Maurice Benard warmly welcomed Joyce Guy, who plays Phyllis Caulfield alongside his Sonny Corinthos on General Hospital, for this week’s episode of his YouTube video podcast, State Of Mind. “I don’t know why but the world regal comes to mind whenever I think of her,” Benard disclosed with a smile. “It just does, and I respect her greatly. Maybe I don’t tell her enough.”
Maurice Benard And Joyce Guy: The Origins Of Fear
Benard went back to the beginning and asked her to talk about growing up. “You know it is a great story,” Guy shared. “My father was in the service. My mother and father are from Montgomery, or I should say a little town called Mt. Meigs, Alabama. My father was in the Air Force, so we were moving three to two years. Here’s the lineup: Texas, Taiwan, Florida, Japan, and then Kansas and Delaware.”
While living overseas in Taiwan and Japan, the family experienced the Asian community as curious, wanting to touch their hair and skin. They had only experienced African Americans on television or at the movies. There was an innocence to their curiosity. It wasn’t until the family moved to the United States…Derby, Kansas, to be exact, that the family felt real racism.
“That kind of shaped me. And then when we moved to Kansas, which was really a learning experience for me because I was the only black kid in the school.” The veteran actress went on to describe the beginning of her battle with fear. Whether it was participating in sports, dancing, giving a report in class, or auditioning for cheerleader, she would tackle it head-on. “You just face it,” she advised, “say I am going to go through whatever it is that I have to go through in order for me to go through the other side.”
Now, Guy has learned new methods of handling fear. “When I meditate in the morning, I say let this be a day without fear. Let this be a year without fear… Don’t let the fear get in your way. And then, at a certain point, that other part of me, that warrior, that lion, says just stop and do it because you have been here before.”
The Best Of Times, The Worst Of Times
As the old cliche goes – with the good, often comes the bad. Guy experienced this when she auditioned for the role that would become one of her favorites – Mrs. Moreau on Sunset Beach. Around the time of her third audition, she learned her brother was dying of colon cancer. Guy balanced her first months on the set, working three days a week, and flying back east to be by her brother’s side.
Towards the end, he was on heavy pain medication, and she had a moment alone by his bedside, where no words were spoken. “I went into his room by myself,” Guy recalled, her eyes filled with tears. “I went into his room and he had a tear. I quietly left the room. My sister-in-law had a woman who was this minister talk to us. And she said, ‘with all of you around, he is going to hang around longer. Let him be at peace.’ I went outside, and we came back in, and you could tell that his soul had left.”
The episode ran about 43 minutes but was filled with her early days as an Air Force brat, how she excelled in sports, dancing, biology but courageously decided to admit to her secret love of acting as she prepped for college. Joyce Guy shared more about how fear kept her from a career in New York early on, but how she turned it around by facing her fears and heading to Los Angeles.
Daytime fans can glean details of her time on the set of Sunset Beach and working with ex-General Hospital writer and producer Robert Guza, Jr. on the show. In addition, GH fans can get the precious behind-the-scenes stories of the Nixon Falls foursome of Sonny Corinthos, Nina Reeves (Cynthia Watros), Lenny Caulfield (Rif Hutton), and Phyllis Caulfield.
There is even a mutual story shared about Brad Pitt. Catch the entire State Of Mind episode here. You can follow Joyce Guy on Twitter and Instagram. Follow Maurice Benard on Twitter, Instagram, or State of Mind.
General Hospital (GH) airs weekdays on ABC. Check your local listings for airtimes. For more about what’s coming up in Port Charles, check out all the latest that’s been posted on General Hospital spoilers, and for an in-depth look at the show’s history, click here.
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— Maurice Benard (@MauriceBenard) February 7, 2022