CENTER STAGE: ‘DAYS’’ Blake Berris Discusses Nick’s Revenge, Imposter Rumors, and a Maniacal Romance with Theresa!
Watching “Days of our Lives’” Sami (Alison Sweeney), Kate (Lauren Koslow) and Gabi (Camila Banus) supposedly wash their hands clean of Nick (Blake Berris) by tossing him in a river was delicious soap opera fun. But with the formerly presumed dead character back in town and acting rather strange, it seems the fun has really just begun! Is the dark haired fellow really Nick? Or could it be a twin brother or an imposter using his face? And if it truly is Nick, just how far will he go to get back at the ladies for trying to off him? Soap Opera Network chatted with the character’s portrayer to find out!
Last week was quite a ride for “DAYS” viewers, who finally found out that Nick does indeed know about Sami, Kate and Gabi trying to drown him. The “back-from-the-dead” character has already used the information to his advantage career wise, but just what else does he have in store for the threesome? “I’m not even one hundred percent sure that revenge is what he wants,” Berris teases of his alter ego’s plans with a smile. “The plot will evolve, but I will say that what he wants are very specific things. And I’d say that he’s got a lot to negotiate with, and he’s going to make sure he gets what he wants. He’s got a full hand of cards. He’s flush.”
That is, if this guy really is Nick, which is still debatable! “He does seem to be acting a little different, doesn’t he?” Berris teases, adding that the unknown has been an interesting acting challenge. “I was excited about this storyline, of him coming back, because whether it is a different person, or if it’s his twin brother, or he’s just acting [different] because he was hit on the head, or if he’s acting that way because he’s just messing with everybody, regardless, he had to be behaviorally different. That was exciting to me, to kind of reinvent the character again. He’s already gone through so many incarnations, and I thought this was a new incarnation that I could take a little further.”
Speaking of multiple incarnations, the former Santa Barbara resident describes his years of playing Nick almost as if he’s jumped into the shoes of several new characters rather than played the evolution of one. “The writers have always surprised me with where they take him, so just when I feel like I’ve gotten comfortable, they throw another [bomb like] ‘And, he was raped!’ And you’re like, ‘Oh, wow. Ok,’” he explains. “And then they throw out, ‘He’s homophobic!’ And you’re like, ‘Wow, ok.’ So there always seems to be a surprise around the corner that forces you to go, ‘Oh, wow, now I need to create this layer into this person.’”
No doubt, there’s another bomb in the wings, just waiting for the right time to explode. Until then, Berris is enjoying his alter ego’s current state of being — and he says good things are headed Nick’s way. “I think the next chapter is going to be a bountiful one for Nick, because the deck is stacked in his favor,” the actor reveals. “2014 is going to be great for Nick. It’s going to be a good year. I think he wants to get his life together. I think he wants to finally get everything he’s ever wanted.”
Sadly, that probably won’t be a happily-ever-after with Gabi, whose portrayer, Banus, has already taped her final scenes and is set to exit the canvas later this spring. “Camila is amazing, and filming our last scenes together was very emotional,” Berris recalls of saying goodbye to his co-star. “I have no doubt that she will have great success beyond the show. And it was an incredible pleasure to work with such a warm, talented, feisty woman like her.”
So, sans Banus’ Gabi, what could Nick’s romantic future look like? “You know, I get a lot of tweets about Nick and Theresa (Jen Lilley), because they’d just be two maniacs who would make hell in Salem for a lot of people!” he says with a laugh. “We recently had some fun scenes together, but I don’t know [if that’s the direction they’ll take it], so it’ll be interesting to see if there’s anybody else on the table. Though, he’s so obsessive, it might be hard for him to move on to anyone outside of Gabi.”
However, if the powers that be do end up connecting Nick and Theresa, Berris wouldn’t complain. “Jen is awesome; she’s a comic genius,” he raves. “She comes at things from a totally different way than I do as an actor. And it’s always fun to work with people like that, because they kind of surprise you. I often feel that way with Ali Sweeney, as well. And we’ve discussed that with each other, that we’re totally two different animals, and that’s why I think people like watching the Sick scenes, because we’re such different beasts. It’s like watching two elements that don’t understand each other but there’s chemistry there. And that’s always fun to work with, and it’s one of the perks of the job, just working with different artists and seeing how everybody comes at the same goal totally differently.”
Despite all of the fun he’s having at “DAYS,” Berris is pretty open about his intentions to explore all kinds of different characters outside of Nick. So far, he’s been able to juggle the soap role with other projects — like “Meth Head,” the recent indie film he starred in which he says should be available on Netflix and Amazon in June, “Crazy Bitches,” a comedy/horror film currently in post-production, and “This Shining City,” which is a political drama that Berris wrote and plans to shoot this summer. “I definitely want to explore other avenues,” he says of his future career. “I love working in a bunch of different capacities. I love independent film work… and I love working in primetime, as well. So I definitely plan on doing more of that stuff in the future.”
As for now, the actor is very happy at “DAYS” and doesn’t seem himself leaving any time soon. “I love this character; he’s so weird and colorful,” he says. “I’ve got to hand it to the writers: They do an amazing job with Nick, and there’s a lot of exciting stuff going on with the show right now.”