News - Soap Buzz

40 August 11th, 2013 General Hospital’s Lisa LoCicero Interview: From Olivia & Sonny’s Future To Kelly Sullivan’s Exit!

Photo Credit: Kathy Hutchins

After many years, it looks as if former teenage lovebirds (although for a short time) from Bensonhurst, Olivia Falconeri (Lisa LoCicero) and Sonny Corinthos (Maurice Benard) may be moving closer and closer to finally having a tangible romantic relationship on General Hospital.  That, in the process, could also make them a family, since they also share a son, Dante Falconeri, (Dominic Zamprogna) even though Olivia covered that up for many years to Sonny!  But with all of that water under the bridge, and the upcoming exit of Olivia’s cousin and Sonny’s once beloved Connie (Kelly Sullivan), is the path clear for these two to have a real shot at happiness?

On-Air On-Soaps caught up with Lisa LoCicero, who at times has played the very hallucinogenic Olivia to get her thoughts on if she thinks Olivia and Sonny are truly going to be the end game for one another?  And, the talented actress weighs-in on, if the decision by GH to let go of Kelly Sullivan was made in order to allow this on-screen romance to blossom?  Plus, Lisa emotionally shares with us how she handled Kelly’s final day on set.  Then, she discusses if the fact that she recently signed a new contract with the series means big story ahead for Liv, after sort of languishing on the back burner for the last few years. Here is our candid conversation with Lisa below!

What did you think about the fact that they seem to be pairing Olivia and Sonny after all these years?  And, you got the new contract with GH, too!

Courtesy/ABC

LISA: Of course, as I have said from day one, working with Maurice is a rare treat for any actor.  As long as I have been watching him, or working with him, he never ceases to surprise me with what he does.  That is a really fun place to work from as an actor.  I could not be more thrilled.  I think there is a lot of interesting stuff that they could explore with Olivia and Sonny.  Certainly, she knows him longer, and understands him probably better in a certain sense, and she forgave him for the most unforgivable thing that you could ever do.  I think he trusts her, and I think she has shown that he can trust her.  God knows, he needs to have someone comfort him at this point.

Were you afraid, since you had been on the show for several years, that when it came back around to Olivia/Sonny it wouldn’t play OK?  Was there any trepidation?

LISA:  I don’t know that we know that it will work out yet.  I have no idea what they are going to write at this point.  Fans asked me at my fan event recently, “So do you think this is going to be a stop gap measure?  Or, are Sonny and Olivia going to be together for ever?”  I think the record has shown that no one stays with Sonny forever, and that’s not a spoiler.  There is no version of Sonny that is going to settle down with a lady and be happy for the rest of his life.  That ain’t going to happen.  So it just winds up being: In what manner of horrible suffering is this particular pairing going to endure?

What about Olivia’s hallucinations?  Will that stop?  Do you want them to stop?

Photo Credit: Kathy Hutchins

LISA:  I don’t know.  For awhile that was the crux of my existence on GH, and it is a really great storytelling device!  Some of them I like more than others.  Some are more difficult to play, and I go back and forth on this.  Sometimes on my Twitter feed it’s mixed reviews on the hallucinations, but whatever they write for me, I have a good time playing.  With things like that, that veer from the normal every day experience, I really feel strongly that you just go for it.  You really look like a fool if you don’t go for it.  You really have to play the “Oh, my God! She is stabbing her” … or, you just really look like a goof!

We are losing Kelly Sullivan shortly on-air on General Hospital.  Do you think there were missed opportunities to really have more of the Kate/Connie and Olivia dynamic?  Remember when the characters were first on-screen together?  There seemed to be this love/hate thing going on between the women.

LISA:  It’s been a weird thing.  We always tried to make it a sort of realistic family relationship, like a sister relationship, where you love each other so much, but you do fight, and you will say anything in the fight.  And that was to me the saddest part of Kelly’s last day.  It was the hardest day I have ever had on General Hospital, and it was saying goodbye to her!

How is Kelly about it all?

Photo Credit: Kathy Hutchins

LISA:  She is OK.  I know for her this is great.  I have no doubt she is going to go off and do amazing things.  Selfishly for me, I am devastated because it’s not every day you get a co-worker and a cast mate that brings out things in me so effortlessly.  It’s not work for me with her.

Are you getting pushback from fans that Kelly Sullivan is a casualty of the show in order to make way for Sonny and Olivia to be paired together?

LISA: It was rather unfortunate that the day Kelly said she was leaving was the day that news of my signing a new contract with GH came out, and I had signed that contract months ago.  But for some reason, it all came out at the same time.  So it was like: “She’s staying! She’s going!”  It wasn’t planned.  I certainly did not plan it, and no one said anything directly to me.  I am sure if I had gone and looked at the message boards that day, I am sure it would have said, “She should go f**k herself.”   It was completely out of my control.

Why do you think GH decided to write the character of Connie off the canvas instead of keeping the super-talented Kelly Sullivan around?

LISA: I think it was a written-into-the-corner kind of feeling.  The character of Connie had gotten so crazy that maybe, short of spending six months in an ashram, she could have come back as a cleaned up version of both Kate and Connie, but then you have to re-integrate that into the storyline.  All I know is shooting her final scenes almost killed me.  I remember I had to go in the morning and shoot Olivia’s visions and things, then go to my fan event, and then go back to GH to shoot her final scenes all afternoon.  I was ready to jump off the cliff by the end of the day!  It’s different when you are shooting a movie, or even a TV show where you have your one scene, and your close-up.  Here, on General Hospital, you have eleven or twelve scenes where you have to play a sense of loss.

I was always hoping you would be given your due in a story.  And that is the ebb and flow of daytime, and I understand that, but now it would seem GH  has an opportunity to move you more front and center.  It’s about now, if they will go that direction, and commit to that, or not.

Courtesy/Tumblr

LISA: There is no question, for a long period of time I was supporting for the last five years.  Scott Reeves (Ex-Steven) and I were joking about being the maid and the butler and we would walk in and go, “Hey, did you hear what happened to that guy?”  And then the curtain would go up and the play would start. (Laughs) We laughed about that a little bit.  But you are right; it is the ebb and flow of daytime.  I have been watching long enough to know that for most characters, you are not front burner all the time.  For some characters, you will always be front and center.  But for most people, it’s a rollercoaster ride, and you need that quite frankly.  I couldn’t have done what Maurice Benard has done for the past two decades … that every six months you have to play the worst thing that ever happened to you?  I couldn’t do it!

So, are you hoping that Olivia and Sonny find long term happiness with each other?  Do you want GH to continue to push them together in story?  How do you feel about the impending on-screen exit of Kelly Sullivan, and Lisa’s thoughts on the matter and why it went down?  Share your thoughts in the comment section!

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

  1. Arden says:

    I get Lisa isn’t too happy bout all this hallucination stuff either… LOL!

    Reply

  2. moshane 58 says:

    I hate Gh is getting rid of Kelly Sullivan.Her role was great and don’t see the reason for it….

    Reply

  3. Jared says:

    Both actresses are talented lovelies. I will miss Kelly as much I miss Megan Ward, which is a lot. I really like Olivia being the sensible “tell it like it is” conscience of the show. It’s too bad Connie had to be written off the show, though.

    Reply

  4. Cynthia says:

    I hope Sonny and Olivia do get together. I like Olivia and Sonny together. I mostly want Lisa to have more of a storyline. I love Olivia and Dante together too. I hate the visions though. Most of them are stupid. I think they could be written better if they are going to have them, but I think Lisa has done a very good job with them and with everything. I hate that Kelly Sullivan was let go. The character is already integrated. They could have written her a different story. A huge opportunity was missed with the whole Trey story. Erik was a good actor and they could have done a lot with Trey and Connie. It’s a shame to lose such a wonderful actress! I wish her all the best. I think the writers could have come up with something. They didn’t have to write her off. They are not that limited.

    Reply

    jimh(leave it to beaver) replied

    I agree with a lot you said…i also feel they shouldve kept Connie…maybe Sonny and Olivia could feel Connie was loosing her mind when Connie claims she seen Trey alive, and they try to have her committed. Connie would accuse them of trying to put her away so they can be together. It is later revealed the reason why Connie thought she had seen Trey is because he has an identical twin brother she was unaware of. Maybe my idea isnt a great one but its proof there could be more story for the Connie character…plus i noticed great chemistry between her and Julian…missed possibilities!!!

    Reply

    Cynthia replied

    I totally agree!

    Sherry replied

    I agree with jimh! Maybe YOU should be writing for GH! That would have been a fantastic story! Kelly is uber talented and will be missed.

  5. Kelly says:

    I hope Sonny and Olivia get together. I have always wanted this relationship! I did like sonny with kate but the whole connie/kate i did not like that at all. I will miss Kelly Sullivan she was great and will go on to do bigger things! I look forward to what is to come for Sonny and Olivia :)

    Reply

  6. Robert Paul says:

    I watch everyday and the show is taking so many directions, I don’t know what to think. Kelly is a great actress who I feel sure will come out on top. I doubt seriously Sonny be with anyone continuously. It’s hard to keep up. Olivia has been with several different people too.

    Reply

  7. Beth CP says:

    Having been at Lisa’s event at FCW I can fully attest that this lovely, tender hearted woman was a ball of emotion when she arrived. That she pulled herself together and gave us a wonderful presentation is testmant to her professionalism and humanity. My biggest regret is that she and the wonderful Kelly Sullivan will not have the chance to further explore the cousins’ relationship with the sister vibe that they so effortlessly portrayed. One of my favorite scenes between them was where Olivia was re-enacting teaching Connie how to cha-cha when she wasn’t completely integrated. It was a scene that was as touching as it was funny and the warmth between these two actresses was a sweet respite from the turmoil of the surrounding story. Beyond the romantic rivalry, there was still plenty of story that could have been mined, but it’s RC’s shortsightedness in developing and maintaining both character and family dynamics that will always be responsible for the abrupt dropping of talented performers. We the viewers end up being cheated as a result.

    Thank you for this interview, Mr. Fairman. It was my distinct pleasure that I got to meet you also during FCW.

    Reply

  8. Tea says:

    I’m hoping Sonny & Olivia will be together. It’s ridiculous they will never let him be happy for any real period of time.

    Reply

  9. aria says:

    its clear that even you michael fairman is baffled by GH decision to let Kelly Sullivan go, i think its a big mistake, and for a show that (even though i love) has made it a joke about bringing so many people back from the dead, i just wish they would stop with doing that and killing people off.. Bad decision Ron and Frank.

    Reply

  10. kathy says:

    I wish they would have kept Kelly OK she could not keep her with sonny so they should have hooked her up with someone else bring johnny back I thought they were good together

    Reply

  11. Shirley A Miller says:

    I really like Olivia and Sonny together….. they have chemistry between them and I think they make a very “sexy” couple. I am sorry that Kelly Sullivan was let go because she is a very good actress but since she is now out of the picture, I would like to see Olivia and Sonny get back together. They also are united by their son, Dante. So come on, GH writers …. do the right thing …. and put Olivia and Sonny back together again!!!!!!

    Reply

  12. su0000 says:

    Olivia is the only character that I have a hard time tolerating..
    That Bronx accent makes her appear to be a dim bulb ..
    That accent makes her seem unintelligent and a dropout street corner babe,,
    I wish they would make the Olivia character more intelligent/sophisticated..

    LOL,, watching Olivia and her jittery/hyper manner (they need to calm down Olivia, to be more in control, cosmopolitan) she comes off as a Bronx Hillbilly ..

    Reply

    rebecca1 replied

    @su000. The entire POINT of Olivia’s character is that she’s a tough chick with a heart of gold from Bensonhurst BROOKLY, not the Bronx. And she doesn’t come off as dim, dumb or deficient in any manner. Actually, she’s the heart and soul, she’s maternal, protective, loving but with a street smart edge and a firecrecker sarcasm. She’s innately intelligent…perceptive…she’s also a businesswoman since Jax hired her right on the spot when he met her; she is quite good at her job at the hotel.

    Not everyone has to have a pompous, effected accent to come off as intelligent. She’s wise, sassy and authentic. She’s also a real tie to Sonny’s old neighborhood days; he too, as well as Dante (and Connie) have all been given that Brooklyn “flavor,”…which separates them from the Diane’s and the Tracy’s and the Q’s…which in actuallity have more flaws than Olivia.

    Don’t judge a book by its cover…or in this case…accent.

    Reply

    donna replied

    very well put rebecca. i agree with everything you wrote.nothing like hitting the nail on the head

    su0000 replied

    .
    Sonny, Kate/Connie are also from Bensonhurst .
    They do not have an accent that sounds like a dropout street corner Hillbilly Bronx dim bulb, they both have evolved into great characters. The Bronx”s accent will never allow the Olivia character to be taken seriously in the great category.. No major company would hire her with her kooky accent lol
    Olivia is a stereotyped character, and always will be.
    Both Sonny n Kate/Connie speak very well , but Olivia was held back as a bad neighborhood Bensonhurst gal, a wannabe gangsta babe with an annoying accent lol..
    Olivia’s accent is extremely annoying as is her jittery hyper personality.

    ohhh well , different strokes for different folks .. she total FF..
    She would be very good less that accent..

    Patrick replied

    LOL.

    that’s too good.

    Olivia was held back as a bad neighborhood Bensonhurst gal, a wannabe gangsta babe

    funny

    Shay replied

    I think Olivia missed her calling as a hitwoman….Ava has nothing on her as a gunslinging gal. Not to mention Ms. Bensonhurst would never leave a job incomplete…..

  13. Carole says:

    I love her! I have always wanted to see what Olivia and Sonny would be like together.

    Reply

  14. Phil says:

    At first I was against the pairing, but Lisa has done a great job making me feel bad for Olivia. I cannot help but want to see how this plays out. I am angry that Connie is leaving, but if one of the Falconari girls had to go I am glad it was Connie!

    Reply

    Patrick replied

    just saying “… the Falconari Girls” had a go…

    I love them

    Reply

  15. Patrick says:

    I haven’t seen two cousins’. two ladies. two friends. two allies/confidants. two sworn connections in. like forever in these two.

    Kelly Sullivan is amiss…. and that’s GH’ foregone.

    Olivia became one of mine…. LOL…. when Steve left… and her hallucinogenics became…. hey… it’s Heather that’s batty…. Olivia is comedic… along with alluring. She has her beat.

    I still don’t see her and Sonny… yet. it’s because of Connie. and, i’m mad at the writing of Sonny… like I said… bemoan the fact that it’s his way… or the highway… ie: think Victor and Jack. I do like, that fans.. think of her as the forthright altruistic… sets others first, and Olivia deserves romance and passion.

    I so liked her dance with Connie… and her love for her son, Dante. my, oh my… WOW.

    so… knowing the paper work…. in the advent of beyond our control…. TPTB… decided.

    I do believe… there is a trust built…. not a comfort level (w/Sonny)… and we’ll get the chance for Olivia to show so much of what Lisa LoCicero is capable.

    I wish her the best…. I’ll always put the Connie connection with Olivia and Sonny… and for me… I don’t know… if I’ll accept these two crossing paths where Connie left off.

    Reply

  16. Jessica says:

    I don’t want sonny and Olivia together. I want Olivia to go with Connie. I’ve been waiting for the day Connie leave so I çould watch sonny again but now thy planning to put him with my second hated character Olivia. Maybe heather will come back and throw her off gh roof

    Reply

  17. heidi says:

    I would like to see Liv and Sonny together for awhile. Let them develop as a family. With the Jerome story it would be nice to see Sonny have a family. I would like to think this might be the relationship at this time in his life that he sticks with for awhile. Love Lisa!!!

    Kelly will be ok… she will do other things… it was time for Connie go get well and not be so close to Sonny.

    Reply

  18. SZima says:

    Love Lisa…Olivia, not so much. Her accent drives me crazy and she (Olivia) needs to go to a voice coach and get rid of it. Sonny doesn’t have an accent and neither does Connie, so why the hell does Olivia talk like that?
    Also, the hallucinations have got to stop. They are beyond stupid and just a gimmick, so I hate when she has one that drives a whole storyline.
    As for her getting with Sonny, NO! Just NO! I need to see less of Sonny on my screen and do NOT want to watch him in romantic settings with anyone, much less Olivia.

    Reply

    Tea replied

    Sometimes Sonny is on once or twice a week. Don’t worry he’s on less this week so you’ll get your wish. I just find it comical when people act like Sonny is on all the freaking time…lol He’s not! As a fan wanting more of him I can tell you he’s on a LOT LESS THAN HE’S BEEN.

    Reply

    su0000 replied

    It is almost becoming rare to see Sonny ..
    Really, Sonny is not seen very often nor has there been a ‘Sonny story’ for a long time.. I hope a Sonny story come soon, once again.

    However I totally agree with SZima.
    Olivia’s terrible annoying accent drives me crazy too and she does need to get rid of it and evolve …

    k/kay replied

    I am back after being gone for a while my sister has made a few comments on my email now that will stop. The character of Olivia is doing a great job that is their accent she is probably one of the few actresses on daytime who has done her research and probably got a voice coach I applaud her for researching the part and going with it. Kuddos to the actress!

    lulu1 replied

    I do agree with one of the above postings that Olivia’s accent drives me NUTS. It’s so backward. She DOES need a voice coach. At least they’ve stopped putting her in the slutty, low breasted dresses daily….

    Reply

  19. Pamela_2273 says:

    I already know once Kelly Sullivan leaves my heart will be broken and I will have to take a long break before I would even consider turning in to the show again. I’ve watched this show for over 30 years and this storyline and my love for SoCo have downright killed me, and I don’t see myself recovering anytime soon. So I think it best for me to take a break, hopefully my memory is short…because I will miss watching Maurice/Sonny on screen. I have nothing against Lisa, she’s a good actress, but I don’t see her with the talent or range of Kelly Sullivan…this is why this firing makes little sense to me. My well wishes and prayers go out to Kelly in all of her furture plans…she is my favortie GH actress and I will miss her more then I can say.

    As far Sonny and Olivia, I have never seen them as anything but brother and sister vibe…but carry on, since I’m not writting the show

    Reply

  20. jon says:

    I just don’t see the chemistry between these two actors as a romantic pair. And this “written into a corner” excuse is bull. You’re a writer, for craps sake, get imaginative and write the character out if the corner! In my opinion they got rid if her to budgetarily make way for all these new characters.

    Reply

  21. CTwildheart says:

    I just hate when they kill off a character unnecessarily! There have been SO many and now Connie. There are so many other ways a character can leave…

    Reply

  22. boes says:

    I don’t care about Olivia’s accent. Or anything else about the character. She’s always come off as more of a talking prop than as a real character. If she’s not whipping up some ziti, she’s running off to church, or hullucinating, putting her nose where it doesn’t belong, or wanting to bang the moron who shot her son in the chest.

    A can of Chef Boyardee has more depth to it than Olivia does. BUT, this makes her a PERFECT match for Sonny, the walking ad for spray on tan.

    Reply

  23. Charday says:

    My favorite thing about Olivia is her hallucinations. I also hope they bring back Stephen Lars (played by a new and better actor than the last one) for her to play off of, rather than Sonny (soooo tired of Sonny).

    Reply

    Shay replied

    Bet nobody wants “Steven Larrrrrrs…..” to return more than Heather!!!!!! LOL….

    Reply

  24. Li says:

    I like Olivia- she is good with Sonny and Connie. Isn’t she engaged to Steven Lars??
    i am not sure why Connie has to go- it is ridiculous. She is one of the BEST actresses on the show. She could date someone else and leave Sonny. Sonny needs a love connection that is realistic and meaningful. Back in the day he and Carly were sincere, crazy but in love. I’ve missed the old writers of the show. These newbies are doing strange things- letting Steve Burton leave (he would have stayed if they would have let him commute as he does with Y & R), bringing back oldies but goodies for barely a storyline. What is the point of just standing around ? (Felicia, Lucy, Doc, Duke, even Laura). I do think the Jeromes will bring some fun with Sonny!!

    Reply

  25. lulu1 says:

    Hating to see Connie go, she is a great talent, and know it is hard on Olivia. Scenes with Sonny must be neat to play, though. He’s a great actor. Lots going on right now….thinking maybe it’s Laura in the basement today, altho not sure. Thinking Brit’s baby is Lulu & Dante’s baby? Luke is ALWAYS great, and so is Laura. They became the backbone of GH several yrs. ago, along with the Q’ family.

    Reply

  26. Debbie says:

    What a loss for GH, Connie was probably the best actress they’ve had on in years. Nobody cried like Connie, you believe her when she cried and her emotions won our hearts. In other scenes, the room lit up when she entered the room. I had watched GH in many years, stopped for a while, but got back into it a few years ago, Connie was one of the reasons I looked forward to each episode.

    I am so disappointed they went this way. What is behind this, when a terrific actress is let go?. I’m sure she will not be lacking for work. There are many loyal fans that feel as I do, GH you made a big mistake :-(

    Reply

Leave a comment