The Untold Truth Of The Bold And The Beautiful

"The Bold and the Beautiful" has graced our screens since the late 1980s. Set in the glamorous world of fashion and high stakes, fans have been tuning into the 30-minute sudser for their dose of daily drama for decades. For the most part, the intrigues of the Logan, Spencer, and Forrester families have captivated audiences for decades, even though they sometimes think that the storylines are a little far-fetched. But what is a soap opera without a little fantasy, right?

Any longtime "B&B" fan will tell you that there are certain things that are always a certainty on the show. For instance, Eric Forrester will always be the patriarch, although, on occasion, he admittedly switches up his wives. Ridge Forrester has a penchant for saving his children, Liam Spencer is always battling his so-called conscience, and Brooke Logan somehow inevitably finds herself between a bad choice and another lover. The characters, their character flaws, and the storylines may sometimes seem a little repetitive.  Yet, there are some little-known facts about the beloved soap's characters and behind-the-scenes secrets that even die-hard fans may not know. This is the untold truth of "The Bold and the Beautiful."

Only two original cast members remain

Certain characters on "The Bold and the Beautiful" have been a part of the show since 1987. Ridge Forrester, then played by Ron Moss, appears in the opening scene of the very first episode of "B&B." But, the only two original cast members are Katherine Kelly Lang and John McCook, who play Brooke Logan and Eric Forrester respectively. When Lang appeared on CBS "The Talk," they showed a clip of her doing a screen test for the soap, prompting her to reminisce, "I credit John McCook for getting me that part, honestly ... He made me so comfortable and so confident." During a 2019 appearance on "The Sunday Project" (via the Daily Mail), Lang further revealed that she initially signed a four-year contract. "I had no idea this was going to happen. You know. It's still a hit in 100 countries," she said.

McCook has also been playing the role of the Forrester patriarch since the very beginning. However, there was only a seven-year age gap between him and Moss who played the role of his son. He told Soap Central that the solution was simple, "They added grey streaks to my hair," he said. Suffice it to say, he's in it for the long haul. McCook told TV Guide that he always jokes to his wife, "'One day they'll call you from 'B&B' and say, 'He's dead. Come get him!'" He added, "I want to be the really old guy on our show." 

It's a global record-breaker

When Bill and Lee Phillip Bell created "The Bold and the Beautiful" as a sister soap opera for "The Young and the Restless," they did not realize how big it was going to become. Actor John McCook explained that several factors contributed to the runaway success of the show. He told The Sydney Morning Herald that timing was everything. "When the show was new, in 1987, it happened to coincide with the deregulation of television in quite a few places in Europe and privately-owned television companies were looking for new product." To make the deal even sweeter, he continued, "Most of these countries had never had a daily serial. That's what set us afire from the very beginning." The soap opera format was a novelty to these countries and they just slurped it up like Pam Douglas' lemon bars.

In 2021, executive producer Brad Bell told TV Insider how "B&B" became such an international phenomenon. Having enjoyed initial success in Greece, the show soon found an abundance of fans in Italy, France, Belgium, Germany, and Holland. "We were amazed at the popularity of the show there," he said. "... It was just well received all over Europe and then Australia, India, and Africa. We kept on going. We were thrilled to find we had a global hit on our hands." The show is so universally loved that Guinness World Records confirmed it was the most popular soap opera in the world since 2010.

The show has used some exotic locations for shooting

The fashion industry has remained the backdrop for "The Bold and the Beautiful" for its entire run. As such, fashion shows have been held in exotic locations like Paris, Dubai, and even Cabo San Lucas. According to supervising producer Casey Kasprzyk, when the cast went to Monte Carlo, Monaco, for a storyline, the drama was not only in front of the camera. Speaking to TV Insider, the producer described a few crazy situations that went down during filming.

For starters, the actor who was cast to play a chauffeur could not drive. "He needed to learn how in 10 minutes," Kasprzyk said. "You can see this guy driving around the set while we're trying to shoot." According to the producer, when an unexpected downpour happened during a beach scene, Brad Bell commented, "'Rain is expensive so ... just use it." Kasprzyk added, "So, we had our actors running in the rain and it just added to the atmosphere of the scene."

Of course, some "B&B" couples have also wed in international locations. In 2017, Steffy Forrester, played by Jacqueline MacInnes Wood, and Liam Spencer, played by Scott Clifton, tied the knot in Australia. Clifton told Australia's The Daily Telegraph, "[T]here is going to be a wedding, some drama, conflict, and a stunt, too, which is going to be exciting." The wedding pics were epic, with cast members posing in front of the iconic Sydney Opera House. 

The story of the sister soaps

Fans of "The Young and the Restless" and "The Bold and the Beautiful" know there are often crossover storylines. After all, the sister soap operas were both created by husband and wife team William J. Bell and Lee Phillip Bell. Upon receiving the 2007 Lifetime Achievement Award from the Daytime Entertainment Emmy Awards, Lee revealed the inspiration behind her and William's soap operas. "Bill and I would talk about our ideas for a series that dealt with real-life issues and real-life families," she explained to the Academy. "We wanted to tell stories that made a difference."

As the youngest soap opera, debuting in 1987, "B&B" had to compete with established daytime serials that had already garnered an audience. However, its ties to "Y&R" boosted its ratings significantly in the early 1990s. Head honcho Bradley Bell explained to TV Insider how they knew that the 30-minute sudser had made its mark. "Going way back, I suppose [it was] the first Sheila [Kimberlin Brown] crossover from 'The Young and the Restless' in 1992. The ratings popped, bringing us to the No. 2 spot ... That elevated us in the ratings to a point that showed we were here to stay." 

Throughout the years, Brown's character, Sheila Carter, has returned for juicy storylines such as accidentally murdering her son, in 2022. Many other "Y&R" and "B&B" characters, such as Sally Spectra, have jumped between the sister soaps, much to the delight of fans. 

The wardrobe department is the backbone of B&B

"The Bold and the Beautiful's" glitzy fashion world is often portrayed by the clothing the characters wear.  As Katherine Kelly Lang, who plays Brooke Logan, said in a behind-the-scenes interview, "Fashion is everything on the show because it's based around fashion." The actor also gave the press a tour of the "B&B's" wardrobe in 2014. The large airy space is comprised of floor-to-ceiling rails and shoe racks, similar to that of a department store. Lang's character has her own section of clothing, shoes, and jewelry that would make any fashionista swoon.

The daytime drama show had a complete fashion makeover in 2011. Executive producer Bradley Bell's wife, Colleen Bell was the director of special projects at the time, and she took on the cast's wardrobe. Speaking to TV Guide, Colleen explained, "'B&B' should be a benchmark for fashion. People should be tuning in going, 'I can't wait to see what Hope wears today!' We want them saying, 'Did you see Steffy rocking those leather pants?' I saw a need and knew I could fill it. We're overhauling the entire wardrobe department and integrating the clothes, hair, and makeup so that 'B&B' is relevant and cool."

After the pandemic, the series' costume designer Glenda Maddox told Channel 24 that she was gearing up to showcase even more exaggerated looks. She insisted, "You are going to see some real escapism fashion." After all, that's what "B&B" is all about.

Brooke's love life is still making headlines

There are few actors who could carry the same storyline for decades and still enthrall (and infuriate) fans. Brooke Logan, played by Katherine Kelly Lang, was once famously called "sl*t from the valley" by Stephanie Forrester due to her admittedly salacious love life. In 2022, the derogatory moniker continued on with Logan referencing the insult during a moment of pained introspection. 

"The Bold and the Beautiful" fans know that Brooke's romantic history makes for cringe-worthy viewing. Per Soaps, she has worked her way through an entire family. That includes father Eric Forrester, his eldest son Ridge Forrester, second son Thorne Forrester, and half-brother, Nick Marone. She also wed her brother-in-law Bill Spencer. Standard soap fare, right? But then, Brooke went one step too far and also had a steamy affair with her son-in-law, Deacon Sharpe, resulting in the birth of little Hope Logan.

Nevertheless, Lang's character remains a fan favorite. In fact, to celebrate the show's 35th anniversary, the soap aired a standalone Brooke Logan special episode dedicated to her and five of her most beloved past paramours, per TV Line.  How's that for a tribute to her bedroom shenanigans? In 2017, the actor reminisced about her character to People, and mused, "She's learned from her past. She's made a lot of mistakes and become a different person because of them. People still loved Brooke during those havoc-wreaking years, but I like the fact that she's become the heroine." 

Sally Spectra was immortalized in wax

There are few characters on television as memorable as Sally Spectra. Played by Darlene Conley, the larger-than-life redhead with the booming voice had a commanding presence. In fact, the soap star became the first U.S. daytime serial actor to be turned into a wax model by Madame Tussauds in 1998, per Chicago Tribune. Her likeness was displayed in Amsterdam and Las Vegas. Conley told TV Guide (via Chicago Tribune), "The museum called and said they couldn't think of anybody more instantly recognizable than me, and who was I to argue?" ... As if anyone would dare to give Sally Spectra lip. Conley continued, "I had this beautiful young man under my skirt for hours. They measure and photograph every single inch of you from every single angle. It's terribly intimate." Of course, she couldn't resist cracking a joke. "At this point, the sculptor knows me better than my ex-husband," she said. 

Although Conley died in 2007, her character still lives on in the show. Per Soaps, Spectra lives in the south of France, and her namesake and niece Sally Spectra still keeps the family name flying high in modern episodes. On the fifteenth anniversary of Conley's death, John McCook fondly remembered his former co-star, telling Soaps, "She dared to do what nobody else would." Praising her vibrant personality, he added, "She brought the circus and vaudeville and theater and burlesque and opera ... she brought it all when she came into the room!"

B&B actors work long hours

"The Bold and the Beautiful" is the only 30-minute soap opera in the U.S., but that doesn't mean that they are shirkers. In fact, the production team and cast work grueling hours. Per, the soap opera aims to film two episodes a day. They start at 8.30 a.m. and only wrap up at 6 p.m. Lead actor Katherine Kelly Lang also told the outlet that their working day doesn't end there. She revealed, "You work all day, but you still have to do your homework at night." Actors have to memorize up to 63 pages of their lines per day so that they are prepared for the following day's scenes. 

Sometimes guest actors are unprepared for the amount of work that goes into making a sudser. On Instagram, Tisha Campbell shared her experience of working on "B&B." She wrote, "This genre ain't no JOKE! I've never done a soap opera before and they work HARD on this set, you hear me? Every one of them BOLD, BEAUTIFUL and are SWEETHEARTS to work with!" Of course, their demanding schedule has its perks. Every year the cast and crew members enjoy a 5-week long summer break from production. And with the amount of work they do, they certainly deserve to rejuvenate with a long holiday.

It made history amid the pandemic lockdown

When COVID-19 shut down Hollywood in 2020, fans had to endure endless repeat episodes of their favorite soap opera. However, "The Bold and the Beautiful" took the plunge and became the first U.S. broadcast series to start shooting after the pandemic restrictions were sufficiently lifted. Deadline reported that the cast and crew resumed production in mid-June. After taking all the necessary precautions to ensure the safety of the cast and crew, the first post-shutdown episode aired on July 20, 2020.

Per TV Insider, head writer and executive producer, Brad Bell, revealed, "We had a group come in to monitor all of our [activities] at TV City, where we've shot the show since Day One. We rebuilt the studio control booth with plexiglass." It seems as if Bell was also willing to change the way the cast and crew worked. He continued, "We went through every type of safety precaution and put everything in place ... People wore shields. We limited close interactions. We asked the actors to play romance — eight feet part! That was a challenge." However, Bell felt that they would not have been able to pull off such an incredible feat without everyone's support. Praising the positive attitudes of cast and crew members, he added, "Everyone rose to the occasion with enthusiasm and bravery, and we got the job done."

B&B got creative for intimate scenes

Soap operas are synonymous with steamy love scenes and heated passion. That presented a challenge to the actors of "The Bold and the Beautiful" who worked around COVID-19 restrictions during romantic scenes. Brad Bell told ET that they ensured safety by limiting filming to one or two actors per scene alongside restructuring how characters interacted with each other. They brought out mannequins, amongst other tools, to keep actors' sight lines uniform. Bell explained to ET, "We're having [the actors] act while looking at something that's very close ... It brings their voice down, brings their eyes to the right spot. And then when you edit both sides together, you've got a very intimate scene."

Bell also shared that since actors could not stand close to each other, they had to find another way to shoot romantic scenes — they recruited the actors' significant others as stand-ins. Bell divulged, "We are wigging them, we're matching wardrobe and makeup. Once in a while, if you look closely, you'll see a sideburn is a little longer when they get in tight on that kiss." Hollywood veteran Denise Richards revealed that her husband obliged to the request and was filmed for just such an intimate scene. "We were asked if our significant other would step in," Richards shared. "Otherwise I have to have my love scene with a mannequin, which is fine, but I'd much rather my husband," she added.

B&B's groundbreaking transgender character

In 2015, "The Bold and the Beautiful" broke new ground when Karla Mosley's Maya Avant was outed as transgender in the show. At the time, she had already had relationships with a few characters on the soap and was even engaged to Carter Walton at one stage. Her unexpected revelation was a huge plot twist in the narrative and a rarity for television at that time. 

While Advocate noted that casting cisgender actors like Mosley to depict transgender characters can come with controversy, GLAAD shared the importance of the character's positive representation. Jessica Hofflich wrote for the LGBTQ organization's blog, "Maya's storyline is one of the few serious major media representations of a trans woman dating a non-transgender man, treating them as an actual relationship instead of as a punchline."

Bradley Bell told Entertainment Weekly that great pride and care were taken in developing the plotline. He explained, "My writing and producing team, along with the actors have collaborated with GLAAD on scripts and media training. It's been an honor to tell this positive story of love and acceptance" He added that the soap was reportedly the first ever television show to depict a transgender person getting married.  Likewise, Mosley told ET, "Twenty years ago this storyline would have been very different, this is the next community that deserves to be recognized and accepted and represented in our media." Following the watershed storyline, "B&B" received GLAAD's Outstanding Daytime Drama Series for three consecutive years.

This full circle casting connection

Even the most hardcore soap opera buffs may not realize the odd connection between Hunter Tylo, Lisa Rinna, and Krista Allen. The story begins when Hunter Tylo left her role as Dr. Taylor Hayes on "The Bold and the Beautiful" to join the cast of "Melrose Place." However, as reported by Washington Post, the actor wasn't given the chance to star in a single episode before she was fired. The soap star alleged she was promptly ejected from the cast because she disclosed that she was expecting her third child. Although she had asked for $2.5 million in damages, the jury awarded her nearly $5 million instead.

Per Los Angeles Times, Lisa Rinna then replaced Tylo in her "Melrose Place" role (ironically becoming pregnant after joining the cast). In a full circle casting moment, Krista Allen went on to replace both actors in two different soaps. She took the role of Billie Reed after Rinna left "Days of Our Lives" in 1995, and was also cast as Dr. Taylor Hayes in 2021. Allen dished on her roles to Soap Opera Digest, "I understand how incredibly loyal the soap fans are. To this day, I have people who are still fans of the Billie that I played. There are always going to be people who will say, 'That is not Billie. That is not Taylor.' I am just stepping into the role of a character."

B&B has attracted some illustrious guest stars

Many stars have appeared on "The Bold and the Beautiful" through the decades. According to People, celebs such as Bob Barker, Gina Rodriguez, Usher, and even Fabio have starred in the soap opera. However, one of the show's most notable guest stars was "The Golden Girls" star Betty White who played the role of Ann Douglas for three years. In 2022, Soap Opera Network reported that the sudser would pay tribute to the comedy legend whose "B&B" character died of pancreatic cancer in 2007. 

Discussing her time on the show with Tulsa World, White reflected, "It's ... such a great stretch because I don't get the chance to do serious acting. So to get some serious things to do was kind of fun." She also had high praise for the people who worked on the serial, sharing, "They are the nicest people in the world, and they greet you back like a member of the family — even though it's a member of the family they don't like on camera." Upon White's death, the official "The Bold and the Beautiful" Twitter account shared a sweet tribute to the actor which read, in part, "Betty was as Bold and Beautiful as they come and she will be greatly missed."