The Young and the Restless' Christel Khalil has been bringing serious talent to the role of Lily Winters for almost 20 years and has received multiple Daytime Emmy nominations and one win in the Outstanding Younger Actress category. However, this is the first year that she has received a nod in the über competitive Supporting Actress category, which she is beyond excited about.
Soap Central: Congratulations on your nomination, Christel!
Christel Khalil: Thank you so much.
Soap Central: How are you feeling?
Khalil: I mean, I'm very happy and excited. I haven't been nominated in a while, and I haven't ever been nominated in the Supporting Actress category, so it's really exciting to have this come up. I'm very happy.
Soap Central: I've always heard that the Supporting Actress category is the absolute toughest category to make it into, which must make this extra special.
Khalil: Yeah, definitely. It really is, because there are so many people going in that category and probably only half the amount going into Lead. So, yeah, it's a tough, tough category, for sure.
Soap Central: What do you think about the other talented performers that you're competing against?
Khalil: I mean, obviously, I think they're all amazing, and I respect all of them. I really respect everyone in the daytime world. I know that we have such talented people among us, and I'm just happy to be included in that. I'm really excited.
Soap Central: How did you find out that you'd been nominated?
Khalil: Well, Matt Kane [from our publicity department] told me, because I am always behind on everything, and I never know what is going on, because I don't pay attention to anything. [Laughs]I completely forgot that the nominations were coming out, so when he called me to congratulate me, I didn't know what he was talking about. So, when he told me, I was like, "Oh, my gosh, wow!" It was just one of those things, where I'm always behind. [Laughs] But that actually made it even more exciting, just because it wasn't something that I was biting my fingernails over. It was very much just a thing where I was enjoying my day, and then this amazing news came along, so it was great.
Soap Central: What were the scenes that you included on your submission reel?
Khalil: I definitely did the funeral scenes for Kristoff's [St. John, ex-Neil Winters] tribute, and then I think the last one I did was when I told Cane [Daniel Goddard] that I wanted a divorce. I knew pretty much right off the bat which scenes I wanted to include.
Soap Central: I would have chosen those for you, as well. You gave such powerful performances in them, and for obvious reasons, they were super emotional. Did anyone give you their opinion, or did you just go with your instincts as you said and choose the scenes on your own?
Khalil: I kind of knew right away about a handful of scenes that had popped into my mind, and obviously, Matt Kate is really helpful with, "Oh, what about this, or what about this?" Once you kind of have the scenes that you want, you watch them all, and when I watched them, I pretty much knew right off the bat, "Oh, that one is good," or, "This one is okay." It's really just compiling that first round of scenes together and then really trying to rack your brain to make sure you don't forget anything.
Soap Central: How do you feel about the fact that the Emmys are going to be televised this year? It's so exciting to the fans.
Khalil: Yeah, I know! I'm so happy about that, because it hasn't been televised in so long. It's exciting. I just wish we could all be together for it, you know?
Soap Central: Yes, that is the bad thing about it this year, because the Emmy ceremony is like the one night of the year for everyone to be together and celebrate daytime. But I think if the fans had a choice, they'd prefer that it's on television!
Khalil: [Laughs] Oh, totally! If it's being televised over having everyone together and not being televised, then I'd probably also choose televised, because that's nice, for everyone to be able to see it.
Soap Central: They said something about actors accepting their awards from home, so how are you getting along with Zoom interviews and all of these technological changes that are happening? Have you been quick to jump on board?
Khalil: Pretty much, yes, because of my son. I'm doing a couple of yoga classes through Zoom, but my son is the one who is on like four or five Zoom calls a day with his school, so I've definitely had to be a part of it for that. And also, I've had some friends who have gotten engaged, so we've had engagement celebrations over Zoom. But for the most part, that's pretty much it, thank goodness!
Soap Central: Do you feel like you'll be more or less nervous to participate and potentially do an Emmy acceptance speech online from the comfort of your home as opposed to in a crowded auditorium?
Khalil: I think, for me, it's the same. I've done it before, and thankfully, I don't really get nervous about things like that. I mean, I get nervous like if I'm going to hear my name, but to actually go up, that doesn't really freak me out at all. I think it might be weirder doing it virtually, just because you're not able to see people's faces, and you're just kind of like talking to a blank screen. So, we'll see; it would definitely be a different experience!
Soap Central: The fun of choosing something to wear is a little bit different this year. Have you given that any thought yet?
Khalil: Not really, just because I don't know exactly how they're going to do it. Like, I don't know if I'm just going to be on camera for just my category or how it's going to work. Honestly, if that's what it is, I probably won't put on a gown! [Laughs] But I don't know. To be honest, I have no idea what I'm going to do. I'll have to figure something out. I definitely want to be a little dressed up, just to show my respect.
Soap Central: Well, congratulations again on your nomination. Is there anything else that you'd like to add before I have to let you go?
Khalil: I'm just grateful that people voted for me and that people enjoyed my work, and I can't wait for the ceremony.
What do you think about Christel Khalil receiving an Emmy nomination for her work as Y&R's Lily? Do you think she'll take home the Outstanding Supporting Actress award this year? We want to hear from you -- so drop your comments in the Comments section below, tweet about it on Twitter, share it on Facebook, or chat about it on our Message Boards.