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Y&R's Elizabeth Hendrickson Video Interview: Adam's "Death", Bella's Baby Daddy Drama, A Kevin & Chloe Romance Redo?

Photo Credit: HutchinsPhoto.com

Since Elizabeth Hendrickson’s (Chloe) return to The Young and the Restless, she has wasted no time in shaking things up on the Genoa City canvas in a major way, and there is plenty more to come!

As viewers have witnessed, Chloe in her thirst for revenge has done such unimaginable things, starting with teaming up with Victor Newman (Eric Braeden) to ruin Adam Newman’s (formerly Justin Hartley) life and put behind bars forever. Now Chloe is living with her best friend, Chelsea (Melissa Claire Egsn), who is grieving the loss of her husband Adam, after Chloe set him up to die!  And there is still the issue of just who is the biological father of her daughter Bella?  What will happen when the truth comes out?  Is it really Billy Abbott’s (Jason Thompson) little girl?  And, will Chloe and Kevin rekindle their relationship?

To get some insight to all of these questions and much more, On-Air On-Soaps Michael Fairman sat down with Elizabeth Hendrickson for this very special video interview to talk about many of the recent pivotal moments fans of the top-rated soap have watched, and to preview what is still to come.  Here are just a few of the key excerpts from Liz and Michael’s chitchat below.

When asked if Elizabeth was surprised to return to Y&R, she related: “It was a total surprise, but it was a good surprise.  I was pleasantly surprised, but out of the blue for me.  But, I knew it was going to be juicy, and they made an offer I couldn’t refuse.”

Courtesy/CBS

As to if Liz knew that her return was a huge part to Adam’s exit storyline and that she would be the one to destroy Adam, Hendrickson noted: “They didn’t say ‘destroy’ Adam, but I knew Adam was in the mix.  I knew there was a chance that Justin Hartley was going somewhere. Sometimes people think that we know what’s going (behind the scenes), but not really.  But, I had a feeling that was a piece of the puzzle.”

Chloe’s been acting “crazy” in her vendetta against Adam, but Hendrickson shared she thinks of her differently: “I kind of changed the wording from “crazy” to her “reality” and her reality is, and has always been, that she is going to avenge her daughter Delia’s death, and that Delia needs the justice that is deserved.  So I don’t think Chloe necessarily has it all planned out.  I think she is more of a spontaneous girl.  I don’t think she sits there with her entire plan and maps it out.  But, I think all of these emotions brings them up, and stirs her up, and then she thinks, “Oh! This is the best plan.”   Then, she goes for it.  Adam has always been at the top of her list.”

When Liz read the script that Chloe walks in to Adam’s cabin in those huge boots preparing to kill him, she shared: “I heard that there was going to be this show, where I was shooting Adam with a tranquilizer.  I am like, “What?  I get to do that?”   I love playing the fun stuff.  I don’t think I realized the magnitude of everything that was really happening.”

Courtesy/CBS

As to what Chloe might have done with Adam once she paralyzed him with the tranquilizer, before the explosion that “killed him”, Liz shared: “In my mind her intention was just to have him suffer, and I think her use of a tranquilizer was her hoping Adam would have a slow death.  But, I don’t think her plan was to have him blown up!  She had nothing to do with the explosion.”

Now that Adam is believed to be ‘dead”, does Chloe know where he is? Liz expressed: “No, I don’t think she really knows, nor, do I think she really cares.  After she finds out the explosion happen, she kind of feels bad, but secretly, deep down inside, that is all she ever wanted.  But she constantly has that pull back to Chelsea.  She does feel guilt, only because she loves Chelsea so much, and she sees the pain she is in, but then Chloe has to remind herself, ‘No. This is really what you wanted.’   When this story comes to a head, I am very interested to see what those scenes will be like between Chelsea and Chloe, because they are going to be massive.  It’s a really big, huge reveal for her.”

Though it was a short amount of time, Liz had nothing but fantastic things to say about exited star Justin Hartley, who is now starring on NBC’s This Is Us:  “He was phenomenal.  I am so bummed that I got a month to work with him.   I loved our scenes in the jail and I wish there was more.  There is a reason he ended up on a primetime show.  Justin is a heavy-hitter.  He’s an awesome actor, and he is also an awesome guy.”

Courtesy/CBS

Another heavy-hitter Liz has gotten the opportunity to work with is Eric Braeden – for Victor and Chloe were originally in cahoots to bring Adam to his knees.  Liz shared:   “That was one piece of the puzzle, I never knew.  I did not know I would be so connected with Victor, and that we would be this new little duo!  I had never worked with him before, not one on one.  I have had scenes with him where I have been in the same room with him with other characters.  But I love working with Eric.  Right now as its airing, Victor worries Chloe.  He can do some serious things, but they are not really in cahoots together anymore.”

Being good pals with Melissa Claire Egan, Hendrickson relates that a great work day is one that also has Missy in it: “Missy and I have the best time. When I am acting with her it’s like I am sitting there with my girlfriend, but when I am acting, I am being the worst friend in the world.  (Laughs) I respect Missy so much as an actress.  She is so talented”

Is there hope for a Kevin/Chloe relationship redo? Liz revealed: “Chloe sees Kevin just as a friend, but … I think Chloe still has some issues, and I don’t think she is really ready to be alone.   Unfortunately she can be an easy target.   Not that she uses him, because I don’t think she does it an intentional way.  I think Chloe really loves Kevin, and no one loves him like the way that she does.  I think she gets confused over what she wants and what she needs.  But what you will start to see is that Chloe is going to start to need him for support and she may blur those lines, between friendship and relationship.”

Courtesy/CBS

The big story coming up is who is truly Bella’s baby daddy, and fans suspect it will be Billy’s child.  But Liz admits: “I don’t really know, but I have an idea, and I would love it if it was Billy’s and I got to work with Jason Thompson more.  Mainly because I feel like they dropped the ball with Chloe and Billy many years ago.  I think that is a story that could be revisited, and they really didn’t deal with two parents losing their child.  It was more like he lost her and he’s over here, and I lost her and I’m over there.   Billy went through that with Victoria (Amelia Heinle), not with Chloe. I think how parents go through a lost like that is much more interesting story to be told.   That being said, I have always been a huge fan of Jason Thompson when he was on General Hospital.  We have mutual friends and whenever I would run into him, I would say, ‘Jason, you are my favorite soap guy” – he was just always my favorite.  So when they called me to come to Y&R, Jason being here was a large part of me coming back.  I said, ‘Yes, I want to work with him.’ I love that Jason is playing my on-screen ex-husband, Billy.”

Having worked in soaps for ten years, both in the casts of All My Children and Y&R, Liz knows that recasts are hard for the actors involved and the fans, but feels Jason Thompson is making Billy his own: “The hardest job in the world is to step into someone else’s shoes, and those shoes were refilled three times by the time Jason came to Y&R.  I think when Billy Miller (Ex-Billy, now Jason GH) stepped into those shoes, he made quite a mark.  I can see that they were hard shoes to fill, but you can’t expect anyone to be the same.  As actor’s, we don’t take over roles to be like someone else.  We take on the role and put our take on it.  I feel for the fans when something like this happens, as for them it can be alarming, but in regards to Jason in the role of Billy, I think he is doing a great job!”

Photo Credit: HutchinsPhoto.com

Going back a beat when Chloe left the show before, she became pregnant which gave viewers clues as to who could be Bella’s daddy, Hendrickson recounted:  “So Chloe left town with the sperm, but she also slept with Kevin that day, so that’s why there is this “Who’s the daddy?” story.  Then she came back to town secretly pregnant, and then the next time she came back, I guess Bella was hanging out in the loony bin, because she was being babysat by one of the nurses, while she made that little trip to GC.” (Laughs)

Elizabeth admitted her joy of being back at Y&R: “Being back is a hundred times bigger and better than I could ever imagine.  Moving forward, Chloe is goings to piss people off!  I love playing a bitch!” (Laughs)

Watch the full Elizabeth Hendrickson video interview below. Then weigh-in: What did you think of Chloe’s part in “Adam’s death”?  Working in cahoots with Victor?   What do you think will happen when Chelsea finds out what her best friend has done to her husband?  Are you rooting for Kevin and Chloe to get back together? Who will turn out to be Bella’s bio-dad?  If it is Billy’s, what kind of relationship would you like Chloe to have with him?  And finally, are you thrilled Liz Hendrickson is back on Y&R adding more excitement and unexpected moments into the daytime drama series?  Share your thoughts on the interviews and more in the comment section below!

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Tani SterlingNikkisoapqueenforeverdmrTimmm Recent comment authors
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padange
padange

Nice interview and EH is a fine actress. But I find the character of Chloe incredibly annoying. And I don’t usually mind “bitchy” characters. I dread “Chilly” and hope Bella isn’t Billy’s. I actually wish she weren’t even Chloe’s. Just a black market baby.
Just the idea of replacing one kid with another is kind of unacceptable to me (not to speak of the way she did it if Bella is indeed Billy’s kid).

Harry
Harry

I agree. Also, Kevin and Mariah make a far better couple than he and Chloe do.

Timmm
Timmm

I want Chloe with Cane. He needs a lift!

Celia
Celia

We do agree on this, my darling, Harry…..
Mariah and Kevin have such great camaraderie, which is normally hard to come by between the opposite sex. That is such a plus in a romantic relationship–lovers AND friends….love it!!
Chloe is too far out there for me. Well, so is Kevin; but, he’s docile. LOL. She’s too untrustworthy.
It seems to me that every move she makes is calculated.

Harry
Harry

Cane needs a lift and Chloe needs a Cane!!

MBmomof3
MBmomof3

I agree too. The only reason I would tolerate “Chilly” is if it would reduce JT’s airtime and get NotBilly out of Jack and Phyllis’ orbit. At least I could FF through that.

Nikki
Nikki

I don’t care for the character of Chloe at all. I like having a villain in a show but she is just pure evil. Even Victor has a soft spot but this Chloe is awful and if Bella is Billy’s I hope he get custody of her and for what she’s done to her best friend’s husband, I want her in jail. As for Kevin I have been so ticked at him lately. Wake-up already Kevin. Your also better off with Mariah.

barbara Branski
barbara Branski

I love elizabeth she is a great actress an brings a lot to life. I hope they keep her.

Dennis L Parks
Dennis L Parks

You should have Billy Abbott, and Nick Newman, see a Vision of Jesus , and they both become born-again Christians! And make them believeable! Not Weirdo’s! Research those
Happenings! And Don’t be PC about it! Thanks!

Harry
Harry

Why would they do that and how would that be remotely interesting or entertaining?

Celia
Celia

Hey, Dennis,
I don’t think either Nick or Billy is a weirdo. Nick has come a long way.
Billy? Well, he’s just Billy. What I find weird are the writers.
Within a matter of minutes, Billy tries to make amends—-what an epiphany!!!!!!!! No, no, no, writers; no can’t buy. This sudden switch in personality and heart? No way, Hose’!!!!!
This ‘out-of-left-field’ transformation only makes him look like a psycho.

Nikki
Nikki

I don’t get it.

Harry
Harry

For some reason I thought she was just coming back on a short term basis.
Like the actress, hate her character. They ruined any sense of empathy viewers might had for her with her murdering Adam. Worse, she seems incredibly possessive of Chelsea and seems to want her all to herself.
I find her character be insidiously creepy but I do admit that actress is very talented.

JK
JK

TOTALLY AGREE………………

Timmm
Timmm

Who knows how one acts after losing a child. I suppose everyone could act differently. Chloe seems to still not be “Counciled up” enough. But its a soap and we never see a counselor heal a character! Billy let his daughter alone in a car on a dark road. Adam didnt maliciously hit her Daughter. We dont even know that he did it. I still want “Drunk Nikki” to be the one! Or what about Esther? Theres a twist! Chloe is a loose cannon still and it seems to be the time to slow her down.

Celia
Celia

True, my Timmmy. People react different to the pain of losing a child. Some women do lose their minds, literally.
But, let’s not forget that Chloe has always been a manipulative, little hussy. She tried passing Delia off as Cane’s: ergo, the name Cordelia, which he gave her.
As Elizabeth discussed with Mr. Fairman, Chloe strongly felt that Delia’s death had not been avenged to its full extend……not until death came to Adam. One loss for another.
You’re right. Chloe is not healed. Imagine the internal and mental turmoil she experience, in a world all her own. Is she now healed? I doubt it. I love Elizabeth, but I find no pleasure in the character as she is. TPTB need to do something drastic with Chloe to take root with Adam’s fans.
I hope Elizabeth stays…such a talent…..and, Chloe needs to be cultivated; so much potential!!

Celia
Celia

That should read ‘differently’.

Dave Richardson
Dave Richardson

I’m desperately hoping that out of nowhere, The writers will bring Adams character back, to reveal what Chloe did then She’s goes to prison and become even crazier then ever, and also he witnesses Chelsea and his brother Nick having a affair but somehow Adam wins Chelsea back after a long family battle royal.

Timmm
Timmm

Maybe Victor was in on hiding Adam?

Dave Richardson
Dave Richardson

I am desperately hoping that the writers will bring Adams character back on the show and reveal what Chloe did to him, and Chloe barely escapes prison but becomes even more crazy and vows to destroy both Adam and Victor and Adam witnesses his brother Nick and Chelsea have an affair, but after a long family battle royal wins Chelsea back

jaybird369
jaybird369

Uh…No. Kevin and Chloe DO NOT NEED to get back together again!!!!! That ship has SERIOUSLY SAILED!!!!! Also, Kevin (lately) has been behaving like a TOTAL IDIOT…I mean…taking Mariah for granted and everything else!!!!! Most of all, Mariah needs to give that CRAY CRAY Chloe a MUCH-NEEDED BEAT-DOWN!!!!!

Just saying……….

Timmm
Timmm

Here is a twist. Adam resurfaces and runs to Chelsea to reveal what Chloe had done to him and Chelsea says she doesnt want to hear it, Chloe and I have moved on, we are getting married in two weeks! Hey now!

Celia
Celia

HaHa, Timmmy! Why not!!

MBmomof3
MBmomof3

I agree. I like Kevin with Mariah, but Mariah deserves better than how Kevin is currently treating her. I would actually like to see Mariah in a front-burner storyline. She’s currently my favorite character.

soapqueenforever
soapqueenforever

I agree. Mariah needs to be more than a bodyguard/mouthpiece for Sharon, as they continue to lie about Sally. I would love to see this talented actress carry her own story.

soapqueenforever
soapqueenforever

I completely agree with you jaybird369. Somebody needs to knock some sense into Chole, and I think Mariah is the perfect one to do it. And when she is done, she can knock some sense into her friend Kevin as well. In the beginning I wanted Kevin to be the father, but with the way he is acting now I’m glad he’s not

damien
damien

a down and out billy needs to commeserate with a cray cray chloe… hell hath no fury when two of genoa citys outcasts hook up…a chloe/ jill/ phyliss feud would be epic!

Celia
Celia

Hmmm. Speaking of Jill accusing Phyllis of breaking her marriage vows. Gee, the pot should shut her mouth about the kettle.

Tucker
Tucker

Chloe’s return has been a bust from Day One – her “Dorothy Gale” visitations to Victor, shooting Adam with a blowgun and keeping the identity of Bella’s daddy a huge secret has grown old for this longtime viewer.

Nikki
Nikki

I’m with you Tucker. How about she makes friends with Summer and the two of them go on a very long long vacation.

Timmm
Timmm

“Summer” vacation!

Nikki
Nikki

Good one Timmm!

soapqueenforever
soapqueenforever

Well if and when the Sully reveal ever comes out, I have a feeling Sharon will be vacationing in a nice padded cell somewhere

soapqueenforever
soapqueenforever

I agree with you Tucker. This whole story needs to be put to rest along with Adam. Enough is enough. Now it’s time to move forward with other issues. I am wondering if the Sully reveal will be next. Then we can watch Sharon crack yet again

Nikki
Nikki

But the Sully reveal might send Sharon over the edge but it won’t send Summer on any long vacation even now with the break-up of Jack & Phyllis she get’s yet another front burner story as her mom moves in with her. I would love to know what she has on these people cause it sure ain’t acting.

Timmm
Timmm

Yeah and Chloe and Natalie look a like and they never played on that angle!

Alan
Alan

Elizabeth Hendrickson is a good actress but I feel like Chloe is such a mess that she really serves no story purpose at this point except to tell Billy he has another another child and to reveal that Adam is alive and being held in some clinic all drugged up and unable to move while she torments him with photos of Chelsea and Connor moving on.

Hopefully Sally Sussman-Morina and Kay Alden can turn the character around and get her out of the corner she’s been written into.

dmr
dmr

Chloe and Kevin have zero chemistry, as do Mariah and Kevin.

Tani Sterling
Tani Sterling

Agree that Chloe and Kevin don’t have much chemistry, however, Kevin and Mariah have something special. It might not be sexual, but it is there. Perhaps a one sided thing that develops into more.

Grand Hotel

Denyse Tontz and Lincoln Younes Preview Forbidden Romance & Intrigue As ‘Grand Hotel’ Premieres

When Grand Hotel opens its doors to its audience tonight on ABC (10PMET/PT), it will have a very familiar feel to soap fans for several of its series regulars and its executive producer all come from the world of daytime or serialized storytelling.

Executive Producer, Eva Longoria (Ex-Y&R, Desperate Housewives, Devious Maids, Telenovela) brought to the screens a provocative drama with Miami Beach as its backdrop of the last family-owned hotel (by the Mendozas) with a contemporary take of an upstairs/downstairs story of 2019.

Former General Hospital’s Bryan Craig plays Javi, who is joined by two other soap notables; former All My Children reboot star, Denyse Tontz (Ex-Miranda Montgomery) and Australian-born actor, Lincoln Younes (Ex-Casey, Home and Away) who’s characters are interlocked in some very sexy and mysterious ways.

Tontz, plays Alicia Mendoza the strong-willed daughter of the Mendoza clan, who is fresh out of business school… and who will make a huge discovery about her dad, but is also set to embark on a romance with a new staff hire!  And that staff hire is Danny played by Younes, whose character Danny is not who he says he is at all … and he has one goal in my mind which brought him to the hotel … but things get complicated for him when he feels a massive attraction to the hotel owner’s daughter … Alicia!

Michael Fairman TV took part in a press roundtable discussion with Tontz and Younes to get some teasers of what’s to come when Grand Hotel premieres.  Here’s what they shared in some questions posed by us and others below.

Photo: ABC

Danny and Alicia definitely have an instant attraction in the season premiere. Where can you tease that it might go?

LINCOLN:  Well, it can go in a number of directions, but hopefully towards a positive one.  They each have their own motivations for why they’re at the hotel.

DENYSE:  Alicia’s main goal, or at least from the beginning, is to prove herself, just having graduated business school and sort of step into her mother’s shoes a little bit. She’s had a lot of pressure on her for most of her life to sort of fill that role and keep the family together.  I think it’s really tough to have to juggle that and the desire to explore this potential romance with this person who is so intriguing to her.

LINCOLN:  I think with Danny, his reasons are kind of unknown as to why he’s at the hotel.  He comes in as a new employee, but there is something off about him.  It is complicated by the arrival of Alicia and the chemistry the kind of ensues between them.  I think that’s kind of the interesting thing to watch is them navigating their priorities and their initial motivations with the inevitable chemistry and dynamic that has appeared.

Photo: ABC

The main family in Grand Hotel is Hispanic.  And what is intriguing about the premise is that their ethnicity is not the backdrop of the story, it’s just who they are.  Would you agree?

LINCOLN:  Eva is kind of a trailblazer in that way because this is about the story of a family, and a hotel, and the guests, and the employees, and the employers, and all of the different things these people go through.  It’s not so much the color of their skin and their background.  I think as soon as you take away the magnifying glass of how a person appears and really look at what is going on inside, that’s a step in the right direction.

DENYSE:  I think that even though we are really a diverse cast and crew, that really has nothing to do with the actual premise of the show, and I think that’s really cool even to just see that.  To just play a character who happens to be Hispanic, and that’s not the central theme of this character, I think there really are no stereotypes that are perpetuated in any way.

LINCOLN:  It’s the perfect melting pot of culture, and the fact that it is set in a hotel where anyone from any part of the world can come into, it creates this show that I don’t see anything like this on TV, and that’s very exciting.

Do you see Danny and Alicia as a duo to root for with their dysfunction and all throughout the series?

DENYSE:  I think there is this sort of allure to the forbidden romance aspect of it all.

LINCOLN:  They have these obstacles in front of them.

DENYSE:  But you want it to happen. (Laughs)

LINCOLN:  You want it to happen, and it’s just against all odds.  That complicates things.

Photo: ABC

You have such a great cast to work with; chief among them Demián Bichir, Roselyn Sanchez (Devious Maids)!

DENYSE:  Oh man, working with Demián and Roselyn and Eva Longoria was a dream.  They’re each so special in their own way.

LINCOLN:  Three powerhouses.

DENYSE:  Yeah, three powerhouses and very different.  They each have their own way of approaching a scene.  Demián is mostly a movie actor, and it really shows in the way he approaches scenes, and the way he is not glued to the lines, and it’s kind of cool to watch him and learn from him in that way.  He’s so funny too.  He makes it a really comfortable environment, and you feel safe to try stuff.   Eva … same thing.  She has a clear vision for what she wants.  She can direct in such a way that I think a lot of directors can’t, because she has been on the other side of the camera, and she has got a really good perspective.  I think she’s really great at articulating what she wants you to do.

LINCOLN:  Yeah, she’s very meticulous.  I think the thing about all of the people who you’ve just mentioned is that they all have levity.  They are all very specific, but they are all very authentic.  That carries through in both their acting and how they carry themselves off set.  That was really great to kind of learn from them.

Photo: ABC

Many in the cast are from daytime dramas, or soap operas previously, including both of you!  Was that a coincidence in the producers casting choices, you think?

LINCOLN: I think, just knowing Eva so well now, and Brian and Ben, the creators behind it, they searched long and hard for the people they wanted to play the roles.  So, it might just be a happy coincidence.

When the scripts came out, how did the cast handle the twists?

LINCOLN:  There was a lot of speculation going on.  There was a lot of gossiping on set and off set.

DENYSE:  Lots of gossiping, stealing scripts… a lot of bombshells though.  There really is no shortage of plot twists.  A lot of these characters you think are going to start out a certain way, and then you find yourself completely changing your opinion of them halfway through the season. Without giving too much away, nobody is really who they appear to be.

Photo: ABC

How do you both feel about the fact that the wait is over and Grand Hotel is finally premiering?

DENYSE:  It’s super exciting.

LINCOLN:  It’s very surreal.  This is my first American show, so I have no idea what to expect.  I just go to Denyse for advice.  I’m like, “What do I do?”  (Laughs).  It’s all very exciting.  I think when you love a project; there is another element when it is released to the public.  Everyone on the show loves it.  Everyone is so passionate about it.  So, I just hope that the audience feels the same and that we get to keep doing it.

So will you be checking out Denyse, Lincoln, Bryan, Eva and more on Grand Hotel?  Share your thoughts via the comment section below. But first check out this promo for the kick-off tonight!

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General Hospital

GH’s Cynthia Watros Talks On Taking Over The Role Of Nina & Ingo Rademacher Dishes Jax’s New Love Interest

Today on June 3rd, Daytime Emmy winner, Cynthia Watros is set to begin taping all-new episodes of General Hospital as she steps into the role of Nina Cassadine, last played by Michelle Stafford, who has left the ABC daytime drama series and headed back to The Young and the Restless to reprise her signature role of Phyllis Summers.

Watros, best-known for her delicious portrayal of Annie Dutton on Guiding Light, and who was last seen on daytime on Y&R, is back to the grind of the soaps taking on the complex Nina.  Add to that, it is clear that GH is setting up a potential love triangle, or new love interest for her, now that Jasper Jacks is back in Port Charles with GH fan favorite Ingo Rademacher returning to the show.

Last month on the recent GH Nurses’ Ball episodes, we saw Nina (then Stafford) lock eyes with Jax, and the two demonstrated an instant attraction to each other.  Add to that in story; Jax was revealed to be the new 50 percent owner of Aurora Media, which Nina’s Crimson Magazine falls under, putting them in each other’s path in more ways than one.

Michael Fairman TV chatted with Cynthia and Ingo along with other members of the media at last week’s ABC Summer Press Roundtable junket, and here were some intriguing and insightful moments from the conversations below.

When we asked if Cynthia had a conversation with Michelle Stafford on taking over the role of Nina, Watros responded: “I did.  We had lunch together, and I have to say, Michelle is an amazing, lovely, giving woman.  Just to be able to sit across from her and talk about Nina and to talk about the show, I was just in awe of her generosity.  I will always be a fan of Michelle’s.  She actually reached out to me and said, ‘If you ever want to call or text…’ and I said, ‘Let’s have lunch!’  So, we found and afternoon and spent like three hours just talking about it.”

Photo Credit: ABC

Since Watros has brought the cray-cray to her best known role of Annie on GL and is so adept as an actress to go from that to playing grave reality, Cynthia weighed in on how she sees Nina and the challenges of being a recast in a soap role: “Nina has all of this stuff that I can’t wait to play.  She’s got stuff that she hasn’t explored for a long time because her life is going pretty well right now.  What happens though when your life doesn’t go really well?  You start exploring those things that you thought were sleeping a little bit, you know, that weren’t necessarily bubbling up to the surface.  So, I like it all: when a character’s life is going well and when a character’s life is not going well. Because I’m playing Nina now, it’s going to be different.  It’s going to be challenging.  It’s the first time I’ve ever taken over a role that someone else has played.  I don’t want to totally go off, so people go, “Wow.  Nina’s totally different,” but of course, I want to make it my own.  Again, I’m an actor who likes to use all of the tools.  I like it all … the funny, the not so funny, the playful, and the crazy.”

As to the timing of Watros returning to the soaps at this time in her life … and how it went down that she landed her new gig at GH, she revealed: “It sounds not very dramatic, but I got a phone call.  Just a phone call asking, ‘Would you be interested?’  Guiding Light will always be in my heart because I had such a good time doing Annie, and I was on Young and the Restless and Another World for half of a second.  So, daytime has always been in my life and in my world.  My last show was in Atlanta, and my daughters were in high school in LA, and it’s hard to go back and forth for them, for me, and for my life as a mom.  So, I kind of took my acting and said, ‘Well, I’m going to slow it all down until they graduate high school.’  They graduate high school June 2nd and I start GH June 3rd.  So, it just seemed like it just made sense.”

Photo: ABC

As to what the future holds for Nina as she takes over the role, Watros shared: “I can tease that I get to play with this guy (Ingo) a lot, and Nina is trying to find a stronger role in the magazine where she is really going to step up in making that a success and her love for the magazine , and trying to navigate her relationship with Jax.”

Cynthia will also get to work with Nina’s present love interest, James Patrick Stuart (Valentin), which the actress is also excited about:“I have to say, I have not met him, but I have been watching the show, and he is just phenomenal.  I love his character.  I love how he is this sort of like bad guy, but it seems like the women really dig him.”

Watros says she is excited to work with Maura West (Ava), Laura Wright (Carly), and Billy Miller (Drew) from the cast.  She has previously worked with Laura and Billy in her soap career. As to her nerves for her first week at the ABC studios where GH is taped, Cynthia shared that she is: “Less nervous, more excited. I feel like a 20-year-old back in soaps.  I remember Kim Zimmer (Ex-Reva, Guiding Light) back in the rehearsal room, and I was off script, and she was on the show for a long time before me, and I was new. I was yelling my lines, and she goes, ‘Excuse me! Can you tell this actress not to act so early in the morning?’ (Laughs) I feel like I’m going to do that again.  So, I’ve got to tone it all down.” (Laughs)

Photo: ABC

For Ingo, he certainly has a view as to how Jax fits into the canvas of Port Charles: “Jax is to me, and I’ve only just been able to put it into words now that Captain America came out, but he’s ‘Captain America’.  He’s all about fairness.  If he sees a bully, he will stand up for the person who is being bullied.  So, that’s who he is.  He’s the white knight.  He’s the person who will always do the right thing.”

Now that Jax has big time ownership in Aurora Media and thus Crimson, does he see the sparks flying with Nina? Ingo reveals: “Yeah, basically he walks in, and she goes, ‘What are you doing in my office?’ and he goes, ‘Actually, it’s my office.’  When I heard about him doing that magazine, I was a little surprised because that’s usually much too small for Jax.  He’s more of a Richard Gere in Pretty Woman character, corporate leader, takes corporations apart, sells pieces … this is, I think really for his daughter, Josslyn (Eden McCoy).  He’s thinking about the future.  Also, to keep him busy in an actual job that he might be good at.   I think it’s a big change in lifestyle for him where before it was about businesses which were much more global.”

Photo: CBS

As to what is behind Jax’s attraction to Nina, Ingo summed it up by sharing: I think Jax is attracted to Nina the first time he sees her.  I have a feeling he already knew who she was the first time he sees her at the Nurses’ Ball, because he’s been studying Aurora Media before purchasing it.  He’s done his background work, and to piss off a Cassadine is just a bonus.  Also, I think what is interesting for Nina’s character is the two different guys.  She’s engaged to this more mysterious character, and then, you’ve got this jolly, upfront one going, ‘Hey!  How’s it going?  Everybody having a good day?’ (Laughs)  He’s very confident as well, but in a different way.  I think it’s nice for the story for Nina to be tugged between two completely different men.”

So, excited to see the debut of Cynthia in the role of Nina? Are you up for a triangle between Jax/Nina/Valentin? Share your thoughts via the comment section below.  But first, watch Cynthia’s Emmy-winning moment as Lead Actress in a Drama Series for her work on Guiding Light.

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Days Of Our Lives

DAYS Arianne Zucker, Stacy Haiduk & Paul Telfer Talk On Masks, Villainy & Their Wildest Storyline Yet

Take three great actors, add a prosthetic mask into the equation, and let them have at it! That’s just what NBC’s Days of our Lives is in the midst of serving up to its fans with this latest plot device and twist.  Last week, it was revealed that the nefarious Kristen DiMera (Stacy Haiduk) is alive and well and pretending to be Nicole Walker (Arianne Zucker) donning a mask, a voice alternating device, and some other body tweaks!  The goal …  to be with Brady Black (Eric Martsolf) and she will do anything to accomplish that!

Enter Xander (Paul Telfer) who has been in the thick of the plot being the only one we know of, so far, who knows that Kristen is parading around as Nicole.  They hatch their next moves inside a room at the Salem Inn.  They even went so far as to set it up to appear that Nicole’s daughter, Holly was killed, so she could blame Eric (Greg Vaughan) and cause a break-up of the long-suffering lovebirds and play it off as she needs to be consoled by Brady!

Michael Fairman TV chatted in an entertaining and wickedly funny interview with Arianne Zucker, Stacy Haiduk, and Paul Telfer to get the lowdown on what happened when they learned they would be wearing or working with a mask, how they pulled off the emotions in the storyline twist, and what to look forward to from here.  Under the clever pen of head writer, Ron Carlivati looks for the hits and twists to keep coming as this storyline continues to rock the world of Salem for some time to come.  Here’s what Arianne, Stacy, and Paul had to say about their latest on-screen predicaments and schemes!

Ari, at what point did you know that you really weren’t Nicole … and that you were Kristen playing Nicole?

ARIANNE:  I actually didn’t find out until a little bit after the van went off the road in the storyline; thinking it was Holly who was killed.  Sometimes, the less I know makes it fresher, and I think if I had known before those scenes, and the scenes with Eric (Greg Vaughan), and when I first came back, I would have had a little too much Kristen on my mind, and I don’t know if I could have been as raw as I felt in those scenes.  So, anyway that’s my long explanation.  I found out after I started back on the show! (Laughs)

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

Additionally, did you have a conversation with Stacy about certain mannerisms hat Kristen has if you’re “masquerading” as Nicole?

ARIANNE:  Our co-executive producer, Albert Alaar had talked to me about watching Stacy because everything was happening fast.  Stacy and I really hadn’t had a chance to even talk to each other even from the last round of me being thereI remember Stacy was inundated with dialogue up the wazoo when I came back for that twelve-episode arc.  So, because of all of that, Albert said, “Watch Stacy! Watch her mannerisms, watch what she does,” and then I’ll throw a little Ari in it.  I just hope that I do as good of a job as Stacy does.

Paul, you and I talked about this on the NBC ‘Inside Salem’ podcast, when we played back for you (for the first time) the clip of Kristen taking off her Nicole mask.  Xander had the perfect set-up line for the reveal: “The part of Nicole Walker is being played by Kristen DiMera!”  Did you not have a good laugh doing that scene?  How did you get through doing that moment?

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

PAUL:  Oh, yeah, I was laughing my ass off the whole time.  This is an insane storyline with masks and doppelgängers.  But, it looks great on-screen, and that way it’s edited.  So, I was really happy.

STACY:  There was one moment when Nicole would hold steady to unfold the neck.   So, Ari started that to the point where I’m pulling it off completely.  I think it’s cool.  It’s “Mission Impossible”.  How nice!

PAUL:  That’s what I going to say.  If Tom Cruise can make a hundred million dollars doing this stuff …

STACY:  … then, we can do it!

ARIANNE:  Right?  We can make a quarter of a quarter of a quarter of a quarter of that.

STACY:  We’ll make it look good!

What is the real deal between Xander and Kristen?  They are conspiring and in cahoots, but there’s this underlying sexual tension between them.  I think Xander respects Kristen in a way, because she can one-up him!

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

PAUL:  I think every character who Xander has interacted with who isn’t a member of his family, he’s trying to either get something from, or get into bed with, and he can’t really do either with Kristen, because she’s crazier and more dangerous that he is up until this point.  That’s certainly the way that it feels.  The way Stacy plays it, she is not to be messed around with. Honestly, I think that turns him on.

STACY:  Yeah, there you go.  That sounds good. (Laughs)

PAUL:  I mean, it makes sense.  Just like, “Wait a minute.  This is a bit spicier than I’m used to,” so, he’s excited, but at the same time he knows which side his bread is buttered on, and he doesn’t want her to murder him!  (Laughs)

STACY:  Well said.  I like that. (Laughs)

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

So, what does Kristen think of Xander at this point?

PAUL:  That, he’s a useful idiot.

STACY:  She actually needs him to go out into the world because she can’t leave.  When she does, she has to leave as Nicole, and then it becomes a whole other storyline.

PAUL:  It’s fun because Kristen is actually the boss, and Xander is convinced that they’re actually partners and that becomes our whole dynamic where she’s treating him as her lackey, but he’s like, “No, we’re partners, because I know your secret.”  Then, it becomes kind of a bargaining chip between the mask and all of that.  It’s so crazy because certain evil characters when they come back, they have to come back in disguise; whereas Xander’s always quite happy to be just jogging through town square with his shirt off after holding someone ransom or kidnapping a baby like, “Ah, whatever.”

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

Arianne, it’s been awhile since you got to play the villainess side of Nicole, and with this return to DAYS you get to play that side of her as well, even though it’s really Kristen. Do you enjoy playing the bad girl?

ARIANNE:  Stacy and I were just saying today that you have these conversations about the villain character, (and Paul, I’m sure you’ve felt a lot of this too) people hate you or they love to hate you, and you’re like, “Hey, it’s a good thing because I’m doing my job if you hate me,” but in order for the storyline to move, you’ve got to have a villain.  Nicole used to be kind of villain-ish but playing someone like Kristen who is such a valued villain on this show is just … oh, my God!

Stacy and Paul, what do you think is the most heinous thing your characters have done so far?

STACY:  The most heinous?  (Laughs). Wow.  You know what’s funny is that she’s done all of these things, and I don’t think she thinks what she does is bad.

PAUL:  It’s so funny because you totally would expect her to be like, “The other characters are evil.  We’re the good guys!”

STACY:  I mean honestly, so she kidnapped Nicole, and took her baby.  There’s Marlena and the window.  I mean, it’s hard when she’s done all of these crazy, horrible things.  I’ve just really enjoyed playing her because she’s smart, she’s sassy, she’s this brilliant, deviant person who just wants one thing, and there’s one thing on her mind, and everything else gets in her way.

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

Is the one thing Brady?

STACY:  Brady, Brady, Brady, and I think even Xander has to repeat it over and over again.  We were playing in rehearsal, and I think I had him do that.  I don’t remember the line, but I said something, and he goes, “Brady Black,” and I go, “Say it again,” just because I want to hear him say it again.  That’s her driving force.

What did Greg Vaughan and Eric Martsolf say when they found out about what the twist was?  Did you tell them?  How did they find out?

ARIANNE:  Well, Eric Martsolf always has a great chuckle.  He has a great laugh, and I think Greg Vaughan just stared at me for a minute.  Then, I told him about the mask process … about making the mask …. and how I thought I was going to pass out and die.  (Laughs)

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

Is putting on the mask an extremely weird experience?  How long does it take to put on? 

STACY:  About an hour?  It’s quick, and I thought we were going to suffocate when we were under that because I’ve never done my whole face before, but I’ve done body things. Make-up department is like, “You’re going to be fine.”  It was heavy too, really heavy.

ARIANNE:  Yeah, and because it’s so heavy, after a while, it starts to pull your skin down a little bit, and you’re like, “No, no!” (Laughs)

Did anybody else go running around with the mask on?

PAUL:  Oh yeah.  Everybody!

I knew it!

ARIANNE:  How could you not?

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

So, what is the relationship between the real Nicole and Xander, which we saw play out before her death?

PAUL:  She’s my wife!

So, Xander sees Nicole as his wife?

PAUL:  I’m happy to give Xander’s perspective on Nicole, and then Arianne can feel free to correct it.  (Laughs)

ARIANNE:  Alright, that sounds good.

Photo Credit JPI Studios

PAUL:  The way I’ve tried to handle it over the years in our ins and outs of this failed romance is that they’ve saddled poor Arianne with: this psycho chasing after her, and kidnapping her and her baby, and whisking her off to foreign lands – and also to Nashville.  When Xander first came into town, before they decided to make him a total psychopath, it was all working nicely, and Nicole wasn’t really on the up and up with Xander, and she wasn’t really honest about what her intentions were.  Meanwhile, Xander was involved in all of this chicanery with Serena, so once that metastasized into full-blown evil, and Nicole was aware of this, it shifted from, “I just really wanted to take this girl to the movies,” to, “Well, I guess I have to kill her now.”  (Laughs)  So, I think he’s just been playing that out ever since.  “Well, if I can’t date her, and if she won’t love me, then I guess I just have to torture her for the rest of her days.”  I think now on the other side of her supposed death, I think Xander has probably reconciled that his twisted romantic notions, or torture, or whatever he was doing with Nicole, is probably over, and he’s moving on to greener, more alive pastures like Sarah.  To be fair, I do think they’ve purposely made it confusing.  Not just for the audience, but for us.  There’s a real sense of, “Am I playing this to Nicole as Kristen, or do you want me to play this just to Nicole?”  Very often they just go, “No, just play it to Nicole,” because it’s funnier if for Xander it just occasionally slips his mind because she looks just like Nicole.  I’m kissing her… like he’s just enjoying the fact that he can.  “I never really got to kiss Nicole much, but this is Nicole’s face, so I’m going to.”  (Laughs)

ARIANNE:  That’s hilarious.

Ari, what would you say is their relationship?

ARIANNE:  Well, I’m certainly not as long-winded as that.  (Laughs)

PAUL:  He’s a creep!

ARIANNE:  He is a creep.  What cracks me up coming from Nicole is, “Ew, what a jerk.  He’s so gross.  Yuck, yuck!”  Like, really?  You’re not going to make that one work, huh Nicole?  When you reach that far back to the history of Xander and Nicole, it doesn’t have a lot of depth for the two characters because the next thing you know he’s trying to kill her and Eric.  It’s like that scary online dating when you go on one date and it didn’t work out because that guy is going to kill you.

PAUL:  Xander is like the ultimate bad Tinder date.

ARIANNE:  Totally. (Laughs)

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

That is classic.  The bad Tinder date.  That’s basically it.  Xander also apparently feels bad for Maggie (Suzanne Rogers) as she is having her bout with alcoholism.  Is that correct?

PAUL:  Yeah, I’m actually excited to see some of that stuff.  It was great doing it because I love Suzanne to bits.  I was very afraid of ruining Xander by making him too nice, but at the same time when I was first brought on to Days, I wasn’t offered a villain role originally.  Xander morphed into a more severe villain than I’d been led to believe he would be, and it happened quite quickly.  So, I’m actually quite happy to right the ship a little bit back towards he’s bad but he has some occasional glimmers of goodness in him.  So, Maggie really represents that because she’s actually quite nice to him and nurturing in a way that no other character on the show is.  When she has her dalliance with alcohol, he’s one of the few people who doesn’t judge her for it, and we finally get a little bit of Xander’s back story.  I’m actually excited to see those scenes because they felt nice to do, so hopefully they come across well.

Stacy, how did you track this storyline, when Arianne would be playing Kristen as Nicole? 

STACY:  Well if I didn’t get the script, I didn’t know about it.  So, if I wasn’t in the script that time, then I would be looking at Paul going, “What are we talking about?” and then, Ari had obviously already shot those scenes, so they were written for me, so I’m like, “What did I do?  What did I do?” It’s just scenes between Xander and Kristen at the Salem Inn.  Occasionally, you’d get somebody knocking at the door, but then I’d have to quickly put on my mask. (Laughs)

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

So, Ari did you ever have to go to Stacy to get tips about Kristen’s past or anything?

ARIANNE:  It was all about the future moving forward.  I think old, former Nicole had some crazy similarities with current Kristen because it felt kind the same as pulling some things from what she used to do … you know, just a couple of crazy chicks in one crazy character. (Laughs).

The other big part of this is Rolf’s diary that Xander has in his possession.  Is Kristen in cahoots with him on that?  Is she trying to get that from him?

STACY:  I think she is.

PAUL:  Yeah, that’s when she starts to get mad at him; when she realizes that he’s not just being her underling and he’s off scurrying around with his own agenda in the meantime.

ARIANNE:  He’s manipulating and doing his own thing.

PAUL:  I use it to start manipulating Eve (Kassie DePaiva).

So, what would you say to the fans to look forward to?  “You never know who you’re talking to on DAYS?” “Gird your masks?”

ARIANNE:  I definitely think fans know that’s not Nicole the way she is.  And, you never know who is going to give you a shot in the butt and turn you into somebody else.

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

Well, that’s true.  You never know.  One day they’re going to tell you that you’re playing Julie today! (Laughs)

ARIANNE: “Today the character of Julie will be played by…”

STACY: “… you will never guess by whom!”

PAUL:  This was fun.  This is a fun way to do it.  Let’s all do all of our interviews together moving forward!

So, what have you thought of the plot twist? What do you think of the Nicole mask and the performances and comments made here by Arianne, Stacy, and Paul? Share your thoughts via the comment section below.

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GH icon Genie Francis chats with Michael Fairman about her return to the soap as Laura after being taken off-contract earlier this year. Leave A Comment

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