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Quick Take With Don Diamont (Bill, BOLD AND BEAUTIFUL)

Don Diamont

Howard Wise/

Don, let me first just say how happy I am to see Bill back in story! “As am I. I think this story is just great. Obviously, we’ll have to see what the boss [Bradley Bell, head writer/executive producer] has in mind for how it unfolds, but I think having this completely outside love interest [Poppy] kind of show up out of nowhere is just great. It’s just a really good story — and I do think it’s a possibility, maybe, that as this relationship progresses, Katie, who has just rebuffed any attempt that Bill has made to put the family back together, is like, ‘Whoa!’ That would be fun to explore! But anyway, I’m all-in on this. I think it’s a really terrific story.”

What was it like to first meet Romy and to start finding a groove together as scene partners? “Oh, it wasn’t difficult. Romy is terrific. Such a nice person — just super-nice, no affectation. And she’s a terrific actress, easy to work with. She’s very organic. She’s beautiful and talented and very excited to be on the show and to be in this story and we just work really well together.”

What do you think it is about Poppy that Bill found so captivating years ago at the music festival and clearly still finds captivating today? “Well, it’s kind of like what he said, that she was so extraordinarily uninhibited and, you know, sexy and just kind of willing to to be out there in such an uninhibited way. He’s seen her dancing and doing her thing and then beyond that, there was just a very genuine connection that extended well beyond the physical part of it and when he saw her again, it all kind of came rushing back to him. He’s been in such a shut-down place, with the Katie thing falling apart and his sort of misguided efforts with Brooke and then Katie at the same time. You know, he was just not in a good place and so this is kind of an awakening for him. It’s just very genuine and brings up feelings for him that he hasn’t had in a very, very, very long time. Maybe the feelings this brings up for him with Poppy are feelings he didn’t have with Brooke and didn’t even have with Katie. This is just something out of his past and, as he articulate on the show, well, if he was so taken with her, why did it not go beyond that evening [that they first met]? And it was also a point in his life where he almost consciously was not going to let anything distract him from building his empire into what he has. It was both feet back to work after that evening. He never even intended to go to the festival in the first place! It’s not like he was there to go to the festival, he was in San Francisco on business. His friend gave him a ticket so it was, ‘Okay, I’ll go check it out,’ and lo and behold, Poppy was there. So that turned into something completely unexpected, something he never intended.”

The scenes where Liam was giving Bill a hard time about being at the festival — “Can’t quite picture you camping out in a tent” and that sort of thing — were very charming. “Yes, we had some fun with that! It was written to be that way and then [Scott Clifton, Liam and I] kind of expanded on it a little bit. I thought that was very real. Listen, I love working with my boys [Clifton and Darin Brooks, Wyatt]! I love their relationships and as I’ve said a million times, they’re just such good people and such fine actors. I think the stuff that we do — both written and the stuff that is improvised — is what you just described, really charming and genuine. I really love those relationships.”

Liam and Wyatt presumably have a lot less to worry about with Bill courting Poppy than they did last year with Sheila! “Well, yeah, can’t say that I blame them for that [laughs]! Listen, they’re not unaware of where their dad has been and what’s happened with his relationships and I think it really does mater to them that their dad find somebody that really makes him happy. They’re happy for their dad and they hope that this something that’s really good for him.”

So, opposite Bill being so smitten with Poppy, we saw some other characters to do some math and wonder if Bill might be Luna’s father. Do you think Bill is just too blinded by his infatuation to have any similar suspicions? “Yeah, I think he’s just not even necessarily wanting to go there with regard to that, initially. Now, of course, this is a guy who is used to adult children showing up on his doorstep [laughs]! I said, ‘We’d have to rename him! He’d have to be, not Dollar Bill, he’s No Condom Bill!’ [When he thinks about] that night and her age and some qualities he sees in her that maybe remind him [of himself]…. I think it’s in the recesses of his mind, but he’s not going there. And I don’t know yet. Me, the actor, I have no idea what they’re doing. But I think it would be amazing! I hope that’s where it goes because I think Bill having a daughter, that dynamic would be just amazing. I just think it would be great to have to see him deal with a daughter.”

How do you imagine Bill would be as a girl dad? “Oh, well, I think he’d just be Ray Donovan protective on the one hand, and he would have to learn how to engage with her from a business point of view because he can go off on his sons, but there might be a different reaction for him with a daughter. He might have to realize that there’s just a different approach you have to take to confrontation and a different way you have to conduct yourself when you’re pissed off about something. I could see maybe she would get emotional in a way that he hasn’t had to deal with with his sons, and I think that would be a really fun scene, sort of like the ‘There’s no crying in baseball’ scene in A League Of Their Own. I could see him have to navigate things that would be challenging to him.”

I can picture how intimidating it might be for R.J. or any other suitor to have to deal with Bill as his love interest’s father. “Oh, yeah. ‘There is an expectation of how you’re going to treat my daughter.’ We’ll see. I really hope that’s what happens as we move forward.”

You’ve only shared a few scenes with Lisa Yamada (Luna) thus far, but what were your first impressions of her? “Oh, she’s terrific. I think she’s doing a great job. We haven’t had any one-on-one stuff together, but I’ve certainly seen some of her work and I think she’s a great addition to the show. I hope that we have more scenes together and that that relationships blossoms. That would be great!”

We’re speaking in a lot of “What-ifs” here, but if Bill did prove to be Luna’s father, and she was dating Ridge and Brooke’s son, that could potentially bring a new dynamic to Bill’s relationship with them. “Yes, of course. There would just be a lot of story, you know? Just a lot of legs and long-term ramifications and all that. It would certainly add another layer to those relationships. I do look forward to it unfolding. I have my hopes, and we’ll see! Right now, I’m kind of living in the present of it, and in the present, I think Romy is doing a great job, I’m enjoying working with her and I think it’s a fun relationship.”


Romy Park, Don Diamont

Howard Wise/

Still Crazy After All These Years: Diamont thinks Bill’s rekindled relationship with Poppy (Romy Park) is “an awakening” for the character.