Alicia Minshew is no stranger to the Daytime Emmys. As “Kendall Hart Slater” on ABC’s “All My Children,” the actress has already racked up a pair of nominations for her work as Erica Kane’s daughter on the iconic series.
So imagine her surprise when she received a nod for her web series role on the critically acclaimed “Beacon Hill.” The series, set in the “epicenter of Massachusetts politics,” received a total of three Daytime Emmys nominations in all – Outstanding Performer in a New Approaches drama for Minshew and Sarah Joy Brown and Outstanding New Approaches Drama Series. With Crystal Chappell, the mega-producer of last year’s Emmy winner, “Venice the Series,” at the helm, quality web series like “Beacon Hill” are helping to evaluate the New Approaches genre and The Daytime Emmys to another level entirely.
Daytime TV Examiner caught up with Minshew to get her thoughts on the series, her Emmy nomination, the Emmys in general and to find out what she’s working on now.
On receiving the nomination for her role as journalist Sara Preston:
“Can I just tell you, what a fun surprise? I did the web series. It was a labor of love. It was something I did. It was a labor of love. I loved the script and I was excited to work with Crystal and Sarah Brown and I just excited to do it. You do it because you want to work. Little did I know that they were going to add a while new category to the Emmys just this past year. I’m glad they did because there’s so many good web series out there. There are so many actors from daytime and prime-time and theater and they all do web series. I feel like it’s so appropriate to add a category because we work hard. It was no different from shooting soap or a TV show or a film. It’s the same amount of work, even more so because you’re on a budget.”
On how she found out she was nominated:
“I found out on Twitter. I didn’t even know they were coming out that day. I kind of forgot about it. I was getting congratulated on Twitter and I was wondering for what. So it was such a pleasant surprise. Just an exciting surprise. I had gotten [two Emmy] nominations for “All My Children” which was my first love,but to have a nomination for something else, it’s kind of special.”
Of the other nominees in her category [Sarah Joy Brown, “Beacon Hill”, Martha Byrne, “Anacosta,” Andrea Evans, “DeVanity,” Vannessa Vasquez and Danielle Vega, “East Los High”]:
“I kind of love that it’s five women. Nothing against the men because that are awesome men. It just goes to show that there are some very cool, strong written roles for women. Sarah is such a force. She’s so good that for me it was a no-brainer for her to win especially with this kind of role that she plays. How many Emmys does she have already? I was not surprised to see her name there; I was surprised to see mine. But I was happy. And Martha Byrne? Come on. These are heavy hitters and really talented people. I’m in good company. I feel very flattered and very honored.”
On working with Sarah Joy Brown on “Beacon Hill”:
“We work so well together. Before we even went to Boston to film this web series, we rehearsed on the phone. I was in New York City and she was in Los Angeles. We’d get together and talk on the phone and we would read our scenes on the phone. We would talk about the scenes. I found that she works a lot like me. I study a lot, I’m extremely disciplined. When you play a popular character on soap, you have to learn your stuff, do your homework and really get into it and she works the same way. Once we got to set we already felt comfortable with each other because of our phone conversations. We just hit it off.”
On working with producer Crystal Chappell [on “Beacon Hill”]:
“Thank God for Crystal [who also plays Claire in the series]. I feel like everything she touches turns to gold. She’s such a good producer. She just knows how to make stuff look good. The quality was really great. It was well written, it was well directed. She put together a great crew. Everyone worked really, really hard. Crystal’s awesome. She played my mom and I’m going “She is way too young and beautiful to play my mom but then look at Susan Lucci [who played Kendall’s mother on AMC] so… (Laughs). It was so fun to work with Crystal. I grew up watching her on “Days of our Lives” so having her play my mom was just cool.”
On why she won’t be attending the Emmys this year:
“I miss the Emmys. They are fun but I’m not going to be able to go. I just got back from California where I was shooting a film. I arrived back to New York in time to get my kid [five year old daughter, Willow] back in school from spring break. My husband’s [Richie Herschenfeld] working so I can’t turn around and leave my kid again so quickly and I would hate to take her out of school.”
On the Daytime Emmys being back on television:
“I love Daytime and am happy for everyone that’s on a soap. The whole Daytime genre is special to me. It gave me the life that I have now so I want it to do well and be celebrated. I have good friends on every single show. I’m happy to see all of my friends doing well too. It’s going to be good for everybody involved. It makes me proud.”
On the new film she’s currently working on:
“I’m working with another very recognizable daytime actress on it. She’s one of the most beautiful women I’ve ever seen. Plus, her character is mean to me. So I’ll just leave it at that. (Laughs) I said on set, ‘I’m usually the one making fun of people so it’s actually very interesting to be on the receiving end. It’s about time someone made fun of me for a change.’ She does a very great job.”
On her comedy series “Surviving Sam” set for release this summer.
“We have twelve episodes to do and want to have a few more completed before they release it. It’s set to debut in the summer. I shoot it right in New Jersey so I can just hop in a car [and I’m there]. I get to shoot on location. We’re in a house, we’re in an office… It’s shot like a film and I’m laughing all day because I’m working with comedians. How bad can that be?”
On how she works exercise into her busy day as an actress and mother:
“Living back in New York City, we walk everywhere. I walk my daughter to school in the morning. When it was winter and literally nine [degrees outside] you’d burn a thousand calories just trying to stay warm. Just trying to keep your body warm. I remember as I was walking her to school one day saying to myself, “Man I miss LA (Laughs). In between auditions and taking care of Willow, we have a gym on our building so I can work out downstairs. I have a Pilates instructor too. I have a great husband that helps me out. If I have an audition, he’ll take Willow to school so I can work stuff in. I get my workouts in. Even if I’m just walking around the city with her…it’s a work out; just living here is a workout.”
On keeping in touch with her former All My Children co-stars Thorsten Kaye (ex-Zach, Ridge, “The Bold and the Beautiful”) and Rebecca Budig (ex-Greenlee, Hayden, “General Hospital”):
“Thorsten and I…we talk and keep in touch. We text each other and talk on the phone. I just talked to him on the phone last week and actually, I just saw him a month ago. I was up at his house. We were talking and hoping that we can work together again. We’re looking for a project for the two of us to do together. I miss working with him as a person and as my friend.”
“With Rebecca, I’m terrible. I have not seen Rebecca on “GH.” I’m sad to say that I don’t watch TV that much and when I do I’m watching “Sophia the First” or some children’s show with Willow. I haven’t had a chance to catch her on it. I know my friend; I just saw her and met her baby girl last week, a gorgeous baby girl. I know she loves it over there and she was just saying what a great cast it was. I’m not surprised. She’s having fun. I’m just happy for her. I see my friends and they’re family now. They’ll always be in my life. But when I see them, I do miss working with them.”
The Creative Daytime Emmy Awards will be held this Friday, April 24th leading up to the live Televised Ceremony airing on Pop, Sunday April 26 at 5 p.m. PT/8 p.m. ET