INTERVIEW: Days of our Lives' Kassie DePaiva on her Emmy nom and her daytime hero

Posted Wednesday, March 27, 2019 4:49:32 PM

Days of our Lives star Kassie DePaiva (Eve Donovan) opens up about the stellar writing that helped her earn an Emmy nomination, the daytime hunk she calls her hero, and what she's learned about dressing for the red carpet.

Days of our Lives star Kassie DePaiva has already had the pleasure of receiving two Daytime Emmy nominations in the Outstanding Lead Actress category -- one in 2016 for her work as DAYS' Eve Donovan, and one in 2005 for her work as One Life to Live's Blair Cramer. Fans of the popular actress are thrilled to see her receive yet another nomination for this year's awards. Will the third time be a charm? Viewers will have to wait and see whether or not she'll take home the gold in May, but the actress tells Soap Central that just being nominated is already a gift from above.

Soap Central: Congratulations on your Emmy nomination. I'm so excited for you!

Kassie DePaiva: I'm excited, too! You know what? The nominations came out on the 20th, and my birthday was on the 21st, so I got a really nice birthday. I'm so happy.

Soap Central: Oh, that's amazing! Did that change the way you celebrated at all, or did you go on with your already standing birthday plans?

DePaiva: I went on with my regular birthday plans, but it was just another thing to smile about. You know how happy I am about everything, so it's all good.

Soap Central: How did you find out that you'd been nominated?

DePaiva: I saw it on Twitter, believe it or not. I was getting ready to go skiing, and I thought they were coming out, but it's usually in the morning, so I thought, "Well, maybe it's actually not today." And that's because out in California, it wasn't announced until the afternoon. But I think one of the soap opera websites was the first to tweet about the nominations, and I saw that.

Soap Central: It's so funny how Twitter is now the way that everybody finds out about everything, from Daytime Emmy nominations to political news.

DePaiva: Yeah, from learning you're getting fired to learning you got a nomination. It works both ways! [Laughs]

Soap Central: You mentioned you were getting ready to go skiing. Was that your big birthday plan, the thing you did to celebrate?

DePaiva: I live up in the Catskill mountains, and we had a bunch of good snow this past week, so I skied as much as I could, because I had the week off. [But learning I had received the nomination] was a really nice surprise. I think it might have been Variety that sent out a picture on Twitter [of some of the nominees], and the photo showed me and Maurice [Benard, Sonny Corinthos, General Hospital], so I took a screenshot of that and sent that to my husband [James DePaiva, ex-David Bensch, GH; ex-Max Holden, One Life to Live], who was asleep on the sofa. That was really nice -- of all the pictures of all the people, they used my face along with Maurice Benard, who is my hero. So that was great!

Soap Central: Which scenes did you end up submitting for your reel?

DePaiva: They were scenes wonderfully written by Ron [Carlivati], the breakup with Brady [Eric Martsolf], when we had the almost-marriage, and I said, "I wouldn't marry you if you were the last man on Earth!" Those were sad and tragic, of course. And then I had a couple of scenes in an episode with Robert Scott Wilson [Ben Weston], where I confront him about Paige's death and attack him. And I guess those were strong enough to get a nomination. I'm so allergic to all the Emmy stuff, anyway. I was just telling Irene, from our publicity department, I thanked her, because she helped me put my reel together, because I was like, "Oh, this sucks! We can't use that! That's awful! Oh, no, not that scene! Yuck, that's terrible!" I can't watch myself. It's awful.

Soap Central: Well I can assure you that you are the only person on the planet who can't watch you. The rest of us love to see you on-screen!

DePaiva: Well, thank you, but I can't do it. And I guess it's just one of those things. When I watch, I go, "Eeeewwwww." [Laughs] But there is just so much talent in daytime. Just making the pre-nom selection was fantastic for me. I'm just happy to be a part of the daytime space. It's part of my life, and I'm really happy to continue to do what I love.

Soap Central: You're up against a few other actresses from your own show. Does that influence how you feel about the competition?

DePaiva: Well the last time I was nominated, I was up against Mary Beth Evans [Kayla Brady], and she ended up winning, which was wonderful. You know, I've been doing this long enough to know that in the grand scheme of things, it doesn't amount to a hill of beans. But in the moment, it's really wonderful and exciting. Of course, if you're going to be in it, it would be nice to win, because if you don't win, you're the first loser. [Laughs] But I just look at it as it is what it is, and I'm happy for whoever wins. I'm just happy to be sitting at the table, cheering on daytime.

Soap Central: You've been in the industry for a while, so have you had the pleasure of meeting the nominees in your category who are from other shows?

DePaiva: No, actually. I did meet Beth Maitland [Traci Abbott, The Young and the Restless] one time a long, long time ago when she was sitting out by a pool with Hillary B. Smith [ex-Nora Buchanan, One Life to Live]. But it was very briefly and a long time ago. She probably doesn't even remember meeting me, but I met her! [Laughs] Of course, I'm very proud of Martha [Madison, Belle Black] and Linsey [Godfrey, Sarah Horton]. I adore Linsey! Both of those girls are just so natural and great and wonderful. Really wonderful.

Soap Central: I know it's still early, but have you put any thought into what you might wear to the ceremony?

DePaiva: Something to cover my old skin! I'll probably wear either some pants or a long dress -- or maybe a tent over my head, I don't know! [Laughs] I just want to feel comfortable. I haven't thought about it. But you know, May is a tricky time in California. It can either be 95 or 55.

Soap Central: Has your "getting ready" process changed over the years? I feel like I get more and more stressed about these things the older I get.

DePaiva: It's always such an ordeal. Everything like that is stressful -- to get ready for a Christmas party, to get ready for all those things. And you're under a magnifying glass out there on the red carpet, and it's usually hot and sweaty. I just like to feel pretty and comfortable. And I've learned over the years that you definitely have to wear comfortable shoes and a dress where you don't have to hold your stomach in all night long! [Laughs]

Soap Central: Do you think you'll bring your husband as your date?

DePaiva: We talked about that. I don't know if you're a nominee, if you get two tickets. He told me he'd go if he doesn't have to buy the ticket!

Soap Central: How do you normally react to good news? Are you the type to go out and go crazy, or more the type to be still and quiet and let it all sink in?

DePaiva: Gosh, I feel like I take in good news every day. Every day that I'm alive, it's good news. But I share it with a few people. When it's a nomination, I share it with my family and a couple of close friends, and I'll go on Twitter and say thank you to Eric Martsolf for getting me the nomination -- because I did most of my scenes with him. So that's kind of how I celebrated. I'm very happy. And I'm very honored. When you're acknowledged by your peers in the genre, in any genre, it's wonderful. I've been doing this a long time, and some years, you think you have great material, and you don't get nominated, and there are years when you kind of go, "Hhmmm," and you get nominated, and you kind of go, "Wow." But I think the material was really strong this year for me.

Soap Central: Yes, Ron is doing such an amazing job at One Life to Live -- oh, gosh, I don't know why I said that! I meant Days of our Lives!

DePaiva: I know why you did it, because I do that all the time! [Laughs] But yes, Ron is doing a great job.

Soap Central: And it's showing. DAYS received more nominations than any other soap this year, which is fantastic.

DePaiva: Yes, and you can tell, when shows get nominations, that it comes from the writing. I mean, there is some great acting, definitely. But it always starts on the page. All of these scenes are taken out of context -- they're just parts of episodes, so you're not getting to tell the whole story. So, if it stand up on its own in a couple of scenes, it's good writing.

What do you think about Kassie DePaiva earning a Daytime Emmy nomination? Do you think she has a shot at taking home the gold? We want to hear from you -- so drop your comments in the Comments section below, tweet about it on Twitter, share it on Facebook, or chat about it on our Message Boards.

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