Interview!

#TBT - Billy Miller

Credit: ABC

This interview originally appeared in the April 8, 2008 issue of Soap Opera Digest

A few minutes into the interview, Billy Miller ducks out of a crowded New York City street and into a phone booth. “I have a hard enough time talking about myself, much less walking around in public doing it,” he explains, adding of his chosen profession, “It’s an odd job, man.”

For the hard-working Texas native, that it is. He got into acting as an undergraduate when he switched his major from business to film, but “didn’t have the cojones,” to pursue it. “My parents didn’t go to college and it was hard enough for them to swallow that I’d gone from trying to get a real degree to film,” he recalls. “My dad had a mini-heart attack, but came around — and how he’s a big Texas guy who watches daytime TV!”

But before AMC came along, he had almost given up on a career in front of the camera. After college, he’d moved to L.A. and found employment at a production management firm. (“I worked in the mailroom. Absolutely loathed the position.”) When he gave notice, one of the managers encouraged him to act and sent him off to the Wilhelmina agency, which signed him. Commercials (including spots for Pizza Hut and JCPenney) followed, but after a bad experience with a manager, he soured on to the biz. “I quit [acting] for two years, and focused on building bars, which I’ve done since I was 17,” with the small firm he still runs, 4M. “I’ve just been in that business all my adult life,” he shrugs, “and it’s good to not only be thinking about being an evil terror in Pine Valley all day long.”

AMC came about when he found new (and improved) management. “My first audition, first one back in two years and I got it,” he beams. “I got a call on Tuesday telling me to move to New York on Thursday, packed my stuff, called my girlfriend and said I wasn’t going to make dinner on Friday!”

Sven months later, he’s thrilled to be making a name for himself as the show’s newest baddie, even though he lost his first setside mentor, Alexa Havins (ex-Babe). “Alexa was like, ‘Let me show you around! Let me find you a place to live!’ Then, poof, she left. She kind of handed me off like a baton,” he grins. ‘Here, take care of this kid.’ And everybody did! I couldn’t ask to be in a better places.

Just The Facts

Birthday: September 17

Romantic Status: Miller’s girlfriend is an art director at an ad agency in Los Angeles. Being separated “is tough, but at least when I get yelled at now, it’s over the phone!”

Tell Us Something We Don’t Know: “A little-known fact about Bobbie Eakes [Krystal]? She makes the world’s greatest onion rings.”

Dressing Room Style: “I refuse to do any decorating until my one-year anniversary. It’s bad luck.”

 

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