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Y&R’s Eric Braeden Remembers His Former On-Screen Nemesis Nick Benedict: “He Couldn’t Have Been A Nicer Guy to Work With”

Photo: CBS and ABC

Earlier this week, the daytime community was saddened to learn of the passing of Nick Benedict.  The former soap heartthrob, who had first appeared on All My Children as Phil Brent in 1973, eventually landed on The Young and the Restless as photographer Michael Scott in 1980-1981.

It was at Y&R that Benedict worked with soap icon, Eric Braeden (Victor) as well as Meg Bennett (ex-Julia). In story, Victor’s wife, Julia worked as a model to escape the controlled life Victor had forced her into. Julia’s photographer Michael Scott was really smitten with her and eventually the two had an affair and she became pregnant.  At this time, Victor believed he was sterile.  Outraged and jealous, Victor kidnapped Michael and held him hostage in a bomb shelter on the Newman ranch and fed him rats!  As part of his plot, Victor set up camera and forced Michael to watch him sleeping with Julia.  Eventually, Julia discovered Michael and freed him from captivity.  Next, a struggle ensured between Michael and Victor, causing Julia to falls down the stairs and lose the baby.  In the twist, it was confirmed that the child was Victor’s all along.

Speaking with Michael Fairman TV, Braeden recalled working with the late Nick Benedict, sharing: “Those were memorable scenes and he couldn’t have been a nicer guy to work with.  Those scenes were certainly memorable: feeding him baked rats in Victor’s dungeon below the ranch. (Laughs) Oh, my God! That was Bill Bell (co-creator, and head writer, Y&R) at this best. I had worked with Nick Benedict’s father, Richard Benedict, who directed me in a nighttime television show. I just remember Nick just being a very nice man, and very nice to work with, no problem.”

When asked if he and Benedict shared any laughs on how outlandish Michael’s kidnapping by Victor was, Braeden offered up, “Of course, all the time! I thought, ‘are you serious’? Let’s go! I am going to punish you for having an affair with my wife!”

Photo: Everett Collection/CBS

The Genoa City icon also recalled working with Meg Bennett, expressing, “Sweet Meg. She was very pretty and bright, a very bright woman.”  As Y&R fans know, Meg Bennett went on to be a script writer on Y&R from 1981-1987, and is the wife of former General Hospital head writer, Bob Guza.

So Y&R fans, do you recall the classic scenes of Victor holding Michael captive and feeding him rats featuring the late Nick Benedict? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.

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One Life to Live Alum Jonathan Groff Wins First Tony Award For ‘Merrily We Roll Along’

Finally, in his third Tony Award nomination, the multi-talented Jonathan Groff, was named the Tony winner in the Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical for his work in the Broadway revival of Sondheim’s Merrily We Roll Along at the 77th annual Tony Awards broadcast on CBS.

In one of the hotly contested categories of the night, Groff bested Brody Grant for The Outsiders, Dorian Harewood for The Notebook, Brian d’Arcy James for Days of Wine and Roses, and Oscar and Olivier Award winner Eddie Redmayne for Cabaret at the Kit Kat Club.

Many thought Groff should have won a Tony back in 2007 for his performance in the original Broadway cast of Spring Awakening, but ‘Merrily’ was the ticket to victory.

One Life to Live fans may remember Groff played the teenager Henry Mackler back in 2007, in what was to be a long arc of a storyline involving a school shooting, but his role as cut short after 11 episodes, due to the real-life Virginia Tech school shooting in April of 2007.

Delivering the most emotional and heartfelt acceptance speech Tony night, Jonathan began. “I grew up in a house surrounded by cornfields in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. I was raised by my parents, Jim and Julie Groff, and my brother David, and the three of them were sitting right there. Thank you for letting me dress up like Mary Poppins when I was three. Thank you for letting me act out scenes from I Love Lucy on my 10th birthday. Thank you for always allowing my freak flag to fly without ever making me feel weird about it.”

He added, “Even if they didn’t always understand me “my family knew the lifesaving power of fanning the flame of a young person’s passions without judgment. I walked through life with an open heart because you let me know that I could. Thank you to all of my teachers back in Pennsylvania, especially Sue Fisher, who told me I could do this for a living.”

Speaking to how Broadway has impacted his life, Groff further teared-up and expressed, “I moved to New York exactly 20 years ago this year and I got a job waiting tables and became a volunteer for Broadway Cares/Equity Fights Aids. All I wanted was to be a part of this community. A thank you to everyone involved in Spring Awakening who not only made that dream come true, but also inspired me to come out of the closet when I was 23. I’m now 39 and musical theater is still saving my soul.”

“Maria Friedman, thank you for letting me be your Franklin Shepherd in this production of Merrily and allowing me the chance to accept respect and express both the lightest and darkest parts of myself,” Groff continued. “Daniel Radcliffe and Lindsay Mendez, you are more than old friends, you are soul mates, and I’m looking forward to watching each other change for the rest of our lives. Thank you to every member of the extraordinary cast for lifting this Merrily into the spiritual stratosphere.”

Groff concluded with, “And finally, I just want to say that when I was a kid in Pennsylvania, I used to record the Tony Awards on a VHS tape and watch the performances over and over again. And to actually be able to be a part of making theater in this city and just as much to be able to watch the work of this incredible, incredible community, has been the greatest gift and pleasure of my life. I thank you and thank you so much for this honor.”

So were you happy to see Jonathan Groff win the Tony for Best Performance by a Leading Actor in a Musical? What did you think of his acceptance speech? Let us know in the comment section below.

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General Hospital

Bryan Craig Wishes General Hospital’s Maurice Benard ‘Happy Father’s Day’; Is He Trolling Us … or is This the Ultimate Return Tease?

Sunday is Father’s Day, and it’s the time when many soap stars and celebrities take to social media to give love and shout outs to their dads.

In an another post that got General Hospital fans to take notice, two-time Daytime Emmy-winner Bryan Craig (ex-Morgan Corinthos) dropped a blast from the past photo of himself alongside Maurice Benard (Sonny). Accompanying the photo, Bryan wrote: ‘Happy Father’s Day” Maurice Benard.

The post on X comes on the heels of a previous response by Craig to a post on Frank Valentini’s (executive producer, General Hospital) comment to On the Red Carpet, where he revealed that this summer, “A former cast member is coming back. And I think that the audience will go crazy for HIM.” In response, Craig teased, “Who could it be…”

Photo: ABC

Now on Sunday responses to Craig’s post were met with varied responses from GH fans from “Stop playing with us” to “Now you’re just trolling us, lol. We really need you back right now.”  Still others took it as a potential confirmation that Craig is the mystery man on his way back to General Hospital stating, “I hope you’re going to back to GH!” to “Can’t wait!”

Craig last appeared on GH from 2013-2016 and made a brief return in 2018. Since departing GH, Bryan has appeared in numerous TV and film projects including: Freeform’s Good Trouble and ABC’s Grand Hotel.

So, is Bryan Craig yanking GH viewers chain, or is he slyly teasing us, because he knows he is the one returning to the ABC soap opera? Weigh-in on your theories below.

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Days Of Our Lives

Jonah Robinson Joins the Cast of Days of our Lives as Dr. Mark Greene

If you caught last Wednesday’s June 12th episode of Days of our Lives, a new doctor came running into Horton Town Square shirtless; much to the delight and then eventual chagrin of Leo Stark (Greg Rikaart).

Enter actor Jonah Robinson who is now on the Peacock streaming soap opera in the recurring role of Dr. Mark Greene. We meet Mark when Leo tries to hit on him, only to have Mark clarify to Leo he is straight, shocking Leo that his gaydar could have been so off.

Later, Mark is at University Hospital and stepping in for Chanel’s (Raven Bowens) doctor who was called away for the day and he assures Chanel and Johnny (Carson Boatman) that their unborn baby has a strong heartbeat, and at the moment is doing fine.

Photo: JPI

During the conversation, Mark reveals he is the big brother to his little sister, Felicity (Kennedy Garcia), with whom Chanel loves when she comes to the bake shop.  There was also a little ‘wink-wink’ moment, when Johnny recalls that the doctor on the hit NBC medical drama, ER, was named Dr. Mark Greene (Anthony Edwards), to which Salem’s Mark Greene, says he was named after.

Taking to his Instagram, Robinson shared, “Meet Dr. Mark Greene. So excited to be joining @dayspeacock. It’s an honor to be @kennedyjean04 @louis_tomeo ‘s big brother.”

Photo: JRobinsonIG

So, it looks like there are 3 Greene siblings.  Will we eventually meet the parents?

Before Days of our Lives, Jonah was seen on Peacock’s Daisy Jones and the Six, and has appeared in independent movies and musical theatre productions throughout his career.

Do you hope DAYS expands Jonah’s role as the Greene family becomes more entrenched in story? What are you first impressions? Comment below.

 

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