Article et interview de Marissa Tait 

 

California Dreaming: B&B's Marissa Tait

 


The first time The Bold and the Beautiful's Becky Moore (MARISSA TAIT) appeared on-screen, you knew she'd be nothing but trouble. Trouble for her sneaky cousin Amber Moore Forrester, that is. First, there was Becky's unwavering frown, and then there were her angry eyes and relentless stare perpetually shot social climber Amber's way. Becky, after all, has had plenty reason to be ticked off.

A native of a dead-end town in Death Valley, California, poor Becky never had the opportunity to get an education and was barely out of high school when she accidentally got pregnant. Meanwhile, her longtime rival Amber, practically a sister to her, up and moved to L.A., landed herself a Forrester fashion heir named Rick, apparently got pregnant with his baby and moved right into the family estate after drop-kicking Rick down the aisle. ("Seeing Amber do so well, there's jealousy there," notes Becky's portrayer, Marissa Tait.) Sadly, Amber lost rich boy Rick's baby, but thanks to a string of slick moves, the vixen has been passing off cousin Becky's little son as her own ever since. There was one hiccup in Amber's little scheme, though. She never came clean with Becky (or Rick and the Forresters!) about the impromptu adoption of baby Eric.

Devastated by her cousin's ruse, Becky nonetheless has agreed to go along with it, believing the affluent Forresters can offer a better life than she can for her biological son. Meanwhile, the Forresters still don't know that Eric is not Amber and Rick's biological child. "Becky still loves the baby very much and she feels a connection to him," Tait observes. "She can't let go a second time." Thanks to Amber, Becky is now ensconced in Paris, settling into her new life as a Forrester Creations employee. But she's missing her little boy big time and she has got a bad case of homesickness. Watch your back, Amber.

"You won't be disappointed with what's to come," promises Tait, who joined the soap's cast in the spring. She recently returned to the screen after a month's hiatus, although her character remains in France, far from B&B's L.A. locale. "I think Becky is kind of homesick and I think she's kind of lonely... Becky is in Paris because circumstances happened to put her there, and she's trying to make the best of it. But Becky is still not happy." Uh oh.

Unlike her on-screen counterpart, Tait has plenty of reason to be happy. Case in point, her soap job. "I've been very lucky, but I've also worked really hard," shares the friendly actress, who has lived on her own since she was 18. "My philosophy on life is that if you want something bad enough, you are going to get it, not just because you want it but because you're going to deserve it because you've worked so hard."

And that Tait has. A San Diego native, the young actress pursued acting despite a wealth of people who discouraged her. "I had a lot of people tell me I could never do it. To all of them, 'Hah!" says the actress, displaying a bit of her character's gusto.

"I'm not too fond of any of my past drama instructors because apparently I did it wrong," Tait continues. "I had one drama teacher in high school who told me that I was too serious of an actress... I'm assuming it was because I was so young and if I was in a play, I'd get so mad at the other kids for goofing off... I was being professional."

While juggling seventeen units at San Diego State University, working full-time and doing a local play, Tait performed in a showcase at The Actor's Center attended by an array of agents. Soon thereafter, the actress landed an agent and manager and then she landed roles in two horror films, Witch House and Totem. Her daytime role followed.

Naturally, her parents are thrilled. Her mother is a masseuse who used to teach dance and sings; her father has worked in sound design and once worked at the prestigious Old Globe Theater in San Diego. "Unfortunately their musical talents never progressed to me," Tait cracks. "I'm tone deaf and can't sing a note." So Becky won't be joining the legion of B&B singers for a little number? "Maybe if they give me a song now and I practice and practice until next year at some point." Although the actress laughed when she said this, something in Tait's demeanor says Macy and Amber shouldn't count her out. "I don't like being told I can't do something," Tait later notes in the interview. "If you tell me that, I'm just going to prove you wrong." Hmm? Sounds a bit like someone we know.

Below, Tait talks about what makes Becky tick and observes why Amber should be worried that her cuz is California dreaming.



DIGEST ONLINE: Becky has been away from the screen for a few weeks now, So did Marissa get a chance to take a vacation and kick back while your character was not in story?
TAIT: I was off for about a month, part of that had to do with the storyline of finding the new Rick and part of it was just the storyline. Adrienne [Frantz who plays Amber] and I went to the Bahamas for a week. The next week, I visited my family down in San Diego and stayed with my grandmother for a few days. Other than that, time just flew.

DIGEST ONLINE: I bet. What is your take on Becky?
TAIT: Whenever someone asks me a question relating to Becky, such as 'Is she good or is she evil?', I have to answer, Becky is human. Even when someone is evil or good, they don't think of themselves that way. An evil person never thinks of themselves as evil, for example... Becky's human and she's reacting to the circumstances that have happened to her.

DIGEST ONLINE: She's had some bad times. And she hasn't had the opportunity to have an education and doesn't come from much money. I would feel naturally jealous of Amber, too.
TAIT: She is. Because of the fact that she and Amber grew up together, there's competition there. I mean, girls around the same age, it is natural to be competitive. Seeing Amber do so well, there's jealousy and that competitive nature. That's inherent.

DIGEST ONLINE: My heart broke up when Becky landed on Amber's doorstep in L.A. You wanted her to get a chance in life. I believe there's more sympathy among viewers for Becky than for Amber.
TAIT: I've tried to play Becky so she's human and everyone therefore can relate to her. Not only do I try and let people see her emotions, but I have to let them see why she has them which is what makes her human, which is why some people think she's real.

DIGEST ONLINE: You are very genuine in the role... So what is Justin Torkildsen, the new actor playing Rick, like to work with?
TAIT: I don't know his work yet. I haven't seen him doing any acting. But as far as a person -- and usually a person's character will tell you how good an actor they are -- I would say he is marvelous. He's one of the sweetest guys I know. I have nothing but glowing praise for him... He's very eager to learn and eager to please people. He's one of those guys who is just loving it. He's like, 'I love this. This is great.'

DIGEST ONLINE: Will we see a different Rick with Amber?
TAIT: I don't know. Because my character is now at a different point being that she's in Paris, I haven't seen him do anything. I'm not familiar with what is going on over there [in the L.A. story involving Amber and Rick].

DIGEST ONLINE: Can you get inside Becky's head and share if her thoughts are still very much on baby Eric even though she has this great job in Paris?
TAIT: Yes, they are. She still loves the baby very much and she feels a connection to him. It's something she thought she lost but she found it again. When that happens, you just can't let go a second time. She can't let go a second time.

DIGEST ONLINE: Is Becky liking her Paris job or is she is homesick?
TAIT: I think she's kind of homesick and I think she's kind of lonely. She's in a foreign country and learning the language, but she still doesn't know it very well. I don't think she's really met anyone yet. Becky is in Paris because circumstances happened to put her there, and she's trying to make the best of it. But Becky is still not happy.

DIGEST ONLINE: And meanwhile, Becky seemed to light up when C.J. got on the phone with her recently.
TAIT: C.J.'s a friend. She has fond memories of C.J.

DIGEST ONLINE: I loved that scene in the restaurant where Becky whipped out her fake ID to by drinks for herself and C.J. She certainly appeals to the devilish side of him.
TAIT: Those scenes were so fun to do. That was my first time ever working with Mick [Cain, who plays C.J.].

DIGEST ONLINE: Oh, really?
TAIT: I had seen him at the set or at certain events and I would talk to him, but I never worked with him. That was really cool [to shoot] because it was the first time Becky and C.J. were together, too.

DIGEST ONLINE: And you two had great chemistry!
TAIT: We had fun. It's nice when you work with another actor who is there to have a good time as well. Just having a great time loving work!

DIGEST ONLINE: Can you give us any hints as to when and if Becky might return to L.A.?
TAIT: I honestly don't know.

DIGEST ONLINE: It's so funny but when I first saw you as Becky in Furnace Creek, I thought to myself, Oh, this girl can't be an actress in Los Angeles. She must be the real thing straight from Death Valley. I totally buy you as Becky.
TAIT: I'm loving it. Keep going!

DIGEST ONLINE: So tell me about yourself. First up, tell me about landing the part.
TAIT: I had four auditions, the last three were one right after the other and then there was the screen test. When I did the producer's call back, which was the fourth call back, I tested with Adrienne. I remember sitting in the lounge area of the [B&B production] office with about five other girls [auditioning for the part], and watching this tall blonde, who was actually Adrienne, in these platform boots, walk by. As I looked up at her face, I saw her picture on the wall right behind her. And I was like, 'Oh my God, she's one of the actresses on the show.' I didn't watch the show. I'm not a big TV watcher, except Sex And The City. I love that show. It's a great show to watch because it's on every day during the week, so if you miss it one day, you know you can catch it another day. [Laughs] Anyway, I remember Adrienne walking by. I thought, 'Oh my Gosh, she has this job and she looks happy.' After I did the screen test with her, she kicked her shoes off and she sat down on the couch. We had a couple of minutes so I started talking to her. And then she stood up and I stood up and she didn't have her shoes on, and I was like, Oh, my Gosh, she was so tiny. It was really weird because I had remembered her being so tall, because she had those five inch boots!

DIGEST ONLINE: Boy, it must not be easy to go on auditions where you sit right next to your fellow job candidates.
TAIT: I think the hardest part would be if you had a really good friend and you were both up for the same role. My natural instinct is that if anything for me concerns a friend, it's like, 'Go for it. I don't need it.' I'd step away. For example, if we both saw a cute guy. If I saw my friend like him, I'd be like, 'Aah… Go ahead, I don't care.' [Laughs]

DIGEST ONLINE: You were working at Zales Jewelers in your hometown of San Diego when you auditioned for B&B. Did you get the call there that you won the part of Becky?
TAIT: I did. It was interesting because the store I had been working at had just been remodeled. I had actually been shooting a short horror film right before I found out that I had gotten the call back for B&B. So I knew I had a call back but I didn't know what date it was going to be. So I was driving back and forth to L.A. for these auditions. But I had a very understanding store manager named Jackie. She always told me to follow my dream and to be happy.

On my first day back [from shooting the horror film], I had come in early [to work] because it was supposed to be our grand opening... I finally saw the finished product [of the store remodel] that morning and I was walking around and something felt strange to me. I thought, 'I'm never going to work here.' Somehow I knew. It was really bizarre. It was a strange feeling. The phone, of course, rang all morning. Every time it rang, I jumped. It was never for me and I would feel so deflated. Finally, it rang and Jackie turned around to me and said, "Marissa, it's for you and it's not your little brother.' So I picked up the phone and said [rather nervously], 'Hello???' It was my manager Gordon. He just said, 'Pack your bags! You're moving to L.A.!' I just let out this big scream and started to jump up and down.

Thankfully, there was no one in the store. Jackie ran around with her camera and took pictures of me. Meanwhile, I had worked in this mall where the store was for about four years. I ran out to my friends in the mall and said, 'Guess what?!' I was like a little kid at Christmas. I stayed my full shift, I was very proud of myself. [Laughs] Then I raced home. I was right, though, I never worked in the remodeled store.

DIGEST ONLINE: So did you find an apartment in L.A. after that?
TAIT: I actually commuted for the first three shows [about 2-and-a-half hours] each way... I started filming the day after I got the call. It was March 4, 1999. I didn't air until April 15.

DIGEST ONLINE: As I remember it, your first scene was in Tawny's trailer. Amber and Rick were visiting Tawny and there was a Moore family pizza party.
TAIT: Yes. I walked in the door and I kind of gave Amber a dirty look.

DIGEST ONLINE: Well, Becky looked so unhappy and scared and angry at the same time. One knew something was in store for this character. How do you like living in L.A.?
TAIT: I love Los Angeles. It's funny, I run into some people and they don't like it very much. But I couldn't imagine living any other place. I've never been happier. I mean, I'm doing what I've always wanted to do. I'm living out my dream.

DIGEST ONLINE: And you are buddies with Adrienne?
TAIT: Yes. Adrienne is one of my best friends. She just bought a new house, and she had a little barbecue over there this weekend. Some of my friends from San Diego drove up to visit me. I did about a year-and-a-half of college, so they [are my friends from college and they] came over to Adrienne's house with me. Adrienne likes to cook so she made this grilled chicken. It was so much fun.

DIGEST ONLINE: What was it about acting that first attracted you?
TAIT: I don't know. I remember when I was a little girl the pre-school teachers asking, 'And what do you want to be when you grow up?' Other kids would answer, 'Doctor...Fireman... Policeman.' I would say, 'I want to be an actress.' In my mind, I never thought theater or television, I always thought movies. I had this huge plan that by the time I was 25, I was going to be famous. You know, I was going to be up there accepting my Oscar. This is what I thought my entire life. I cannot remember not thinking that. My parents wouldn't let me audition when I was younger, which of course only made me want to do it more. I was able to convince my dad to let me go to a performing arts high school, which was a complete waste of time. After I was there about two years, I was like, 'You know what? This sucks. They don't teach you anything.' My father also worked at the Old Globe Theater while I was growing up, so I got to watch the actors rehearse and the shows being put together.

DIGEST ONLINE: People must come up to you on the street now and recognize you from your role on the soap?
TAIT: It always makes me smile. It makes me feel good. I go to the gym every day; I'm working on losing weight... There are these two ladies at the gym who I always see. One day about a month ago, I was on one of the bikes and I could tell they were whispering to each other. One finally turned to me and said, 'Are you Becky?' I just smiled and said, 'Well, I play Becky. My name is Marissa Tait.' We talked for a little bit. I see them every day. They say, 'Hey girl, how are you?' It's very nice.

DIGEST ONLINE: Who has been helpful around the set in helping you learn the ropes?
TAIT: Everyone is very, very kind. I've gotten really close with Adrienne, so probably she's been the most helpful. I can talk to her so easily. She's one of my greatest friends... [The B&B cast and crew] are like my family. It's really bizarre how that happens. I mean, I see them more than I see my family. Everyone is so nice and supportive of each other. We had a baby shower for one of our producers about a week ago. It amazed me how many people were there. It never occurred to me that I would know that many people who genuinely care and that was a good feeling.

DIGEST ONLINE: I bet. I always hear the B&B cast is close-knit and the Bells are nice to work for.
TAIT: Definitely, I've been spoiled, man. I never want to leave. I love my job.

Propos recueilli par Meg McCaffrey

( Cet article vient du SOAP OPERA DIGEST )

 

Mesurez votre audience