's exclusive interview with Days of our Lives' Arianne Zucker image

Arianne Zucker (Nicole) is currently in the middle of a red hot, front burner storyline on "Days of Our Lives" where her character’s world is crashing down around her as her lies and deceit regarding baby Sydney’s true parentage is coming to light.

Not only is she working full time on "Days," but she is due to give birth to her first child, with husband Kyle Lowder (Rick, "The Bold and the Beautiful"), in a couple of months and continues to work on her jewelry line, Lowd Suga.

I recently had the chance to talk with Arianne, who called me from the set after a day of taping, about her intense storyline coming to a head, as well as her thoughts on being a mom. First of all, congratulations on your pregnancy. I read you are having a little girl.

Arianne Zucker: Thank you. We are. A little princess. Have you picked out a name yet?

Arianne: Yes, we do have her name, but we aren’t revealing it until after. When are you due?

Arianne: December 16 is the due date. So, pretty soon. When are you going on maternity leave?

Arianne: I’m not certain of the actual date, but I believe sometime before our Thanksgiving hiatus. Not too far away. Are you excited? Are you getting nervous?

Arianne: Definitely not nervous. I love kids. I’ve loved kids I think since I was born. Yeah, not nervous, but I cannot wait to meet her. Are you and Kyle all ready and have everything prepared?

Arianne: I’m not sure what parent ever has everything prepared. We’re almost there and of course we’ll have to have baby showers. We haven’t had those yet. We’ll see what happens with the shower and then get everything after that. Good plan. How has it been working while being pregnant?

Arianne: She’s been treating me very well. I’ve had a very easy pregnancy considering…First of all, I love being pregnant. I think because I’m so excited to have a baby and I think just having a positive attitude and being really happy and even when 5:30 rolls around in the morning and you’re all cuddly, snuggly in bed and you’re like, “Oh, I don’t want to get up,” and I’m like, “Yes I do. Just kidding. I do. I do. I want to get up.” Because I love my job and my daughter’s a part of it right now. I mean listen, every woman’s pregnancy is different; I just know that mine has been so pleasant. Don’t get me wrong, I have had my morning sickness and it turned into night sickness, but Kyle, my husband, has been unbelievable. He makes sure everything is done and the chores and he makes me laugh. It’s been a real team effort, so it hasn’t just been me. I think that makes a huge difference too, because I get to come home to him. We. We get to come home to him. It just makes a big difference all around and of course everyone at work is so supportive and so excited. She has a lot of aunties and uncles here. I’ve been here over ten years so they’ve really embraced my pregnancy and it’s been pretty awesome I have to admit. You are very lucky. You mentioned your morning sickness. Many of our readers have noticed you snacking onscreen a lot. Has that had anything to do with it?

Arianne: Yeah, I do. I feel very, very lucky. That’s to make me look like the character is gaining weight. They thought maybe it was to help with your morning sickness.

Arianne: No, no. They thought, “Well, maybe we’ll have her eat,” but then the storyline was getting so intense, it was kind of hard to eat and cry at the same time. Nicole has been crying quite a bit.

Arianne: Yeah, I hope no one is sick of it yet. How do you work yourself up to cry so much?

Arianne: I had a really great teacher. When I left "Days of Our Lives" for two years I took a scene study improv class. The teacher’s name is Stephen Book and he’s a really, really tough teacher, and that’s what I love, because I don’t want to go to a class where they’re like, “That was great.” I want to go to a class where they’re like, “What are you doing?” And this was that kind of class and we all stayed together through the two years, two or three, well, I think some people are still in it, it goes as long as we want it to, but I left about a year and a half ago because of work, but he really taught me how to get out of my head and into my body, which is kind of a weird thing, but if you’re constantly worried about, especially with how fast we work on soaps, like “Ooh, I hope I cry today,” you’re probably not going to. There are steps and it’s such a long process to really know your lines, and that’s the other thing: he said if you don’t know your lines you can’t play. It’s kind of hard to find a technique at work because every job is different. For me what I’ve chosen to do is, I choose to really know the lines. That’s the most important thing to me because I work every day and that has to come first and then I just kind of go with the flow and just allow whatever my co-star is doing to affect me and just go with that. Sometimes if it does say to cry in the script, I might not, because it might not call for what my co-star is doing. So there’s a lot of trust with the co-star as well and whoever I’m working with and I think everyone in this storyline has really stepped up to the plate, so we give each other a lot too, which helps. I’m very much a team player and I feel like everyone on the show is, from hair and makeup and wardrobe to our executive producers and writers, it’s a big team effort. It’s a combination of everything I think, but that trust really helps too because I know I can go anywhere as far as emotion, and maybe I can even go farther sometimes. If we had four or five takes like we used to I probably could, but sometimes you have to work it up for just the one. It’s really challenging and it’s wonderful and it always keeps you on your toes, but I love the storyline too. I fell in love with the storyline, which helps, and I’m totally rambling. (laughs) The storyline is playing out really nicely with Nicole’s lies coming out and it has been great to watch. I find it interesting that Nicole and Sami have become friends of sorts…

Arianne: Thank you. I’m very lucky. There’s that word again, but it has been. I feel very lucky to be involved in the storyline and that they trusted this character in me and kept it going and everybody in it. It’s been a year and a half of some seriously great story. Ali (Sweeney, Sami) and I love that. You know it’s not going to last long. Oh, no. It can’t.

Arianne: That wouldn’t be any fun. Right now Nicole has Sami, Brady and Chloe to be her support system, but will she be all alone once her secrets come out?

Arianne: God, I can’t imagine that anyone would want to be her friend. I can see some really angry people for a really long time, but, also, Nicole has a way of finding herself back in someone else’s life. I’m sure eventually, somebody, anybody will forgive her. There’s got to be one person in town who will forgive her. Do you enjoy playing the softer side of Nicole, or do you prefer the edgier side to her?

Arianne: I really enjoy both and it depends on the setting. I think this side of Nicole that you see is, this woman just wants to be loved and the only way she knows how to do it is by having this child. She’s still the same old selfish Nicole, but there’s an extra part of her now that’s like, gosh this is what she’s wanted all her life, to feel this unconditional love. All I keep hearing as a soon-to-be, I mean I’m a mommy now, but when she comes out, you have no idea what it’s like to have a child until she’s here and that love. I can only imagine that this character has never had that feeling before because she was abused and all that kind of stuff. So once Sydney is ultimately taken away from her, will Nicole resort back to lashing out and being the vengeful character she has been in the past?

Arianne: I don’t know. I don’t know what the New Year will bring. It will be interesting and I’m ready to play whatever they give me. How long will you be out on maternity leave?

Arianne: Seven weeks. Will the reveal play into explaining your absence from the show, or will the viewers not notice your absence?

Arianne: That is a really good question. I’m not sure what the distance will be between scripts. I don’t think I will be off air that long because we are so far ahead. They will definitely cover that. I’m sure. I can’t imagine they wouldn’t. Like the last time I left the show, they even had that whole thing explained: “Oh yeah, she couldn’t take it anymore so she went to California and met a soap star,” or something like that. So I’m sure they will cover however much I might be offscreen. The baby who plays Sydney is so cute. How is she to work with?

Arianne: Well they’re twins. There’s Lauren and Haley and Haley is the one that works the most. When Lauren first started working, she liked it better, she was more of the easier baby to work with, but now that they’ve gotten older, you can really see their personalities and they’re wonderful. I make sure no matter what, whoever is coming on, I make sure I play with them all the time so they know who I am. They’re wonderful and their mother is rockin’. Laura. She’s such a great mom and has a great spirit which I think bleeds into the kids and how they are. They are really good girls and a lot of fun and Haley is really, really responsive. The things that you say, who knows, she probably knows exactly what you’re saying. She’s a scene stealer I’ll tell ya. Fifteen months old and she’s already gonna be nominated for an Emmy. They’re definitely cuties.

Arianne: Yeah, they’re wonderful, wonderful girls. It makes me can’t wait for my own to come out. I bet. I was going to ask if working with the babies was helping to get you even more ready.

Arianne: Yeah, those girls. I just want to eat them up. And how is your jewelry line going?

Arianne: Good. You know with the economy it slowed down a little bit, but that’s to be expected. We’re constantly making some changes and have some new things coming up for the New Year that I’m working on. I’m not quite sure how I find the time, but I manage to.

Luckily this busy lady does find the time to do everything, as the long awaited reveal to the baby switch storyline is ramping up to conclude in what we can only assume will be an explosive fashion. Don't know about you, but can't wait!

Photo credit: Jill Johnson/JPI

- Lori Wilson

Refreshed March 1, 2016 by Christine Fix