When it comes to his friendship with Dollar Bill, there are few things THE BOLD & THE BEAUTIFUL’s Justin won’t do. Whether dumping someone from a helicopter into the Persian Gulf or applying lipstick on himself in order to stage a fake tryst, Justin is always game (however reluctantly) to help pull off his pal’s egregious dirty tricks. His portrayer, Aaron D. Spears, acknowledges that it’s not always easy for Justin to abide by Bill’s wishes, but at the end of the day, he has his back. Why? For Spears, the answer is simple. “If you can’t count on your friend, then are they really your friend?” he wonders. “Justin’s tone is usually, ‘I don’t like it, but if you want that done… ? Okay.’”
That’s not to say the lawyer won’t try to convince his megalomaniacal buddy to see the error of his ways. “A friend is that person who will tell you, ‘You have a booger in your nose,’ or ‘Your breath is kicking — have a mint!’” Spears chuckles, “so Justin will check the hell out of Dollar Bill, but if Bill doesn’t want to listen to the lesson Justin verbally tries to offer, then maybe he needs to feel the lesson in the form of consequences.”
Though originally cast as Donna’s former high school sweetheart, Spears’ role quickly morphed into being Bill’s right-hand man.
“Who knew that bromance would take on a life of its own?” says the actor, who’s thrilled to have been back on contract full-time for the past year. Working with someone as dynamic and off the cuff as Don Diamont (Bill) takes an actor who isn’t afraid to dance the same dance, so to speak, and Spears has filled that niche nicely for nearly a decade. “Don brings so much to that character, and the show gives him a lot of freedom, so you’ve got to be able to jump into that playground, to be free and malleable,” says Spears.
It doesn’t hurt, of course, that Spears and his co-star get on like gangbusters off screen. “We both have the same type
of personality. We’re jokesters, and any- one who comes on set with us knows we have fun,” he says.
Can He Be Trusted?
Last spring, viewers found themselves wondering whether Justin might ultimately be capable of betraying Bill when he was short-listed as a potential culprit in the “Who shot Bill?” storyline. Though that turned out to be a red herring, Spears says it did make him wonder whether his alter ego could ever turn on his tyrannical employer. “I’d like to think he would never betray Bill, but greed can get the best of anyone,” he notes. “If Justin ever did betray him, he’d only be doing what Bill has taught him for all these years. It wouldn’t be personal — it would just be business!”
As for whether we’ll ever get to see more of Justin outside of the Spencer offices, Spears says he’s certainly game for anything. “I always say the most amazing thing about Justin is that he has so many directions he could go in,” says the actor. Not only is Justin a billionaire’s righthand man, but he’s Donna’s ex-husband, cousin to THE YOUNG & THE RESTLESS’s Olivia and Drucilla, and the uncle of Forrester intern Emma. “In that respect, he has the most amazing outline of any character on the show,” says Spears, “So the framework is definitely there if they wanted to fill it in!”
“He’s definitely going to make sure nobody messes with her,” Spears says of Justin’s protectiveness toward his niece, Emma.
“I was happy to hear Jennifer [Gareis, Donna] was back,” says the actor of his former B&B missus. “We’re always cracking jokes and acting crazy. We’re off the wall.”
“Justin’s got a man for everything,” quips the actor of his alter ego’s connections. “If you need somebody to captain a submarine… just let Justin know!”
“Justin does have an office,” notes Spears, who is typically only seen in Dollar Bill’s CEO suite. “I think we’ve only seen it twice, but I was in there once when Justin and Donna were married and once when Wyatt came to confront me about taking over Spencer Publications.”