Three Of Hearts
By: Lori Latusek
Soap Opera Digest Magazine
March 20, 2001

PASSIONS's Kim Johnston Ulrich, Ben Masters And Andrea Evans Make Adultery Fun

The outrageously crass, often-hysterical Julian has two women in his life on PASSIONS. There's long-time wife Ivy, whom he despises because it was recently revealed that "their" son, Ethan, was sired by Sam, the local police chief. And there is Julian's scheming mistress, Rebecca, who happens to be the mother of his ex-son's ex-fiancée. (Got that?) Here, Kim Johnston Ulrich (Ivy) and Andrea Evans (Rebecca) give Ben Masters (Julian) as run for his money.

Digest: What's your relationship like off-camera?
Ben Masters: I have love and respect equally for both of them. I've worked with Kim longer, so she's like my first love in the show … even though [Ivy is] a witch. But Andrea is such fun to play with.
Kim Johnston Ulrich: Andrea is fairly new to the show, but we're becoming very good friends.
Andrea Evans: Actually, [Kim and I] have a lot in common.
Masters: They both take a long time in makeup and hair.
Evans: We both hate Ben [laughs].
Masters: They are both evil witches.
Evans: We both like the same kind of pantyhose.
Masters, Ulrich, Evans: L'eggs!
Evans: We demand our L'eggs. they are the best.
Masters: Isn't that the equivalent of giving you underwear?
Ulrich: You want underwear; they'll give you underwear.
Masters: They will?
Evans: Then at least we'll know you're wearing some [laughs].

Digest: Do you hang out in each other's dressing rooms?
Masters: I don't know where Andrea's is. Kim cracked the door and stuck her head out about a year ago, but I haven't seen anything else.
Ulrich: The dressing room is yours alone to hide and cower in. I walked up to Ben's once. It's very plain. [To Ben] You still haven't moved in. You haven't convinced yourself that you're staying.

Digest: Ben, do you ever feel like you're cheating on Kim when you do love scenes with Andrea?
Masters: Not so much in a romantic way because there's not a lot of kissy scenes that Kim and I have done, but more in a friendly way. I feel like I'm letting Kim down by hanging out with another woman. It's an odd feeling.

Digest: Kim, how do you feel when the writers gave Julian another woman?
Ulrich: I was distressed and jealous. I was happy that Andrea joined the show, but I love working with Ben. I don't want our characters to diverge and not work together. I liked it better when [Julian and Ivy] were always adversarial. We played with each other and had more fun.
Masters: When Julian is always mad at Ivy, I sometimes find myself being mad at Kim.
Ulrich: Yes, you're very mean to me [smiles].

Digest: It's no secret that a day or night in PASSIONS lasts a few weeks.
Evans: That secret is out? People are noticing [laughing].

Digest: How does it feel to be in the same dress day after day?
Ulrich: I feel so sorry for our costumer. She's so good and comes up with all these fabulous dresses. The first day, we all love them and we're happy. But by the 20th episode, we're just bitching and moaning and griping and screaming at her. I hope she doesn't take it personally. But if you wear anything for 12 hours a day, 20 days in a row, you're over it.
Evans: Let's face it, the dresses can stand up and do the scenes on their own. They don't need us anymore. They are still doing the scenes' partying away.

Digest: Are there duplicates, or are the same ones just dry cleaned often?
Ulrich: It depends on the dress, how delicate it is, how many times you do the scene and if you have to do any stunt work.

Digest: How do you keep a straight face working with Ben?
Evans: He's funny?
Masters: Please, you ask the wrong people.
Ulrich: There was a scene, it wasn't in this engagement party, it was in the last engagement party, where I couldn't keep a straight face. I was laughing at Ben. I lost it, and they kept it in the scene. I was like, "Okay, I'm embarrassed now."

Digest: Do you try to bust them up?
Masters: Well, it has been written that Julian is always staring at Rebecca's chest. And it's been written that I put my hand on her rear end, but on occasion, I do it when she doesn't expect it. There's a lot of give and take and variation of what can happen.

Digest: Andrea, is it hard not to laugh?
Masters: No, she's a professional.
Ulrich: Thank you, and I'm not [laughs]?
Evans: I giggle when I laugh, so I sound like I'm 6.

Digest: Andrea, the wardrobe department is fond of putting you in low-cut clothing. How do you feel about that?
Evans: I think it's become a character trait for Rebecca because I'm so not [like] that. I don't know that I own a single, low-cut outfit. My character justification is that, though mine are real, Rebecca must have paid for [her breasts] because she's so proud to show them off.
Ulrich: The engagement party was a ridiculous homage to breasts. [Rebecca] actually was very modest, but between Pilar and Eve bending down to minister to Ivy, I thought we were going to get thrown off the air because there were so many breast [shots].

Digest: Andrea and Ben, how did you first kissing scene go?
Evans: He was the perfect gentleman … once I got his tongue out of my throat!
Masters: That is not true!
Evans: That is not true. I'm kidding.

Digest: How do you prepare?
Evans:A lot of Bianca.
Masters: Yes, a lot of Binaca.
Evans: Oh, and we have to put this sealer stuff on our lips, so [the lipstick] doesn't come off all over his face. It's horrible stuff.

Digest: Do you watch what you eat?
Evans: I try to cut it down to two heads of garlic [laughing].
Masters: This young lady probably has other feelings about it because she's a generation behind me, but I feel self-conscious at my age having to do kissing scenes. I spent many years as an actor doing them with some sort of reality, and now it's hard for me to do that because – as the wonderful Ivy had a line the other day – "It's disgusting to watch middle-aged people slobbering all over each other." Rebecca is a young, hot little number, but for me to be doing that, I'm thinking in the back of my mind, "This is so embarrassing."

Digest: What do you wish would come out of this triangle?
Ulrich: I want Rebecca to redecorate the mansion. I'm looking forward to that.

Digest: What significant changes have you noticed since PASSIONS started?
Ulrich: When we first started, everything and everyone was new. Now we're working as more of a cohesive group. The young kids, most of whom hadn't had a job before, have some so far. It's wonderful to watch them evolve into really find actors.

Digest: Do you offer advice to younger co-stars?
Ulrich: Yeah, don't listen to Ben [laughs].
Evans: She told me that the first day I showed up.
Masters: (Laughs): I'm not an advice-giver, but I'd say to just know the lines and have fun with it. Don't be frightened of the prospect of having so much to do in one day.

Digest: Is there anything you've learned about each other that would surprise our readers?
Ulrich: It would surprise readers to know that Ben doesn't ever grope anyone. He really is a nice man and a gentleman.
Evans: He is.
Ulrich: He's always very concerned with everyone and how they're doing. And if we're sick, he's always …
Masters: Staying away from you! I've learned that Kim is like a Petri dish full of bacteria. Every other week, she comes in coughing and trying to get everyone else sick. And Andrea Evans is just the nicest person in the world; she's not like the evil Rebecca. I just want to say that I couldn't be luckier to be working with such wonderfully talented, beautiful women. This was on another show I did [All laugh].
Ulrich: He's right. He couldn't be luckier.
Masters: Too bad one of you has to lose. There's only one Mrs. Crane!
Evans: That's a nice ending.