The Ties That Bind

As the World Turns 's Van Hansis (Luke) and Paolo Seganti (Damian) play daytime's estranged father and gay son. Now they are learning to trust and accept each other. But will it last?

BY Michael Fairman

June 08 2009 12:00 AM ET

How does a gay son come back from this one? Your biological father, upon learning you are gay, decides that that the best way to "help" you is to send you to a deprogramming camp where they claim to turn young teens straight ... all the white trying to get his hands on your rightful inheritance. That is what As the World Turns' Luke Snyder dealt with in 2006, the last time Damian Grimaldi came back to Oakdale.

Fast-forward to 2009, and a mysterious hit-and-run on Luke, a pair of distant whack-job Grimaldi relatives, and the return of Damian to Oakdale, and it would seem like this father and son are about to implode once again. But wait -- something has changed. This time, Damian wants to make up with his son and has accepted his sexuality.

The fantastic Daytime Emmy-nominated Van Hansis (Luke) and the mysterious, sexy, and very Italian Paolo Seganti (Damian) are winning raves from gay and straight soap fans alike for their believable portrayal of an estranged father and son trying to find common ground and rebuild their relationship. So what can viewers expect next? Hansis says there is an exciting upcoming story not only for Nuke (that's Luke and boyfriend Noah) but for daytime's most conflicted father and son.

Advocate.com:First, Van, congratulations on your Daytime Emmy nomination for Outstanding Supporting Actor. What scene of Luke's did you submit for the competition?Van Hansis: I submitted a scene from last May or June when Ameera had just left, and Luke and Noah are breaking up. Luke is trying to get Noah to stay in their relationship. I chose it because I remember shooting it that day and feeling really good about it after we shot the scenes. Sometimes as an actor you get these cathartic scenes, and it just felt really good. I knew from that moment on, this is what I would submit.

Well, LBGT fans would love to see someone who plays a gay character win an award.Hansis: Well, Sean Penn just won one, so there you go.

I mean in daytime!Hansis: Sean Penn is not doing daytime these days. [ Laughs ]

Paolo, what did you think of Van's nomination?Seganti: I am thrilled for my son! [ Laughs ]

Tags: television

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