How did he approach playing an already-established character? Newman revealed:
But you know, every character I play has a past, has a history. So any play I’m researching, any musical I’m researching, those characters don't just begin to exist in the first page of the first scene. They have existed well before that, so there’s always this kind of looking back, and in that case you’re looking for in this in this already written and published script of, what was this person’s background?
Of working with his leading lady Amelia Heinle (Victoria), Newman said:
Fantastic. Of course she's fantastic. You know, in a way I thought it might be more a little more tricky for her, you know, because she’s been working with another person, an entirely other human being, for a period of time, who has different rhythms and methods and tics and whatever and still has to somehow figure out...I had a conversation with both [co-executive producer/head writer] Josh [Griffith] and [executive producer] Tony [Morina] and then actually she and I spoke, Amelia and I spoke, I think, like, the day before or something like that about just a few things over the phone. Because she also had to pick up on this relationship that apparently is based in love and it had to happen right now. That reminded me a little bit of when we lost Laura Wright and we had Nicole Forester literally the same day [in the role of Cassie on Guiding Light].
How would he characterize Ashland? Newman mused:
So to me, Ashland is a businessman through and through. The term 'ruthless businessman,' I think is the most overused phrase in casting history. There are hundreds of roles that I’ve looked at and the breakdown says, 'Ruthless businessman,' and I’m like, 'What does that really mean?' I have this theory—Eric [Braeden, Victor] and I talked about this the other day—I have this idea that anybody who gets to level, when you're at the multimillionaire, billionaire level, you’re probably done a lot of ethically questionable things to get there, you know?
Listen to the full interview below.