#TBT Greg Vaughan – Soap Opera Digest

This interview originally appeared in the October 15, 2002 issue of Soap Opera Digest.

Greg Vaughan (Diego, YOUNG AND RESTLESS) proudly admits his big breakthrough came “the day I met Aaron Spelling.” It was on the prime-time show MALIBU SHORES that the actor made his soapy debut as Josh. The 1996 series was a wash, but Spelling is known for never forgetting a face he loves. Vaughan soon appeared on BEVERLY HILLS, 90210 (ex-Cliff), LOVE BOAT: THE NEXT WAVE (guest appearance as Tom) and for one season on CHARMED (ex-Dan). “He really loves his actors and loves keeping everyone in his family,” Vaughan smiles. “And if he’s encouraged or inspired by someone’s work, he keeps trying to bring it back until he has a hit.”

Vaughan avoids smearing the somewhat combustible CHARMED set too much (read: the alleged antics of Shannen Doherty, ex-Prue; ex-Brenda, 90210), but admits the experience “has had its ups and downs. All the world was preparing me for the worst before I went in, but I’m a very open-minded person. He cops to ‘fight’ with co-star Holly Marie Combs (Piper) on Fridays.” There was a food-fighting action,” he reveals with a laugh. “It got tame, but it was very real in the moment.”

If there is been never tension, there’s no doubt this easy-going actor could diffuse it – he takes nothing in life also seriously. Take modeling, which in high school was a way to make easy money. Vaughan admits he had no idea it would take him from his native Texas to the slopes of Italy. “I thought it would beat the bus tables at Red Lobster, which I did,” he says. “I put myself through school working at Sound Warehouse, rebuilding lawnmowers for my uncle, installing security systems in the Texas summer heat. Not funny.”

So he was tempted when a top modeling agency in Milan started courting him after graduation, but Vaughan still had reservations. “I was a mama’s boy,” he laughs. “I liked to stay at home, close to my family. That’s all I knew. Leaving the state of Texas was difficult. We are very proud and do not want to leave. But I knew there was something more for me.

Three years later, a world-weary Vaughan came home. “I was exhausted,” he sighs. “It felt like a lifetime. I had already missed watching my brother grow up (see box), family reunions, weddings. One day I packed my bags and said, ‘I come home. And that was it. He went back to waiting tables until a push from his mother revived his career. “I think I was at home too much and eating a lot food,” he smiled. “She was like, ‘You’re never here that long. Why are you here? Go somewhere.’ She loves it when I come home now. There’s nothing quite like coming home and getting a good hug.

In LA, Vaughan took to acting – and these days finds himself entangled in a clingy romantic quadrangle on Y&R after sleeping with his step-sisters Sharon and Victoria. Stepping into the role in April as a recast (Diego Serrano, ex-Diego; ex-Tomás, ANOTHER WORLD, who originated the role) didn’t deter the daytime newbie, and now he’s claiming Diego as his own. . “It’s mine, that’s for sure,” he confirms. “I hope to continue to bring more to the character. Every day is another day of excitement because I know I’m going to be challenged even more down the road. He’s in disarray. Everything he feared the more happened. Now that the whole thing with Sharon is out and he fell in love with Victoria…. I find myself [in bed] more than anything.”

Of course, life as a visual object is nothing new, but Vaughan acknowledges, “I’m training more than ever. I don’t like running without my shirt. I’m very shy in that sense. Josh [Morrow, Nicholas] love it,” he laughs. “He loves walking around without his clothes on. I’m a little more reserved. I’ll get used to it over time.

He better hurry because, if message boards on the internet are to be believed, fans are quite enamored with this unforgettable face. “Thank goodness for the make-up – if they could really see me underneath,” objected the actor, who caught the attention of fans “a bit overwhelming, but it never distorted my sense of who I am. “No one really recognizes me, which is great. It’s not like I’m undercover. I’m very active and I would never change that. I like mingling with people.”

Plus, Vaughan is predictable about her status as a sex symbol. “Come on,” he sniffles. “We’re talking about Greg Vaughan, not Brad Pitt.”

Brotherly Love

According to Greg Vaughan, Diego’s relationship with his younger brother, Raul, echoes his with his actual younger brother, Chris. However, a distance didn’t pull them apart like his on-screen counterpart. “Diego is very parental when it comes to Raul,” notes the actor. “Leaving my own brother was a very difficult thing for me because he hadn’t even started high school and I wanted to see him grow up as a young man. I wanted to be close enough that he could call me at any time. I talked about it a lot before leaving and I called him once a week, as I still do today. Even though now I’m in three states, I can be there in two hours. At the time, it was certainly difficult, but our relationship was not affected by it. It’s grown. He even sends me cards for Father’s Day.

Just the facts:

Anniversary: June 15

Just: Dallas, TX

TX vs. LA: “It’s a different way of life there. Drinking and eating, that’s all.

The men’s best friend: “Daisy, my almost 6 year old Lab is my best friend in the world. I got it when I got to California, and we went through it all together. If you let her, she just might kiss you to death.

Meeting status: “There’s someone special in my life, but the names may not be spoken. We’ve been together for a little while. We’re taking it one day at a time. I don’t want to finish the race, I’m enjoying the race.

On autograph requesters: “If it makes someone’s day, I think you should oblige. You will always be remembered from your first impression.

About Madeline J. Carter

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