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Catching Up With Eileen Davidson

Soap Opera Digest: How did you react when you learned you would be playing Kristen?

Eileen Davidson: It kind of made sense, the fact that Stacy [Haiduk] is playing Kristen [on DAYS] and I would be doing this Peacock version of it. I think I even told [Head Writer] Ron Carlivati that it was just fun for me to revisit a role that I love so much and helped create.

Digest: What was it like to step back into her hair, makeup and wardrobe?

Davidson: It was fun, it was like old times. This character is kind of in my blood, so it was quite easy to slip right in.

Digest: Tell me what it’s like when you go back to DAYS in general. It’s been awhile since your last run.

Davidson: I’m blessed to work with terrific people; when I go back to Y&R, it’s kind of the same thing. These are my homies, I love these people, so it’s great for me to see everybody again, and it’s like a mini-reunion. It’s just really, really fun. Again, the situation is so strange but I was just really happy to be able to go back, revisit the role and see all these great people, the actors and also the behind-the-camera people, production and everybody. So, it’s a huge plus on every level.

Digest: You and Lisa Rinna (Billie) appeared on THE REAL HOUSEWIVES OF BEVERLY HILLS together. Did you wonder what it would be like to act together after appearing as yourselves together for so long?

Davidson: I wish I could say I did but no, I really didn’t. We’re both professionals, we know what we’re doing, we both like each other, we enjoy each other, so I thought it’d be fun. Plus we had texted, “This is gonna be so much fun. I can’t wait to do this.” So, we kind of already laid the groundwork, so we knew it would be fun. It was super-fun, super-easy — it was great.

Digest: What was it like to play Sister Mary Moira again?

Davidson: It was great. These [characters] are all my children, I created these children, so it was really fun to revisit her. I always loved that character so much. I even brought my own ruler from home. The first thing I said when I was doing it back in the ’90s was, “If I’m playing this character, you’ve got to get me a ruler.” This time, I decided to take one from my son’s room, so I threw it in my bag the day I worked because I knew I was going to use it. I kind of worked it into the scene.

Digest: It turned out to be Kristen masquerading as Sister Mary. How was that to do?

Davidson: I didn’t have to be rigid in my portrayal of [Sister Mary] because it was Kristen being her. Sister Mary has brown eyes and Susan has brown eyes. Even though I got the contact lenses, I realized I didn’t have to wear them because it was Kristen playing Sister Mary, so it didn’t have to be an exact Sister Mary. It was kind of a brain teaser for me.

Digest: When you look back at 1996 through ’98, do you ever marvel at how much you did and how many different characters you played?

Davidson: I just remember that I was really, really tired. I mean, it was an incredible amount of dialogue. I think I saved a script — I must have it somewhere in storage — I had something like 40 scenes out of 40. I had 90 pages of dialogue because all of the characters were working with each other. It was insane. I don’t know how I did it. I loved it but I was so tired because I was just running for my life. Even though I loved doing it, it was quite exhausting.

Digest: How does it feel to be doing it now?

Davidson: Well, I’m not playing all of the characters, so it’s nothing. It’s a walk in the park.

Digest: Would you be open to playing any of the roles going forward?

Davidson: You know, it would depend. I’m open to anything but it would really depend. I have nothing but the greatest respect for Stacy, we ended up talking on set, I love her. I’ve always loved her when she was Patty on Y&R. I’ve always gotten along with her very, very well and she’s a fantastic actress and I only have the best feelings toward her. I’m having fun just doing a little hit-and-run, so I wouldn’t mind doing it again, depending on what it was.