GABBING WITH THE GUINEYS
Rebecca Budig (Greenlee) and Bob Guiney’s (THE BATCHELOR) newlywed glow has not faded one bit. “Married life is amazing,” professed Budig, who was thrilled to get a bag of beauty products, including some of Jessica Simpson’s Dessert line.
“It is sooo good,” she raved. “You have no idea. This dessert lip gloss is really good for the show. Cameron (Mathison, Ryan) hates lip gloss because it’s icky, but he loves kissing me with this stuff.”
SPEAKING OF CAMERON
Kisses were the last thing on his mind, unless they were kisses for a certain baby boy named Lucas.
“It’s the best thing in the whole world,” beamed Mathison. “He’s 17 months, but who’s counting? He’s walking around like a little maniac. He’s so much fun. It’s the simple things that make me love him. I can’t get home fast enough because I know he’ll come running to me and he’ll not want me to put him down. Then we go upstairs and give him his bath. We have a ritual we do every night. We watch THOMAS THE TANK ENGINE and he runs around and tries on his shoes. He loves his shoes, he plays around and then I put him to bed. I’m very lucky.”
The Mathisons are also getting settled into their new home. “We just bought a brownstone,” shared Mathison. “We had it gutted and re-built, so we have about 4,400 square feet in Manhattan, a backyard and a basement. He’s got his own floor in a brownstone.”
Leven Rambin arrived with her mother, Karen. The poised 14-year-old (yup, 14!) told us that she had done some research on autism before testing for the role of Lily.
“I looked it up on the Internet a little bit before I auditioned,” she said. “I wasn’t aware of where it stops and where it starts. Lily is not very severe. My friend, he was severely autistic. I used to baby-sit him.”
Since her mother was right there we got the scoop on her daughter’s name. “When I was six months pregnant with her, I found out on my birthday I was having a girl,” she recalled. “The next day my husband was misdiagnosed with grade four melanoma.” Once, while he was in the hospital, he asked his wife to call the library and “find out all the different names that mean life in various languages. Leven means life in Dutch. I can tell it now without crying. It took years and years before I could repeat that without crying. He’s fine now. He’s so proud of her.”
James Scott (Ethan) may be new to daytime, but he’s got the basics down pat. “It stopped being intimidating and now it’s exciting,” Scott said in a dreamy accent that would give Hugh Grant some cause for concern. “I’ve been really lucky. [It’s] such a wonderful cast of talented people.”
Viewers know that Zach is Ethan’s father, so could his mother be far behind? “It does seem to me that there is an opening. How fantastic would that be? Can you imagine having to deal with the emotional thing with the father and then your mother comes back? Ugh, I’d be crying. I’d be doing an Alexa Havins (Babe) and crying every day for a month.”
NEVER TOO YOUNG
Young soap vet Jacob Young (JR) is happy to call Pine Valley home now. “It’s the best thing that I’ve ever done in my life, absolutely,” he raved. “The best character I’ve played. I’ve been the Junior on every show. I played Eric Forrester Jr. on THE BOLD AND THE BEAUTIFUL, Lucas Lorenzo Spencer Jr. on GENERAL HOSPITAL, and now Adam Chandler Jr. They are powerhouse people. I couldn’t be more fortunate. It’s been an incredible ride and it’s been a fun, fun time. This has definitely been the most defined character.”
JR is now following in Adam’s footsteps. “I don’t necessarily believe in astrology so much, but David (Canary, Adam) is a Virgo, and I’m a Virgo as well, so we’ve definitely connected in a lot of ways. I’m always telling him that I respect his work and he says, ‘What you do is amazing, also.’ We have a great rapport together, and that’s what makes the scenes so easy to do and so much fun.”
Alexa Havins (Babe) arrived a little late with her real-life beau Justin Bruening (Jamie) and proudly showed us her new locket.
“I’ll show you guys this…nobody knows,” she whispered. “My locket has his picture in it.” Awww.
Havins graciously accepted our compliments on her recent work, specifically the scenes with Ace and Kevin Buchanan. “I’ve been working so much I don’t get to watch it (AMC) during the week. I try to catch it on SOAPnet. I really need to TiVo it. The writing is so solid I can’t be anything but good. I feel like I would disappoint Megan (McTavish, head writer) and all the writers if I delivered anything less. Today I had some solid material and I thanked her.”
Havins had another tidbit to share. The secret about Bess/Miranda is finally out! She’s a he. “They are all boys,” Havins confessed. “They are twins and they are dolls.”
SPEAKING OF THE BABIES…
Finally, we cornered the Emmy-Award-winning head writer Megan McTavish and asked that famous question. “Bianca is going to get her baby back, I just won’t tell you when,” she teased.
Oh, well, patience is a virtue, they say.
SUDDENLY (SURPRISING) SUSAN
The next night, Sept. 23, ALL MY CHILDREN cast and crew descended upon the ritzy Central Park South restaurant San Domenico for a surprise party for Susan Lucci (Erica). The occasion? To announce the date — Jan. 28 — that she will receive her star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
“I was completely shocked,” shared Lucci. “I thought that Helmut (Huber, her husband) and I were coming to dinner. Then I had to ask what it was for because it was huge and it’s not my birthday.”
Lucci was clearly touched about getting her very own star. “I’m so mindful of how I started as a little girl and my dreams, and so here I am!”
There were photos of Lucci through the years on specially made gold lamp shades. As for the food, there was ravioli, shrimp and lots of other tasty hors d’oeuvres, plus Italian pastries and a sparkly cake in the form of — what else — a star. “I even have a special plate decorated with my name,” smiled Lucci, pointing out all the goodies on her plate. “The woman who made our daughter’s wedding cake, made the cake tonight.”
Unfortunately Lucci’s daughter, Liza Huber (Gwen, Passions), couldn’t be there. “She made a video,” revealed Lucci. “She and I were on the phone for an hour yesterday, and she never gave a hint at all!”
Lucci’s ALL MY CHILDREN family also shared some kind words about this milestone:
Eden Riegel (Bianca): “It’s exciting. She’s getting her star on the Walk of Fame. There’s a sense of permanence attached to it.”
Alicia Minshew (Kendall): “No one deserves it more than her. I missed the surprise because I was working but I got to come in and see her in the afterglow and she was so happy. She’s one of the hardest-working women in show business. I love her as a person, so I’m thrilled to be here.”
Walt Willey (Jackson): “Susan is beloved by millions. The idea of honoring her in this way — and getting to surprise her — is a wonderful thing. Susan’s been nothing but wonderful to me the 17 years I’ve been on the show.”
Cameron Mathison (Ryan):
“I was talking to (wife) Vanessa on the way here and we decided that Susan’s biggest accomplishment is her incredible longevity in her career and staying true to who she is through all those years of success. That’s something we could all aspire to. I have a little crush on Susan, but don’t tell her that.”
Eva La Rue (Maria): “There are people who think we are famous because we’re big fish in a small pond. Susan is a big fish everywhere, and she is the only daytime star, in my opinion, who’s truly a household name. She’s an icon. We’re so excited for her and everybody’s behind her.”
Brian Frons, President, ABC Daytime: “When I heard that Susan got the star, my first reaction was, ‘You mean she doesn’t already have one?’ She’s done so much in daytime, in prime time, on Broadway, so I think it’s long overdue.”
Head writer Megan McTavish: “The first day I walked into ALL MY CHILDREN, it was identified in my mind as Susan Lucci. I’ve written a great deal for her over the years and I’ve always been so thrilled with how it’s come back. She’s one of the rarest talents we have and this honor is absolutely appropriate, wonderful and well-deserved.”
Executive producer Julie Hanan Carruthers: “It’s always nice to see a star get a star. She is the ultimate daytime star and she’s certainly earned her right to be on the Walk of Fame. I’m thrilled for her.”