Kim Zimmer Returns to 'One Life to Live' as Echo DiSavoy
Here she is folks!
Reva Shayne Lewis! Echo DiSavoy!
Four-time Daytime Emmy winner Kim Zimmer, best known to soap opera viewers as fan favorite Reva on 'Guiding Light,' is returning to the soap world. She will reprise the role she portrayed 27 years ago, pre-Reva -- Echo DiSavoy on the ABC soap 'One Life to Live.' Her first air date is Fri., Oct. 1.
The mysterious and passionate Echo, who first hit the scene in 1983, was a brief, but memorable romantic obstacle for super-couple Viki (Erika Slezak) and Clint (then Clint Ritchie, now played by Zimmer's former 'GL' cast mate Jerry verDorn, ex-Ross.) The role ended abruptly and Zimmer was soon scooped up by 'GL' where she won viewers' hearts and devotion with her portrayal of Reva.
Zimmer's got the answers to some burning questions: Why play Echo again? Did the 'So Long Springfield' tour achieve its goal? What's up with her upcoming memoir? The actress dished with TV Squad on all this and more. Read on for scoop from 'OLTL's' newest cast member!
How did your return as Echo come about?
Frank Valentini [executive producer, 'OLTL'] and I rode together on a rental car shuttle from the airport in Los Angeles at the 2009 Daytime Emmys. I told him, "I used to play a character on the show." He said, "Oh, I know." (Laughs) I said, "Isn't it time you brought that bitch back?" He said, "Don't think I haven't thought about that." About a year went by and the phone rang. It was Frank's assistant saying Frank would like to have a meeting. Frank asked me if I'd have interest in Echo or if I'd prefer playing a new character. I said, 'Bring on Echo! She has a history with several of your mainstay characters on the show.' That's the way to introduce a character. You don't want to come in out of left field. They're using a lot of clips from 27 years ago. (Laughs) Erika [Slezak, Viki] and I were freaking out about that! We joked, "How could you do that to us?"
I remember Echo as being mysterious ... she felt badly about things she was doing, too.
Yes. She was being tortured by her brother.
And then she was gone.
I was fired. I think we got into a corner and there was no way to get out. I'm not sure what happened. But it was the best possible thing that could have happened to me [because I went on to play Reva.] Things happen for a reason.
What can you tell us about what Echo's been up to all these years?
That's yet to be discovered. I don't exactly know what she's been doing for the last 27 years. Supposedly, she's still doing her photography work. I know she spent quite a bit of time in Atlantic City where she met Charlies Banks [Viki's husband], which is what brings her back to Llanview. [Smiles] She's not just there to torture Viki, but she's there to see Charlie. And then, in the same breath, [she'll] ask Viki to give her a job at [her newspaper] The Banner, which is kind of ballsy. (Laughs.)
How will you make Echo different from Reva, who was larger-than-life and had that whole "everything she did she did for love" thing about her?
Echo is a lot more guarded than Reva was. She still has that mysterious quality. I'm really enjoying being back with people I've known and loved. I was having my hair done in the makeup room the other day. There were four of us in there -- Gina Tognoni [Kelly; ex-Dinah, 'GL'], Jessica Leccia [Inez; ex-Natalia, 'GL'] and Jerry verDorn [Clint; ex-Ross, 'GL.'] and myself. Then, Hillary B. Smith [Nora] walked in and joked, "Oh, my God. I've just walked into the wrong makeup room!"
'GL' actors went on a "So Long Springfield" tour where actors met with fans; did it help with closure?
We thought it was going to, but when fans saw us it got them talking about the show again and saying, "Now, we need you more than ever!" A lot of people still haven't given up hope even though a lot of the actors have moved on to different shows. Fans still wish there could be a 'GL' movie or a show that picks up five years later. Who knows? It'd be a real treat for fans if Procter & Gamble [which owns 'GL'] found it in its heart to do something like that someday. But I know that they have no intention of putting out boxed sets. Now that 'As the World Turns' is off the air, too, they could put together a 'Best of" both of those shows. They could include 'Another World,' too.
What's up with your memoir? When will it be out?
Next spring. I think around Mother's Day. I was just sent the prototype from the book cover, which I can't stand! The picture does not match the title of the book. The picture they've chosen for the back of the book is all me. It should be the picture for the front of the book. The title, which I can't really reveal yet, is funny, quirky and me. I think they wanted the picture to be juxtaposed to that. They thought a wacky picture of me would be overkill. I don't agree. You want the picture on the cover to book to say, "It's Kim Zimmer" or "It's Reva Shayne!" But in the picture they've chosen I look like Queen Margaret. I'm sitting on the corner of a sofa with my hands folded looking like a housewife who hasn't been laid! I know I can't have that glamor shot but this is ridiculous.
Hey, you in a red dress on a table top wouldn't be a bad idea.
We toyed with that, too. But I slammed that down. The book is not "Reva." It's about "Kim." It's really my story. But the cover should be red. [Right now,] it's all in pastels and white curtains. I don't know if I'll win this one, but we'll see. They've been really wonderful about including me in the process. The picture isn't bad. I just want to take my fingers and mess up my hair!