Watch one second of him on The CW’s Dynasty and it won’t take long for you to come to a conclusion: Adam Huber looks like a movie star. Starring as Liam Ridley, he imbues the character with warmth, compassion, and one of the only sources of stability in the over-the-top, dramatic, and endlessly entertaining world of the Carringtons. Huber’s Ridley is a character that was made to be seen and felt, constructed so three-dimensionally that it’s hard to believe he was not meant to be a series regular in the first place. But that’s Huber’s charm: cast him in a role he was meant for, the match becomes irresistible, and people beg for more.
Though it might be hard to believe, Huber’s journey from a small-town guy in Pennsylvania to Hollywood was not easy. After graduating from Penn State, Huber moved to New York to act on the stage, modeled simultaneously, and moved to LA in 2014. After guest-starring in shows like New Girl and The Good Place, Huber was cast as Liam Ridley, a character that was supposed to be a fleeting presence in Fallon Carrington’s life at the end of season one. But people loved him, and his chemistry with co-star Liz Gillies was electric, and Liam evolved into a fan favorite and key member of the Dynasty ensemble, giving Huber his breakout, and first series regular, role.
Now on season three, Fallon and Liam’s relationship has turned into a hashtag (#FalLiam), and the release of Dynasty of Netflix has given Huber a worldwide fanbase and platform. Speaking to Huber, it’s clear that not one second of his whole journey, and especially his Dynasty experience, is being taken for granted, and that hard work and perseverance are driving forces in his life, solely responsible for getting him where he is today. Liam Ridley maybe Adam Huber’s first big role, but it definitely won’t be his last. Getting to know the rising star, we spoke to Huber about his journey to Hollywood, the craziness that comes with being a part of the Carrington family, the lessons he’s learned along the way, and what comes next for Liam.
You first started acting on the stage. How do you compare the experience of acting in a play, and on film and tv? How do you think your theatre background helped you get to where you are today?
They are two completely different beasts all on their own. On the stage, there are no retakes, no “can I do that again?” No, “what’s my line?” You have to be fully prepared every day. You have to know exactly where you are in the story at all times. In film… You can come in, read your lines that morning and kind of wing it and see what happens. For me, I can’t do that. I prepare every episode like I did when I was doing a play in college. I read every scene. I’m in every day and every night before I go to bed. It helps me understand and have a better flow of what story we are telling that episode. I think it also helps ground me in my performance a little more.
Playing Liam on Dynasty is your first big role, what has the experience of being on the show taught you about acting and the entertainment industry?
Yes, this has definitely been my first big role. I’ve learned so much more about the ins and outs of the business. I’ve learned all of the behind the scenes things that go into each episode and the art of playing the waiting game. What it’s like to get full-scene of rewrites the night before a shoot. What it’s like being on set working 12-14-hour days every day. It has taught me so much. And I still have so much more to learn. I don’t take one day on set for granted. I’m like a sponge absorbing as much as I can.
Something I love about Liam is that he is such a kind presence on the show. Every time he shows up onscreen there’s a feeling of safety and warmth, especially when you consider how important he is for Fallon and what a rocky road they’ve had. What was your approach to building this character?
Aww, thank you! Well, I saw how crazy Fallon’s world is. Also, I looked at her characteristics. What makes her, her. And Liam almost had to be the opposite. Not in all facets, but he needed to be the balance in her life. Liam and I are also very similar in some ways. And no matter what, with any character you do, you bring aspects of who you are into it. But he just kind of happened and evolved from episode to episode. But, I just wanted him to be a support system for Fallon. Someone who understands her and her world and why she does the things she does.
Since Liam wasn’t supposed to become a series regular, did you have any role in helping shape who the character turned out to be as his presence on the show grew? What kind of research did you do to create your version of Liam?
As I said, he just kinda evolved from episode to episode. I think the writers and staff kinda liked what I was doing so we just kept going in more of that direction. I didn’t do much research. Just digging in the script. We call it detective work. What world does Liam come from? What was his upbringing like? His relationships with his family and friends? What’s his point of view in the world. There are so many questions you have to ask yourself to fully understand who your character is and where he is coming from.
How are you and Liam similar, and how are you different?
We are similar in that we love and care for people the same. We both have high expectations for people and we expect the best from them. How we handle situations is a little different. I also tend to have a little bit more of a rebellious side with some things haha. Sometimes Liam is too good and tries to do things too perfectly. I can be a little messier with that.
I started watching Dynasty on Season 1, my mother was the one who got me into it, and it became a huge bonding thing for the both of us to watch Dynasty together and talk about the show. When did you realize you were part of such a special project?
I love that. I think it was while we were filming the season finale in season 1 that I felt something really special was happening. I didn’t want to stop filming. I didn’t want to go home. I was having so much fun. Then, also, in season 2. I think in season 2 the show really became something special for everyone. You have a full season under your belt. The show finds out what it is in that first season. And I feel like season 2 really became something. Now we’re all just interested to see how long we can go
What was the most surprising turn of events that has happened to Liam so far on the show to you?
The most surprising turn of events for Liam is revealed very soon. It has to do with his long-lost son.
I feel like Dynasty took on a life of its own once it was on Netflix and essentially the whole world has access to the show. How do you wrap your head around the fact that your show is watched and beloved by people in over 100 countries? I feel like it might be something hard to fathom.
Yeah, people all across the world love it. I mean, my Instagram followers went from 5 thousand to over 400 thousand so quickly. I’m so grateful for this show and all of the fans that watch and love it. Without them, we wouldn’t have the success that we do. It has been really great to know that I have impacted people that I have never met. People who speak a completely different language than I do. It’s nice to get those Instagram messages from people in India, the Philippines, Italy, and all over the place saying how much they love my character and my work on the show. Messages that I have inspired them. It’s very rewarding to have the love coming in from all over the place.
One thing I love about Dynasty is that the storylines are great, juicy, and dramatic but it’s also a visually stunning show, the sets, the costumes, the size of all parties and the glamour, no one holds back. What’s it like to be on a show that’s heightened and extravagant and so fun on all levels?
It just makes it so much fun. I’m in awe with how they pull everything together and make it look the way it does. From costumes to the sets to the lighting of the show. It’s been amazing to sit back and watch it all happen. And it’s nice to be a part of all of it. It just makes it that much more fun to come to work and do what you love to do. It can be very surreal at times.
Liz Gillies is so magnetic as Fallon, it’s just impossible not to root for her on the show, even when she does things which aren’t that great. What’s the best part of working with her so closely on the show?
Liz is fantastic. I love working with her. She has taught me a lot. And she doesn’t have any fear on set. She will try anything. She works more than anyone else and has such crazy dialogue and she handles it with such ease and grace. It’s fun to watch her work and do her thing. She’s insanely talented and it makes me want to be that much better. I’ve learned a lot from Liz.
People love Liam and Fallon’s relationship, #FalLiam is such a big thing and I love seeing the passion they have for this couple. How does it feel to be part of such a celebrated and loved couple? Why do you think people have latched onto them so much?
Yea our relationship has really turned into being a big part of the show. I think people gravitate toward our relationship because it feels real. It feels genuine. It doesn’t feel like it’s a show where they are forcing this couple on you. It’s been great. I want people to look up to our relationship. Say to themselves, “that’s what I want.” I want our relationship to be a good model for real-life relationships. Sure, we have our moments and can be crazy but, in the end, we love each other and have each other’s backs no matter what. We learn from each other and grow as a whole.
If you could give your younger self a piece of advice, what would you say?
Be patient, work hard, work harder, be smart, and never give up. You got this kid. Stay focused.
I read an interview where you introduce yourself as “a small-town guy from Pennsylvania trying to make his dreams of making it in Hollywood come true” – when you look back at where you came from and realize what you’ve achieved to this day, how does it make you feel?
It makes me feel proud of myself finally. It’s been a long tough journey for me to get this point. It makes all the pain I went through totally worth it. I can finally give myself a pat on the back and say, “good job.” But I can’t settle here. I have to keep working hard to get to where I want to be. The journey, for me, is only just beginning.
What would you say to other small (or big) town young people who also dream of making it big in Hollywood?
Go for it. Try it out. If you don’t you are going to look back years down the road and say what if? Or question yourself. That’s what I didn’t want to do. I didn’t want to be 40 sitting behind my desk hating my job and life and say, “Damnit, I wish I would have gone after my dream” we only live once that we remember. I don’t want to have any regrets