‘The Young and the Restless’: Is Christel Khalil Returning to the Show on a Full-Time Basis?

Legacy character Lily Winters on The Young and the Restless and her portrayer, Christel Khalil have been very popular with viewers since she first debuted on the show in 2002. Recently, Khalil began making more appearances on the series which begs the question — is the actress returning to the show full-time?

Christel Khalil in 2016
Christel Khalil in 2016 | Paul Archuleta/FilmMagic

Christel Khalil is back on the show as a recurring cast member in a sizeable storyline

In 2018, Khalil revealed that she was moving to recurring status on the soap opera. She wrote on Instagram at the time, “Hello Lovelies! I wanted you to be the first to know that if you see less of me on @youngandrestlesscbs , it’s because I have decided to switch from Y&R full time to recurring status. That means I’m not leaving, just ready (after 16 amazing years playing Lily) to explore new things! I will continue to be a proud member of the Y&R family and look forward to further adventures playing Lily. Thank you for all the love and support over the years! xoxo.”

Khalil’s return appearances on the show included coming back for the funeral of her characters’ on-screen father, Neil Winters (the late Kristoff St. John). After this, the character left town. Now, she’s back and is running a new division at Chancellor Industries with Billy Abbott (Jason Thompson).

In an interview with Soap Opera Digest, Khalil spoke about Winters’ current storyline on the show now that she’s returned.

On her current storyline, Khalil said, “It’s something I’ve always wanted for Lily, so it’s nice to actually have that. Plus, I thought it was great for there to be a job to show more women in power as well, which is something that Josh was really wanting to do. And then also to work with Jason has been wonderful. I love Jason. He’s such a great actor. He’s so easy to work with and he’s fun. So, I was like, ‘Yeah, it would be great to do something different with someone else.’ I was really excited. I mean, this is better just because Lily is the one calling the shots rather than following other people or being an employee. She is now the employer. It’s really cool.”

Would Christel Khalil return to the show as a main cast member?

In the same interview with Soap Opera Digest, Khalil also talked a lot about how her return to the show came about and potentially doing more work on the soap. When she went on recurring status at the show, Khalil moved to Toronto with her boyfriend and son. She still continued to appear on the show sporadically.

She said, “I happened to run into Josh in the hallway at Y&R shortly after New Year’s Day and he was like, ‘I have this really exciting storyline, I think you’ll love it. I was really excited. It’s like home there, so it was nice to even be thought of for a new storyline.” She talked about her move to Toronto, saying that it was “just personal life reasons, and nothing to do with work or anything else. And it’s been great, but I miss working and being on the show.”

Khalil and her boyfriend had already been having conversations about potentially moving to Los Angeles. “Sam and I had talked about possibly moving back before Josh even approached me, so we were already on the same page with all of that. It kind of was kismet when I ran into Josh and we had that conversation. Sam was definitely supportive knowing that he’d have to do a lot more and watch Caden [her son] when he’s in school and stuff. I think we both care about making money [laughs].”

Khalil says that she and her family still plan to move to LA this summer, so while we aren’t sure right at this moment, don’t be surprised if Khalil comes back to the show for good. She added, “I’m back in Toronto with my family right now. We still have plans to move to LA this summer, although I don’t know when because of this whole drama. But it’ll be great to really be back full time.”

The Young and the Restless airs weekdays on CBS.