When Trent Dawson was cast on As the World Turns as Henry Coleman back in the fall of 1999, it was supposed to be for only a few episodes. More than seven years later, Trent has a front-burner story line, an immense fan base and has been nominated for two Daytime Emmy Awards, including this year's Outstanding Supporting Actor.
And after a few moments of speaking with Trent, it's easy to see why. Trent brings much of his own humour, wit and intelli-gence to the character of Henry, and that is the main reason he has remained so popular.
When he found out he was nominated this year, he says: "I was dozing on my couch and people started calling my cellphone nonstop, and it angered me because I'm like, 'Why are all these people calling me?' Then I remembered it was nomination day, so it was OK."
It's hard for Trent to describe Henry, because "he's gone through so many permutations. He first was cynical and manipulative. Now he's Jack Lemmon wishing he were Cary Grant. He's got a heart of gold - mostly thanks to Katie - but he's still a manipulator and a schemer."
And, of course, he's having his share of woman troubles. His latest fiasco - leaving Vienna at th - really has Henry reassessing himself and his life. "Vienna really is in love with him," Trent explains. "I think he is in love with her, too. His problem is he can't believe his good fortune. Here she is, she's an incredibly wealthy, gorgeous woman and she loves him. In his mind, he thinks, 'This cannot be true." It"s his own self-doubt that's holding him back."
But there are so many pluses to this relationship that you cannot help but root for them to get back together and stay together. "She's got the glamour that Henry adores. Ewa (Da Cruz, 'Vienna') and I, when we first worked together, we found a good comic timing with each other. We are the fun couple, we represent fun - plus, we're great in the sack together! We're like, 'Let's go play!'"
Now that Henry might be making a go of it with Vienna, does that mean that his feelings for Katie are completely extinguished? "I've been thinking of that myself," Trent says. "I think if the opportunity ever arose (with Katie) that he'd jump on it. (Pause.) You know, I take that back. I don't think he would. What he has for Katie is a selfless love you have for someone where you want only what's good for her."
What does Trent hope for Henry's future in Oakdale? "Let's make him the next Craig (Montgomery) and take over the town! When Henry first came to Oakdale, he wanted power and money. It's fun to be in that position. Someone suggested I go to the The Intruder and be the Food and Drink Critic. I'm just excited to see where this is all going with Henry and Vienna. I'm just waiting to see what happens next."
- Cindy Elavsky