Interview with actor Linden Ashby of "The Perfect Boss" and other shows - Primetime Article From The TV MegaSite

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By Suzanne

Linden Ashby

Interview with actor Linden Ashby of "The Perfect Boss" 5/12/13

Linden Ashby has been in many great TV shows and movies. He is currently on "Teen Wolf" on MTV as well as starring in this LMN movie. He is probably most famous for starring in "Melrose Place" years ago, and he also played the psycho Cameron on Young & The Restless, among many other roles.  He is also married to actress Susan Walters, another Y&R vet (ex-Diane). She was recently on "The Vampiare Diaries".  We had a really nice chat over the phone about this movie and his other projects.

Here is the audio of my interview with him.

If the audio is not streaming well, please right-click on this link and save it to your computer. It should work better that way!

Interview Part 1    Interview Part 2  

Here is the transcribed version by Gisele. - I will be going through and adding more of it later.

Suzanne: So I read the summary of "The Perfect Boss". You play Cameron Finney, right? How does he fit into the story?

Linden: Cameron Finney worked at a large pharmaceutical company. We've been pretty successful in the past, so we've got a couple of patents that are expiring or near expiration. And we've got some financial difficulties, and we've got a new drug that we're awaiting FDA approval on, that the entire future of the company hinges on. And we've got some hedge-fund money coming in that's really going to turn the company around. Everything's riding on this drug, and one of our research doctors, that's been on the clinical trials, gets a call that there's a problem with the drug. So, my friend, lover, boss Jamie Luner, who was my wife on "Melrose Place," I brought her into the company now to turn this thing around. We find out about this problem with the drug, this issue, and we take matters into our own hands.

Suzanne: The description says she kills him.

Linden: She does? No, she puts me up to it. So, it's really fun. It's drama, it's -- The research doctor, his daughter, starts putting two and two together to try and find out what happened to her father, because she doesn't believe the story -- that he was bought. So she starts putting the pieces together and... the plot thickens.

Suzanne: So is your character a bad guy?

Linden: Oh, yeah!

Suzanne: And does your character sleep with Jessica (Jamie Luner)?

Linden: You know, we've been together before, and we hooked back up. Her character is not really capable of emotional attachment. Jamie is great! It was really fun to work with her again. Like I say, we were husband and wife on "Melrose Place." It was a long time ago, probably '98, '99, somewhere back in there. And, you know, it's so much fun. The longer you're in this business, you come sort of full circle, and you work with people you worked with when you were younger again, and it's always a pleasure to revisit, to retouch, those relationships.

Suzanne: What else can you tell us about the movie?

Linden: You know, I've done a lot of these Lifetime movies. I have. And in this one, the script was really good. I think it's a good one. I watched it, and for me to watch it, because I'm not exactly a demographic, and I had a great time. It's a good one. It's a good one. You will not be disappointed with this one. It's very much a structured piece of scriptwriting. I mean, it's very clearly defined, you know, Acts I, II, III, IV, done! You don't go into these going "What's going to happen?" You go into these going, "How's it going to happen?" It's a bit like life, you know. We know A, we know Z, but we don't know everything that happens between those two letters. It's a journey, it's a dance -- how do you get there?

Suzanne: Tell us what the casting process was like for this movie.

Linden: Pierre David, who I've worked with quite a bit on a lot of other Lifetime movies, called me up and said, "Hey, do you want to do this?" And I said, "Let me read it." I read it, and I called back, and said, "Yeah." That's it.

Suzanne: Do you still have to go in for live auditions or does everyone pretty much know who you are, your work?

Linden: At this point in my work, a lot of people certainly know me, know who I am. But if I work with somebody new, they want to see what I bring to that part understandably.

Suzanne: I've heard that the casting process has changed quite a bit because of technology.

Linden: It's changed tremendously, which I actually like, because it becomes to me more about doing the part than getting the part. I think that so much of it is beyond our control. You know, you walk in that door, and they go, "Eh, what if, maybe." And then, once you put yourself on tape and send it in there, it's generally followed up by meetings and more auditions, callbacks, and whatnot with the director, for certain. That kind of thing.

Suzanne: I've seen you for years in many soaps, especially "Days of Our Lives" and "Young & The Restless" and "Melrose Place." Would you be open to more soap opera roles?

Linden: I would, actually. Right now, I'm pretty tied up with "Teen Wolf." But after that! With the role of Cameron on Y&R, I thought that there's a lot of unfinished business there. Sharon doesn't learn a tremendous amount in life -- she's not an incredibly evolved person. She just keeps making the same mistakes, over and over and over again. Christian LeBlanc is one of my really good friends, so I sort of keep up with it through him. You know, Susan, my wife, was on that as Diane. I'll stay with Christian a lot when I'm in LA, and Michelle Stafford's over and Christian, and, it's just... You know, when you're immersed in it, it becomes like any other job, it becomes your life, it becomes a focal point of your conversation, and whatnot. I certainly know about the behind-the-scenes changes much more so than the story, but I don't really watch it. I didn't watch it when I was on it. It's just not my cup of tea, which doesn't mean it's not great, but --

Suzanne: The behind-the-scenes stuff was probably more interesting than the story.

Both: More like a soap opera.

Suzanne: It's pretty bad when the fans are talking more about that than about the show.

Linden: That's so true, because, I think -- certainly 20 years ago you had no idea what was going on behind the scenes. You just didn't. Soap Opera Digest or one of the other magazines would kind of give you a brief glimpse into behind the scenes, but as far as what was really going on? You had no idea. Now with Twitter and with blogs with 24-hour access to news and Internet space that has to be filled with something. I think, in a weird way, we know way much more than we should and yet we know nothing, because we gloss, we gloss, we gloss, because our attention span becomes so short. I think the biggest disservice to the world was 24-hour news, because guess what? There's just not that much that's interesting that happens every single day of the year, and yet they have airtime to fill, so we hear about stuff that just has no bearing on anything. There used to be so many editions of newspapers that you had to read. I get it. It's kind of fascinating to watch, but after a while it becomes tiresome. I mean, it just sort of wears you out. Susan is a fan of the gossip mags. You know, she'll bring them home or check it out in the grocery store. And you don't even know who these people are. It's a throwback to the age of celebrity as opposed to the age of movie stars or musicians or artists. The majority of the people are famous for being famous.

Suzanne: You seem to play a lot of bad guys. Why do you think that is?

Linden: I've played a lot of good guys. I still play a lot of good guys. I mean, Stilinski on "Teen Wolf" is probably one of the most morally-sound characters I've ever played. He's pretty true blue. In these Lifetime movies, you can either play the milquetoast nice husband / boring friend or you play the cop or you play the bad guy. They send me the script and a lot of times they go, "What do you like?" And for sure the bad guy's by far the most interesting character and the most fun to play, so you only go around once turn in your life, you better have fun doing it. Yeah, it's just choice and you get to play.

Suzanne: I see that you're in Iron Man 3. How did that role come about?

Linden: I auditioned, and then they offered me this part -- it was such a big, secretive film. You know, they're going, "Okay, so this is your character." Can you tell me what I do? "No." Can I read the scene? "No." Well, how can I make a decision about whether I want to do the picture or not, and they said, "Just have fun." And I said okay, and I did it, and it was fun. But some of what I did didn't make the cut. A couple of sheets went on the cutting room floor, but that's okay. That happens. And it wasn't a pivotal character. It wasn't like the movie hinged around what I did or what I thought, so, you know, hey, it was fun. It was fun, and I got to go to Wilmington, eat some good food, and life was good.

Suzanne: So "Teen Wolf" is in its third year now?

Linden: We're in our third year. I still wake up every day beyond blessed that I have this job. I really dig my work. I'm excited to read every script. I like the process and the environment that Jeff Davis creates on set. I love working with Russell. I've worked with Russell before. I worked with him on "Resident Evil." And I love Dylan and Tyler and Tyler and Crystal and Holland and Melissa, obviously, and JR. It's just a really, really good collection of people, and it's kind of that, like, I ride a dirt bike, motorcycles with a bunch of guys here in Georgia, and we have a sort of an unofficial club, and it's called NAHA. I made it into NAHA somehow. I didn't know that NAHA existed. You know, it's kind of like you don't know about it until you're in. And I go, "What the hell does this NAHA stand for?" And they go, "No assholes allowed." And I think that's kind of like "Teen Wolf" is. We're going through our phases on the show. You know, the first year, everyone is so excited to be there. It's just like it's an electric kind of environment filled with uncertainty, because you don't know if what you're doing is going to make it or not. And it's all about the process, and you have fun, and you do it. And then suddenly it becomes a hit, and then the second year, everyone's like, "Whoa. Holy cow! Is this really a hit? Will it go on?" And then it does. And then the third year it's like on a lot of shows people don't like each other. They start to complain about each other or complain about the process or whatnot. I really haven't seen a ton of that. There's some growing pains. People get worn out, they get tired, they get busy with other things, but I think everyone still likes each other. Really what happens in the third season of the show, we become like family. You probably are meaner to people in your family than you are to anyone else. It all comes full circle. Everyone realizes how much they care about each other.

Suzanne: Do you have any other roles coming up that we should look for?

Linden: Nope. No. I'm taking time off. My oldest daughter, Gracie, is graduating, so we're going on a little family vacation, and then we are going to hang a little in Florida and visit relatives, then we go back to "Teen Wolf" in July, so I don't know. Maybe I'll get motivated and just go to work.

Don't forget to watch "The Perfect Boss"!

Read our Review of "The Pefect Boss"

Review of "Teen Wolf Season 2" DVD

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