Emotions have been running high throughout GENERAL HOSPITAL’s powerful Alzheimer’s storyline, but there was one scene in particular that brought actor Maurice Benard to tears, and that was the moment when Sonny finally had to move his father into Turning Woods as a permanent resident. But it wasn’t simply because of the emotional dialogue or the performance of co-star Max Gail as Mike. It was also because they taped the scene shortly after the death of Benard’s dear friend, GH hair and makeup head Donna Messina. “The day after I found out Donna died, I had to tape the scene where Sonny puts his dad away,” Benard confided to Soaps In Depth. “Usually, with great stuff like that, I try to personalize [the material] and make it better.”
However, with the loss of a dear friend he considered to be his sister still fresh in his heart, the Daytime Emmy winner didn’t have to do very much to access those particular emotions when the cameras began to roll. “This time, I didn’t want to personalize it,” Benard revealed. “I just said the lines and [the scene] went crazy!”
With Mike’s storyline still unfolding, and the Alzheimer’s patient’s condition continuing to deteriorate, there will likely be even more heartbreaking scenes and Emmy-worthy performances in the future, so make sure you have your tissues at hand!
For more on your favorite GH stars, keep reading the ABC edition of Soaps In Depth magazine.
Reporting from Deanna Barnert
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