“I had been talking with my management and my team about this for awhile, and it’s almost as if I kind of manifested it maybe because it felt like it was running its course,” Young tells Variety exclusively about his role as Rick Forrester.
Young shares that the character is “incredibly important” to him, as well as the show, so while he is no longer with the show full time, he is glad to be able to still pop up “here and there.”
“I’m very grateful for Brad Bell and ‘The Bold and the Beautiful’ — for their vision and having faith in me as an actor and in giving me all of the story that they have over the years,” Young says.
News of Young’s status switch at “Bold and the Beautiful” was first reported Thursday, which Young confirmed on Twitter.
After receiving hundreds of responses on the social media site, Young says it “adds a bit of relief” to have a group of people who will follow him to the next project.
“They’re going to root for you all the way. It’s an undying, unwavering love, for sure,” Young says, noting he wants to thank his audience for their “kind words” and support.
“I’m pursuing wholeheartedly my other passions, but I’m still around,” he adds.
Here, Young talks with Variety about the decision to move beyond “The Bold and the Beautiful” as well as what is next for his acting — and his music.
What went into the decision to step down from “The Bold and the Beautiful” at this time in its run and your career?
I started so early in the industry, and I was limited on what kind of characters I could play. Most of them were on the younger side, and daytime would lean itself to that. There were very few film roles that would have been right at that age [of] 17 to early 20s, and if I was trying to get those roles at that time, you kind of get pigeonholed into the teen movies, and very few people make it out of that alive with a career still intact. But we felt with the way the market is going right now and the offers that I’ve been getting that this was the right time…to make that move. It feels right. There are a lot of opportunities that have been coming — opportunities I’ve had to turn down because of being tied up under contract.
How much was the time the show required from you a factor versus the idea of stretching into other types of roles?
I would say it’s definitely on a parallel, for sure. Timing is everything, but also you want to be able to develop characters with a deeper meaning — a deeper sense — and you know, I’m just not quite getting that. In the daytime market you’re pretty much limited to a good guy or a bad guy — not too much in between with the content — and I was looking to explore projects with more meaning to me personally.
After over two decades on a daytime drama with so many twists and turns in its storytelling, is there something specific you’re looking to do next?
I’m really open, honestly. There’s just so much great content that’s out there right now through the streaming media outlets, there’s a lot more risks that are being taken with the kinds of shows that are out there, so I’m open in general to exploring multiple possibilities — it’s not just two or three different kinds of roles. There’s just so much material out there, as you know!
What do you think you’ve learned on “The Bold and the Beautiful” that will most help you in expanding into new material?
The pace that we work at, how much content we put to memory, how fast we have to shoot it — obviously with budgets becoming lower all of the time, that becomes a huge factor for producers [and] directors. I’ve been able to take that with me, and I truly believe that everybody’s looking to save a buck when they’re shooting these productions, and I know that that’s going to be one of the skill sets that’s going to set me apart from some other actors.
Is there a sense of wanting a slightly slower pace than what daytime requires, too?
Absolutely. It’s nice to be able to take the time to develop a character versus we get these scripts and we’re hammering them out and you feel like you’re rushing and missing these crucial beats — layers — that could be enveloped into the character. I do enjoy the process of single-camera…so it would be nice to take a breath and be able to add those layers into the character for the first time instead of “Rush, rush, rush, let’s hurry up and get it done.”
What is the first new project on deck for you?
I am shooting a film currently right now in Albuquerque, and I feel that this is the first step of many steps in the right direction. We’ve been hard at work as a team pushing to get these projects going, and as you know, work breeds more work, and right now I’ve taken those initial steps to continue doing so.
Do you want to create roles for yourself?
This is for myself. Even my wife [who’s] my everything, my rock — I bounce everything off her — she knows it was becoming stagnant for me. It felt unfulfilled and it wasn’t quite, 100% what I wanted to be doing. Anybody who has an opportunity in TV, that’s fantastic, and we’re always grateful, but when it becomes a job, it starts to lose that pizzazz, and it was really starting to become a job and it was starting to break my heart inside. So it was time to take those steps, and she’s fully supporting me on getting back out there. She’s constantly telling me every day, “I’m very proud of the steps you’re taking to fulfill your dreams.”
Are you developing any specific projects right now?
Absolutely. Right now I’m in the process of developing a Jerry Lewis project. I was dear friends with Jerry right up until the very end, and this is a project that we have a lot of interest from major A-list comedians that may want to [take on] this role. So that is something that I am getting in the thick of actually right now. So yes, producing, developing, that’s the next step. In this great journey of being an actor, what do you know? What do you take with you? You learn every aspect of what takes place on a set and what doesn’t, so this project I’m very excited about and we’re in talks with several different people at the moment.
Where does that leave your music?
I’m writing every day. I’m back and forth to Nashville. I’m working very hard on a new album which is finished [but] I haven’t come up with the exact release date yet, but I am very proud of it. It’s a very sort of roots country album with a little bit of Americana feel to it. I released an album in 2001 when I was much younger, signed under Artemis Records with Danny Goldberg, and my album came out on 9/11 — on the day. And we had gone all over the country, every radio station, crisscrossed the entire country and the single was called “Life Is Good” and the irony just didn’t land. I never stopped writing music [but] my wife finally said, “Stop writing songs for me. Write songs for the world — the songs that’s in your heart as well.” So she kind of gave me the kick in the butt to do that as well, so I got back out there, and thank God I’ve got great friends in Nashville, very famous musicians, famous producers, and we’ve all slowly [taken] my writing and gave it that Nashville tweak. There’s going to be tour dates that are coming up, so I’ll hopefully be out there playing music live.
What do you think will be the most challenging on where you’re going from here?
Honestly the thing I think I find the most challenging is playing live with the music. That is a totally different skill set within itself. You can play as much as you want in your home or for other people that are there in your house with you or in a very intimate setting, but to get up there in front of a crowd and really engage with them, that can be quite a daunting task. But the more I’ve been doing it, the easier it’s becoming, of course. I can maybe relate it to my first day on set when I was just 17 years old and seeing all of the madness happening around me going, “What am I supposed to do? Am I supposed to stand here? When do I say my lines?”
Is the challenge part of the excitement?
I think it’s everything because in those new challenges that adrenaline kicks in — those butterflies — those things are actually the driving force behind either acting or playing music, the thing that makes you feel alive.