You can't help but be intrigued by General Hospital's William deVry, who plays increasingly-dangerous mob boss Julian Jerome. The Canadian actor, known for his roles on All My Children and The Bold and The Beautiful, first came to Port Charles as a sexy, bachelor publisher. Now he’s the patriarch of the ever-growing Jerome crime family!
After Sonny Corinthos (Maurice Benard), the Jeromes are the most suave, sophisticated mobsters Port Charles has ever seen. To that end, a lot of work goes into getting their looks, wardrobe and sets right. “We rely so much on Shawn Reeves, who handles our wardrobe and production. He takes our input and we exchange ideas. We find a happy balance.”
Julian is different from other characters deVry has played on soaps. How does deVry compare and contrast him to AMC's Michael Cambias, or B&B's Storm Logan?
“Michael had all the potential in the world," said DeVry. "In the focus groups, he had over 90 percent approval rating. They wasted that character like no other soap character in the history of daytime. With the whole new regime, new executive, a new writer, I think if they would have really thought about it longer than they did, they might have changed their minds. They could have redeemed Michael if they wanted to. You know you save a baby and his mother from dying in a fiery crash, and 'Boom!' he’s redeemed. That’s it, 'Boom!' finished. Now he’s a good guy again. It was just the biggest wasted situation; I’ll never understand that for as long as I live.”
deVry thinks Julian is the best character to come onto daytime in the last two years. “Just because of the potential of his character; the family he’s involved with and his storylines. I am working with the best people on the show. We have such a talented cast, I can’t go wrong! It’s just a win, win, win any way you look at it.”
The veteran actor has already made his submission for the Daytime Emmys. “I chose two scenes, one with Roger Howarth and the other with Maura [West] and Bryan Craig. We’ll see how it comes out!”
While it was a bit of a surprise to learn Julian had two adult children, nevertheless, deVry has been thoroughly thrilled about his upcoming storylines.
“He learned he had a daughter first and then that he was a grandfather. I think it was one of those things that is so overwhelming, you try not to think too much about it ,or you would end up in bed for two weeks, depressed about the whole thing," the actor joked. "I think he is excited and interested now about having a relationship with Sam (Kelly Monaco). He will do whatever he can to try to bridge the gap that has grown between them. And now, like any guy, he would love to have a son. With Lucas, (Ryan Carnes) he is going to get another shock that he is gay. He will have to work through that. As anyone can imagine, I am pretty sure that Julian isn't okay with it at first. This will be another journey that my character has to go through. So a lot of good stuff is coming up.”
deVry loves working with Carnes. “He is a really talented actor. He is very giving and vulnerable as an actor, so the work is really interesting to watch and it’s easy to play off of. He’s a great guy too.”
Ava and Sam are in love with the same man. If push comes to shove, who would Julian side with, his sister or his long-lost kid? “That’s a tough position. I think Julian would probably want to have a relationship with his daughter—because she is his offspring—while Ava is his half sister right now. Having said that, I think Ava would off Julian before Julian would off Ava. Even though he talks a big game and he tries to dominate/intimidate Ava, I don’t think he really has the bite to go along with his bark. I think he really loves her in his way, and I don’t think he would really do anything bad toward her.”
Fans are also itching to see more romance for Julian. Could Alexis (Nancy Lee Grahn), Carly (Laura Wright), or some other Port Charles lady melt his heart? “I think there is a story to be told between Julian and Alexis. I don’t know how it will culminate in the end, but there will definitely be a journey, some laughter and some pain. I look forward to telling that story.”
What about the Flowers in The Attic-esque chemistry between Julian and his baby sister?
“I love our dynamic!” deVry enthused. “We like to play and have fun. We always try to make it interesting. If the scene is a little bitchy, we try to make it fun. We have a really good time together and I think the audience can see that. I really enjoy it and I hope Maura does too.”