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30 May 11th, 2014 2-Time Dad & 5-Time Daytime Emmy Nominee Bradford Anderson Talks Finola, GH’s Spinelli & The Gold Statuette!

Courtesy/IMDB

It’s been an amazing 11 days for former General Hospital star Bradford Anderson, and a lot to take in!  First, Bradford landed his fifth Daytime Emmy nomination in the Outstanding Supporting Actor category for his role of Damian Spinelli! What followed was the birth of his real-life second daughter, Finola!  Talk about getting a double dose of great news!

While Bradford was learning that he had been nominated for the upcoming 41st Annual Daytime Emmys, along with many of his former co-stars and friends in the same category including Steve Burton (Dylan, Y&R) and Dominic Zamprogna (Dante, GH), he was also on high alert and ready to take his wife Kiera to the hospital to give birth to their second child, when the time came.

On-Air On-Soaps caught up with this now two-time dad and five-time Daytime Emmy nominee for a special interview on: new baby Finola, the choice of the name, the killer performance that scored Bradford a nomination, his decision to leave GH and more!  Here now is what Bradford shared with us!

So you have had quite the last week and half!  First, comes a Daytime Emmy nomination, and then comes a baby within basically 36 hours of each other.  What went down at the Anderson home when you found out you scored a nomination from your peers?

Photo Credit: HutchinsPhoto.com

BRADFORD:  Well, I had a lot of big news!  So the nomination came out last Thursday, but we were in baby watch at that point anyway, because our doctor told us she would probably come a week early.  So we were expecting the baby to come the weekend prior.  I wasn’t anticipating the nominations, because the night before I did not have time to think of what was happening the next day.  It was about making sure the bags were packed, and making sure we were set if we needed to get out the front door at a moment’s notice to the hospital.  Thursday morning, my phone lit up with a lot of alerts, emails, and texts.  I kind of thought …“Why would this be?” (Laugh)   Then, the first texts were from Dominic Zamprogna (Dante, GH) and Steve Burton (Dylan, Y&R) which was a cool way to find out.

And then next, you are trying to celebrate the news of your nomination … and Kiera goes into Labor that evening?  And then I try to call you to chat about your nomination the next afternoon … and you inform me you just became a dad again!  My timing is impeccable! (Laughs)

BRADFORD:  (Laughs) Thursday night around 9PM Kiera got contractions.  We had a rough night Thursday night and a sleepless night.  We called our doctor Friday morning at around 7AM and she said come in to the hospital …. and the baby was born that day at 3:30PM.  And then Michael Fairman called around 5PM! (Laughs)

You named your daughter “Finola”.  And everyone immediately drew the reference to the one and only Finola Hughes (Anna) of General Hospital.   How come you and Kiera chose “Finola” for your new little bundle of joy?

Photo Credit: HutchinsPhoto.com

BRADFORDIt’s a great aunt’s name, and Kiera’s Irish heritage is very important to her.  The derivative of Finola we had even talked about for our first daughter which was “Nola”.   And then Kiera said, “What about Finola?”  When we realized we were having a second daughter we played with the name … and having a little girl named “Fin” was so cute.  It was interesting.  Sometimes when you name your kid it’s fun to not have any prior association with it.  We talked about that, because we knew people would say we named her after Finola Hughes (Anna, GH).  It’s a family name, but at the same time, if that’s the association people make with our daughter, we couldn’t be more thrilled.

Did Finola Hughes reach out to you after realizing you named your daughter, “Finola”?  Or, did she already know that was a strong possibility?

BRADFORD:  I went to visit GH a few weeks ago and I saw her.  A couple of friends that are at GH knew I was going to be naming our baby “Finola”.  It’s funny because Finola came up to us a couple of years ago when I told her we were thinking of naming our second child her name.  She said, “Don’t, don’t.  It was the worst name when I was a kid, and people made fun of me.”  I think she was being funny.  So I went up to her and said, “Hey, I know awhile back you told us not to name our baby “Finola”, but … our daughter is going to be named “Finola”.  She had a tear in her eyes and it was very sweet. It will be a great moment when they finally meet.

What happened when your now eldest daughter Juna meet her sister, Finola for the first time?

BRADFORD:  She came to visit at 6PM last Friday night, and she was really sweet. Juna brought a teddy bear to give Finola.  She has been keeping tabs on her, and if she is not in the room, she goes, “Where is my baby sister?”  I think she has more of a sister vocabulary now from watching Frozen a hundred times! (Laughs)  One her favorite things to say in general now is, “Please don’t shut me out…” from the song from the movie!  Juna will be three in July.

Courtesy/ABC

Back to going for the gold at this year’s 41st Annual Daytime Emmys.  I looked at this list of Supporting Actor nominees and it’s a great group, and some of your close friends!  How does it feel to be nominated in the same category as Steve Burton?  The two of you made Jason and Spinelli, or the Jackal and Stone Cold, such a unique friendship on GH.  Now you are pitted against each other for a Daytime Emmy!

BRADFORD:  That was one of the cool things.  I don’t get to see those guys very often anymore, and it’s hard to get Steve Burton out of the house!  (Laughs)  The first thing I asked him was, “You’re going to be there, right?”   But also his wife is due around that time.  He gave a pretty definitive, “I’ll be there”.  It’s weird to be pitted against each other.  Never in my wildest dreams did I think I would be in a category with Steve.  In the situation we were in at GH, I never thought I would be in the category with him, because he was a leading actor.  Of course, all of us would like to win, but at the same time, it’s really a celebration of the soap community, and being with all of our friends that makes it more fun.

And this is your Fifth nomination!  Could five times be the charm, Bradford?

BRADFORD:  A fistful of nominations, yup!  I figured how many nominations do I get before Susan Lucci gives you a call? (Laughs)

What episode did you submit that won you the nomination?

Courtesy/ABC

BRADFORD: When Ellie (Emily Wilson) tells Spinelli he is the father of Maxie’s baby, while he is outside the nursery window in the hospital watching Dante with his son.  Dominic Zamprogna was my favorite part of my submission!  So Ellie rehashes the night that Maxie got pregnant, which Spinelli deflects because he believes Maxie used a second embryo.  Then Ellie goes, “No.  She didn’t have to get a second embryo, because she was already pregnant with your kid!”  She convinces him, and in the moment that he processes it.  He kind of walks over to the window of the nursery. Dominic gives us this ho-hum wave like, “Why are you staring at us?”  It’s this nice little moment. Spinelli is having this crazy moment in the hallway, while Dante gives this chummy wave!  It contrasts so much with what Spinelli was dealing with outside the nursery, and when we taped the scene I was worried I was going to laugh!

I remember watching those scenes when they aired.   I truly thought it was one of your best performances … ever!  It gave the character of Spinelli an opportunity to really man up, and not let Ellie, or Maxie, or anyone off so easy for their lies, but also offered the contradiction of the knowledge for him that he is a father … which is something he wanted to be.

BRADFORD:  The reason why I liked it was it has a bunch of different colors in it. It’s “Oh, I am a father!” Then, “Wait, why didn’t Maxie tell me?”  Then Ellie is like, “Well, she wanted to keep it a secret?”  But then he realizes Ellie knows too! And then it’s, “Wait! You lied to me to?  What the hell!”  It’s quite the arc. It was fun to play.  Emmy episodes are tough, because it’s a one episode submission for the actors.  This one kind of made sense because it had a heightened circumstance.  It was good material.  I was happy with how I handled it.  I think sometimes, we are ourselves, are not the best judges of our own material.  You fall in love with certain things and you see it from your eye.   But at the end of the day, you have to think about how other people are going to view it.  My wife is a good judge of that, because I showed her a couple of episodes and she watched the one I submitted first and she said, “Yeah, that’s kind of perfect.”  Then we watched a couple others that I thought were charming and what not.  And she said, “You know what?  I get you see this as charming, but the circumstance of the other one is so heightened that you got to go with that.”  This is the biggest storyline I ever had.  It made sense to use that and just not try to find something that was charming. 

Courtesy/ABC

It did have many twists and turns within the episode for Spinelli.

BRADFORD: Yes.  You get to see Spinelli coming to terms with that he is a father, so there is that element to it.  There is the happiness of it and I felt that was interesting, and then the realization that he was betrayed by two people that he cares about.

So to back-up a minute, is it true that you had already made the decision to leave General Hospital, but decided to stay on to finish out this storyline? 

BRADFORD:  My contract was up in May of last year, and so I could’ve just walked away then.  However, I was so grateful that they trusted me with a story like that, and once you have a kid on a soap there is a legacy there.  I wanted GH to know how grateful I was to be given that story.  I wanted to do right by the show, and by Kirsten Storms (Maxie).  I didn’t want her to have to play a shortened version of the story where it couldn’t reach the potential it could go, and she is having a baby and that story directly effects her.  I wanted to do right by my character and I wanted to handle it with respect, but at the same time doing right by my decision to leave.  So it made sense to just go on recurring until the story wrapped-up in the way that everyone was happy.  I felt like we got the most out of it from the time that we had.

In closing, what do you deep down in your heart of hearts really think about your shot to win the Emmy this year?

Photo Credit: HutchinsPhoto.com

BRADFORD:  Ultimately, it’s bestowed upon by your peers, which makes it really special, but at the same time, it’s not bestowed upon by the “acting gods”, which makes this unique.  It’s the outsiders that watch the tapes that aren’t in the circle of actors that can watch the submissions more objectively, and as much as the actors try to watch objectively, these are our co-workers.  And no one can be blamed for that, and no one can be faulted for who wins every year, because every one that is not nominated deserves to win.  So, you can’t take it too personally if you don’t win, and if I do win, I can’t take it like, “Well, I’m the best!”   If it’s my turn, fantastic!  If not, I got nominated again and that’s pretty cool.  It’s also kind of hard to want to win in my category.  I know this may sound cheesy, but I am rooting for others in my category too!  Dominic Zamprogna has done such great work for a long time.  Steve Burton is someone that I admire so much.  Scott Clifton (Liam, B&B) had been one of my buddies for awhile, but I think he has enough trophies (laughs), and Eric Martsolf (Brady, DAYS) is a good friend of mine, too.  What a group!

So, what do you think of Bradford’s chance to win the gold?  Did you love his performance when he found out that he was the bio-dad of Maxie’s baby?  What do you think about the  choice of the name “Finola” for his second real-life daughter? Do you miss Spinelli on GH big time?  Let us know!

 

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  1. mfarris70 says:

    Hoping that the rumors Bradford is coming back are true! I miss Spinelli and Ellie’s quirky romance and would love for Ellie to be Silas and Nina’s daughter!

    Reply

    Patrick replied

    theres so much potential… with this possibility

    two characters the audience identified with… and easily found there place on the canvas … and we continued to root for

    I loved this pairing

    should they return… they’d be welcome’d warmly and without question

    sometimes I think they overloaded Silas… as he has so much going ON…

    but, knowing… that it’s Ellie and Spinelli

    Reply

    jimh(leave it to beaver) replied

    Id like to see him return…Ellie as their daughter could work…hopes both happens…fingers crossed!!!

    Reply

  2. Eileen Hargis says:

    Id love to see him win, Bradford is a very unique actor and Spunelli is a gem!

    Reply

  3. Greta says:

    Bradford just blew me away with the baby story. I thought everyone in it was spectacular (I still can’t believe his co-star Kirsten Storms wasn’t nominated!!!). Dominic was amazing too, but I feel this is Bradford’s year to take the Emmy. The scenes he submitted were great. Fifth time’s the charm.

    Reply

  4. Cathy Borruso says:

    I love Bradford from the first I met him he is truly a genuine giving person it would be so cool if he
    WINS! ★★★★

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  5. Mark says:

    I hope he wins he was so good in those scenes and he is always good and I hope he comes back for good

    Reply

  6. Dan says:

    That’s funny, cause as soon as I saw the headline where it says Bradford talks about Finola, I immediately thought of Finola Hughes, lol. It’s certainly a unique and beautiful name, and congrats to him and his wife!

    I always enjoyed him on GH, so it would be cool to see him finally win an Emmy as a way of tying the bow around his time at GH. He submitted some heavy scenes. I remember that episode very well, cause it was so emotional and the acting was so brilliant from everyone. One of the many stand out shows from GH this past year. It could be Bradford’s year.

    Of course, it’s hard to guess when you don’t know what the other actors in the category submitted. I know I’ll be rooting for either Bradford or Dominic to take it home for GH!

    Reply

  7. su0000 says:

    I miss Bradford/Spinelli :(
    perhaps someday when his personal life would allow time for him to return to GH, I hope he will..

    Reply

  8. GH50 says:

    Bradford says, “Once you have a kid on a soap there is a legacy there” and “I wanted to do right by my character and I wanted to handle it with respect.” That’s the right attitude for people in the soap world to have. That’s why it is so appalling how TIIC of GH constantly piss on legacy characters. Look at all the “respect” FV and RC have NOT shown AJ Quartermaine and Robin Scorpio.

    Reply

    su0000 replied

    AJ and Robin, both left ..
    again;
    // SK and KM walked out .. they walked out on FV and RC and GH and their fans //
    They deserve no bowing ..
    neither are soap gods..

    I would have told them both not to let the door hit their ass on the way out!

    Reply

    GH50 replied

    And you absolutely miss the point. The actors left, regardless of why, it is about what FV and RC did to their characters that is at issue. The characters of AJ and Robin have been trashed. That is the point. Get it?

    Dan replied

    I will agree with you that they didn’t do a good job writing AJ after Sean Kanan came back, and I don’t blame him for wanting to leave.

    But as for Kimberly McCullough, I think they had a situation where she wasn’t gonna stay long-term, so they had to come up with a story to explain why a woman would leave her husband and daughter after just being reunited with them after 2 years, and think that they did the best they could under the circumstances.

    I don’t blame FV and RC for that. I think they did a good job with the storyline of Robin’s return for the short time she was back, but there’s only so much you can do with a character that is only gonna be back for a short time.

    andrew hass replied

    GH50 i think everyone including us the fans knew Kimberly McCullough wasn’t coming back to GH full time.So no matter what happened Robin was going to leave her husband and daughter.Plus the way the show wrote Robin off opens the door for future story for when she returns again with her helping Jason.

    andrew hass replied

    I do think the show could have done better with Robin and AJ storywise but Sean Kanan asked to be let go from his contract and KMC didn’t want to be on GH full time.I think GH would want Kimberly back as Robin but maybe not if she’s going to leave after a few months.As for Sean Kanan i keep wondering if they didn’t know B&B wanted him back would he have asked GH to let him go?

    Reply

  9. Betty says:

    I have been a huge fan of Spinelli since the beginning. The way Bradford cultivated Spinelli and helped him become such a complex character was brilliant. He went from a bumbling computer geek, to a real leading man with a lovable quirkiness. I miss him & Steve Burton so much on GH. I have been a fan of GH since the beginning, and Spinelli was one if my all time favorite characters. Bradford made him what he was. I hope he wins an Emmy. I wish him great success, but selfishly I hope he comes back to GH someday.

    Reply

    Cat replied

    I totally agree with you. I could have written your post myself. Bradford is a phenomenal actor and I’ve lived his work since day one. It’s his turn to win. He deserves it!

    Reply

  10. Nick D. says:

    Best of luck to Spinelli on the Emmys and looking forward to maybe seeing him pop up on GH real soon – maybe we will get a peak at his life in Seattle with Ellie and the baby! :)

    Reply

  11. aria says:

    spinelli is so much missed, wish Bradford would come back. Love the name Finola, and Fin is a perfect nickname, and of course he should win the emmy, he was really the heart of that storyline.

    Reply

  12. Johnny says:

    I think he is awesome and I hope he wins the Emmy. He has a beautiful family.

    Reply

  13. GB says:

    i’m in two minds about this. i do want him to win, because of how good his performance was. what irks me, though, is that this is a “straight” soap storyline. what anderson proved he could do that i’ve seen not many actors pull off is what he did with the regular spinelli material. i don’t know if people realise how difficult it is what he was called upon to do. his job was to sell not just really text-heavy, but really overwritten material (coming from the way Spinelli talked) – and not showing how overwritten it was, but selling it with such ease and, moreover, using it let us glimpse the spinelli underneath was a huge deal. and he never got recognition for that, even though it’s one of the hardest things to do as an actor. if he wins the emmy this year – and again, i hope he does because he deserves it – he will have done so for doing excellent, yes, but run-of-the-mill soap acting. anyway, rant over.

    Reply

  14. andrew hass says:

    I hope Bradford wins the Emmy because i think last year he did his best work ever.I also hope he returns to GH and maybe not full time but maybe for visits from time to time when the story needs Spinelli.

    Reply

  15. Timmm says:

    As if they dont have enough cast members! Spinelli was Steve Burtons little buddy, Gilligan. Steve is gone and Spinelli should stay gone. The character is a one trick pony. He is annoying and immature. Stay away and keep that fish with you!

    Reply

    andrew hass replied

    For a one trick pony Spinelli was on GH for 7 years.Plus i think Spinelli made a name for himself on the show apart from his connection with Jason.As for bradford Anderson he’s been nominated 5 times for an Emmy in the 7 years he was on the show.Plus as long as he shares a child with Maxie i think there’s always going to be a place fro Spinelli on the show.

    Reply

  16. Sue Ellen says:

    I really hope Bradford wihns this year. The reel he submitted was the best moment of that whole story. I also really hope he returns to General Hospital, Spinelli provided a sense of fun and whimsy that the show needs given all the darker elements playing out in many stories. I would really like to see Spinellli return and reunite with Maxie. Those moments at the end before he left finally sold me on that pairing which I was one of the most vocally opposed to for a long time. Spinelli was a different more original kind of soap character who I always thought they didn’t explore nearly enough, remember, we never learned Spinelli’s parentage, so he could return as Neena’s lost child maybe.At any rate, the show needs Spinelli back. I hope I get my wish and that Bradford gets his Emmie.

    Reply

  17. Rod says:

    He BETTER WIN

    Reply

  18. Jessica says:

    I hope you win Bradford. You are missed at GH. Hoping you return for more than a couple of episodes in the future.

    Reply

  19. Wendelyn Sullivan says:

    I adore the character Spinelli. His scenes when He found out He was a Father were amazing. I love Him and Maxie together. I hope He wins the Emmy. He is truly deserving of it . I am hoping Spinelli’s return is long term. I have missed Him.

    Reply

  20. Don H says:

    I hope the Spinelli to come back and stay. He a good actor and an asset to GH.

    Reply

  21. Pam Page says:

    MY HOPE was always that Spinelli and Maxie would get back together and be a long-lasting couple! Those two played so well off one another and I always enjoyed every one of their scenes together. Having them as parents would have been superb! I still hope for that reunion one day (which means I have to hope for a Spinelli return)! In the meantime I guess I hope Maxie will end up with Detective West and she sends that wacko Levi packing! Come on back to the canvas Spinelli!!!

    Reply

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