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Freddie Smith talks about working with Chandler Massey and Guy Wilson as Will Horton on “Days”

So yesterday I posted Freddie Smith’s thoughts on the killing off of Will Horton on Days of Our Lives.

Thought you all would also find interesting the part of his AfterBuzz TV chat when he talks about the two Wills – Chandler Massey and Guy Wilson.

As we all know, Guy began appearing in the role in early 2014 and soon after, Sonny proposed to Will and they got married.

Massey had made public his plans to leave the show but had expected to work until the end of his contract. He was let go more than three months early as Wilson was quickly brought on as the new Will.

‘If they were going to (bring in a new actor) I think they did it at the right time,’ Freddie says of the transition. ‘If it has been he’s coming out then my first kiss was with Guy, it would’ve been weird. But I feel like we told a chapter between Chandler-Freddie and then a new chapter started. They wanted me to actually propose to Guy to not completely blow people’s minds, I think it was a great decision. … If I had proposed to Chandler then married Guy, it would have been weird to do that. He really filled the shoes quickly and we did our best within four days to get to know each other and build that chemistry. It was kind of tricky but Guy’s an easygoing person and we just kind of picked up. We just did the best we could with acting with a completely new person.’

He was asked to compare working with Massey to working with Wilson.

‘The people were so different. Yes they had blond hair, blue eyes but they are two different people and they are both great people. But they were both just big goofballs. They were my favorite people to hang out with. Me and Chandler would spend all the time in the world together and we did some goofy things. And then me and Guy the same thing. They’re just nutballs. I was the stick in the mud.’

FILE UNDER: Days of Our Lives

Comments

(All comments are reviewed before being published, and I review submissions several times per day.)

5 Remarks

  1. Whether you prefer Wilson or Massey, the character of Will was too important to die. Because it was that proposal referenced above and the wedding that brought me to Days, Guy is my Will. I’ve seen clips of Massey, and they are both good. And frankly, the Days canvas has far worse actors than both of them but I won’t name names.

    However, I do think the fan war between the fans of the two Wills and the constant harping on the character was the excuse the show needed to pander to homophobia. I think the whole thing is an illustration of how fictional characters and the actors who play them are caught in a net of hostility and double standards amplified by homophobia. Straight characters can weather much more and not be served up for slaughter.

    Many fans of both actors are bewildered at why Will & Sonny were not given a happy ending or even a tragic loving reunion before Will died. People can talk about the hate toward either actor – and Massey got it too from what I have seen – but the reason Will was killed off in such a grossly insensitive way was because it was for those audience members who could not abide to see a happy gay man, a forgiven gay man, or a loving gay couple.

    There will be two weeks of good drama resulting from Will’s death. Then, his mother and husband will be gone from the canvas, his daughter in the hands of straights. His memory will be scrubbed to service hate, and I”m not talking about the hate against one actor or another.

  2. Such a bummer that Will & Sonny ended tragically, like pretty much every gay romance in mainstream movies and television. I loved the Will/Sonny/Paul story line, and I really admired Days for allowing gay men to be flawed and engage in soap shenanigans.

    I think both the previous writers and myself were naive. The backlash from all sides was overblown and nasty and had to do with homophobia. Everyone is talking about Will being “ruined” with his antics – why is Theresa not ruined by false rape reports and attempting to kill John – but it seems the decision to kill Will had everything to do with the explicit Paul & Will sex scene that made the rounds on the internet. It was daring and sexy and they had amazing chemistry – chemistry that the show was obviously scared of because they kept Will and Paul out of each other’s orbits after that.

    I just think that we’ve come a long way as far as gay images in mainstream media, but the Days audience was just not willing to accept a gay man engaging in infidelity and having hot sex with someone he wasn’t in love with.

  3. KK, that sexual encounter between Paul & Will was blacked out here in Louisiana. I don’t know how wide spread the blackout was. But if it hadn’t been for Greg’s posting of the scenes, I would not have realized what I had missed. The blackout ended when Days returned showing the clothes been scattered about in the bedroom.
    We probably will never know what transpired between Days & NBC regarding the gay storyline. But what I have read was there were too many complaints coming from the “old guard.” I personally think they decided to return to the older characters/storylines as they approach their 50th anniversary. Such a sad time for Days.

  4. Brew69, I think you nailed it. This may seem petty to non-soap fans, but it seems that a television show accepted a Glaad media award at the exact same time they were caving to homophobia and not just writing out their iconic gay couple but writing a gruesome “punish the gays” tragic ending.

    I have no doubt that Will’s grisly death was designed to please homophobic audiences and make them feel welcome for the 50th Celebration.

    If there is proof of that, the show should be canceled. I don’t say that lightly, either, as I don’t like people losing their jobs, but everyone just needs to read their Vito Russo to understand that gay characters often die because it pleasures the audience. In 2015, that’s just wrong.

  5. Definitely looks like Days gave in to NBC concerns about continuing the gay story lines. Maybe it is time for Days and other soaps to just gracefully end an era in television history.

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