It seemingly took forever for DAYS OF OUR LIVES’ Ben and Ciara to officially get together, but behind the scenes,portrayers Robert Scott Wilson and Victoria Konefal were on the same page from the get-go. Sure, they come from rival hometowns and there’s nearly a decade between them, but the electric connection they formed upon meeting in December 2017 definitely brought the sparks to their characters’ “Cin”-fully delicious romance. Here, they retrace their steps to on-screen supercoupledom!
What were your first impressions of each other?
Victoria Konefal: “I was struck by his passion…I thought, ‘He’s the kind of actor that really throws himself into the work.’ I appreciated that because it reminded me of the style of acting that I learned while in New York. So I was very excited to be working with him.”
Robert Scott Wilson: “I walked in and saw a beautiful young girl. You kind of expect that working on a soap opera… but she was also super talented, and it was a breath of fresh air to work with someone like that. And as Victoria said, we have a similar work ethic, which I didn’t expect.”
When did you realize that you were clicking as a soap couple?
Wilson: “I think [the directors] realized it before we did. Back when Ciara first woke up in the cabin with Ben, they came up to us and said, ‘You guys are playing something like six months down the road.’ Neither of us had been trying to force a romance or a connection; Victoria was just in the zone of Ciara’s point of view, and I was just very much still in mine. So I think them bringing it to our attention was the first time we realized it.”
Konefal: “Ditto! I couldn’t have said that better myself.”
What is the best advice you’ve received from each other?
Konefal: “Rob helped me with incorporating [perspective] at one point. He said, ‘Champagne problems.’ So that’s what I carry, I guess: champagne problems. Yes, they’re problems and life can be chaotic, but it’s something to celebrate.”
Wilson: “Victoria helped change my point of view about how to operate as a more humanized Ben. Coming back, I felt like I was just throwing gas on a fire, so it was nice to have someone level me out and find the vulnerability of what we do here again. Without that, everybody would just be scared of this maniac guy.”
What does your co-star have stellar taste in?
Wilson: “She’s got good taste in music.”
Konefal: “I was going to say that! Actually, he’s got good taste in music and drinks!”
Wilson: “We both enjoy tequila.”
Konefal: “And he’s got good taste in clothes, movies… “
Wilson: “We click on a lot of that stuff.”
Konefal: “And we have two of the same leather jackets: I have the female version, and he has the male one. It was unintentional, but… “
Wilson: “It works.”
What has been your favorite CIN scene so far?
Konefal: “Probably the most recent breakup scene… the fans went crazy with that one. And lately, there have been a lot of moments where we say a lot with just subtle touches and movements. I think that work is probably the best.”
Wilson: “As their relationship develops, I enjoy scenes like when they were at the hospital and Ben got stitches [in his hand]. I remember Ben really being in his own world, but for once, there was this girl with him and she kept him in a different state of mind. It’s the little scenes that build the bigger ones.”
Konefal: “I also really like scenes where we’re eating because they always give us really great food.”
Wilson: “Right! If there’s General Tso’s chicken on the page, then you know we’re gonna like it.”
Have you shared any really awkward scenes at this point?
Wilson: “The foot thing [in the cabin] was pretty awkward.”
Konefal: “At the time, feet kind of freaked me out, and I was like, ‘He has to touch my feet? Are you kidding me? We can’t fake that?’ They were like, ‘Nope!’ So I said, ‘All right, then he’s gotta wash my feet.’ And I had only known him for a week at that point.”
Wilson: “Yeah, I could tell she was uncomfortable about it, so I tried to make it a light moment. But it wasn’t super sensual or anything like that.”
Konefal: “Yeah, I got to kick him in the face afterwards.”
What would you say has been your biggest mess-up on the set?
Konefal: “One time, I thought we were rehearsing, but we were really going straight to tape and no one told me. So I was reaching up my arm to get a hair tie and I wasn’t acting… I was just saying the lines, basically. And then we were supposed to kiss at the end, but we don’t really kiss during rehearsals. So he went to kiss me and I went to the side and I was like ‘La la la’ and started singing in his ear.”
Wilson: “I was like, ‘Oh, okay. We’re not gonna do that anymore?’ But they liked it because it looked authentic. When it ended and they said, ‘Okay, clear,’ she was baffled. I said, ‘Yeah, you gave me the cold shoulder, but it worked.’”
Konefal: “It wasn’t cold!”
Wilson: “It was a mediocre shoulder.”
Konefal: “It was tepid.”
Is there anything that causes the two of you to bicker?
Wilson: “Maybe that she just can’t get over the fact that Boston is much better than New York?”
Konefal: “Please! Get over yourself! City Of Champions, my man! Hell no. Even though I’m a Patriots fan.”
Wilson: “Yeah, the girl’s a Pats fan, but she still talks smack about my city.”
Konefal: “That’s because New York is the best!”
Do you give each other a hard time about anything else?
Konefal: “He’s always saying, ‘Maybe you’re dehydrated?’ And I’m like, ‘Rob, I drink a lot of water. Leave me alone.’”
Wilson: “Well, it’s the cause of a lot of problems. I’m always dehydrated.”
Konefal: “I don’t have any problems!”
Wilson: “Oh, okay. See? She has no problems. Everything’s fine.”
Konefal: “I like to stay happy. I see things with a positive light, no matter what.”
Wilson: “Hey, have a glass of water. It’ll be okay.”
Konefal: “I’ve got one right here.”
Wilson: “I know. I got it for you!”
What has surprised you about each other?
Wilson: “I was surprised that whatever I give her in a scene, she’s well-prepared to handle it. Sometimes you improv and it throws people off or makes things awkward, but it makes it better with us.”
Konefal: “I was surprised that he had a Chihuahua. He seemed like someone who’d have a pitbull or something big, but instead, he has this teeny little [thing].”
Wilson: “She’s the best dog ever. She’s a mix and only weighs 4 lbs., but she’s a badass.”
Konefal: “Fun fact: Our dogs are both named Lola.”
What is the nicest thing that your co-star has ever done for you?
Konefal: “He got me a present last year for my birthday. That was really sweet.”
Wilson: “It was pretty rad.”
Konefal: “I also go you one. You could’ve said that!”
Wilson: “Of course. We exchanged birthday gifts.”
Who would you prefer to take a road trip with: your co-star or their character?
Wilson: “V’s pretty cool, but Ciara’s badass, too. I’d be down either way.”
Konefal: “Ben? As long as he has his meds, I’d be cool to go on a road trip with him. But Rob? Sure. Yeah, we get along.”
Wilson: “And we’d listen to similar music in the car.”
Konefal: “And we like the same kind of food joints.”
Wilson: “How far of a road trip are we talking about? If it were cross country, we would have similar destinations, so that’d work.”
Konefal: “We wouldn’t be bored, that’s for sure!”
For more DAYS news keep Reading the CBS edition of Soaps In Depth magazine.
Additional reporting by Michelle Moro Parkerton.
This story originally appeared in our print magazine.