February 13th, 2009  |  Leave a comment

THE CHRISTEL KHALIL INTERVIEW – THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS

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As one half of one of daytime’s most popular couples, (Cane and Lily), actress Christel Khalil is at the center of one of soaps hottest storylines, which is set to explode this week!   Lily has just found out that Billy is the father of Chloe’s baby, and Chloe is about to give birth practically in front of Lily, or is she?  Elsewhere, Cane has just realized he has been a fool, and has run out the door to find Lily.  Christel reveals her perspective and what to look forward to next, in one of soaps all-time best quadrangle story arcs.

Last week, Christel was also nominated for an NAACP image award, and is still in the running for a Daytime Emmy nomination after the in-house voting at “Y&R” for the Younger Actress category.  In this revealing interview, she talks about working with Daniel Goddard… voted “soaps sexiest man”; and the real life love of her life… musician and husband, Stephen Hensley. Christel also gives her insight into how the Maria Arena Bell  writing regime has affected the “Y&R” scripts and dealing with the pressures of awkward Red Carpet moments!

Listen to the audio:

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MICHAEL:
How do you like the amazing “Y&R” quadrangle you are part of?

CHRISTEL:
I love the storyline!  I love the actors that are involved in the storyline.  Elizabeth Hendrickson (Chloe) is one of my best friends.  It’s hilarious when we have fighting scenes, and when we have photo shoots.  When we look at each other really mean, we laugh at each other afterwards.  Billy Miller (Billy) is a great actor and I have worked with Daniel Goddard (Cane) for a long time.  It’s great to have everyone come together.  There is not a weak link in the bunch.

ChristelKhalil-bestbuds1.jpgMICHAEL:
This week is a HUGE and pivotal week for the “Quad”.  Chloe is about to give birth in the cabin where Billy and Lily are having a romantic getaway!  Set it up for us.

CHRISTEL:
We are there for a Valentine’s Day trip and Chloe follows us there.  She is looking through the window and she hears Billy tell me that he is the father of her baby.  Billy and I are about to make love in the cabin.  But before we do, Billy is feeling very guilty and that’s when he says to Lily, “Listen, I have to tell you something.“  Chloe overhears it and bursts through the door.

MICHAEL:
What happens next?

CHRISTEL:
Her water breaks.  At first I don’t believe her, but then I see clearly that her water broke. So, we don’t have much time. We have to deliver the baby right then and there.

MICHAEL:
Billy has known for some time that he’s the ‘baby daddy’, and that makes things all the more horrible!

CHRISTEL:
Billy found out when Chloe fell off the ladder and she went to the hospital.  He asked the nurse, “How far along is she?”  When he finds out he keeps it quiet, because he figures out that he is the father.  And at that point, Cane and Lily did not know.

MICHAEL:
Isn’t it odd that Lily, who just found out about this lie, is helping to deliver the new little bundle of joy?

CHRISTEL:
So, here is good ole’ Lily!  This is how I thought about it.  If you see someone about to have a baby, your logic and hatred goes out the window.  I mean, it’s a big snowstorm and we are all snowed in.  So, I guess I’ve got to help this person!

MICHAEL:
Where is Cane?

ChristelKhalilandDana.jpgCHRISTEL:
Cane is at home.  He ends up coming there, but he is not there for the whole delivery part.

MICHAEL:
Does he find out who the baby’s father really is?

CHRISTEL:
He finds out whose baby it is.

MICHAEL:
Will devoted Lily/Cane fans be happy in the foreseeable future?

CHRISTEL:
Yes. They will be happy, because of the way Cane finds out and how he reacts to it.  Then the way that Lily reacts to it ends up working out really well, also.

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MICHAEL:
So, there will be some stuff coming up after Valentines Day between the star-crossed lovers?

CHRISTEL:
Yes.  It happens very quickly. It’s just so funny because the writers took so long to break us apart, and then all of sudden, its “bam”.  I understand why it would be that way, though.  In real life when you are apart from someone, you want to be with that person.  And when you are finally able to, you jump at it.  I can see how it would happen, but it’s a little funny.

MICHAEL:
Will the baby be a problem?

CHRISTEL:
The baby will be a huge factor.  As long as Cane feels he needs to be the baby’s father, no matter what, whether he is the baby’s father or not, it will continue.  He had been thinking this is his child, and when he finds out that it isn’t we will see Cane’s character change in a lot of ways for the good.  I think the quadrangle will go on forever.  Cane and Billy are brothers, and Chloe and I are always at each other, so I think it will always go on.

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ChristelKhalil-Dan-Liz.jpgMICHAEL:
In a few words, describe Elizabeth Hendrickson to me.

CHRISTEL:
Elizabeth is feisty, funny, and a firecracker.

MICHAEL:
Billy Miller?

CHRISTEL:
Billy is crazy, funny and a Texan.

MICHAEL:
Daniel Goddard?

CHRISTEL:
Daniel is inappropriate, and that’s Daniel. (She laughs)

MICHAEL:
You recently got married to musician Stephen Hensley.  Short romance wasn’t it?  How did the two of you meet?

ChristelKhalil-Henley.jpgCHRISTEL:
I met him at church.  I remember when I first met him.  I did not like him.  I was not attracted to him.  He had long hair and a beard, and he looked like Jesus.  I remember  thinking, “Wow, this is really creepy,” and then I had a friend who invited me to a barbecue and he was there.  We started talking and we hit it off.  We were talking for three hours straight.  I remember being so blown away by him… the way he talked and acted.  I never met anyone like him.  He is a Leo and I love Leo’s.  So, we started dating and he came to Hawaii with me, a month after meeting me, for my birthday.  He is so spontaneous, like that.  We always knew we wanted to get married.  So we originally set a date of July 8, 2009.  We wanted to have a small wedding in Italy.  Then all of a sudden it was July.  I said, “I don’t want to wait a year to get married.  It’s so long and I don’t want to do that just because everyone else does.”   So, we decided to get married this past September 21.  Because it happened so quickly, we did not have time to plan a real honeymoon, so Adrienne Frantz (Amber), who has a house in Lake Arrowhead, let us stay in her Lake House for three days.  I got to bring my three dogs, which was great for me, since it’s hard to find someone to take care of them, usually.  For our one-year anniversary we want to go somewhere really big… like Italy, Fiji or New Zealand.

MICHAEL:
I missed something in the story.  When did Stephen cut the hair and the beard?

CHRISTEL:
It happened gradually.  First, he cut his hair to his shoulder.  Then after he did that, I thought it was too long.  Then he cut his beard where he had a goatee.  Then he chopped his hair off before he came to Hawaii as a surprise for me.  He did his hair in ‘Faux Hawk’ and I was like, “Oh My God, I love those!”  That is what he has now.  I just told him flat out, “You need to cut your hair.”  He is so attractive!

ChristelKhalil-Stephen-Happy.jpgMICHAEL:
What do you think makes a successful relationship?

CHRISTEL:
Stephen is a musician, and we are both creative.  I think the number one thing is communication for friendship, and relationships with your family, or your partner.  I am the kind of person when I am upset I want to be left alone, and then I will talk.  But he wants to talk about it right away, which is good.  I think it’s always easier for a woman to come around then a guy.  He’s more sensitive than I am, and I am sensitive in a different way, and I am a brat.  I realize I am kind of a control freak.  I don’t want to be.  It’s very stressful being a control freak, because you want everyone to do it like you, and nobody does.

MICHAEL:
You were just nominated for an NAACP Image Award for Lead Actress in Daytime Drama, an award you won last year.

CHRISTEL:
I was the only person from “Y&R” last year, so that’s probably why I won.  Usually, there are so many nominees from the show.  This year there weren’t.

MICHAEL:
Debbi Morgan was the eventual winner in your category last week.  Do you like the whole process of picking out a dress to go to these types of ceremonies and to walk the red carpet, or don’t you really care?

CHRISTEL:
I care.  I try to put it off as long I can, because I hate formal gowns.  I am more of a jeans sort of person.

ChristelKhalilRedCarpet.jpgMICHAEL:
So, what’s prepping for an award show red carpet like for you?

CHRISTEL:
Basically, it’s choosing a gown. You go to lots of different shops or designers and look at choices and options.  Usually, it’s expensive and you don’t buy it, and anything you see any celebrity wearing is usually borrowed.  The day of the award show, you can hire someone to do your make-up and hair, or do it yourself.  I do it myself because I am too cheap to hire anyone.

MICHAEL:
Is that including your own make-up?

CHRISTEL:
I do it myself… make up… hair and everything.  I do it simple.  I probably should get a stylist, but I never do.

MICHAEL:
The red carpet can be daunting, with all the people, the paparazzi, and the pressure to look good.  Are you cool with it?

CHRISTEL:
I am, but at the beginning it was bit uncomfortable.  You have a lot of people screaming your name, “Look over here! Over here,” and if you don’t, you feel bad.  The photographers are like, “Christel, Christel to your left, to your right.”  It’s always cool, but I hate posing, I really do.  (She laughs)  I feel like a goofball when I am standing there.  And there are certain poses that actresses know how to do to make their dress look good.  I just don’t know how to do it at all, so I feel like an idiot.  I am that girl in school again who is like, “Ah, don’t look at me.” (She laughs)

MICHAEL:
Are the crying scenes, as Lily, the easiest or hardest type of scenes for you to play?

ChristelKhalilMonteCarlo.jpgCHRISTEL:
This is my theory: crying scenes are the easiest, because whatever brings you to that, it will be truthful, because you are actually really crying, whereas, when you have a normal scene, its harder to stay truthful the entire time.  But for me, crying is not easy.  There are times when I have to be angry or screaming in a scene and that will make me cry.

MICHAEL:
Have you noticed a difference in the scripts under Maria Arena Bell and this new regime?

CHRISTEL:
Yes. I love Maria Bell.  I love what she is writing.  Honestly, I loved when Josh Griffith was writing the show, when Lynn Latham was gone because of the strike.  It was amazing, and we miss Josh.  I think with Maria here, it’s great, too. She knows the history of the show, which is
something Lynn Latham did not know.
So, it’s great having someone who
knows the show and how she writes it.

MICHAEL:
Why was Josh Griffith let go, do you think?

CHRISTEL:
Who knows?  The politics?  It’s never based about talent or what someone can really do, but Josh was great.

MICHAEL:
How is working with daytime classic soap executive producer, Paul Rauch?

CHRISTEL:
Paul is a tough guy.  I like being told what to do.  I do really well with clear- cut direction.

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MICHAEL:
Right, because you are a control freak (he laughs), so coming from him that probably works well for you.

CHRISTEL:
It’s funny, because Daniel Goddard and I have this joke.  With his acting, he is very analytical and precise, and I am totally go-with-the–flow.  I think that’s why our chemistry works so well.  There are days when he makes me think about something more, and times where I will make him calm down.  It’s a good balance, and it shows on screen.  I think that’s why people like us together, because we have this really great way of how we work together.  I am like, “Daniel, just shut up and calm down.”  And he will say, “Crystal, think about this.”  And I am like, “Eh. It’s OK.” (She laughs)

ChristelKhalil-SoapNetParty.jpgMICHAEL:
Remember way back at the start of the Cane/Lily relationship, so much was made of their age differences.  Lily the younger woman and Cane the older man.  What happened to that?

CHRISTEL:
I don’t know.  It cracks me up so much about some of the characters on the show.  In real life my husband is nine years older than me.  It’s so funny how these relationships come and go on soaps.  It’s like, “Oh, look who I am with now!”

MICHAEL:
Coming up this week on “Y&R” it’s going to be, ‘hold on to your seats’ kind of drama. What can we tell your fans to look forward to?

CHRISTEL:
Make sure you watch, because it’s crazy the way everything unfolds.  It’s so great!  It does not happen all at once, but it’s not over a long drawn out period, either. You will have an, “Oh, my God,” moment!

  1. NATHAN JAMES says:

    SHE IS WONDERFUL ACTRESS AND ABSOLUTELY BEAUTIFUL GAL GO CHRISTEL

    Reply

  2. sandy gaydos says:

    Great job on Y and R! Just started watching since All My Children, and One Life To Live were taken off the air. U r a brilliant asset to the show, and a fabulous actress. Keep up the good work!

    Reply

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