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ICYMI Joshua Morrow And Rory Gibson Interview

Soap Opera Digest: Rory, let’s go back to your audition since that’s when you two met. What kind of vibe did you get from Joshua when he came in to read with you?

Rory Gibson: I came in and Josh was immediately just super-chill. I could tell without him saying anything that he’s this cool, laid- back dude. I was already feeling comfortable around him and he went out of his way to make sure everyone in the room was comfortable, too.

Digest: Josh, how were you feeling about this young guy in front of you?

Joshua Morrow: I asked him, “You ready?”, and when we locked eyes, I knew, “This is my son.”

Digest: Rory, did you feel that instant connection?

Gibson: Yeah, I did. This was actually my first TV screen test ever, so I didn’t really know what to expect. I just wanted to commit to that moment and be “there”, and Josh met me right there, so I was ready to go.

Digest: How did you feel about the audition after you walked away?

Gibson: I just knew it went well but I felt the chances were slim because there were a couple of other dudes [testing], but for me, it was a great experience that I now had under my belt. I hoped that it would lead to future auditions with Y&R.

Digest: Joshua, did any of the producers or casting people ask for your opinion? Morrow: No, they used to ask what we thought, but now they just ask us to leave the room [chuckles]. Just as I walked out after Rory’s audition, I jokingly said, “Well, I think we’re done here,” but they didn’t ask for my opinion or what I thought. But, thankfully, they went with the right guy. I also read with Conner Floyd [Chance], who did a great job, but Rory was the clear favorite.

Digest: Rory, how soon did you find out that you got the job?

Gibson: My agent and my manager were calling me about five minutes after I left the CBS lot. Then I hear, “They called us…” and I was blown away by how fast it happened.

Digest: Joshua, when did you find out?

Morrow: It was a couple of days later and I was just glad, because Rory was the guy I wanted to play Noah. It’s unfortunate that he’s so ugly and tough to look at, you know, but we’re making do. On Y&R, we adapt.

Gibson: Thanks, Dad. Josh reached out to me once he found out and texted, “Yo, dude, welcome aboard.” I thought that was really sweet, and then he followed up with, “It’s too bad about your face.”

Morrow: I wanted our relationship to get off on the right foot by being honest. He’s a great actor, just not a very good-looking man.

Digest: When did you see each other for the first time after the reading?

Gibson: I saw Josh the day before I actually started and we had a nice long talk, where he reassured me that everyone here is super-cool and gave me great advice.

Morrow: My advice to new people is always the same, that this is a team sport. I tell them to be prepared, know your stuff and don’t be afraid to take chances. I really like it when people find little things that make their character unique. I like actors who aren’t afraid to take big swings. This was the same advice Peter Bergman [Jack] gave me when I started, so I’ve sort of taken that mantle of telling new people to be a part of something because this is a show of very rich history.

Digest: Rory, who was your first scene with and how did it go?

Gibson: Josh and Michelle [Stafford, Phyllis]. They were in a bedroom at the villa and I popped in and basically said, “Hey,” like, “I’m back.” I had rehearsed that scene several times and when we actually got into it, I messed up. I don’t typically get nervous but I was mortified just because it was my first day and I already messed up. I looked back at Josh and he said, “It doesn’t matter, dude. Everyone does it.” That immediately calmed me down.

Digest: Your first day was cast-heavy because it was Victoria’s wedding. Did that make it easier or more intimidating because there was so much going on?

Gibson: I don’t think I could have gotten any luckier in my first two weeks actually, because when most new people come on, three or four months will pass and they’re still meeting people for the first time, whereas practically everyone was there at Victoria’s wedding. I had quite a few lines on my first day, so after I got that out of the way, I was able to relax and meet pretty much the entire cast from the get-go, which was sick. As you know, at these weddings we’re there all day, every day for about a week-and-a-half to two weeks, so we’re all together the entire time.

Digest: Joshua is well known for keeping the mood light on set. Is that something you appreciated, Rory?

Gibson: Oh, of course. I know when I have scenes with Josh, it’s gonna be a good time — even when we have more serious material. And that’s the biggest trip with Josh: He could be cracking jokes, and 10 seconds later he’s playing frustration or anger. It’s just baffling to me how he can flip that switch, but yeah, it’s always easy and fun with him.

Digest: What’s it like to hear that, Josh?

Morrow: I take my job very seriously but I really love being someone that when I come on stage, everyone knows there won’t be any drama or ego. I want everyone to have fun while being highly efficient. Rory is a perfect person to share scenes with because he’s just very chill. There are times when the scenes require more depth or whatever and I know where that line is with the actor. I don’t want anyone taken out of their process. I know when to just shut up and let that person do their thing.

Gibson: I remember I had to be crying and all upset for a scene and Josh was walking by and realized right away that I was trying to get in that zone. Normally he’d be like, “Hey bud, what’s up?” But he gave me a pat on the shoulder and said, “All right, let’s do this.”

Digest: What has been your favorite scene together so far?

Morrow: You know, in this business, you’re forced to have memory dumps so you can learn the next day’s script. I really can’t remember.

Gibson: It was the Christmas Eve episode. It was the first serious scene that me and Josh ever had and he looked at me and I just knew I wanted something intense. In my head, I’m like, “I’m going for this, I’m going all-in,” and Josh was right there with me the whole time. I don’t think either of us blinked through that entire scene. I knew where I wanted to get to, and Josh had figured out where I was going, and because of that, he brought something to the table that I wasn’t expecting and that got me even deeper than I had planned. I could just feel such genuine concern from a father to his son.

Morrow: I remember now, we were in Society at the bar and you were telling me about the woman who broke your heart in London.

Gibson: Yeah, that’s it.

Morrow: Okay, so that’s my favorite scene, too. That’s a solid one.

Digest: Rory, you recently marked your one-year anniversary. How does it feel?

Gibson: I just can’t believe it’s already been a year. That’s insane to me. It’s one of those things where it makes perfect sense but at the same time, I’m just shocked that I already have so many memories with so many people I work with.

Digest: Have you guys ever had lunch together?

Morrow: I’m sort of a loner when it comes to that. Missy [Claire Egan, Chelsea] and Amelia [Heinle, Victoria] are able to drag me out of my room because I can’t say no to them. I love Rory, so if he ever said, “Hey, we’re going out to eat?”, I’d say, “All right, let’s do it!” Reaching out and eating with co-stars is not one of the things I’m great at. I love them all, but I tend to watch movies in my room while eating a sandwich.

Digest: Have you guys socialized outside of work?

Morrow: We both have a love of Viking movies and we couldn’t wait to see The Northman. Rory drove out to where I live, which is fairly far from L.A., and watched that movie with me.

Digest: Rory, you lost your dad in real life. Is there anything about Joshua that reminds you of him?

Gibson: My dad was a big, strong guy because he used to play professional football, but he could always be light and silly. He was as sensitive as he was strong and he was as funny as he was smart and he was as brave as he was willing to be vulnerable. I feel like Josh checks all those boxes as well. They’re both great men.

Digest: How would you sum up your relationship?

Morrow: Great! I love Rory. He’s a good dude. There’s nothing forced and I don’t have to pretend I like him more than I do. It goes without saying that if I ended up in jail one night, I know I could call Rory, and he’d come get me. And If he lived near me, we would hang out all of the time.

Gibson: I would say it’s very easy and fun with Josh, and there’s a family dynamic to our friendship. We’ve only known each other a little over a year but I know if I need advice or just someone to talk to, I can call him. We’ve gotten very close, and he’s the best.

Digest: What would you both like to see happen for Nick and Noah?

Gibson: Honestly, I want to see Noah go into kind of a chaotic place. I think we got a tease of that a while back after all the Tessa stuff, and then Allie came around and everything is fine and dandy. I feel like Noah’s in a place where [the writers] could get a little crazy with him and I really want to dive into that. I’ve always enjoyed playing unhinged characters that are dealing with their own stuff and I would like to see Noah fall off the deep end a little bit. Noah and Nick have always been close, so having Nick see his son in this disturbed state would be really unsettling for him. I think Nick would be one of the few people that could actually pull Noah out of that dark spot.

Digest: What about you, Joshua?

Morrow: I want to see Noah struggle because we have barely scratched the surface of what Rory can do. I want the show to push this guy and I know he’s up to that challenge. And then obviously with that would come Nick’s support of his son and helping him. I’ve done this show for almost 30 years and I’ve run the gamut of everything that you need to accomplish. It’s Rory’s time.