When Rena Sofer first joined the cast of The Bold and the Beautiful, who knew that her character — Quinn Fuller — would turn out to be someone viewers would love to hate? Quinn, whose son Wyatt [Darin Brooks] is Bill Spencer’s [Don Diamont] illegitimate son, just seemed to be a doting single mother, who also had a talent for designing jewelry.
But now, months into the character, it turns out that Quinn will go to any lengths to make Wyatt happy.
So much so, it isn’t clear if she is just obsessed with her son’s happiness, or possibly a little psycho.
To get the inside scoop, I spoke to Sofer, who won a Daytime Emmy for her role as Lois on General Hospital, to get her take on the character and what lies ahead. Here is what she had to say:
I am loving to hate your character. Did you know the direction it was going to take when you signed up for it?
She wasn’t meant to be mean. She wasn’t meant to be hateful. I just started playing her that way because I wanted to do something different and something interesting. I like to create characters that are not normal to the soap world, like Lois was. I think you get lost if you just create a normal, everyday character. It’s so nice to do something different.
I don’t really have a new boyfriend on the show, or the love story, or the three-way love story, so the only way to really make her interesting was to make her not ashamed of anything she does in the name of her son being happy.
So you’re saying they changed the direction of the character based on how you were playing it? It wasn’t originally planned for her to be this scheming?
It was never a plan for her to be hateful. I think that they hired me and wrote it as it went along. I don’t really know if Brad Bell had a specific idea in mind other than to bring Wyatt’s mother in, and that she would be focused on making sure that her son would be happy.
There were many lines where I could have played it sad or scared, like when Liam would catch me in something. I could have played it in a way that kind of educated the writers to the way I was going to play the character, so that they would write for it. I just really played her non-apologetic.
Nobody knows who she is. Nobody knows what she’s been through, or where she’s come from, so it was really up to me, then, to inform the audience and the writers of how I thought she should go. Then they kind of followed through, so it was a mutual effort, and I think it’s going really well.
I totally agree with that. It’s also kind of a shock, because with your angelic face, you don’t expect her to be a character like that. Do you like playing against type?
Well, I don’t know that anybody would say I have an angelic face, but thank you for that. I like to play interesting women who have a point of view and that don’t digress from that point of view per the writing of the day.
When I played Lois, the great thing about Lois was her moral values were No. 1 to her. Her idea of family and doing what you like, always was number one to her, so no matter what choices she made, she didn’t make them because she felt guilty. She didn’t make them because she felt pressured. She always did what was right in the way she was raised.
With Quinn, she had this child at such an early time in her life, when she should have been enjoying the end of high school and college. Here she was saddled with a kid, and she just made the decision that: “My life is now about making sure that this boy is going to have the greatest life ever. Whatever needs to happen, whatever I need to do, this child will have everything I never did. ”
Her idea was: “I’m not going to have the perfect life, but my son will.” That is her focus in life. That is her one directive in her life and that’s how she makes every choice.
You’re a mom in real life, and you’re making these choices. Can you imagine ever doing something like that for your own kids?
Absolutely not. Listen, do I love one of my daughter’s friends so very much because she loves them, and then they do something and they break her heart, and I try to talk to my daughter about how to handle it. She tries, and eventually this girl or boy treats her awfully, no matter what my daughter tries.
Do you think I’m going to hug that person at the end of the day, or adore that person the way I used to? No. I’m going to side with my child, obviously. I’m going to do that. Quinn just takes it a little bit further because, as I said before, we don’t know where she’s been in her life. We don’t know what she’s been through. That’s a story that has yet to be told about the hardness of Wyatt’s upbringing, based on what she had to do in order to survive.
Right. The only thing we really know about her is Bill.
Yeah, and he destroyed her. He not only seduced her and impregnated her, but then he unceremoniously dumped her and money was his way of writing her off. She made choices based on that.
Now that Wyatt’s been revealed to have stolen the diamond, Quinn has to do something to stay at Forrester. One of the things that she had previously done, and they haven’t played it for a while, is that she was trying to seduce Eric. Is that going to come into play more now that the reveal has happened?
Not at this point, but I don’t know what the writers have in store. You know, it’s a 22-½ minute show, right?
When you discount the commercials. The truth is, you’ve got a lot of people on that show for 22-½ minutes and everybody needs their moment, so they’re not really focusing on that aspect of Quinn keeping herself safe. Who knows if it’s going to come up in the future? I love working with John McCook. I love the idea of that, but I think they’re kind of trying to figure it out, so I don’t really know how to answer that.
Is there something you are allowed to tease about what’s coming up?
The only thing I can say is something comes up that is going to make people either fall in love with Quinn, or really hate her. It’s definitely some stuff that the show has not seen before. I can’t tell you with who, and I can’t tell you how. I can’t tell you anything.
You had previously worked on Loving and on General Hospital, which is what you won your Daytime Emmy for. What was it like joining the cast of The Bold and the Beautiful?
It was really nice. They were so welcoming to me. Donald [Diamont] was really welcoming to me and everybody has been really great. Daytime, it’s a family. When you’ve been in daytime, you’re kind of accepted into the family a lot, not easier, but more seamlessly. You know how it works, you know the speed, you know how to learn the lines. This is an incredible cast. These people are lovely.
I really enjoy the job a lot. I’ve been doing a lot of work out of daytime for many, many, many years. For 17 years, I haven’t been back to daytime. With the loss of work in Los Angeles, and my husband [Sanford Bookstavers] is a director, and he works out of town all the time, I was really faced with: Do I continue to keep leaving town for very small periods of time, but I could never really audition for any fulltime jobs out of town, because I can’t leave my children. My husband books out months and months in advance, so we can’t really plan anything.
It really was the perfect opportunity for me to continue working, doing what I love to do, and still be a fulltime mom. Being there to take my kids to school, and be home with them, and make them dinner every night. It really worked out perfectly for me.
Also, because this is a half hour format and you don’t work every day, you could do other projects. Are you still auditioning for guest starring things, or are you just playing mom?
No, I still audition for other things. I just did a guest spot on Chicago P.D. that aired last week. It was great. My husband actually directed the episode, so it was fun to work with him again. Hopefully, that’s something I can come back to, because I played a character that could come back.
I auditioned for tons of different things. It’s not as easy now that I have a job, because I can’t just leave at a moment’s notice anymore, but if it works out, then yeah, I do. I definitely audition for other things.