By: Lori Latusek ~ Soap Opera Digest ~
While ducking Eve’s hot-tempered hubby, T.C., she and Julian have taken steps toward rekindling a long-ago romance. During a comical interview, portrayers Ben Masters (Julian) and Tracey Ross (Eve) prove that off-screen, these friends have nothing to hide.
Digest: Are you ready for Julian and Eve to be a supercouple?
Ben Masters: Bit by bit, the scenes led to embracing, kissing, understanding and caring about each other. I guess they say that’s being a supercouple. Somebody likes the chemistry somewhere. I just do scenes with the lovely Tracey Ross and we have a simpatico [relationship] together.
Tracey Ross: Julian is one part Thurston Howell III and one part J.R. Ewing, but nobody knew he was one part Cary Grant. They want to see that and they have to have Eve be there for him to show that part.
Masters: What about the people on the message boards who say he’s a wuss and a sissy now?
Ross: There are two, and they always try to get a thread started and nobody will join them. Then, they move on to something else like, “Who’s the sexiest guy on PASSIONS?” They answer, “Julian, Julian, Julian, Julian, Luis, Fox, Julian, Julian, Julian.”
Masters: We don’t need to go on about that, dear.
Digest: You both check out message boards. Do you talk about what you see?
Ross: Oh, yeah. Checking out message boards is pretty much the first thing I do when I get home. Before I even watch the show, I like to see what viewers think.
Masters: I get pissed off if I think I’ve done something good and they don’t discuss it.
Ross: When I’m at the end of where the new messages are, I feel so let down. It’s like my night is over.
Digest: Do you alter your acting because of what you read?
Ross: I take notes from them.
Masters: You do not! Call me before this happens.
Ross: I take notes in that, if they mention my voice is too high, then I think they have a point; I start lowering my voice. It’s not like there is feedback; applause or lack of applause. And it takes 30 days before you even get to see yourself, so I figure they’re doing me a favor.
Masters: There was a period for about six weeks after they said they thought I was wearing a wig, so I started every scene doing this [pulling the hair on top of his head]. When we were doing those old Julian and Eve photos, they said, “He belongs in a D-cup bra [lifting his shirt].” I don’t have big boobs, right?
Digest: Do you enjoy the flashbacks of Julian and Eve’s risqué days?
Ross: Ben doesn’t like when he has to do flashbacks.
Masters: Not anymore, because I don’t have that cheesy dye in my hair and they pat it down.
Ross: He doesn’t take it very well when they plaster his hair down to his head and give him some shirt with the little collar and knit vest.
Digest: Do you do anything to make him feel better about it?
Masters: No, she doesn’t at all.
Ross: He looks great. I think he always looks great.
Masters: That’s a good trait of being a woman – that you can lie very well.
Ross: You’ve just impugned all womanhood.
Masters: I think women are fabulous.
Ross: But you think we lie very well. What would I hope to gain out of telling that lie?
Masters: I think you, as Tracey Ross, are very kind to me and I really appreciate that.
Ross: When he says something complimentary, it’s completely sincere. When I say it, it’s just flattery and silliness. Isn’t that awful? He’s so modest.
Digest: What are the other’s best qualities?
Masters: One of the things I like about Stacey [laughs]… She has a wonderful, wide-eyed innocence and a sense of wanting to discover what the world is about, and she has a great heart – not to mention, she’s a good-lookin’ woman.
Ross: I have a great sense of wonder, really? Get out!
Masters: Perhaps I should have said awe.
Ross: Okay, Ben’s best qualities. He hates this.
Masters: Don’t do this.
Ross: Ben keeps trying to take the high road when the low road would be so much easier.
Masters: That’s so good and weird.
Ross: That’s what makes him special because people who would take the low road are to a penny. He wants to be worthy of his own good opinion.
Digest: You guys have been laughing all day. Obviously, you have fun together.
Masters: We have sad times too. For me, it’s difficult to not take it home. I can’t work without having feelings about what I’m doing. So, when I’m doing a lot of scenes with someone who I care about, I tend to be smitten. There are different kinds of kisses on a soap opera. There are Rebecca kisses and there are Dr. Eve kisses. If I’m living Julian and I’m kissing Dr. Eve, it’s like I almost have a stroke whenever I kiss her, and then it’s like I’m walking 12 inches off the ground until I get back to my dressing room. This has been a very intense storyline for me.
Digest: Has it been for you, Tracey?
Ross: I don’t know if intense is the word. Demanding.
Masters: Very demanding.
Ross: I always want to give it my all.
Masters: And you do, my dear, you do.
Ross: You want to really make it matter, and then it’s Ben. Sometimes I see all this stuff that he was giving me [in scenes] that I missed, even though I was only six inches from him. So, I’m just trying to catch even more of things that he’s putting out so that I can contribute something to the scene. People like “Evian” and they’re talking about [us being a] supercouple, so I can’t just fluff it off.
Digest: Do you hang out after work?
Ross: I try, but he keeps ducking me and drives off really fast.
Masters: She’s being facetious.
Ross: I am not. I adore him. Unfortunately, he knows it.
Digest: Tracey, would you ever date anyone like Julian or Ben?
Ross: Do you know something? Did he tell you to ask me that?
Masters (to Digest): Thanks, hon. Here’s the money.
Ross: If he looks and acts like Ben, yeah. Julian is like Ben’s bad brother. If I couldn’t have Ben, I probably would go for Ben’s bad brother.
Digest: How are your kissing scenes?
Masters: It’s a wonderful, delicate, exciting thing to get to kiss a woman this beautiful, whether it be on-camera or on a coffee table.
Ross: It was exciting and I took full advantage of it!
Digest: How would Harmony react to an interracial relationship?
Ross: The only thing they would really think is, “How could that wonderful woman, Dr. Russell, have anything to do with that wicked, horrible Julian Crane?”
Digest: Are Julian and Eve good for each other?
Ross: Definitely. They bring out such good things in each other. She brings out the fact that he was actually born of human parents.
Masters: That he was born of human parents? How do you know that?
Ross: You’re right, this is Harmony.
Digest: There was a posting on a message board about Eve and Julian’s kiss outside the Lobster Shack. “I love that Eve was breathless after kissing Julian.”
Masters and Ross: SIPort!
Digest: You know the poster’s name?
Masters: That’s her screen name.
Digest: It says, “You can see the passion rising in Eve, so much so that she was breathless. Julian just does that to her.” How does that make you feel?
Ross: This whole storyline must be very titillating.
Digest: How would finding their son affect Julian and Eve’s relationship?
Ross: That would be the cement.
Masters (singing): You say cement, I say cement-o.
Digest: What kind of Mrs. Crane would Eve be?
Ross: Eve would make a good Mrs. Julian Crane. She would give parties. There would be more little get-togethers and not always big, fancy, evening-gown parties.
Masters: My idea would be like, since Julian owns the resort in Bermuda, that he and Eve would go down and spend a couple of months feeding each other grapes and hugging and kissing – nothing to do with parties and gowns. He would take her on the Crane jet.
Ross: Where so many other women have been before. What was her name, Suzanne? Eve will have to have the Crane jet scrubbed down!