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Y&R's Doug Davidson Interview: Going For Lead Actor Gold Two Years In A Row – Daytime Emmy Spotlight!



Currently on The Young and the Restless, Paul Williams (Doug Davidson) is fighting for his life, and on today’s episode his brother, Father Todd (Corbin Bernsen), even comes to the hospital!  Things are not looking good!  And then there is the matter of Dylan (Steve Burton) … will Paul survive to learn he has another son?  Looks like that material could give Doug Davidson some Emmy fodder for next year.

But let’s talk about this year!  Davidson is nominated again the Outstanding Lead Actor category and going for his second win in a row in the category!  Can he do the two-peat?  In his nominated work, Doug chose the scenes where Paul tries to talk Jamie (Daniel Polo) down from the roof and committing suicide, and then next going to see the parents of the teens responsible for almost driving the down-on-his-luck kid to the brink of death.  Davidson was again at his best.

On-Air On-Soaps caught up with Doug to get his thoughts leading in to Daytime Emmy night this Sunday.  The awards will be live-streamed at beginning at 5PMPST/8PMEST.  Read on to find out his thoughts are on his competition, his choice of scenes, some suggested Emmy category reform, and more!

You are going for your second straight Lead Actor Emmy win, why did you choose the scenes you submitted?


DOUG:  The truth of the matter is – this past year I had one show to submit in my estimation.  The rest just wasn’t Emmy appropriate.  I even considered changing categories, because it was not about my story, but about the story of Jamie (Daniel Polo) and the Baldwins (Christian LeBlanc and Tracey E. Bregman) and Phyllis (then, Michelle Stafford), etc.  I was definitely a supporting player in this, but after conferring with the academy and my producers, they thought it’s not measured by the story, but measured by your tenure on the show.   So I kept it in the “Lead” category.  But the scenes were about keeping Jamie from jumping off the roof and committing suicide.  I go over and talk to Phyllis in harsh terms about that she has got to keep tabs on her daughter and not let her bully. And when Jamie confessed to Paul that he wasn’t pushed by Fen (Max Ehrich), then Paul also went to the Baldwins and told them their son is not guilty of that, but that in Paul’s judgment Fen is not innocent at all in this.

It’s a touching performance, and in it you get to play tender, tough, remorseful, etc!

DOUG:  I was playing a guilty parent giving advice to Phyllis. There was frustration and hurt.  I was pleading because as Paul.  He was pleading about the death of his own son (Ricky) and that he did not want to see another useless death by Jamie jumping off the roof.


Were you surprised that you got recognized in the category again this year by your peers?

DOUG:  I will be very surprised if I go home this year with another trophy, but I felt there was honesty to the work that I was hoping would be appealing to the Emmy judges.  The nature of the contest is structured as such that although it represents a year of work sometimes even more, that what they are really judging is a three or four minute clip of scenes for the pre-noms, and then judging if you get pre-nominated …one episode.  For everything to work out right there is a convergence of writing and commitment on the shows part, and then as an actor when you are given the material to perform it.  That is why I think the thing I am most proud of this year is the people I am grouped with in my category who are the nominees, and even in the pre-noms.  There are some very, very fine actors in there.  I will not be disappointing if anyone one of them wins.

And one again it’s all the men from The Young and the Restless competing against each other and General Hospital’s Jason Thompson!  Why do you think the Leading Actor category, for the most part, is always dominated by performances from your show?

DOUG:  We have wonderful actors on our show.  I don’t think anybody takes it for granted, and the fact that they work so hard is a testament to our producers and our CBS executives.   We want to put the best show on possible.  I always thought in the last couple of years that we have had some very fine performances from storyline guest performers too!


So you think like many others that have suggested that there should be added to the mix a “Guest Star” performance category … like they have at the Primetime Emmys?

DOUG: I think there should be!  I have a bit of an issue with the label of the “Younger” performers’ category, because I don’t necessarily know if you are going to be getting an Emmy-winning performance from a 12 year old, and if you do, then they should be able to handle it with the rest of the “Supporting” group.   And I am not slamming the younger kids by any means, but if it’s that touching and moving … you are giving them a handicap for being young.  And at the Oscars, young or old, they go into a Supporting category if there work is lauded.

What did you think of the performances of Younger Actor nominees Daniel Polo and Max Ehrich (Fen), since you had the opportunity to work with both in the bullying storyline?

DOUG:  I think Daniel is a marvelous young actor and Max is too! They are both so deserving of their Younger Actor nomination, for sure.

Were you an Emmy judge this year?  If so, what category?  And how did you feel the competition stacked up?

Photo Credit: Kathy Hutchins

DOUG:  I judged Supporting Actress. I will say, without naming names, without a doubt I picked two effortlessly for the first two spots, and even for the third.  I did have trouble with spot five. Also when I looked at the pre-nom tapes/reels; there are some really unheralded performances when people are in for six weeks or six months on a show.  I think if there is some way we could phrase a new category for them, I think that would be great.  For example when Ray Wise (Ian,) first came to our show, he was not scheduled to be on as long as he is now, so he would have been considered perhaps then a “guest star”!  His expertise, his finesse, his colors, his depth, is not easy to do ladies and gentlemen!  To make all of that fly is not an easy feat.  There is no handicap there.  He either makes it work or he doesn’t make it work.  So to honor some of those “guest stars” would be interesting.

Watch Doug’s nominated reel below! Then, let us know what you thought of it and his chances on Emmy night?  What did you think of Doug’s thoughts on the Younger acting categories and a move to bring a Guest Star performance category?  Share your comments below!

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char wilsonEileen HargisNonnajen cadenDisappointed Recent comment authors
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Think he should go in supporting. Good luck.


Would be awesome were he to win again … but I think this year it’s Jason Thompson’s to lose. He was fantastic in 2013 … and 2012!!!

Can’t wait for the show. Super excited to hear Kathy Griffin will be hosting.


first and foremost : NICE press Doug Davidson on Ray Wise !

isn’t he superlative.

“… His expertise, his finesse, his colors, his depth, is not easy to do ladies and gentlemen!”

Oye ! what a coop!

would that he could have been a recast for Victor Newman !

he’s astounding…

for the love of Serial

put him with : Gloria or Ashley

LOL… if he’s not too old for Ashley… certainly would be more plausible than Eric Braedon

i’m overcome with his chutzpah : Je ne sais quoi

is Eric Braedon still culling his own identity


* is Eric Braedon still mulling his own belong and identity

cherie englert
cherie englert

paul is a great actor as many in the show I think they all desevere one been watching since I was 13 and am now 66 I still love the show will always watch its like my family now sounds funny but true please never take it off the air hearts would be broken that’s for sure love to all

Bob Kaufman
Bob Kaufman

Doug Davidson surely deserves another Emmy. Doug has been on Y&R for over 30 years and has always exhibited emmy award winning performances!! I believe his idea for guest appearences awards is a great idea.

char wilson
char wilson

Y & R I have watched forever.
Enjoyed it more years ago.

Storylines now are insane, stupid & the new characters really do not care about.
They are wooden & the old timers are carrying them, ‘cept for Stitch,

Noah only new kid on the block that is ok.

Courtney as a cop, LOL!!!

Mariah, getting her position on the show, not in the real world.

..Worse is Tyler, no expression & w/his gal pal, another dumb blonde, wasn’t she leaving ?

I switch to Dr Oz. when any of the new crowd comes on they are boring & miserable actors.

New writers & people who can act would raise the ratings.


Agree totally with your comments Char….with the exception of Stitch. Liked him at first…now I can’t stand the character. He has become an a/hole, overbearing and so sure he is going to win the woman. I think Elizabeth Hendrickson should have won instead of Amelia Heinle…..her acting was not on the same level by any means. Tyler and Abby need to go. I can’t stand that self entitled blonde bimbo. Plus she can’t act her way out of a paper bag. That incessant laugh after ever sentence she utters drives me crazy.

Sorry to be critical, but this show is not what it was when I first began watching it. It has gone downhill since JFP assumed the reins as EP. The s/lines now go on and on….so much so that I lose interest in the altogether.
I won’t even start with Neil and Hillary…..he is old enough to be her father….disgusting.

char wilson
char wilson

Stitch & his secret getting better be a humdinger,
Not he ran over a dog or help kill a dying man in the hospital.
who was 109

Hilary can’t stand her,, AND the esq , Avery;s partner always looks mad w/teeth & chin prortruding is not believable she is an esq like the oither dumb blonde Courtney is a cop!!!
Call Central Casting..the cast here other than the “adult” actors who have been around awhile,..should go asap not believable..nor can they act

Hope the new Michael is better than the new BILLY.

However, doubt it…waiting for another disappointment..maybe just keep showing his hand & other body parts..might be more exciting that the whole person.

This Billy does Not fill the role..looks like a stranger to Victoria.
I’d unload him quickly.. BILLY ROLE IS A REVOLVONG DOOR of lousy actors..

Can’t wait til red head Phyllis returns..hope she has sparkle & vinegar & better than the broads on this show. who are so .BORING!!!!!

Eileen Hargis
Eileen Hargis

I love Doug, so deserving. But this year I would rrally love to see Jason Thompson win, his year of playing Patrick, seeing his dead wife return was phenominal!


I so agree Eileen. It should have been a tie…..Billy Miller AND Jason Thompson.


Doug Davidson’s voice control was on point in these scenes. I agree with DD he should be in supporting actor category. TPTB, namely JFP, pulling her inflated ego he should be in Lead based on tenure. Such crap.


Best wishes Doug. You’re a wonderful actor.


OMG. I forgot about these scenes; Doug Davidson’s performance was absolutely visceral. Everything he was putting out there…. I could FEEL it, very intensely. He is an extraordinary actor and I think he should always win!

On a side note; oh, how I miss my Stafford on Y&R. She and Doug were two of my very favorite actors and I loved every scene they did together.

Congratulations to all of the nominees and thank you for giving so much of yourself to these fascinating characters that we all love.


How right you are. Doug always delivers; as did Michelle Stafford and Billy Miller. I miss those two terribly. It just isn’t the same watching Ms. Stafford on GH. I suppose I will have to get used to it.
If I my feelings for Y&R were lukewarm when my favourite characters left; well, I now only watch the show once or twice a week; since the new Billy. Good grief! This guy, my apologies, distorts the screen–one extreme to the other. ( I do not mean DT) He looks scraggly and nondescript. No Abbot, he !! He does not fit the profile. Not only does he look whitewashed, but also his acting is forced. I protest!

jen caden
jen caden

just put on y & r and heard them say the role of billy abbott was being played by so and so. so disappointed. not happy with this new guy. don’t care what shows he came from. hes not Tom. this new guy has such a flat affect. so different from billy. ugh!!

Eileen Hargis
Eileen Hargis

Eric Braeden knows exactly who he is, an accomplished actor of many years with many roles to his credit. Try another post and use ur head this time!

char wilson
char wilson

Michael M. as Adam should not & could not be replaced
He was an excellent actor.

Is it really true what he did or did they just have a fight & Hunter fig. let’s kick him out?

Shame..the powerful actors Michelle s, Michael, the old Billy..brought excitement to their roles. Now the characters are bland & boring,

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