ICYMI Bryan R. Dattilo (Lucas, DAYS) Interview

“I guess I have a title, which I like. I’m The Comeback Kid,” smiles Bryan R. Dattilo, reflecting on his latest DAYS return as Lucas Horton. “I never like leaving, but coming back is always fun.”

Dattilo’s return hasn’t been all smooth sailing, however. “I still don’t have a parking pass on the lot,” he admits. “Every time I go through security, I’m stuck at the gate. A couple of times they were like, ‘You’re not on the list. Sorry.’ And I’m like, ‘I’m an actor on the show. I swear. Bryan Dattilo. Stage 42.’ I have to give a speech to the guy.”

This time around, Lucas resurfaces in Salem, chasing after his runaway daughter, Allie, who’s pregnant. Dattilo wasn’t aware of the story twist until he got on set. “They never tell me anything,” he confides. “The multiple times I’ve come back, I have to go to the makeup room [to find out what’s going on]. I ask Deidre Decker, my makeup artist, ‘What’s happened in the last six months? What do I need to know?’ She’ll update me.”

Dattilo was intrigued by Decker’s report. “I thought it was going to be a great storyline, which it has been,” says Dattilo. “There were a couple of things that transpired where I was like, ‘You’ve got to be kidding me. Really?’ Then there were some things where I was like, ‘Thank God, it’s headed back in this direction.’ ”

Sharing the screen with newcomer Lindsay Arnold (Allie) and developing their father/daughter dynamic has come easily for Dattilo. “She’s so emotionally available as an actor,” praises Dattilo. “During scenes she’s very open to the other actors’ choices, and she reacts off them, which is good. She doesn’t act in a bubble on her own. She’s very talented.”

Aside from his new TV daughter, Dattilo has also welcomed the opportunity to connect with some people he hadn’t worked with in awhile. Among them is longtime leading lady Alison Sweeney (ex-Sami). “Working with Ali is always great,” notes Dattilo. “The scenes we have together, I can just kind of coast in them, because I ask a couple of questions, and she just spews all the dialogue. That is kind of fun in the sense that it’s not that challenging at home. I don’t have much homework.”

Dattilo’s also enjoyed collaborating with Arianne Zucker (Nicole) again. “That was exceptional writing. I really was so pleased at how they re- introduced the two characters to each other,” he enthuses. “When you have characters who have history and you put them in the same storyline after a long period of time, you get to play those little moments. It makes the scene a lot richer and a lot deeper. And, of course, Ari’s amazing, her pace and her delivery. She’s so honest about everything she does. There’s never an acting moment, which I love.”

During his time away from DAYS, Dattilo has kept busy with “lots of fatherly stuff,” he says. “My son [Gabe] just graduated from X-ray tech school. He’s going to be an X-ray technician. He’s not modeling anymore, which is so weak because he’s nothing but GQ muscle and leanness. And my 5-year-old daughter [Delilah] is doing Zoom classes, which my wife [Elizabeth] is sitting in on. She’s teaching our daughter.”

Meanwhile, on the work front, Dattilo’s been “auditioning” via self-submissions. “I do a lot of that and at-home taping, which I’m in love with now,” says Dattilo. “I’m waiting to hear about this independent film. I got called back last week. It films in Bryan, Texas. I was like, ‘Dude, it films in Bryan, Texas? I have to get it.’ Hopefully, I’ll play the sheriff in this cool teen movie. That will be fun, because I’ve got a serious Southern accent.”

Now that he’s back at DAYS, Dattilo has been focusing on that and having a great time doing it. “I love being back and working with Sweeney and Zucker and the young girl who plays Allie,” he says. “And then there’s always Lauren Koslow [Kate], who I love bouncing off scenes with. I also got to work with Chad, which was kind of nice, because I’m a big Billy Flynn fan. He’s my favorite actor on the show. I could watch him for hours. I get a kick out of his choices. He’s captivating. I really enjoy his work.”