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The Trevor St. John Interview – In The Family and One Life to Live

Courtesy/ABC

Courtesy/ABC

Many daytime fans have been missing the talents of the Trevor St. John from their television screens, where for an amazing eight-year run on One Life to Live he played the role of Todd Manning in a performance that broke the mold in the soap genre. As many know in his last month of the show it was revealed Trevor’s Todd was really Todd’s twin, Victor Jr., and the character was subsequently murdered.  That story is still playing out and resonating on One Life today with many repercussions ahead.

And now, as Trevor focuses on his new projects and endeavors, he is getting rave reviews in a new film from actor-writer-producer, Patrick Wang, called In The Family, which is set to debut in New York City on November 4th hopefully with national distribution to follow.  The inspiring and emotional tale of In The Family features Trevor in a role that his fans have never seen and he have never played before…that of a gay father with a life-partner, and from there the intense drama begins in a motion picture that deals with many social issues of our day.

To say Trevor is elusive, sometime reclusive, a true original, funny, bright, and one of the most powerful actors we have ever seen is just the tip of the iceberg.  On-Air On-Soaps is happy to bring you this interview where Trevor reveals his side of the story on his departure from OLTL, and his thoughts on the reveal of his alter-ego being Victor Jr. and Roger Howarth returning to the series as Todd.  Plus, he opens up about his thoughts on the amazing fans of daytime, and his
co-stars and the soap genre, and how he truly was, “The Accidental Soap Star”.
We begin on our talk with what Trevor had to say about his new motion picture!

MICHAEL:

Courtesy/IntheFamilyLLC

Trevor, your new film, In The Family just got an amazing review in Variety.  And in it, you play Cody.  And part of the set up of the film is Cody and his partner, Joey, (Patrick Wang) care for a little boy, Chip, who is Cody’s biological son.  The backdrop for the film is interestingly Tennessee … and Cody suddenly dies!  How long are you in the film, if you are “killed-off”?

TREVOR:

I am mostly in flashbacks and Patrick kind of does it non-linearly. I get killed in the first 30 minutes of the film, and then you see me in flashbacks throughout the rest of it.

MICHAEL:

How did you come into this role?   Did you know Patrick Wang previously?

TREVOR:

I did not know Patrick Wang before. My agent sent me the script and wanted to know if I was interested in it.  I thought it was a beautifully written script.  And I went in and read for Patrick and that was it.

MICHAEL:

And how was he to work with?  The film sounds amazing on so many levels!

TREVOR:

Courtesy/IntheFamilyLLC

Patrick is really one of the best actors and directors I have ever worked with, and he has got a really risk taking spirit.  He understands human nature and it is born out in his screenplay and the final product of the film.  He knows how to talk to actors.  He is patient and he knows what he wants, and he has great esthetic vision.  He is a very talented guy and he has it all.  Plus, he is a really a good actor!

MICHAEL:

It is a very important social issue of our time, having same-sex couples raising a child.  And this film even brings in another issue, when one of the partners suddenly dies and now there is one single gay parent raising a child.  Was that one of the things that drew you to the role and the movie?

TREVOR:

I think so.  I have never played a gay character before and I am always looking to do something different.  And I knew I was going to have to kiss him (laughs).  I knew that was one of the “oh-gosh-I-don’t-know-about-that” moments.  But, I thought you need to just jump in to whatever you are fearful of or reticent to do.  I always make it a rule to jump right in there and see what it is like.  So that was one of the reasons I took the role, but mostly it is story.  The other stuff is secondary to the story.

MICHAEL:

Well, from everyone I have had the privilege to speak to over the last several years at One Life, they always tell me, “Trevor was the risk-taker!”  And, that you are the one who comes in on set with a twist on something.

TREVOR:

Courtesy/IntheFamilyLLC

For sure, I like a challenge.

MICHAEL:

What will fans that have watched you on OLTL see in your performance of Cody? Clearly, he is much different than Todd/Victor Jr.!

TREVOR:

I would never even know where to begin with that. Cody in In The Family is a real good guy and he is a real good dad, except I realized when I watched the film there is a scene where I go pick up my son and I don’t make him put his seat belt on! (Laughs)  Cody is also a deep feeling person, but then so is Todd.  The difference in character is how they choose to act out on their feelings and however their feelings are manifested.  I never even considered, “Well, I want to play this guy different than Todd.” I think it’s all in the writing, and the writing is so different.  So as an actor if you get out of the way, then the character comes through.

MICHAEL:

Do you know people in your own life that are in a same-sex relationship that have raised a child?  I have met many couples over the last few years that are looking to adopt a child and raise it, and there are still a lot of struggles for same-sex couples to be chosen, or sometimes accepted in this society as “fit” parents.

TREVOR:

No, I don’t, but I have a four and half year old son now myself.  However, I feel strongly about this.  I don’t know if I would necessarily say it’s ideal to have a mother and a father, (and that would be fine), and you have a masculine and feminine type of situation going on, but I don’t think it’s necessary.  I think that is one of the least important parts for a child being raised.  A child should be raised by loving and respectful parents who are considerate of their child’s growth, and a woman or a man, or two women, or two men; neither of those has a monopoly on this or knows better than anyone else.  You can have a mother and a father raising a child and have it be the worst situation, and you can have a same-sex couple doing the same thing and have it be really wonderful.  Great parenting is not a function of your sex or your sexuality, and that is just a fact.

MICHAEL:

Courtesy/IntheFamilyLLC

So it sounds to me from that we are going to need our hankies for In The Family!

TREVOR:

Yeah, you might need it.  I know there were people on the set who were crying during scenes. There is some moving stuff in it.  Patrick really allows things to happen, and you really take a ride and it’s very intimate.  He lets the actors really go.  So the audience gets really sucked in by it, so you might shed some tears.

MICHAEL:

You have done many feature films and television roles in addition to OLTL.  Would you say that this role in In The Family is one of your favorites?

TREVOR:

This is one of my favorites.  It is a departure from every thing else I have done.  And I don’t’ know if it was my favorite role, but it was my favorite experiences acting.  And it was of my best performances I feel, that is for sure.  I am really proud of it.

MICHAEL:

Now that you have experienced, playing gay, would you play a gay role again?

TREVOR:

Yeah.  Gay or not, it’s all about the script and the story.  But yeah, sure I would do almost… … well, but I do have limits… but it’s mostly about the externals, now of course they effect your psychologically and all of that.  What I am trying to say is it’s all just a character.  It has nothing to do with you.  So why not play a gay character?  Why not play a killer?  Why not play a ridiculous person?

Courtesy/ABC

MICHAEL:

Your fans from One Life to Live miss you terribly.  What did you think of the plot twist during the end of your run when you were revealed to be Victor Jr., and that you and Roger Howarth’s Todd, were twins?  Many in the audience of course were all hoping for many episodes of the two of you going head to head over the business, woman, children, and every issue imaginable.  Since you had made the role of Todd your own over the last eight years, when you heard Roger Howarth was coming back were you like, “What? or “How cool!”

TREVOR:

I thought, “Oh cool” and I was really excited about it and one of the reasons is I like taking the risks.  But on the soaps, and this is not a diss of the writers or the people who are making creative decisions, but they can be a little redundant sometime.  Simply because of the nature of the stories they can tell, and it’s on every single day.  So it can be a little repetitive.  So anytime I got the opportunity to do something different, I was like, “Oh great!  Completely new circumstances and completely new relationships, and I revel in it and I was really thrilled by it.  And I have been asked the question a lot of, “Did I feel possessive of Todd?”  Not even a little bit.  And, I even thought I might when I heard Roger Howarth was coming back.  I was thinking, “I am sure he will play Todd.”  But I thought it was great!

MICHAEL:

Fans were witness to some amazing scenes with you and Roger in Viki’s study at Llanfair, when Irene was with the two of you.  You could see how much the two acted like twins.  Did you feel like you would have liked to see where all of that would go?

TREVOR:

I was a little confused about why they chose to structure that plot the way they did.  Most of the time was spent on the discovery of who was who, rather than the repercussions.  And I think it was the repercussions that the people wanted to see.  I am not saying it was wrong; I just don’t why they would do it that way.

MICHAEL:

Courtesy/ABC

You had posted a blog informing your fans that it was soon going to be your last day at One Life and thanking them for all of their love and support. What from your perspective were the circumstances surrounding your departure from the series?

TREVOR:

The case was, I was not going to stick around if the show had not been cancelled.  I had told them back almost a year ago that I was not going to continue on and then the show got canceled.  I will just tell you this because I am sure people want to know. It has nothing to do with the quality of the show, or the circumstances, or the people there.  It was just that eight years for my personality, and this is all me not the show, that for my personality and other reasons, I was looking to do other roles and take risks, because I didn’t become an actor to do the same thing over and over again.  I mean, if I wanted to do that I would have chosen another profession.  Now some actors love it and they love to play the same part and have the security of a long running role, but that is just not my personality.  It was eight years of doing the same role and I can’t do twelve.  And that is what it would have been.  I really adore the people I worked with over there, and I miss them.  I miss them quite a bit.  I love a lot of them, too.  The only thing I want to do, as the same thing longer than 8 years, is being married. (Laughs). Everything else I can’t take.  It was not about a “grass is greener” thing either.  It was simply about something different.  A lot of people think I am thinking, “Well, Trevor wants to go on to bigger and better things.”  No, no.  Not bigger and better.  Just different.  So that’s the reason.  And then the show got canceled and I went to the powers-that-be and I said, “If it would benefit the show, I would be happy to stick around until the last episode.”  And this was before Prospect Park came into the picture and all of that.  I said, if you would like to play that story out, and would like to go another four months, I could certainly go another four months. Let the repercussions play out and if you think it would be helpful to the show, I would be happy to do it.” So my contract ended on July 31st and July 22nd was my last day.

MICHAEL:

There have been conflicting reports that OLTL had wanted you very much to stay, but it became a timing issue.  Do you think it was because they had planned the story already so far ahead that when you had informed them you would be interested in staying, that they just couldn’t go back and re-script from where they were at the time?

TREVOR:

No, from my perspective I think they could have definitely changed it.

MICHAEL:

Courtesy/ABC

You have been labeled “difficult” by some.  Do you think that is a fair assessment?  It seems like very creative and talented individuals at times often face this same “tag” in the industry.

TREVOR:

There is no doubt about it, because I know what I want.  And I mean, I am not a jerk about it, but the reasons the fans of the show like what I am doing is because I am willing to take those risks.  I am willing to fight for those choices and whatever.  And on a day to day basis, it can be a grind.  My dear friend, Dan Gauthier (Kevin, OLTL) told me, “Trevor, if you weren’t playing Todd, you would have been out of here so long ago.” And I said, “I know.” (Laughs) Look, this is a business, and I get where they are coming from.  Who wants someone going, “No. I don’t see it that way.  This is what I want to do,” on a day to day basis.  In life and professions most people on the day-to-day want everything to be so easy.  The irony here is that this is the reason that people are commenting and appreciating my work, I think, is because of my approach.

MICHAEL:

So did you know they were going to shoot you as Victor Jr.?

TREVOR:

I don’t think they knew what was going to be the end for my character yet, and there were so many variables.  But they did tell me a couple weeks before I taped the episodes that I was going to get shot.

MICHAEL:

Courtesy/ABC

What do you think of the way he died?  I thought it was in particular very bloody!

TREVOR:

It was bloody.  It was fine, and it was really about, who did it? Who shot Victor Jr.? You come to really accept what they give you.

MICHAEL:

What was it like working with Florencia Lozano (Tea)?  TNT fans want to know!

TREVOR:

I love Florencia, man; she is a bit of a risk-taker herself.  And working with me can be challenging because I will let myself go.  I have always thought that the mark of a really professional actress is to be able to say, “Yeah. You can go wherever you want as long as I don’t get hurt and I know when my line is coming.  Do whatever you wish.”  And that is what I tell all the actors I work with.  You can do whatever you want. You can yell, cry, scream, whatever you want, as long as I don’t get physically hurt and I pretty much know when I am supposed to talk and then you can do anything you want.”  I think that creates a situation that is fun for the fans, because if you don’t know what is going to happen, then the fans don’t either, and they are going to be on board with you.  Florencia is willing to go there and is willing to allow that because she is a pro.

MICHAEL:

By the way, it looks like coming up, and from online rumors, that Tea thinks she might be pregnant with Victor Jr’s child!

TREVOR:

Oh, no kidding?  Wow, I wonder why they would do that? (Laughs)

MICHAEL:

Courtesy/ABC

How about your other leading lady, Kassie DePaiva (Blair)?

TREVOR:

Kassie is great!  I will tell you she is one of the lucky people.  She is such an interesting person.  So she does not have to try very hard, and when she doesn’t try very hard she is really brilliant.  I mean really brilliant!  She has all the talent.

MICHAEL:

And how was it working with Roger Howarth (Todd)?

TREVOR:

I like Roger, I really like Roger.  He is a sweetheart of a guy to talk to and have around. He is very open and a little bit like Florencia … willing to turn things on their head. Roger is a very talented guy.

MICHAEL:

What was your favorite Todd moment?  I loved the ending when you played Victor Jr. so in denial over what transpired, that you were saying you were Todd and wanting to take the family to Hawaii!   I say “Emmy” great choices!   But also what sticks in my head is the death by lethal injection execution scenes.  What are you most proud of?

TREVOR:

I do remember the whole Hawaii thing and trying to convince them I was Todd.  I think that was right near the end after the reveal I was Victor Jr.  I also liked the lethal injection.  But there were some moments on One Life to Live that I thought were really lovely, that weren’t very dramatic, and I don’t mean it was underplayed or something.  I just mean that it was not all that noteworthy because it wasn’t as intense as the execution scenes or something like that.  It’s one of those moments that happen when probably the directors or anybody noticed it, and it went right over their heads, and that is the stuff that I really love.  As far as the story; the execution story was a lot of fun, and this Victor story at the end was a lot of fun because it was so different.  It had a real beginning, middle and end.  You can hold on to that and sink your teeth into something like that.

Courtesy/ABC

MICHAEL:

The emotional scars that your character Victor Jr. must have suffered from the brain-washing, and the face altering, and what his mother had done to him, and finding out he is not Todd, was all so horrific! I mean, the guy would then have had to become really fractured about it.

TREVOR:

I know!  That is what I thought.  It would have been nice to get the information out of who I am and then see what happens.

MICHAEL:

Would you even entertain going back with One Life to Live when it goes online via Prospect Park?

TREVOR:

I would think about it. (Laughs) You never say never to something like this, but it would really depend on the circumstances, and all the variables.  That is what all the NFL quarterbacks say when they retire! (Laughs)  But as I said, it was never about the quality of the show or anything like that, it was just needing to do something different.  So with Prospect Park, it would really depend on the level of obligation.

MICHAEL:

Is it weird not being there at One Life?

TREVOR:

Courtesy/ABC

No, its not.  But I do miss my friends who I laughed a lot with on the set.  I laughed with Michael Easton (John) a ton, and we were ridiculous on the set!  We would laugh with Florencia, and Kassie, and Kristen Alderson (Starr) and everybody.  I mean, anybody who happened to be on the set when I was there.  I had a hard time taking it seriously. And again, I don’t mean that because it’s ridiculous, I mean because you can’t.  If you want to be any good, you can’t take everything so seriously.  The more seriously you take it, the worse your performance gets.  So I kept loose by being silly.

MICHAEL:

Were you surprised One Life got canceled by ABC?

TREVOR:

No, but there were so many good people who depended on it and really needed and wanted it to be there, and family men and women who thrive there.  So hopefully the Prospect Park deal will keep them afloat.

MICHAEL:

What would you want to say to your One Life to Live fans that miss you terribly?

TREVOR:

I will tell you this, man.  I was always so impressed by them, and so appreciative.  I felt a great deal of affection for them and I hope that they will continue to follow what I am doing and I hope they will continue to support One Life to Live.  And I want to say to them it would really be a great gesture to me if they can continue to watch the show even if I am not on it, because of the people who I care about, who are still trying to make a living there, and who are trying to make their way there.  So it would be great favor to me if they would continue watching the show.  And also, to check me out and see what I am doing, and go see In The Family.  But, I would like to say that I can’t thank them enough and I hope they are proud of who they are, because I was always impressed by them.  I think they are always, always smarter than the industry gives them credit for… much more on the ball!  I would go into these fans events, and they would come up with these things and I would go, “Man, you’re right!  That is very interesting!”  They are just a lot more savvy, perceptive, and intelligent, than they were given credit for. 

MICHAEL:

Courtesy/ABC

Todd was so complex and tortured.  Were you able to just go slough it off when you would leave the studio to go home to your wife at the end of the day?  Or, did it stay with you and he was difficult to shake?

TREVOR:

I would slough it off because I am not the kind of guy who stays in character.  That doesn’t work for me.  It was easy, because I never really associated myself with Todd, but it was personal when they yelled “action” and it wouldn’t have been any good if it wasn’t personal, but it wasn’t my identity.  There are a lot of folks who wrap up their identity in their character in this business, and I never did.

MICHAEL:

What do you want to do with your career now?  Where are you kind of at with it?

TREVOR:

Just to be in projects where there is interesting writing and be a part of interesting material.  Now I need to make a living, of course, but that is secondary, too.  Obviously it’s secondary, because if I just wanted to make a living I would have just stayed on the soap.  It’s more interesting to me to be exploring different things than to be comfortable.  Unfortunately, that is my personality and sometimes I wish I would be the guy who wants the Manhattan apartment and the second home upstate and just be interested in having my weekends off and my nights free, but I just can’t.  I had it for eight years and now I want to do something else.

MICHAEL:

So, what was your take away from playing Todd on OLTL and Cody from In The Family?   I am not necessarily saying “life lessons”, just something in your professional growth or personal experience, perhaps.

TREVOR:

Courtesy/ABC

Good question. I will tell you what I learned and it is more of an artistic thing than a life lesson.  It is writing is everything.  I mean, it is everything and it was just that I was able to get out of the way of what was and not try to be interesting.  I never tried to be interesting.  It was about if I just got out of the way and let the writing be what it was. And after eight years I just realized it’s embedded in me and ingrained in me that, that is the case.

MICHAEL:

Did you like OLTL’s head scribe, Ron Carlivati’s writing? He gave you some amazing stories to play!

TREVOR:

You know, I never played Todd to be a bad guy.  I never played him to be a good guy.  I never played him any particular way. And the fans would say to me, “I love what is happening with the character and how did you do this?”  And I would say, “I am not doing any of this. This is all Ron Carlivati.  If you like what I am doing it is because of the writing.”  Now I am not taking it away from myself.  It is true that it takes a lot of courage and skill to just let go and not try to manipulate or be interesting, and so I give myself credit for that, but I have to give more credits to the writers because they are the ones creating the interest, not the acting.  It is a great kind of relief that I don’t have to do anything.  It’s not up to me, and it’s not my responsibility of whether or not the scene or the episode, or the story is interesting. It is the writers. 

MICHAEL:

And do you feel the same way about the movie, In the Family?

TREVOR:

Absolutely, because that is what I learned from OLTL, that is, there is nothing I can do. If I didn’t think a scene was interesting and I tried to make it interesting, the less interesting it got.  I treated the whole 8 years as experimental and it is a fact now, like it was a theory of mine that became law – that it is a writer’s job to make the scenes interesting, not the actors.  And therefore, I would like to tell Hollywood and everyone else to make writers more “lauded” and more powerful and given more credit and more money and everything they want, because they are everything!

MICHAEL:

You are like the “Accidental Soap Star”.  You probably had no idea where this would all take you, or where you wanted it to take you.   You signed on to a role eight years ago and it just took off probably more than you could have imagined.

TREVOR:

Courtesy/ABC

I think that is absolutely right and it’s a bit of paradox, because the less I tried to be interesting, the more interesting it became.  So what I took from that and what I learned from In The Family and that is when you are with a really great director who really understands acting, they really let you go.  They might say, “Let’s try this. This might be interesting.”  But they would never say, “Nah, nah, not it. That’s not going to work.”  Yes, they have more time on movie set, but Patrick saw a lot of guys for the role of Cody and he chose me.  So, what you do if you are a good director is go, “I have to trust my choice.  I decided to hire this guy, and so let’s let him go and do his thing, and let’s help him.” 

MICHAEL:

Trevor, do you feel you’ll ever do another soap?

TREVOR:

Again, it would depend on the nature of the obligation.  It’s all about the obligation.

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Oliveria
Oliveria

Thanks for the article.

Great stuff. Good luck Trevor in all you do. I hope you do go to PP. I miss seeing you on my TV.

Courtney
Courtney

hey trevor

Jill
Jill

In the Family? TREVOR:or MICHAEL: when will it be coming out on tv and is there a chance victor could still be alive on oltl

ethel
ethel

michael thank you for this awesome interview with trevor!
the way he thinks & the route he has taken makes alot of sense…….

i truly miss trevor on oltl!

neet
neet

I miss Trevor and keep wishing to the soap diva that he’ll return to OLTL before it ‘s finale!

Brian Greene
Brian Greene

Michael,

This was a wonderful interview you conducted with Trevor. 🙂 I’m looking forward to seeing his movie! 🙂

Carly
Carly

Michael, Thanks you, I’ve missed Trevor, Todd, Victor Jr. so much, I’ve felt like he was really departed, now he seems so alive again and there is hope that I will see him again.

Sissylee
Sissylee

HELLO TREVOR LOVE U ON ONE LIFE TO LIVE I FELL BAD U LEFT HOLE MY HEART MY SISTERS TSJ FAN CLUB LOVE U COME BACK ONE LIFE TO LIVE AS TODD OR VICTOR U SEXY GUY LET U KNOW MISS U LOVE U GOOD LUCK EVERYTHING U DO IN LIFE WE HOPE U CHECK FAN PAGE ON FACEBOOK WE THINK U LIKE IT HOLD NOTHING BUT LOVE IN OUR HEARTS FOR U 🙂 <3 erica EMAIL ME BACK

Dannett
Dannett

Trevor,
I wish you well no matter what you do! You are an amazing actor and are terribly missed by your OLTL fan base……Would love to see you back on the show OLTL has not been the same since you left……Your fans will always back you no matter weather you come back to OLTL or not! HUGS FROM YOUR FANS!

Ada
Ada

A great article. Wish you all luck and maybe one day you’ll be back on the soap.

MEG
MEG

Thankyou Michael ,I miss TREVOR so much no matter who he is on the show , TREVOR is why I became a fan.and I Iove him with FLO, I HOPE PP gives him what ever he wants to return ,

Mia
Mia

Thank you, thank you, thank you Michael! From the bottom of my Trevor/Victor loving heart. This interview just reminds me of how sorely I miss Trevor on OLTL. There is still so much to explore between the Brothers Grimm with the sweetest confection being T&V and baby makes 3. Seriously, Trevor I wish you all the best and I know you will be successful in whatever you choose to do. If you do decide to grace PP with your gifted presence on OLTL 2.0…your fans are waiting with open arms 🙂

Dot
Dot

Miss you Trevor on OLTL. Good luck and success in all your endeavors.
I think you are an amazing talent, and I definitively will be watching for you in film.

Guest123
Guest123

My dear friend, Dan Gauthier (Kevin, OLTL) told me, “Trevor, if you weren’t playing Todd, you would have been out of here so long ago.” And I said, “I know.” (Laughs)
Yep, I agree

My2Cents
My2Cents

So when do we get to view this movie?? What did I miss??

Linda Dowell
Linda Dowell

I loved Roger as Todd, but then when Trevor took over, loved him too – and I’ll always pay attention to what he’s doing and where he goes……….I wish him well.

SoappipeBB
SoappipeBB

Excellent, balanced, and insightful interview–great questions, great structure, great subject. Thanks Michael AND Trevor!

Diane T.
Diane T.

Great article! I was sad to see Trevor leave OLTL but after reading this understand why! I think Trevor is great and will try to keep up with what he’s doing. I def would be interested in seeing him in other acting roles. I know he was great as Todd/Victor Jr. and am sure he would give his 100% in any role he choice to play! After reading this I would understand why he wouldn’t return to OLTL~not that I wouldn’t like to see him return. Lots of luck to Trevor.
Thanks to Michael and Trevor for the interview.

Gayle
Gayle

Thanks so much for sharing this interview. I absolutely loved you as Todd these last 8 yrs and was more than mildly upset when you left. You are definitely a unique type of actor and my fave baby-faced cutie bad boy! I’ve been one of the strongest believers that you are not dead and will be back! They’ve brought back Gigi; they can bring back you! I do wish you all the best in your future projects (I’ll be looking for you), but hope to see you back on OLTL as well. I just hate that it was cancelled. Its always been the best in my book. May you have “Two Lives to Live”!! <3<3<3

youtube.com/SimbiAni25
youtube.com/SimbiAni25

Thanks for the informative interview! It was even more in-depth than previous ones, so that was interesting.. I hope to see TSJ & Michael Easton act together again someday (& man, how I would LOVE to get ahold of all those OLTL outtakes! LOL they always acted so hilarious together.. sigh) but in the meantime, this movie will have to do ;P

xoxoxo

Brian
Brian

Great interview. Trevor is so cool and this makes me like him even more.

Margie
Margie

It’s the writers fault that Todd seemed like a robot for 6 of the 8 years.

Margie
Margie

Really? No it’s not.

Stacy A
Stacy A

Michael, thank you for this very thoughtful & gracious interview. I have always loved TSJ straightforward honesty, candor & sincerity in his interviews & this one did not disappoint. Again, he has shown what a true class act he is for not only asking his fans to continue to support him & his endeavors, but OLTL as well. My friends & family truly miss his energy & magnetic presence on OLTL & will continue to support both. Best of luck & much love & success to TSJ.

abcfanonelife
abcfanonelife

Great article; very thorough interview. Appreciate getting the facts out there. Stilll hope to see him back as Todd, with the ability to leave as other actors on the show have done to pursue other projects. That would be a win-win.

Phyllis Scott
Phyllis Scott

Thank you, Michael! Thank you, Trevor! Deep, deep. Spectacular. Questions and answers. Trevor St John is soooo real about life and pretend life. Here is an actor who has “his head on straight”. I’m not surprised to learn he is not materialistic; I love and admire that about him! It’s not about the money; it’s about the challenge. I write. So, thank you, Trevor, for appreciating writers! You can’t create stuff out of air; the oomph! has to be there. Oh, what you can do, Mr St John, with the written word when it is prime choice! Your fans cannot get enough of you! Come back. Somehow. Somewhere.

Mary Stevens
Mary Stevens

Trevor is amazing,and will have a fabulous career.Here’s the thing…I no longer enjoy OLTL.I am still watching,because Trevor asked,but my heart isn’t in it.Never have i been so captivated by a character,or by an actor,as i am with Todd/Victor and TSJ.Someone suggested that PP offer a “Tony Geary”package to Trevor,freedom in his schedule to pursue other projects,to spend time with his family,etc.I know i’m being selfish,but i want my man back!!!!

fanmale
fanmale

Thanks for a great interview. TSJ is absolutely right about one thing: viewers did indeed want to see more of the repercussions after the identity reveal. OLTL made a huge mistake letting him go before its ABC finale in January when so much more story could have been told. What a waste! Besides that, TSJ and Florencia Lozano were fabulous together. In fact, Victor Jr and Tea were the best couple on the show. Instead, we now have the story of the Ford brothers making a music video. Big effing deal!

What’s happening on OLTL right now is so disappointing because the show was in such great shape last year. Unfortunately, it’s made some major blunders in 2011: turning Marty into a psycho, dragging out Liam’s paternity reveal WAY too long, pairing Jessica with Ford, Gigi (supposedly) dying on her wedding day, Dorian’s underwhelming departure, and of course killing off Victor Jr. Sadly, it now seems like OLTL is going to leave ABC with a whimper instead of a bang.

david
david

I strongly agree with all the comments of Mary Stevens and fanmale: I don’t enjoy OLTL as much without TSJ. The competitive repercussions between Victor and Todd would have carried OLTL to new heights. Victor and Tea together were the best. I can understand TSJ wanting to do something different after eight years, but OLTL suffers in his absence. If he could negotiate a contract allowing for outside work, it would make such a difference to OLTL to have Victor back. I wish TSJ the best. Thank you for the interview.

heidi
heidi

Great intervview Michael! The only thing that would have made it better was to have it be on video! He’s my fave! You did a great job! There aren’t very many interviews out there with Trevor…thanks! Try and get him again sometime!

Mark
Mark

Michael, I applaud you for conducting such a frank, inspiring and thought-provoking interview with one of the most talented yet still underrated actors in the business. Trevor St. John is a gifted person who can easily find a balance of joy and love in his current life, and not focus on external factors such as “I’ll be happy once I’m rich and have this”… He is constantly thirsting and evolving for change and challenge within himself. His ability to express appreciation to all those who around him is most endearing. This is evident in his sincere words and continuous actions in his positive affirmation for the writers, actors, staff and his fans of OLTL. It is most admirable for him to encourage OLTL viewers to continue to watch the show. Trevor has touched us with his professional manner of class, integrity and uniqueness. Whatever awaits him, he finds satisfaction in the challenging journey from wherever he may be, always to remain a well-rounded human being. Trevor, the best is yet to come for you!

Linda Ziemak
Linda Ziemak

Thank you for a great interview. I think Trevor St John is a wonderful actor. I have enjoyed watching him on OLTL and in his movies. I thought The art of getting over it was fabulous. I went to a few of his fan club events and he is a true gentleman. He is truely missed on OLTL. I cannot wait to see him in his new movie. I wish him all the best in his endevors.

gjr
gjr

I never understood why Trevor didn’t win an Emmy for the lethal injection death scene. Would have loved to see more funny stuff between him and Roger. Enjoying the banter between Tina and Todd, and Victor Jr. in the mix could be quite entertaining.

darla
darla

hey do you know amc are come back soon i what to know ok

Tonya aka Texasgirlatheart
Tonya aka Texasgirlatheart

Thank you Michael for all you do! This is my first time replying back to a soap anything! I feel I can speak for a lot of everyday people like me, I live for my soaps 🙂 I tell my husband it is my escape from everyday life, my me time!! I truly love actors such as Trevor, and the entire cast of OLTL. I find myself cheering, disliking, loving, crying etc., in every story line. I’ve been a fan since I was 10 years old. I remember watching Ryan’s Hope with my grandmother who just celebrated her 100th birthday!!!! (and still watches Y&R) I will continue to support the soap as Trevor asked of us. I will also support him, and all of the other soap actors that go on to bless us with their talents of making us show emotions that we should not be ashamed to do. I miss AMC, words cant explain how much OLTL means to me. So I hope and pray that they come back to us in a special way, via internet or whatever. Thank you again Micheal for allowing us to show our love and truly mean it.!!!!!!

anne
anne

I miss seeing you. I wish you well. One Life To Live, is not the same without you. They Made a stupid decision.

MARIEA
MARIEA

THANK YOU FOR THIS INTERVIEW WITH TREVOR. I HAVE SEARCHED THE INTERNET FOR INFORMATION ABOUT HIM. OF COURSE, I WISH HIM THE VERY BEST BUTTTTTTTTTTTT! I WANT HIM BACK WITH TEA . I HAVE WATCHED SOAPS FOR 40+ YEARS AND VICTOR JR AND TEA ARE MY FAVORITE COUPLE OF ALL TIME. WHEN HE WAS KILLED ON OLTL, THE SCENES WITH TEA BROKE MY HEART. I CRIED FOR DAYS AND I TRULY LOVE AND MISS HIS CHARACTER. TALK TO THOSE IN POWER AND PLEASE LET VICTOR AND TEA LIVE HAPPILY EVER AFTER. THAT WOULD MAKE THIS OLD LADY SOOOOOOOOOO HAPPY.

soapbaby
soapbaby

Good interview. Michael, between this and the Genie Francis interview, I think these are two of the best interviews you have done (well, of yours that I have read!)

Trevor St. John is a brilliant actor and one of the best daytime has ever seen. OLTL misses his presence dearly. “The Tale of Two Todds” was riveting but flat-lined once Victor Jr. was killed. That was by far the show’s best storyline. All of the current s/ls are terrible. Not one good one but the show has a strong cast and often very strong daily dialogue.

Best of luck to Trevor.

kelly cook
kelly cook

i like roger the best

kelly cook
kelly cook

i just think that roger is alittle bit moe easy going

TnT 2.0 Forever
TnT 2.0 Forever

You are sharing this information in the comment section of an interview with Trevor St. John because? You can like who you like without being an instigator. That is truly unnecessary.

TnT 2.0 Forever
TnT 2.0 Forever

Thank you Michael Fairman! You are my favorite interviewer in the soap industry. Trevor you are amazing as always and I will you and your family all the best! You always have my support!

Diane Mastro
Diane Mastro

At the end of One Life to Live the character of Victor was handcuffed to a bed on the last episode that I watched. Therefore Todd did not kill him according to that…I don’t understand why Todd (now on General Hospital) is still saying he killed his brother when he’s not dead..
Anyone got an answer for this one?

Carol moorby
Carol moorby

Didn’t I see a quick scene at the very end ofmOLTL that you were not really dead but a captive held up,in a room some where?

Interviews

Y&R’s Hunter King Talks Summer’s Clash With Phyllis, Seducing Billy, ‘Life In Pieces’ & Being Newly Engaged

On The Young and the Restless viewers just watched the summer of …  Summer!  When the top-rated soap brought back two-time Daytime Emmy winner, Hunter King to the canvas, you knew it was going to be to stir up some major drama.  But, little did viewers know that Summer came back a vixen, ready to steal her mother’s man!

Last month, it became game on between mother and daughter after their epic showdown, where Phyllis (Gina Tognoni) got wind of Summer’s attempts to put the moves on Billy (Jason Thompson) and her plans to meet up with him in Philly! (And that spelled trouble for the couple known as “Philly” too)  Oh yes, and there was that well-deserved bitch-slap!  So, where will it all go from here?

Michael Fairman TV caught up with King where we discussed: Summer’s new attitude, if Summer will get her wish and have sex with Billy, her real-life engagement, and her upcoming return to the CBS sitcom Life in Pieces, and more. Check out what Hunter had to say below.

Summer is so pursuing Billy! When you came back to Y&R, did they tell you we need her to be really vampy and this seductress?  What has happened to her? (Laughs)

HUNTER:  Yes.  I understood where it was coming from, and I was excited to play the same character, but being able to play it totally different.  I get to sort of reinvent her.   I think when Summer went away she discovered herself, and kind of grew into Phyllis’ daughter … maybe.  But I will say, it has been very vampy, and you don’t even know yet what’s to come!

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

How is working with Jason Thompson?

HUNTER:   Working with Jason is great.  He is always so professional and prepared and always willing to collaborate on scenes.  Jason is just so creative, and so in it, and loves to work so much that he just exudes that the scenes.

Let’s just say when Summer and Billy “finally” hit the sheets … (Laughs)

HUNTER:   We don’t yet … we shall see.  The way this whole storyline unfolds you think it’s going one way and then there is a twist, and then twists on top of twists.  The more layers that come into play you start to understand why everything is happening the way it is.

Now, Summer had no idea that Billy had a gambling addiction, which put this whole spiral of his in motion?

HUNTER:  I guess not?  (Laughs)  It’s hard to know. I would say she evidently did not know about his gambling.

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

Viewers saw Phyllis slap her daughter in the face as the fight between them escalated; when Summer admitted she was going after her mother’s boyfriend!  How was it taping that scene, and working with Gina Tognoni?

HUNTER:  She’s amazing! Gina didn’t really slap me, but I will say afterwards they wanted to put red blush on my cheeks, and I said, “Oh, just pinch my cheek instead, and I wound up bruising my cheek.”  So Gina goes, “I really didn’t hit her!”  It was the funniest banter on set.  Gina was scary in those scenes, like a good scary.  I went, “Damn!”

On August 18th, you got engaged to your beau, Nico Svoboda.  Were you expecting him to propose when he did?

HUNTER:   I was so shocked, even though I had wanted it to happen, very much.  But, I had no idea when it was coming. It was amazing, and the best day of my life and, we are engaged!

Photo : HKingInstagram

And he got down on one knee for the proposal!

HUNTER:  Yes!  I thought it was sweet.  It’s something you dream about when you are a little girl.

What it is about Nico that makes him the guy for you?

HUNTER:  Besides the amazing qualities he has as a person – he’s compassionate, he’s caring, he’s driven, he’s loving, and just cares for others so much – I love the way that he loves me.  I have never felt so loved before, and so accepted, and he is very supportive of my career.

Courtesy/CBS

Are you excited to go back to your role as Clementine on the sitcom, Life in Pieces?  It is slated for a midseason premiere.

HUNTER:  I am super excited to be back.  We are back taping again   I am excited to do the sitcom and Y&R   As an actress, it’s so exciting to get to do different things:  a sitcom and soaps … why not?! (As noted in the press: King took a three-episode break from Y&R to film some episodes of the sitcom due to a scheduling conflict.)

Then speaking of “All in the Family,” it was just announced, your sister, Joey is coming onto Life in Pieces.

HUNTER:  Yes!  How crazy. She will be on for a few episodes, and it will be fun.  I think we will interact a little bit on the show, and we have never had the chance to work together before.

Photo: HKingInstagram

You and your sister have the funniest Instagram videos.  Do you plan those out?

HUNTER:  Joey is so funny.  It kind of just happens when we get together.  Sometimes we film something and sometimes we don’t.  But Joey is so much fun and my best friend. She is the funniest person in the entire world, and so it’s just easy to laugh when I am with her.

So, what did you think of the showdown between Summer and Phyllis?  Are you glad Phyllis slapped her daughter, or was it a mistake?  What do you think will happen next?  Will Summer ultimately sleep with Billy? Do you want Summer to end up with Kyle (Michael Mealor)? Will you be checking out Hunter on Life in Pieces? Share your thoughts via the comment section below.

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General Hospital

General Hospital’s Max Gail Opens Up On Portraying Mike’s Battle With Alzheimer’s & Making A Difference In People’s Lives

“What happens the day I wake up, and you guys are the strangers,” says Mike to his son, Sonny and his wife Carly (Laura Wright). “I left you before to my everlasting regret, but it’s going to happen. I’d do anything if I didn’t have to do it again, but it’s going to happen – one way or the other.  At least this way I could leave some good feelings, instead of disappearing before your eyes.”  Those words were said during a gut-wrenching scene on Friday’s episode of General Hospital, as Mike tries to come to terms with his deteriorating mental state in his battle with Alzheimer’s, and the hard realization that he may be better off in a care facility, instead of at his son’s home.  These scenes, as all the scenes in this storyline, have been exquisitely played by Max Gail (Mike) and Maurice Benard (Sonny).

When Max Gail arrived on the GH canvas as the recast Mike Corbin in a role made soap-famous by Ron Hale, viewers did not know what to initially expect.  What they did know was that Max is an accomplished actor with a body of work from primetime dramas and comedies, film, and the stage, and that if he is coming to GH, he must be coming on board for something major.  Before GH, suffice to say, Gail is most remembered for his role as “Wojo” on the ABC sitcom Barney Miller that aired from 1975-1982.

In story on GH, Mike, who abandoned Sonny as a child, once again re-enters his son’s life, but soon we learn that he is suffering from Alzheimer’s disease and that the soap is tackling a story that is an important medical, social, and familial issue of our time.

Gail has been a revelation in this role.  A clear frontrunner for an Emmy, playing the facets, the levels, the characteristics, and the heartbreak of a person who is slowly losing everything they know near and dear to them, as in the end they are ultimately stripped of their dignity from this most horrific of diseases.

On a personal note, and as part of this conversation with Max, it was important for him and for me to share, that I lost my mother at the end of April of this year to Alzheimer’s.  So his work hits close to home, this story hits close to home, as it has also resonated for many viewers who have shared their stories on social media and when Max makes personal appearances.

Here now is this very special interview for Michael Fairman TV with an actor whom we can all agree is touching all of our lives.

You’re portraying a person suffering from Alzheimer’s and play the progression of the disease.  Do you feel pressure as an actor to get it right for those who have loved ones, or person’s afflicted with it?

Courtesy/ABC

MAX:  It’s more like an urge, or a calling to find some kind of truth in it that I can connect with.  One of the things I’m inclined towards showing is someone with Alzheimer’s or dementia often just drifts off somewhere else.  “Where am I going?”  This has happened to me many times in life.  For instance, when I was a youngster, I can remember getting in my car, and I’d driven a long way from some party or something like that, and I’d been drinking, and I didn’t remember it.  I knew I’d gotten home somehow.  So, it’s not out of my realm.  I’ve learned that there are no set behaviors really… other than that it usually ends up being really difficult for caretakers, and seemingly really painful for many, if not most people suffering with Alzheimer’s, and losing connection and losing the ability to just function.  We are kind of on the cusp of that in story at GH.  I think it was originally proposed that I would play the part for just a few months, and to give me an out if it wasn’t working.  Maybe, there was a placeholder idea to ship Mike off to a home or something, but the storyline has touched so many people that it has been continuing.

The story has been so effective.  You’ve done such an amazing job, and the fans love Mike and what you’re doing with the character, and they’re on board on this journey.  It’ll be interesting to see how far they will take this with Mike.  Will we actually see him not being able to communicate anymore?  How far will the writers go to show the horrific aspects of Alzheimer’s? 

MAX:  I’m not sure.  You know, I’ve had times where I’ve got the scene, I get the writers, and I get the heart of it.  Other times, I find where that transition is from where Mike is lucid and clear, and other times what that state of mind is and that switch is, and what that is in behaviors and energy level.  I think there’s an ongoing downturn for Mike, and for me as an actor finding something in the moment and finding how it works with things that he does remember.  They’re trying to find a place for Mike within all of the interwoven drama of General Hospital.  I, frankly, had no idea how complex the range of storylines was.  Mike doesn’t really have control over his story.  I don’t want that as an actor.  Mike has some intentions that are really important to him.  I’m trying to find that balance where there are times when he has a pathetic, very sad remorse about what he has missed.  I think that underlies his feelings for his son, who he never could quite reach, because of his own failings as a father.  Sonny’s formative experiences growing up were then with his abusive stepdad.  Finding all of that is really important to do in a way that doesn’t make Mike just this sweet older man with Alzheimer’s.   It’s a wonderful challenge to be presented with.

Courtesy/CBS

You brought up that Mike is seemingly very sweet in his demeanor now.  My mother, who I shared with you died a few months ago from Alzheimer’s was a strong-willed, feisty woman.  As the disease took hold of her, she became very sweet.   She became almost childlike.  The fire had gone out of her eyes.  You knew she didn’t know who you were, and so, all of that, as you know is so tough to witness as her son.  In terms of Mike and his ultimate care, everyone says they love him and want what is best for him, but that he needs to be taken care of because he gets confused, doesn’t know where he is sometimes. etc.  Sonny has been grappling with putting him in a care facility to be looked after, or to keep him with the Corinthos family under their roof.  However, Mike has come to a realization that he may need to be in facility all on his own, and doesn’t want to burden his son by living with him anymore.  That was a poignant moment, and another one of the best scenes has been when Mike couldn’t remember that Sonny was his own son. 

MAX:  Right and he doesn’t know if he’s around friends or around enemies.  This can be true of Alzheimer’s patients.

I had that happen with my mother when she came out to Los Angeles to see me for the last time.  She was out of her element, she was confused, and she broke down and cried in the hotel room.  She asked my father, “Why did you bring me here?” and he told her, “We came to see our son.”  It was heartbreaking.   Later, she had a moment of clarity and realized more of what was going on.  I think it’s those in-and -out moments that you portray so well on-screen.  I feel that they are very realistic to what I, and others, have experienced.

Courtesy/ABC

MAX:  I appreciate that and sharing that with me, because you never know as an actor.  That place of “Where am I?  What is this?” makes me think of that “Summer Wind” moment from the Nurses’ Ball when it wasn’t just, “I’m embarrassed.  I don’t remember the words.”  It was, “I don’t know where the f**k I am.  I thought there was a band there, but there’s not.”  So, in a way, I just had to be there on this big soundstage and just feel this big space around me.  I could barely see that there were people out there.  It’s kind of a terrifying thing to a lot of people, but I think Mike has something in him that makes him want to be okay with all of this.  He doesn’t have to freak out and get accusatory.

Courtesy/ABC

What has it been like working with Maurice Benard as your on-screen son?  Do you watch back your scenes together and ever go, “Oh, that was great!?”

MAX:  Yes, there have been a lot of those!  There are some scenes that are so emotionally focused, and we get a lot of delight in each other.  He has been playing this character in this situation for so long, so it’s just kind of in him.  Maurice has presence.  I think when I went in to read for the part of Mike, I had gone through pilot season and had gone in for some interesting pilots.  I didn’t feel like I was really connecting in the readings, because most things are by tape these days, anyway.  When this part came up, a soap hadn’t really been on my radar.  I knew I’d be going in to read with the actor, so I said, “Okay,” and I looked at the material, and then I checked out Maurice on IMDB.  One of the things that got my interest was that he has been diagnosed and takes medication to deal with bipolar disorder, and that’s become a part of his life, and it’s become part of his character.  I thought, “Wow, that’s really interesting.  This is a survivor, and he’s risen to something that takes a certain kind of balance and courage.”  I watched some clips, and when I went in for the reading of this kind of an amalgamation scene of what the story elements were going to be, I felt like we connected before we’d even started the dialogue.

Well, Maurice certainly loves working with you! He has been very supportive and vocal about that.

MAX:  It’s mutual.  We can take really little simple moments, and we can find something deeper in it, and it doesn’t have to be an, ‘I’m going to start crying now’ moment.  Although, I would love for Mike to have a moment of self-observation where he goes, “Gee.  I cry a lot more than I used to.”  I think there are people who are like that, and it’s okay for certain people to cry, and for other people it is not.

Courtesy/ABC

There was a part of my mom that knew something was wrong.  She’d go, “Why am I crying?  I don’t know why I’m crying.”  She got confused as to why she was feeling that.  She couldn’t connect it all, and at times she kept saying, “I don’t understand.  I don’t understand.”  Those were the things she would try to express.

MAX:  I have a feeling that Mike has those moments too, but he finds a way for it to be okay.  There may be a point where someone with Alzheimer’s can’t pull it off anymore, but how we find those and those specifics, I don’t know.

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

Working on a classic sitcom such as Barney Miller is vastly different than working on a daytime soap opera.  While now being at GH, have you found any commonality within the experience?

MAX:  If I can take a moment and reflect on Barney Miller, because it was a great experience and one that I found was not so easy to find again over the years.  One of the things that really resonates is that when we started shooting the studio audience laughed too easily.  We would end up retaking the scenes.  Sometimes, we didn’t have the end of the show written, because they tended to let certain things start to show up in the earlier parts of the script.  Danny Arnold who was the writer, creator and producer of Barney Miller would always take over the way Frank Valentini (executive producer, GH) does in a way … looking to be respectful of the director, but still seeing things on his own.  Frank has a really wonderful eye.  He’s much more connected into the overall storylines, the motivations that went into the writing, and what he sees in the moment.  I always welcome him on the set because the directors, who have a range of talents and sensibilities, are tasked with coming up with a whole lot of shots to cover, a whole lot of tricky angles, and all of that.

Courtesy/ABC

Vernee Watson has been amazing as Stella, who is also Mike’s social worker.  Does Mike have romantic feelings toward Stella?

MAX:  Vernee is wonderful.  I didn’t know Vernee had been on the show when I came on board.  She won an Emmy, and I’m not surprised.   She is so present and so specific, and she’s very bright and gets what all of these elements are, and so, I think they have a connection.  For whatever ways Mike has lived in his like, there isn’t some strange, exotic draw that she is black, and Mike is white.  I like that because both my first and late wife, and my second wife, with whom I’ve had children (and we’ve been separated for awhile, but have a great relationship) are African-American.  So, in my world that is not a big deal.   I think there’s an affinity there between Mike and Stella.  You know, he’s alive.  He’s old, but he’s not dead.  There’s an ease with women he likes.  I think there are a whole lot of reasons for them to not get involved.  One is just professional, and she’s a social worker.  We just shot something where I say something to somebody else about, “back when I still had all my marbles,” you know, he’s in another stage of life, which many people go into gracefully, while many don’t.

 

What do you think about how Mike knows about who was buried at Charlie’s Pub?  He was trying to keep the truth about Charlie Delaney from coming out, which turned into a gas leak that blew up the bar!  This storyline ties in to Sonny’s mobster dealings as well.

MAX:  Well, this is where they put this effort in the storytelling to connect Mike in some way and be intertwined with Sonny.  Of course, it reveals certain things about Mike that he’s never revealed to anybody before.  So, that’s kind of cool.  I think when he knows what and how much sometimes is not clear.  That’s why I started talking about Barney Miller because the other thing was a lot of times when we go together for the table reads, they didn’t have the end of the story.  They had a first draft, maybe. Dan would talk about it, and they’d say, “Next week, the main story is going to be this man in his fifties who is coming to terms with the fact that he is gay,” or whatever those underlying themes may be with the different characters reactions.  So, we knew elements going into it and that sometimes I  didn’t know what the writers are really intending.  In terms of Mike, he’s kind of back and forth in certain moments.  I have to resist the idea that they trap me by just being careless.  I’ve learned that just trying to fix the script often gets you into a place where you “rehearse yourself out of it,” as they say.

Courtesy/GoodDayLA

You appeared on the morning show Good Day LA  a few months back with Laura Wright (Carly), and Maria Shriver, who has founded the Women’s Alzheimer’s Movement.  What was that like meeting Maria, and helping get the word out about the effects of this disease and the work Maria is doing?

MAX:  It was great to do.  Maria had sent out a tweet that is was wonderful what was going on, on General Hospital.  On Good Day LA, she talked about her work, particularly focusing on the fact that more women are diagnosed with Alzheimer’s than men.  So, then Laura and I sat down and did an interview alongside Maria.  We actually had a nice conversation before.  They did a web interview also as a follow-up.  That was very cool, because Maria is very smart, and I’d never met her, but it was great to see what she was doing.  Whatever we are dealing with in the show is sort of my opportunity in the real world to bring awareness and shed light on the subject.  I’d love to see an ongoing conversation online amongst people who can share their stories with each other.  That’s a lot of what they’re doing.  They’re raising money for research, but people need to be able to talk to each other when you’re a caregiver.  Coming out of the early sixties and early seventies when I was playing a cop on TV, I never was a fanatic activist.  I certainly got the behavior of the Chicago police at a certain time in terms of the energy and conflicts of the time.  There was something to think about, but at the same time, I had opportunities to kind of share that all cops aren’t bad, just look at the show, Barney Miller.

Courtesy/ABC

You were my favorite character on Barney Miller as Detective Wojciehowicz!  I think for many who watched the show you were, too!

MAX:  I think “Wojo” ended up being the heart of the show.

Max, you’re helping people through your beautiful performances including me.  Congratulations on that.   I’ll continue have to have a box of Kleenex handy as I watch how it all unfolds for Mike.

Photo: IMDB

MAX:  Well, I really appreciate your questions.  I’m just planting that seed.  That is really what I would like to do after talking to you and so many people.  That’s something I’d like to put out there.   We each have our own domains and responsibilities and all of it overlaps, and you can kind of get in touch with that; if you just go around the circle and share it, and then go around again.  I’m looking to help people out there in the world who are watching and are looking to share in the conversation.

So, what did you think about the heartbreaking scenes on Friday’s episode of GH between Mike and Sonny?  What have you thought of Max Gail’s performance throughout his GH run?  Have you experienced the loss, or are watching someone you love, or care about slip away from Alzheimer’s?  Share your thoughts via the comment below.

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General Hospital

GH’s Kirsten Storms Chats On: The Emotional Impact Of Nathan’s Death & Who Could Be Maxie’s New Love Interest

2018 has been a difficult year for Port Charles’ beloved Maxie Jones. She became a widow and a single mom following the untimely death of the love of her life, Nathan West (Ryan Paevey).  Maxie’s portrayer, General Hospital fan favorite Kirsten Storms delivered in scene after scene, tearjerker after tearjerker, as viewers experienced the grief of losing a good man, a good cop and her husband, and the father of her child.

Complicating things was Maxie’s friendship with Peter August (Wes Ramsey), who came to town with an agenda and who was revealed to be Henrik Faison, Nathan’s half-brother. As Maxie soldiered on with life after-Nathan, she formed a bond with Nathan’s sister, Nina (Michelle Stafford). Through various (and one nefarious) twists and turns, the two women have grown closer always trying to have each other’s back, and to be there for one another in their times of need.

This past Labor Day, ABC and General Hospital aired the encore presentation of Nathan’s funeral, which reminded us all of great soap opera storytelling, and Storms’ powerhouse performance in this storyline.

Michael Fairman TV recently chatted with Kirsten where we found out: how she handled this 10-hankie inducing storyline, who she thinks the ultimate new love interest for Maxie will be – with Peter and Chase (Josh Swickard) in the running, and how she has stood up for herself on social media when she has had to set fans straight on their often misperceptions. There is no question that Storms contributions to making the character of Maxie come to life, make her one of the standout MVP’s of daytime drama.  Here’s what Kirsten shared.

Nathan’s funeral has been one the standout episodes of the year thus far in soaps. Every aspect of it was beautifully executed from the performances, the writing, the directing, camerawork, etc.  What were your thoughts of the storyline that followed with Peter (Wes Ramsey) being kidnapped by Nina (Michelle Stafford) and Obrecht (Kathleen Gati)?  Maxie did not originally have a clue as to what was going on to avenge Nathan’s death. 

KIRSTEN:  I have chats with Frank Valentini (executive producer, GH) occasionally about storyline.  He and I have a very good relationship.   He’ll talk to me about things I have coming up, because he knows I’m not the type of person who talks to other people about it.  I’m literally the last person on the gossip train.  I’m always the last person to find out about things.  It almost makes me feel stupid. (Laughs)   So, it’s nice because he’ll say to me, “This is going to happen: Nathan is going to die, and Maxie and Peter are going to become closer, and Nina and Obrecht are going to kidnap him and start breaking his limbs ….”   I thought, “Oh cool. We’re going back to crazy Nina,” who is one of my favorite characters.   I love that we always forget the stuff that Nina has done in her past.  It’s not brought up, but it’s there!

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

They have balanced the character of Nina out since her beginnings of the show, which has made her a more fleshed-out character with many dimensions.

KIRSTEN: They have!  Nina’s job with Crimson really leveled that character out, and the relationship with Valentin (James Patrick Stuart), although he’s crazy himself so it works!  Michelle has built up such a great character, and Kathleen Gati always brings one hundred and ten percent.

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

I love the bond between Maxine and Nina, because Nina has been the grieving sister, and Maxie gave birth to Nathan’s son, and they were trying to help each other through their despair.

KIRSTEN:  Yes, it wasn’t too long ago that Maxie was following Nina around in steam rooms begging her to take her back with her jobs, and now they’re inseparable.  (Laughs)  She jokes that Nina’s transferred her love from Nathan to Maxie in a creepy way. (Laughs)

Maxie has worked for Kate Howard and Nina. Who does Maxie think is a better boss?

KIRSTEN:  Selfishly, I think she’d probably say Nina, because I think Nina takes into account her opinion a little bit more.

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

How did you get through the amount of crying leading up to, and following Nathan’s death, that was called upon for you as an actress to play in so many tragic and heartbreaking scenes?   Were you able to get through it, and not take the emotional toll that was hitting the character home with you?  

KIRSTEN:  It’s always difficult to have emotional scenes, but to have so many of them felt like it went on for a long time.  There was a good two and a half weeks where I had to be sobbing going into work.  I had recently been reminded of what it was like to lose somebody that you care about.  I remember when I was breaking down my dialogue (because there’s a whole huge process that I go through) thinking, “Oh! I remember what this felt like, and I have to remember to try to portray that when doing this.”  The moment when Nathan flatlines, and Maxie goes outside, and she hears it … he’s dead.  That unexpected turn, because they woke Nathan back up that’s what killed me.  Nathan gets shot, he has surgery, he wakes back up and starts talking, and then he dies moments later.  I remember thinking, “Oh, my God!”  Having Nathan wake up, and giving Maxie that hope and then just taking him away … from that moment on I knew I would have to be just crushed completely… while playing pregnant.  I felt that there were a lot of days after work when I would stay for an extra hour and just decompress, but I was happy when they started to move on from that a little bit, because it was a heavy couple of weeks.

Photo Ctedit: JPI Studios

Did you watch any of those performances back?

KIRSTEN:  I did, and I never usually do that anymore.

So, you’re going to submit yourself for the Emmy this year, right?  If you don’t, I am going to do it for you myself! (Laughs)

KIRSTEN: (Laughs) Yes, I plan on submitting.

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

Where do you see Maxie’s relationship going with Peter now?  Will Chase (Josh Swickard) be in her life?  How many cops can she have relationships with if she were to date Chase? (Laughs)

KIRSTEN: (Laughs) I know, right?  I was kind of hoping for that fact alone that she wouldn’t end up with Chase, but then I worked with Josh.  Not only did people like it, but I liked it!  I worked with him the day after I came back from two sick days that I took, and I felt terrible.  I was there pretty much because I didn’t want to let Frank down, and Molly Burnett (Maxie sub, GH) was working on something else, and she couldn’t work one more day for me.  I remember being on set and I kept saying, “Josh, I am so sorry.”  We had already had our scenes in the police station, but they were so brief.  This was the first real set of scenes with him that I had.  I just felt that it wasn’t the first impression that I wanted to make on him for who I am as an actor, but he was so supportive.  Josh didn’t let it alter his performance.  I could barely look at him and I could barely look into the lights!   I just felt like I wanted to be at home in bed, but he made those scenes fantastic.  They wouldn’t have been what they were.  If I had walked on set, new to a show, with someone who had been there for a long time… and now, knowing that he was a Zenon fan, he probably had all of these other expectations, and I’m like, “I can’t even look at you!”  (Laughs)

(Laughs) So you would be okay with a Maxie/Chase pairing?

KIRSTEN:  One hundred percent.

And as far as Peter goes?

KIRSTEN:  I have a soft spot for Wes.  I really do.

He’s been given a tough time by many fans of the show on social media.

KIRSTEN:  He has, and I think that’s unjustified.  I have really high expectations for my scene partner, because I know that when I’m going in there, I’ve prepared my dialogue, and I have a good sense of what I am going to bring to the table.  You should do that too as my or anybody’s scene partner,  because there are lots of soap actors out there who are not working anymore, who would be willing to put that type of work into this part.  With Wes, he respects acting so much that never in a million years would he not go to the set with that same mindset – if not more so than I have – and I think we have this mutual respect for each other on that level.  We are committed to our scenes, and kind of don’t really care what else is going on in the storyline at that moment.  For example, when he tells Maxie that he’s Henrik in the hospital and she is in a wheelchair, there were four or five other people in that scene who didn’t have dialogue, so there was chatting and laughing going on.  He just completely zoned in to what he was doing.  He was able to bring emotion and cry.  I texted him and was like, “I don’t even think I’m going to be noticed in those scenes.  Great job!  It’s good, because I didn’t like the way I looked in the wheelchair!”  I just adore him, and he and Laura Wright (Carly) could not be a cuter couple with each other.  She’s happy. They both are very happy, and they both are genuinely good people, and to anyone who has anything to say about the reason why Wes was hired, or his part in the show, I’ll say that he has a better work ethic than a lot of people who I have had the opportunity to work with throughout my career.   He’s earned his place on the show, and if people just gave him a chance and step back from what they know goes on behind the scenes as far as his relationship Laura, they’ll be able to see how talented he is.

Does Maxie give Peter a pass for what he’s done, and his lies and deception?

KIRSTEN:  So many people have given Maxie a pass for stuff she’s done.  I’d have to say, “Yes”.   I do like that he’s Nathan’s brother.  I feel like that has got a weird thing to it that I can understand Maxie’s draw to him, but he’s also a different person than Nathan.

Courtesy/ABC

You’ve recently been great at shutting things down on social media when fans make assumptions about what is going on in your personal life and explaining the situation.  Can you talk to me about that?

KIRSTEN:  I guess motherhood changed me so much.  There’s no time for the b**s anymore.  Going through everything I did last year, I had to really accept that I am human.  The things that I go through and experience, or that have happened in my life are no different from somebody who is sitting at home watching the show.  I’m a person, too.  I can’t be ashamed of the things that happen to me.  I just have to own it and move forward, because owning it is how you get better with something.   Last year was a very rough year for me.  I think a lot of things came to a head for me personally.  I’ve never been the type of person to kind of slink back and let that take me over.  I’ve always been like, “Nope.  I want to get back to work.  I love my job.”  As much as I love it, I take it that seriously.  I know the emotional and mental condition that I have to be in to be able to be prepared and work as well as I want to.  So, I don’t want anyone to be confused about what my time away from work has been for.  I pride myself on the work I have done on myself, and I want to be able to acknowledge that.

So, what have you thought of Kirsten’s performance throughout her storyline following Nathan’s shocking death? Would you like to see Peter, Chase, or someone else as Maxie’s new romantic interest?  Share your thoughts on this and other points and views shared in this interview via the comment section below.

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This weekend we mourn the loss of General Hospital’s beloved Susan Brown who played Gail Baldwin. Here is her final scene from 2004 when Gail and her husband Lee (the late Peter Hansen) showed up at Lila’s funeral and had an exchange with Alan and Monica. Share your thoughts on Susan’s passing via the link below. Leave A Comment

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