Friday, November 14, 2008

Interview: GL's Cyrus Foley Is a Multifaceted Anti-Hero

When Murray Bartlett joined the cast of Guiding Light in March 2007, his alter ego, slick criminal Cyrus Foley, attracted all the wrong women. Police detective Marina Cooper and her aunt, private detective Harley Cooper, both fell for his charming ways. While the women in his life may have tempered some of his less-than-honest ways, he certainly hasn’t been tamed.

Now the new woman in his life, Cassie Lewis (played by Nicole Forester), appears to accept Cyrus for who he is, criminal tendencies and all. “I am definitely glad to see that side of him resurfacing,” Murray says. “It seems like it comes in waves. He’ll go through times where he is happy, where he is not getting into trouble, but then that other side of his personality comes back, and he starts to get in trouble.”

Is Cyrus bringing out the bad-girl tendencies in Cassie, or were they there all along, and that is what attracted him to her? “I don’t think he necessarily knew those tendencies when he got into it. He started to notice them the more he got to know her, and she started to let them show more.”

With the recent announcement that Nicole is leaving “GL” to concentrate on her new husband and baby on the way, the Cyrus/Cassie romance is up in the air. While there is no word on a possible Cassie recast, Murray is sorry to see her go. He tells me, “Nicole is a great lady.”

If Cyrus ends up losing his leading lady, Murray is glad that his brother, Grady, has come to Springfield. “It’s great for Cyrus to have Grady in town — it gives his character more of a background and sense of grounding and a family relationship. Kane Manera, the actor who plays Grady, comes from the same area of Australia that I do, so we have a connection in that way.

“It’s also nice for me as an actor, because I have more history of the Cyrus character to draw on in scenes. With the addition of Grady, we get to see more sides of Cyrus and why he is the way he is.”

Cyrus is trying to be the responsible big brother to Grady, but it is hard because of his own background. “He is trying to guide Grady, but it is difficult. He sees the life Grady is slipping into, and he is family, so of course he wants the best for him, and he is trying to help — as much as Cyrus can help.”

There has been much talk about the new filming process: the hand-held cameras, outdoor settings and sparse indoor sets. Murray loves the change, explaining: “I really like it. I feel less constrained and free to try new things that would be difficult in a normal studio setup. Plus, I love that we shoot on location so much. That part is really great; it makes everything more raw and real. Personally, I really like this new process.”

What keeps Murray interested in playing Cyrus each day is hopefully what keeps viewers tuning in. “What I really like about Cyrus is that he is interesting to play and, hopefully, interesting to watch. Nobody wants to watch a character who is all good or all bad, I think. They want to see some levels, some humanness in him. I definitely think Cyrus succumbs to his human side. I also like that through him, I can do all sorts of things that I would never do in real life, but it’s OK to do here, because it’s Cyrus.”


Anonymous said...

I think murray is a fine actor and i love the character he plays on guiding light. he and kane manera have a great rapport as brothers and i look forward to watching them most when guiding light is on.

Anonymous said...

i do like murray and the character It's good to see brothers that have their ups and downs. . . but in the end stick up for each other. As for the Cassie/Cyrus pairing I must say I'am NOT in favor of it at all! Cassie goes from being the preacher's wife to the girlfiend of a theif??? NOT!

Anonymous said...

I have to disagree. I LOVE Cassie and Cyrus together. I'm a fan of their playful friendship. They're FUN together.

Anonymous said...

love cyrus and love grady. two talented actors!