Monday, August 11, 2014

EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: Mishael Morgan Shares Insights on Playing Hilary Curtis on the Soap Opera She Grew Up Watching, 'The Young and the Restless'

Mishael Morgan. Photo Credit: Wendy Hall
Mishael Morgan was studying Political Science at York University when she changed course and decided to pursue acting. Her star has been on the rise ever since. She quickly landed a role in the Trey Songz "Wonder Woman" music video, and a series regular role as Tracy Dupont-Roymont in YTV's Family Biz. She has appeared in television shows such as Beauty & The Beast and Supernatural, and in films like Casino Jack and Total Recall. She can currently be seen in Dark Rising: Warrior of Worlds, and her new movie Swearnet premieres on September 12th. In May 2013 she joined the cast of CBS daytime drama The Young and the Restless as Hilary Curtis, a young woman seeking revenge for her mother's death. These days, Hilary is involved in a frontburner love triangle with Neil (Kristoff St. John) and his son, Devon (Bryton James).

Serial Scoop recently caught up with Morgan to discuss her career and starring role in Y&R. Read our exclusive interview below.

SERIAL SCOOP: You’ve been on The Young and the Restless for over a year now. How have you adjusted to being a soap star?
MISHAEL MORGAN: I think I’ve adjusted quite well, I believe. It’s really interesting when fans come up. Bryton and I were having dinner one night after work and a fan came up to us, and she was so excited about the show. She told us this amazing story about how her husband, who is a stockbroker, has all of these screens on with sports and stocks and markets, and he has one screen on with Y&R for her because she comes in and out, and he leaves it on for her. She asked him how his day was going, and he replied, "Everything is going good, but did you see what is going on with Hilary and Devon?" It was so funny. It’s just so amazing that we impact peoples lives like that. I think I’m kind of getting used to that. It’s flattering and it's an honor and a blessing. I’m part of such an amazing cast and crew. I can’t even believe I'm on The Young and the Restless. I’ve been watching it my whole life. I was sitting there last night, and I remember looking up at the stage across at the Newman Ranch set. And I thought, "I am really on The Young and the Restless. This is insanity."

SERIAL SCOOP: Y&R fans have taken to Hilary. Why do you think it has worked so well?
MISHAEL MORGAN: I don’t know. I have no clue. I’ve been really hoping for that. I’ve just been reminding myself to be myself and show myself through my character. Hopefully that’s what is resonating with people. They see a little bit of me in Hilary, and maybe that’s why they like her when she’s nice because I’m not that crazy vindictive Hilary. I really am the nicer one in real life. I just try to be myself. I’ve been working so hard, and I have amazing actors who make me feel so at home.

SERIAL SCOOP: So lets get down to it. Hilary has been torn between Neil and Devon, father and son, a classic soap story. Hilary has seemingly made her decision. But who does Mishael want for Hilary?
MISHAEL MORGAN: I don’t know, that’s a hard, hard one. Because now you’re asking me what Mishael wants, not what Hilary wants.

SERIAL SCOOP: Well, I know who Hilary wants.
MISHAEL MORGAN: I feel so lucky and so blessed to have two amazing actors to work with so really and truly I put the faith in the writers. There are no two better actors on the show for me to be having these storylines with than Kristoff and Bryton. I feel like that's why the fans are receiving it so well, because they are such amazing actors. Being able to work off of them it doesn’t matter who Hilary ends up with. But there are a lot of Hevon fans out there, so I don’t know...

EDITOR'S NOTE: Hevon is the couple mashup name fans have given to Hilary and Devon.

SERIAL SCOOP: It’s the forbidden passion!
MISHAEL MORGAN: It is!

SERIAL SCOOP: And Cane (Daniel Goddard) got to see Devon and Hilary in action!
MISHAEL MORGAN: I know he’s so nosy. [Laughs]

SERIAL SCOOP: Can't he just mind his own business? [Laughs]
MISHAEL MORGAN: He’s snooping around in a laundry room. He knew we were in there. He could have made himself known, and he could have come down the hallway, yelling "Devon, Hilary." He could have given us a heads up. No, he was sneaking in there. [Laughs]

SERIAL SCOOP: Lily (Christel Khalil) must not be keeping him interested. When she finds out what is happening with Devon and Hilary, is she going to kill her? Are they going to have the most epic of cat fights in the history of daytime television?
MISHAEL MORGAN: I think it will be pretty epic. Considering all of the things she has done to Hilary so far, I think it will be a pretty epic fight. But I think she should be wondering why Cane hasn’t told her yet. I would be really upset if I was Lily. I think Lily should be mad at Cane.

SERIAL SCOOP: But that never happens. They are always upset at the woman, never the man.
MISHAEL MORGAN: Always.

SERIAL SCOOP: If Hilary and Devon do end up having an affair, how will Hilary be able to justify that to herself?
MISHAEL MORGAN: It’s really interesting. I remember when I was thinking about this whole thing because I was trying to figure out my motivation for her entertaining this relationship with Devon. Hilary and Devon definitely had a natural connection from the very beginning. These two characters always kind of liked each other and kept it hidden for whatever reason. But when I was thinking about my motivation for Hilary possibly having an affair, I thought about people who do things to people who are really good to them. Neil has been really good to Hilary and has turned her life around. I think at the end of the day it comes out of self-righteousness; you’re reminding me of all the bad things I’ve done. Every time I see you I can’t fully be redeemed with you in my life showing me that I’m such a bad person. The fact that Neil is standing in front of Hilary all of the time is a reminder of all of the bad things she's done to him, the bad person that she was. With Devon, Hilary hasn't done anything evil to him. Being with him is like a cut and dry relationship, where it can start from the beginning.

SERIAL SCOOP: How do you think Neil will react?
MISHAEL MORGAN: I’ve thought about this quite a bit. Neil’s character has always been so loving and understanding of people and I feel like that’s the natural thing that everyone is expecting. He is going to be very understanding and get where she is coming from, and allow Devon and Hilary to be together. I feel like everyone is expecting that to happen. But I think his head might explode a little bit. It might depend on where he is at the point when he finds out, where he is emotionally. Hopefully it doesn't lead him to drinking again. [Laughs]

SERIAL SCOOP: Not after happened what happened last time. You'll be blamed again!
MISHAEL MORGAN: Not after what happened last time. [Laughs]

SERIAL SCOOP: The big news from The Young and the Restless is Shemar Moore coming back!
MISHAEL MORGAN: Yes, and it's funny because I have a picture of him when I was 13. My older sister and I went to a mall in Toronto to go see him because they had this huge gathering and we got to go up and take a picture with him so I have this old picture with him from 10 years ago when I saw him for the first time. [Laughs]

SERIAL SCOOP: You’ve been a lifelong fan of the The Young and the Restless so this must be exciting for you. Will Hilary be interacting with Malcolm?
MISHAEL MORGAN: I wonder too. [Laughs] It was a very funny moment when I found out he was coming back. Kristoff St John and Bryton James were standing there, and said, "Did you hear that Shemar Moore is coming to Genoa City?" I’m like, "What?" They said, "Shemar! He is coming to work." I’m like, "Are you’re serious?" They both saw this huge grin on my face, and I said, "I was just wondering."

EDITOR'S NOTE: This week on The Young and the Restless, Neil's shocking accident may change lives forever. Will this alter Hilary's decision to be honest with Neil about her love for Devon? Tune in to CBS this week to find out!



Michael Goldberg is a freelance writer, producer and actor based out of New York. He regularly contributes television and web series features to Serial Scoop.

1 comment:

  1. Mr. Goldberg, you are interviewing everyone in daytime, primetime and the web these days! I've really enjoyed Ms. Morgan's performance as Hilary. I wish Y&R had chosen another way to set up the triangle than having Hilary rush into a marriage with Neil but we are sure to see many fantastic performances from all three actors involved in the weeks ahead. I'm check out Swearnet right now!

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