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Rick Hearst Interview with Michael Logan


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http://www.tvguidemagazine.com/soaps/bb-st...pital-1346.html

B&B Steals Rick Hearst From General Hospital

by Michael Logan June 08, 2009 09:21 AM EST

Three-time Emmy winner Rick Hearst has left his role as lawyer Ric Lansing on ABC’s General Hospital for a gig on CBS’s The Bold and the Beautiful. Hearst hadn’t intended to make the switch, but ABC took him off contract to trim the budget and made him a recurring player. CBS offered him a long-term deal. On B&B, he’ll again be seen as fashion PR man Whip Jones, a role he played for a bit in 2002 before joining GH. During his first go-round, wily Whip wed Brooke (Katherine Kelly Lang) to hide the fact she was pregnant by her son-in-law. This time, he’ll strike a deal with control-freak Stephanie (Susan Flannery) who wants him to woo Brooke and make her forget her obsessive attraction to Ridge (Ronn Moss). Hearst’s final GH episode airs June 25. He hits B&B July 17. The actor gave us the scoop on his new role, his exit from Port Charles and those rumors that he nearly went back to Guiding Light.

Let’s set the record straight. There’s been buzz that you kinda screwed GH by leaving so quickly for B&B that they didn’t have time to write your character a proper send-off.

People had some crazy perceptions of what went down. “Machiavellian Hearst dumps GH for B&B!” Here’s the truth of the matter. I was placed on recurring status and I was a gun for hire but still in the middle of a story with GH. I auditioned for some pilots and the season finale of CSI: New York. Then, lo and behold, one day I’m sitting at home and I overhear my wife talking on the phone for 5 or 10 minutes to somebody named Brad—and I’m thinking, “Well, that’s it. She’s found somebody else. The marriage is over.” Suddenly, she hands me the phone and says “Honey, it’s [b&B executive producer] Brad Bell.”

He called you direct with the offer? No middleman?

Brad just cuts through all the bull and goes right to the person. He’s just so up and so positive. He said, “I heard the news” and asked if I’d like to come back. It all happened so fast. [GH head writer] Bob Guza really had to move to get me out. There wasn’t time to really do anything. Ric just gets in an elevator with an “I’ll be back” —full-on Terminator-style. It was so crazy. I walked out the door at GH on May 21 and reported for work at B&B the very next day. In one way, it was like being shot out of a friggin’ cannon. In another way, it was like coming home. It was such a nice, easy transition. [Laughs] Let’s face it, it’s not a big stretch. I’m going from a fast-talking, scheming attorney to a fast-talking, scheming publicist.

Things didn’t work out so well your first time at B&B—you were in and out of there in six months. Did you ask your buddy Brad for a guarantee this time?

You can’t really do that. However long I’m needed is great. I’m perked up, truthfully, because even in the short amount of time I was at B&B before, I had a blast with those people. It was good times. I feel very strongly that Brad’s bringing me back to the show now because it’s the right time. You never know where a role is going. Did I know I was going to be put on recurring at GH? I had won two Emmys while I was there. Ric was connected to the main guy on the show [his brother Sonny, played by Maurice Benard]. By all rights, I should have had some real longevity there. But it didn’t go that way. Every day I go to work and play it like it’s my last day. I go for the Mary Lou Retton, man! You hit your 10 and then you walk out the door. If they want you to come back the next day, great. It’s a bonus. If they don’t want you any more, tomorrow’s another day. Was I saddened and disappointed GH took me off contract? Absolutely. Was I surprised to get the call from B&B? Totally.

So what’s the new Whip like?

He’s looking for work and a little humbled. He’s suffered at the hands of the economy. When he left the show seven year ago, he went to Europe to work with Forrester International, then he went to a couple of other fashion houses, and he’s now come back to L.A. He didn’t want to go crawling back to Forrester, so he goes to Jackie M for an interview.

And falls right into the clutches of Stephanie...

She wants Whip to take Brooke’s mind off of Ridge. Brooke and Ridge are broken up again—for a minute—and Whip knows it’s inevitable that they’ll get back together. But, hey, it’s an opportunity and Whip’s an opportunist! He’s gonna play both ends against the middle. He’s no schmuck.

He’s still got a thing for Brooke?

Sure. She still tweaks his heart. Their first episode together ends in a kiss. It happens so fast I was worried that it might be creepy, or feel forced. But KK Lang thought it turned out very sweet and unexpected. And that’s what I want Whip to be—everything about him is unexpected. He’s not your standard, mustache-twirling bad guy. He’s a lot of fun. On GH, I was the very ordered, logical, steely lawyer. Here I can break out of myself, be more flamboyant, bombastic and playful.

Won’t this “arrangement” with Stephanie come back to bite Whip in the ass? Brooke is sure to find out at some point.

Who knows how this turns out? Whip and Brooke really get each other. They had a marriage of convenience before and it served both their purposes. Despite his deal with Stephanie, there could be more there between them—something real. Ridge may be Brooke’s one true love, but Whip’s the one who saved her cute little butt years ago.

Word is, you were also in talks to return to Guiding Light as Alan-Michael Spaulding, the part that brought you your first Emmy. What’s the deal on that?

There were no formalized negotiations. My agent spoke with [CBS Daytime chief] Barbara Bloom just shooting some ideas around. There was talk that I might return to GL for four to sixth months and play it through to the end of the show’s run. That would have been fun. I’m so very sad about the show being cancelled.

You were there at a most magical time.

It was magical working with Melina Kanakaredes and Sherry Stringfield and Grant Aleksander and Michael O’Leary… and Beverlee McKinsey! Beverlee… wow. What a great broad. She was class and moxie all at the same time. Great matriarchs are a vanishing breed in the soap medium. Susan Flannery is one of the last and greatest and, lucky me, I’m working with her! Had the B&B offer not come up, I would have been honored to go help close that door at GL. We’re talking about Irna Phillips here. The longest running soap opera ever. It’s truly the end of an era.

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Then, lo and behold, one day I’m sitting at home and I overhear my wife talking on the phone for 5 or 10 minutes to somebody named Brad—and I’m thinking, “Well, that’s it. She’s found somebody else. The marriage is over.” Suddenly, she hands me the phone and says “Honey, it’s [b&B executive producer] Brad Bell.”

LOL....that was funny. Who would leave hunky Rick??

GL is stupid for not signing him up for those last few months.

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It makes me chuckle that Rick got a job so fast that GH did not have time to kill Ric. Guza and Phelps must be ticked off. They did not see that one coming. LOL! I hope Brad appreciates Rick this time around. He can win B&B an Emmy if they give him some decent material.

I loved Rick as Alan Michael. He was golden with Melina Kanakaredes, Sherry Stringfield, Grant Aleksander and Michael O’Leary. Lucy ruined Alan Michael. They should have dumped her and kept Rick.

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I'm SO excited Ric wasn't killed off which is what I was sure would happen, not that I ever want him to back to the Sonny show..I just think its unnecessary to kill off every character. Pumped to see him back on B&B though.

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Rick Hearst is pure class and A level talent. Guza is a fool. Nothing less.

I'm so happy he's found another job and I pray Bell does right by him. He's got the perfect Leading man in Hearst.

I can't wait to see Hearst and Tom in scenes.

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Thinking about it Phelps likely hasn't gotten the finger from an actor she screwed over since Beverlee McKinsey. LOL! Phelps was likely the bee buzzing about Rick screwing GH. I salute Rick and wish him well. It all makes me chuckle.

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I don't think Jill hates Rick. They go way back to GL in the early 90's and he was one of her favs back then. Even today, they seem really close. Didn't Rick call her his "guardian angel" when he won his Emmy in 2004? I don't know if relations have soured since, but I think Guza never had any intention of writing anything substantial for Rick anyway, and they dropped him to recurring because he was probably pulling in a good amount anyway, and his contract was only extended for a few months.

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It makes me chuckle that Rick got a job so fast that GH did not have time to kill Ric.

I chuckled at that too. Cause you know Guza was definitely going to kill off Ric. I hope one day, when Guza is gone, that Rick will return to GH and will be used properly and he will become the lead actor on the show. I guess that's just wishful thinking.

It makes me chuckle that Rick got a job so fast that GH did not have time to kill Ric.

I chuckled at that too. Cause you know Guza was definitely going to kill off Ric. I hope one day, when Guza is gone, that Rick will return to GH and will be used properly and he will become the lead actor on the show. I guess that's just wishful thinking.

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I chuckled at that too. Cause you know Guza was definitely going to kill off Ric.

LOL! It was a given that Guza was going to kill off Ric. They even started playing ominous music when he entered Claudia's room. They thought they had all the time in the world to play out Ric's murder and then bam! He gets the job at B&B and was out of there. Guza and Phelp's must be in blood lust withdrawal. They may kill off Kate instead now.

I hope one day, when Guza is gone, that Rick will return to GH and will be used properly and he will become the lead actor on the show. I guess that's just wishful thinking.

Definitely, wishful thinking. Guza will never leave GH. He will steer GH into cancellation. I hope that B&B appreciates Rick this time around. I've said before, he can win them an Emmy if they give him some decent material. Look at Heather Tom.

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