addition, Rob and Victoria reveal their thoughts on if a #Cin proposal may be on the way, and much more.

Check out the interview above this fan favorite duo below, then let us know in the comment section what you think of the plight of #Cin currently airing on Days.  Do you want Ben to get out of prison? Ciara to save him? Weigh-in.

For more Day of Days 2019 interviews check out the Michael Fairman Channel here.

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Days Of Our Lives

Freddie Smith and Chandler Massey Interview – Day of Days 2019

Days of our Lives stars Freddie Smith (Sonny) and Chandler Massey (Will) chat with Michael Fairman at Day of Days 2019.

During the conversation, they discuss the latest developments for WilSon with the series innovative time jump, which finds Sonny grieving a year later for the loss of his mother Adrienne, and that his husband Will is apparently the responsible party and in jail for her death.

In addition, Will was in for a surprise when his cellmate turned out to be the man that strangled him to ‘death’, Ben Weston.

However, in one of the funniest interviews during the Day of Days event, Freddie and Chandler reveal what really will happen next for WilSon (sort of, kind of, not!)

Check out the chat below. Then, let us know what you think of the current story in the time jump, which looks to be keeping Will and Sonny apart, plus there could be a new man on the horizon for Sonny, now that Evan is in Salem.  Weigh in via the comment section.

For more Day of Days 2019 interviews visit the Michael Fairman Channel here.

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DAYS Eric Martsolf and Stacy Haiduk chat with Michael Fairman at Day of Days 2019; during their conversation the on-screen dup talk about the latest developments of Brady and Kristen within the series time-jump and more. Leave A Comment

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