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Alison Sweeney Returns To Days of our Lives!

Photo Credit: HutchinsPhoto.com

Photo Credit: HutchinsPhoto.com

After an extremely successful story arc her last time in Salem, Alison Sweeney (Sami) is back taping new episodes of Days of our Lives.

When viewers last saw Sami in 2017, she was reunited with her son, Will (Chandler Massey), and had sex with Rafe (Galen Gering) before heading out of town.

Sweeney is very excited about the latest storyline she is currently filming written by head writer, Ron Carlivati.

The fan favorite told Soap Opera Digest that this return has been, “super-exciting, definitely a roller-coaster ride and really fun.”

Look for Alison to be back on-screen sometime later this year on the NBC daytime drama series.

So, what do you think Sami will be mixed-up in this time when she comes back to Salem? Comment below.

 

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rebecca1
Guest
rebecca1

Is it possible she’s pregnant?

Satan
Guest
Satan

Yeah, I called that one the minute she & Rafe hooked up.

Sami’s not going to come back without some sort of shocking news…. and since James Scott has no interest in coming back (For the love of all that is unholy, do NOT let ReRon attempt an EJ recast!!) then about the only thing she could do is be carrying little Rafe Jr. when she walks in the door.

rebecca1
Guest
rebecca1

I thought of it, too, but if she’s not staying on the show not sure where that story will go…

James Scott is before my time with the show. Googling the history…

vinee
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vinee

Most likely pregnant,then have a miscarrage.

Jimh
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Jimh

She already has like 4 kids…so what is one more?????…

Celia
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Celia

Yeah, my Jimmy, but, this will be Rafe’s. Can you see me jumping for Joy????

Harry
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Harry

Sammy is coming back again? Honestly, I did not know she left.
I don’t watch Days but it feels like I am constantly hearing about Allison’s comings and goings. From what little I have seen of her performance on Days, I can say that kind of overly wrought scene chewing gets on my last never.
But I guess she has a huge fan base.

Patrick
Guest
Patrick

“thank you” on the “…overly wrought scene chewing ” agreed… altho.. her first guest arc since leaving the show… I was amazed … WOW did she work magic at bringing her son back to life and back home to Salem. LOL.. seriously… fan outcry… it took 3 years of … on that note i’m so glad Sami Brady as a standalone character… argh! I was glad she left. she has 3 claim to fame: being the wife of EJ. w/James Scott… HOT HOT HOT being the mother of Will. I’ve never seen a character so loved and lauded. ( my… Read more »

dmr
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dmr

Agreed Patrick, good comparison-Sami is a an equal comparison to Carly, and I am not a big fan of either actress/character.

Jovin
Guest
Jovin

This is a character that was SO completely ruined by the writing of James Reilly, it is hard to take her seriously. However, I thought her 2014 exit as a kinder, gentler, NON psychotic Sami was very well written and acted. Keep THAT Sami around! Please enough of the 40 year old whack job whining about her parents getting back together.

dmr
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dmr

The character has been whining since I can remember-and throwing tantrums.

dmr
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dmr

Agreed. I’ve never been a big fan. Honestly, I’ve never gotten the buzz around the actress/character.

Celia
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Celia

I never thought about it, dmr—-maybe because I don’t know Carly as well as I do Sami….but, yeah, now that you mention it, I see it….a force to be reckoned with, both of them!! Strong willed, chomping at the bit and holier-than-thou, whose caca is never offensive to the senses, LOL.
The main difference between them is ….one’s mother is an ex hooker; the other an ex-demon-alien?

Celia
Guest
Celia

Ali does have a big fan base, dear Harry…..you should join us and watch !!!! I’m serious…truly!!! Would love your sarcastically, hilarious input—I’m sure you’d have a lot to say, and I would enjoy it immesely. Will this be Rafe’s baby? Are we making too much out of Sami’s return?…, …..which brings me to GH…..since the day Griffin came to town, not only did I question his paternity…..that is; that Fason was his father ( except I said he was in Duke mask) and Anna his mother; but also, that he and Nathan were brothers. Coming full-circle? So, Sami coming… Read more »

Jimh
Guest
Jimh

I think Nelle is…or maybe Kiki and Nelle were twins and both Nina’s or Ava’s

Celia
Guest
Celia

@Jimh.
That’s right, Jimmy….We both agreed, a while back, that Kiki and Nelle could be twins….I think Nina’s….neither looks anything like Ava…..
Both girls are tall and svelte; so similar to Nina.

Max
Guest
Max

YEAH!!!

Alan
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Alan

Great writing always brings actors back…

Celia
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Celia

Yes, Alan…..I hope there’s a showdown between her and Hope….impaling Hope, the virtuous!!
Can’t wait…..

blake
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blake

True Alan, I figured she’d want to keep returning with Ron C. writing and the great return she had last year.

Lou piikes
Guest
Lou piikes

Ron must have Ali’s number on speed dial. He’s using her to boost Days ratings, which is not a bad thing to do.

rpm
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rpm

Ali is always a welcome sight on the Days landscape!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

roy m upton
Guest
roy m upton

rafe’s baby will need a rare blood transfusion. stefan o will be available. sonny tries to break up will and paul. you don’t want to meddle with sammi’s little chicken.

Coco
Guest
Coco

Sami will be returning to Salem because her one night fling with Rafe, of course created a baby! Because
Neither used protection so Sami is either pregnant or she just gave birth to Rafe’s son, which will cause more tension between Rafe and Hope since she decided to forgive him.

Andrew Hass
Guest
Andrew Hass

I keep thinking Sami will be either be pregnant with Rafe’s baby or just had the baby when we first see her again because i don’t think the show had Rafe and Sami had sex just to cause problems for Rafe and Hope.Hope probably can get past Rafe having sex with Sami since technically it wasn’t cheating but Hope may have a harder time dealing with the fact that Rafe has a child with Sami.Plus it could be revealed that when she found out she was pregnant Sami decided not to tell Rafe because she didn’t want to cause problems… Read more »

ChandlerFan
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ChandlerFan

In soap-opera-land, if Sami showed up with Rafe’s already-born child, the kid would have to appear as a full-grown teenager.

Chaz
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Chaz

Oh, lord…..pregnant by Rafe?

James McDonald
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James McDonald

I wouldn’t be surprised if Sami came back with a baby in her arms and guess who the daddy is?

Patrick
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Patrick

shoot.. it’s also a perfect time to bring back Christie Clark .

Sami gives the baby to Rafe… and he and Carrie are one happy family.

WISHFUL THINKING

aren’t we still waiting on , whether Kristen and Eric had a baby. what an opportune time for THIS . Jenny Bear is getting her clutches in . this can’t be possible.

Celia
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Celia

Ron? The baby is Ron’s, LOL.

linda
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linda

YAY!

Marsha Hubel
Guest
Marsha Hubel

Maybe because EJ comes back from the dead!

Satan
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Satan

Not unless James Scott has changed his mind and decided to come back. Because nothing would be worse than ReRon trying to force one of his OLTL pets in as a recast of Elvis DiMera.

Yeah, I know Kristen popped in for a 30 second cameo to tell us all that Elvis never really “left the building”, but unless they can bring back the prematurely aged British guy who was a lawyer, MBA, and race car driver all by the age of 9, then why bother at all?

Celia
Guest
Celia

Good one, Marsha….I think EJ is alive—does Sami know? If so, why sleep with Rafe?
Maybe seeing his mother again, may awaken Will’s dormant memory.

davlestev1
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davlestev1

Her first scene will be Hope slapping the taste out of her mouth. After that who knows what that whack-a-doodle will be up to.

davlestev1
Guest
davlestev1

Or maybe she’ll one up Abby on the alters and be samabigail.

Celia
Guest
Celia

HaHa, dav….good one. I hope Sami is pregnant, or has had the baby already? Rafe has always wanted kids….Hope is waaay past her childbearing years!!
I remember when Sami and Rafe were married; he loved Johnny and Allie as his own.

rebecca1
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rebecca1

LOL!

Patrick
Guest
Patrick

FUN’ny ! course… Sami has already gone their MANY times. so I don’t know if the “alters” would mean much.

LOVE TO LOVE and LOVE TO HATE Ms. Sami Brady

James R. Poissant
Guest
James R. Poissant

Glad Ali’s coming back to us for a little bit. Hope the story goes as good as the last time she visited Salem.

IRENE M ADAMS
Guest
IRENE M ADAMS

The writing has been really awesome. Not the repetition per se. When there is typical daytime theme Ron throws in so many unexpected turns at rapid pace. Not the same dialog. New take on daytime. Daring.

Who knows what twist there will be with Alison. I bet nothing we guess. Pregnant seems too obvious. But never know. Somehow I think something else.

Patrick
Guest
Patrick

Ali Sweeney deserved to be nominated for an Emmy for this past year work. flawless as an actress.. and as always brings Sami flaws warts and all… humane. can’t beat that WOW.. did she emerge triumphant and all … BROUGHT HER SON HOME. that in itself historic and mother and son once again top shelf and as history should dictate the heart beat of Salem. why not I wish @DAYS should pass the torch on to Christie Clark. nevertheless… Ali is coming home. she showed a stronger , more mature picture. YES OK OK who wouldn’t sleep with Rafe

blake
Guest
blake

Agree Patrick, while I like Sami’s returns, Carrie needs to be back for good. christine Clark already said she’d love to return for longer visits.

Celia
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Celia

I agree, blake….I’d prefer to have Carrie back for a prolonged stay in Salem….
As far as with whom should Rafe be paired? Funny, but, I like both scenarios….LOL.
I suppose the idea is moot, since neither “visits” long enough.

Boes
Guest
Boes

I miss Sami almost as much as I miss Alison.

Mo
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Mo

Yay! I hope Sami is not pregnant. I look forward to more Will and Sami scenes.

Richard
Guest
Richard

It is abundantly clear she is coming back with a baby in tow. Love Hope but she is WAY past her childbearing years. And Rafe has always wanted his own child,so why not tie him to Sami with one? I cannot wait for this. I love Samantha Gene Brady and Alison Sweeney! I hope her and Will have alot of scenes too! I bet she has a son by Rafe! Anchoring Rafe in Salem with a child of his own! So what will this make Arianna in relation to Rafe and Sami’s child? Lord the Salem family tree! Only on… Read more »

Celia
Guest
Celia

Hey, Richard……we almost said the same thing…verbatim. The first part, anyway! LOL.

rebecca1
Guest
rebecca1

Just to clarify…Hope is not “way” past her childbearing years. Not sure what her age is in the show but in reality Kristian Alfonso is 54. Women that age can and do get pregnant; albeit few and far between. If say, Hope is in her late 40s/’50 in the show she can still get pregnant. (see Janet Jackson who was pregnant, for the first time, at 49. and since Hope already had children it’s technically easier for her to get pregnant at an older age than for a woman who never was before) If using her own eggs is no… Read more »

Steve
Guest
Steve

Despite what others say, Richard, you are correct about child bearing age. That’s not a dig on women’s age, just the biological fact that the average US age for menopause is 51.

Hope would be pushing it, but GH has occasionally gone way beyond. Nina’s quest is painful to watch (unless she goes cuckoo again). The tease that 61 yo NLG could be with child was only topped by the easily forgotten lady in white daughter Helena would’ve had to have in her late 60s.

We suspend some reality as soap viewers, but there are limits.

Rebecca1
Guest
Rebecca1

Hey all, what I said was it is possible, albeit rare. I didn’t say she’d want to have a child in her 50s, but the possibility exists. When it’s said that someone is “way” past, it implied to me that it was impossible. If that’s not what you meant, Richard, then I misinterpreted. Sorry. However… According to the National Center for Health Statistics, there were 743 births to women 50 years and over in 2014. In addition, the birth rate for women aged 45 to 49 was 0.8 births per 1,000 women. While these are small numbers it indicates women… Read more »

Rebecca1
Guest
Rebecca1

correction to Steve: I meant to say…I specifically mentioned Hope and NIna (not Alexis). Nina and Hope are wtihin the realm of possiblility. Alexis, if playing mid 50s would be, too, had the writers not put her through menopause years ago (if I remember that correctly) but I think they quickly tried to “chane history” which is why they went with that story. IF she had gone through full menopause then yes, she couldn’t get pregant naturally but still could with donor eggs. So when you write to refute my statement you’re wrong. Your “average age” of menopause might be… Read more »

Celia
Guest
Celia

@Steve. LOL, Steve …the only person I know to have had a child in her 60’s is St. Anne ( The Virgin Mary’s mother)… and that was through divine intervention ( Catechism—-Catholic Religion Education). My grandmother gave birth to her fourth child at age 47 or 48 ( naturally)….. but Hope and Nina? That’s stretching it…..I do not care what age they play….they look their real age….beautiful, nonetheless, but, we cannot defy nature. Even if that were possible; tha is, if there were still a monthly flow involved; the pregnancy would never come to fruition…..the womb would not be producing… Read more »

Celia
Guest
Celia

@Steve.
Correction….through a syringe, not system, sorry….

rebecca1
Guest
rebecca1

LOL! Celia!!!! How DID I know that you’d chime in here! I could feel you salivating for a chance alllll the way over in my corner of the room!!! I didn’t say a woman in her “60s!” could get pregnant. Did I? Ummmmm, no, don’t believe I did. Which is why I clarified that I was talking about the age of the characters in story! I also didn’t say it was common! I said, possible, albeit rare. I said that in the FIRST SENTENCE. As said, yes a woman in her early 50s CAN get preganant by natural means and… Read more »

Patrick
Guest
Patrick

I was so caught up in her last REEL ( guest STAR arc) thee pay off .. is so worth the wait. dang it. just one of the BEST mother/son duos of all time. Sami , the mother bear. watch yourself Chandler Massey story is SOOOO good… it’s like it doesn’t matter that he doesn’t remember his past. LOVE his relationship with paul. and love watching Sonny going thru his trials. nevertheless… the payoff of Will remembering his parents… is a must see Sami and Lucas… they both acknowledge the one thing (plus Ali) the one thing they did right…… Read more »

Richard
Guest
Richard

Rebecca, Hope is a grandmother so on soaps her getting pregnant is a tad ludicrous. Yeah real life is totally understandable, but no one wants to see Hope pregnant. I said the same thing when Brooke got pregnant by Bill but lost it on BOLD. Its way more realistic for him to have a baby with Sami since they were once married and she is probably about 40. That being said, Sami will have 5 kids and this should DEFINITELY be her last child. If Hope got preganant i would seriously laugh. In character, Hope is probably about 55. She… Read more »

K/kay
Guest
K/kay

Rebecca I respect you but Hope is way par the child bearing age she is my age and I sure as hell would not want a baby at 50 trust me she has gone thru menopause just once could we get in reality

Rebecca1
Guest
Rebecca1

Hi k/kay

I hear you. And, thanks. I respect your opinions, too. (you’re always very fair and impartial).

But! LOL…I said she could, (though it would be difficult and the odds wouldn’t be in her favor). Didn’t say she’d want to.

😉

Rebecca1
Guest
Rebecca1

Hi Richard… Read my comments above. Yep; all I said was it’s possible. But being a grandmother has nothing to do with it. There are grandmothers who are in their 40s…if their 20-something (or younger) kids had kids! It’s all relative, as they say… Hope, Nina or Alexis having kids isn’t quite as “funny” as the late actor Tony Randall becoming a father at 80! Sigh…all these geriatric men becoming daddys… MY POINT, ahem, is that they still can and do. So, if the individual woman, while it’s not as common, still can, then she should, if she wants to.… Read more »

4ever DAYS
Guest
4ever DAYS

Sami could have Rafe’s intersex child. If not, maybe twins. One could be raised by Sami and the other by Rafe, but they would have to be separated before separated because they are conjoined.

K/kay
Guest
K/kay

Sami has no business with a child enough their are tons of stories to tell RC does not have to do the baby thing!!! Ugh

4ever DAYS
Guest
4ever DAYS

I’d rather there not be any angst for “Rope”, K/kay, because I don’t like the couple. Angst should be reserved for couples who belong together or who are halfway decent. But if a baby (or babies) is/are already in the works, why not something different? I originally thought of an intersex child for Carrie and Austin…My idea was born out of the lack of detail DAYS has given in regards to their son. Carrie and Austin moved away while she was pregnant and the baby was barely mentioned and finally viewers heard the baby is a boy named Noah, but… Read more »

Celia
Guest
Celia

HaHa…..or, 4ever, Sami could have the same ‘type’ of pregnancy as with Johnny ans Allie. Twins!! One is Rafe’s and the other EJ’s…..IT’S ALIVE!! Yeah!!

Michael
Guest
Michael

Can’t figure out why she left in the first place. I wish she would sign on long term! And isn’t James Scott sick of retirement yet?? Ron’s writing is great- they should do everything they can to lure back Sammy and EJ!

Patrick
Guest
Patrick

@DAYS – needs – to hire a LEADING Lady for Greg Vaughan. PRONTO

this is a – glaring – omission… on the part of the audience.

WE LOVE Eric Brady. GIVE HIM A LIFE

explore with us all his being

Celia
Guest
Celia

Oh, Patrick…ugh; I hear ya!

blake
Guest
blake

Agree because Jenn and Eric are BORING.

Celia
Guest
Celia

Ahhh, blake. We will never see another Nicole-type, my friend—-too bad for us!!

Alan Harding
Guest
Alan Harding

Just as Hope decides to forgive Rafe, Sami will resurface and announce she is with child.
Then she will deliver an Alien….well on THIS show….who knows ~

Louise
Guest
Louise

This isn’t going to be about her carrying Rafe child, this is all going to be about who’s child SAMI really is. That daddy (& adulterous mommie) she was always so proud of…….

ChandlerFan
Guest
ChandlerFan

This means more Chandler Massey screen time!

Days Of Our Lives

DAYS Alison Sweeney on Working with Bryan Dattilo: “28 Years Later, Some Things Never Change. Still Laughing Between Takes and Grateful to Have Such a Talented Supportive Co-Star”

This week, Days of our Lives viewers have witnessed that Sami Brady DiMera (Alison Sweeney) and Lucas Horton (Bryan Dattilo) hit the sheets, and Lumi fans everywhere rejoiced!

On and off, for almost three decades. Alison Sweeney and Bryan Dattilo have played the relationship between these two exes who share children together to the hilt, because Sami and Lucas’ history is well … complicated.

But, what will happen if and when EJ finds out that Sami had sex with her ex? Stay tuned.

In the meantime, Alison took to her Instagram and shared her thoughts alongside photos of her and Bryan, then and now.

Over the years, Bryan had remained one of Alison’s good friends.

Sweeney expressed: “I have always had such fun working with @bryan.dattilo !! 28 years later, some things never change. Still laughing between takes and grateful to have such a talented, supportive costar. Thanks @nbc for this great archive photo! And so grateful to @nbcdays for the incredible opportunity to play Sami.”

What did you think of the scenes where Sami and Lucas slept together and its aftermath thus far? Comment below.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Ali Sweeney (@alisweeney)

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Days Of Our Lives

Kevin Spirtas Talks ‘After Forever’s’ Digital Special ‘Riley’s Unforgettable School Project’, The Loss of Michael Slade, and a Chance to Reprise DAYS Craig Wesley

The coronavirus pandemic has put to the test many content creators on just how they would keep their projects moving forward in ways they never dreamed of. However, out of that situation has come some of the most compelling, unique series, specials, and features currently streaming for viewers. One of which is Riley’s Unforgettable School Project, brought to you by the team from the six-time Daytime Emmy Award-winning series, After Forever.

Former Days of our Lives star, Kevin Spirtas (Ex-Craig Wesley) has starred in and created the first two seasons of what has become the most honored Emmy-awarded LGBTQ-themed drama series on any platform.  Along with his ‘After Forever’ writing/producing partner, the late Michael Slade (DAYS, OLTL, Passions, Another World), the two also conceptualized and delivered this latest documentary-style offering now on Amazon Prime Video.

What makes Riley’s Unforgettable School Project so noteworthy is not just how they were able to execute the series based on fictional 11-year-old Riley’s virtual school project and utilize its cast, which includes: Spirtas, Cady Huffman, Jamison Stern, Lenny Wolpe, Erin Cherry, Anita Gillette, Christopher J. Hanke, and Finn Douglas, but that it was made while Slade was succumbing to his battle with cancer, and that this special marks the final script from this talented writer.

 

Michael Fairman TV spoke with Spirtas about making the special during Covid-19, how the death of Michael Slade has made a lasting impact on his life, what After Forever has personally meant to him, and how an official third season is still in the works, and … if he would consider a return to Salem and Days of our Lives, should they come a-calling.  Here’s what Kevin had to say about it all.

Photo: AfterForever

I think the entire story of this digital special has become even more meaningful with Michael Slade’s passing. What was the genesis of the concept? You wanted to continue the telling of the story of After Forever … but we are all in the middle of a pandemic?

KEVIN:  Yes and… when we filmed season 2, we had the scripts for season 3 already completed. It was our hope and desire to film them at the same time, back-to-back, so that we would have had all of our cast and crew together, and we could have gotten through it because we’ve always imagined this story being told in a trilogy so to speak – a beginning, middle, and end to Brian (Spirtas) and Jason, (Mitchell Anderson) and Brian’s healing or his steps towards healing through grief.  Schedules turned out that they couldn’t really work out for us to hold all the people and hold all of the sets for that amount of time.  So, we thought, “We’ve got the scripts for season 3 ready.  We’ll come back to it in the following year,” and that was always the intention, and then the pandemic hit.  So, it was shut down immediately that we weren’t going to do anything, but we wanted to stay current, and instead of going back in and telling the third installment of After Forever as a Covid-19 story as well, Michael and I sat down and looked at a way of staying relevant and current with a story within COVID, and there was born the idea to do this documentary style story/special about the characters of After Forever told through the lens of the character of Riley, the 11-year-old boy, who is now being homeschooled during the pandemic. He gets an assignment to do a project about the most unforgettable person he has ever met, and he, of course, chooses his best friend, the late Jason Adams, and he enlists all of Jason’s friends and family to join in.  Michael actually said, “What if we tell a story about Riley being homeschooled?” And, not only is Riley a technical genius at 11-years-old in the story, but Finn Douglas, who plays Riley, is a technical genius.

And didn’t Finn perform and write the song “Forever There” contained within the special?

KEVIN. Yes. He is this incredible musician.  Michael thought, “What would it be like if we asked to have the character of Finn sing a song for Jason?”  I said, “Well, what kind of song would we have him sing?”  Finn could play anything, I’m sure, because he’s self-taught, he plays by ear – guitar, piano, and drums.  Michael said, “What if we ask him to see if he could write a song?” and when we heard this song, we all called each other and we all got on Zoom and went, “Can you believe this song?  Can you believe this came out of this 11-year-old?”  It’s pretty incredible.  Michael did a gorgeous job of weaving the stories in and out and how they just sort of dove-tailed into each other, and then it was framed by Riley opening the project and ending the project.  During the Zoom reading we wanted to hear the song out loud.  We said to Finn, “Would you want to sing the song?”  We all just watched everybody on that Zoom call just fall apart.  It was just so beautiful. He’s an amazing talent.

Where is your character within this?

KEVIN:  I still stand in the center of the story of Jason because my character, Brian, was married to Jason, and it sort of connects us all, and through Riley’s understanding of how we all connect to Jason, is how we are all sort of spread out throughout the story.  Michael jokingly said, “You know, you’re not going to be the star of this special,” and I said, “I don’t think it’s about being the star.  It’s really about the storytelling.”  The beauty of Riley’s Unforgettable School Project is that we get to see moments of each person’s relationship with Jason, which Riley sets out to say, “Answer these three questions: What did you like most about Jason?  What did you like least about Jason? And what’s your favorite memory?”  Those three things, cut back and forth is where we all kind of fit in.  Nobody has more of a story than the next person, and it’s all telling honest portrayals of how they’re dealing with their loss of their good friend, or their child, or partner.

It’s a very inventive idea during Covid-19 to continue it in a way where you weren’t having to go shoot a full season of episodes.

KEVIN:  Well, we couldn’t. I have to say, Allison Vanore, who not only produced this special, but she also stepped up saying, “I’d love to direct this,” and I said, “Yes, please!”  She knows the characters.  She understands the story because she’s been a part of it for the last two seasons.  Allison also has this extraordinary amount of knowledge and expertise with the camera and what was needed for a remote shoot, and to also be able to organize filming 13 people in 2 different countries and 5 different cities… that’s just the technical side of it, but having that in our back pocket, knowing that it was a remote shoot, we had to send the camera, the computer, the ring light, and the microphone to each person’s house.  We had to location scout over Zoom.  We had to do wardrobe over Zoom.  It was all this big puzzle putting it together, and once you look at that board of storytelling and how we were going to do it, it kind of fell into place.  I feel blessed that a) we still had Michael with us, at that point, and b) Allison had the know-how to do this.  We all feel that at least this pandemic didn’t keep us from doing what we love.

Photo: AfterForever

In terms of the contribution of Michael Slade in this special, was it the construction of the story, and how was he able to work and write this during his illness?

KEVIN:  Michael’s contribution to the special was no less than the contribution to season 1 and season 2, and the future of season 3, because the scripts are written.  We did everything on Zoom, and we worked around his schedule of treatment.  We scheduled 2 people per day, and we spread them out over two weeks.  He was very present, and when there would be a day where he would say, “I’m going to be an hour late, let’s just push that call time,” I would ask, “Is this too much right now?  We can shelve it; we can stop it.” He’d then say, “Absolutely not, otherwise cancer will win.”  He was determined to stay focused and to stay active because it took his mind off of what was happening to him.

Photo: AfterForever

It would be lovely moment if you both were to win a Daytime Emmy for this project. 

KEVIN:  It’s our last collaboration together as a team, as I said, season 3 has been scripted, and it is on the calendar to get made.  We are just waiting for the COVID restrictions to lift a little bit and everyone to get vaccinated.  Michael was really hit hard with cancer – to stay healthy was so challenging for him.  Sadly, he didn’t make it to see the final edit of the special, and he died four days before we launched, but he had seen the cuts before that and was very approving of it, and had made some decisions, and offered some suggestions, and if God gives him an Emmy for this, it’s not because he died.  It’s because it’s great work.  It just happens to be that the work that was involved in this particular special was very tricky.  It brought up everything, like life itself to have to deal with.  Here we are dealing with the loss of a colleague, the loss of a friend, someone’s brother, someone’s son, this is life imitating art, imitating art imitating life. I can’t tell you the darkness that I went through just experiencing the need to stay focused on getting everything edited, and everything ready, and everything aligned for a release of this project that we had put into motion.  On top of it, our editor lost his mother just before Michael passed, and Allison’s mom was sick at the time, as well.  It took a lot of heavy deep breaths with Michael’s death, and the pandemic, and the loss has, for me, on a personal level, sent me back to really questioning my spiritual muscle and to help remind me that we have to come out of this better than we went into this.  I had many dark nights of the soul this last year, and December was probably the darkest.  I feel like I’m just kind of coming out of it now with the spring revealing itself.

Photo: AfterForever

It must have been extraordinarily difficult for you to also go to New York during a pandemic and also knowing Michael did not have much time left.

KEVIN:  I will say this: I am grateful that I was able to stay in touch with my heart and my instinct and go out to New York to let that be my remote location.  Yes, maybe there was some risk involved.  I wore my mask; I was Covid-19 negative, and I was determined to be fine.  Once I got to New York, I would visit him very protectively with our masks and our gloves, and I’d sit across the room, and then I’d go back to the house I was at.  It was a gift that I was able to see him at that time.  We had some good talks then about how he was feeling, and I think he was still being optimistic, and then once we got the project in the can there was maybe this psychic letting go. That’s when everything really started to reveal itself as this could be the end.  I did go back to see him when he was in hospice.  I think I was there the last two days that he really was able to really stay coherent.  He would close his eyes and be at peace and quiet for a minute, and he would finish a conversation and sort of close his eyes, not to sleep and not to go away, but I remember watching him going, “Look how peaceful he is,” and then he’d open his eyes and he’d remember that he is in this body that has been given a time limit of life, and he’s on his way out.  I’d watch the fear go back in his eyes.  At one point, he did say, “I’m so scared,” and I just held his hand, and I said, “I’m scared too.  Let’s be scared through this together.”  I don’t know how to navigate grief like that.  We are all going to be in a position at some point where we are going to be on the other side of the hand holding.  The wonderful thing is that we were able to have honest communication about our feelings.  I thanked him for everything that he has done for me and how he believed in my talent and creativity and our partnership.  I will always take that with me.  I waved my finger at him, and I said, “Listen.  Now, we wrote a series about a man talking to his deceased husband.  You’d better talk to me!”  So, we laughed about that.

Photo: AfterForever

You’ve done a lot of things in your career from Broadway to television, and of course, daytime fans know you best as Dr. Craig Wesley on DAYS.  How does the entire After Forever project stack up to you within all that you have done?

KEVIN:  Former DAYS casting director Fran Bascom, sought me out and offered me this 2-day role on Days of Our Lives, and those 2 days turned into 8 years, and unbeknownst to me at the time, the final 3 months of that contract of those 8 years, Michael Slade was brought in to write.  We didn’t cross paths at that point, but years later, when we did cross paths in New York, and then After Forever was born, that was that universal crossing point.  I am most proud of the fact that we were able create something fresh, and real, and personal to ourselves that we didn’t have to cater to any “powers that be” that had their vision and their tinkering, that they thought that it could be better in this way or that way.  Then for After Forever to gain such recognition, within the film festivals, and the Emmys, and then, just after Michael died, we won the GLAAD award for Special Recognition this year.  We don’t even fit into one of their categories!  They found a way to acknowledge this project.  If another Emmy happens again, that might be another one to put up on the shelf for After Forever that would be beautiful, and I couldn’t have done it without Michael.

For the Daytime Emmys this year, what category have you entered Riley’s Unforgettable School Project?

KEVIN:  We are not a series this year, we are a daytime fiction special, and the “Daytime Fiction Special” category is a special class.  It’s anything that’s digital in the construct of less than 40 minutes.  NATAS (National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences) is being bombarded with so much content, they’re trying to find ways to put categories together.

Photo: JPI

So, now, when we last saw Days of Lives’ Dr. Craig Wesley, where was he? (Laughs)

KEVIN: (Laughs) He was in a flash from the past or something in the DOOL app’s Last Blast Reunion series. I had a fun time working with Patrika Darbo (Nancy) and Nadia Bjorlin (Chloe), once again.

So, if they were to want Craig to come back to DAYS, would you be all for it?

KEVIN:  Hell yes!

Photo: JPI

Now, what story would you want to be told involving Craig? 

KEVIN:  When Craig was first on the canvas in Salem, there was a lot of mustache twirling and a lot of hand wringing.  He was always plotting; most of the time with Nancy.  It was kind of this high drama, evil villain storyline being told, but when the writers created an opportunity for us to be on after those first three months by bringing on Chloe without a father, there was something real about it.  It may have been told under the construct of soap opera storytelling, but there was a reality-based story about, “You have a daughter, and we are just now finding out about it?”  Then, finding a cure to her health was another realistic story, and finding out that Craig was her real father.  Anything that’s reality based is what I’m getting to.  I would welcome any job that brings me back and gives me an opportunity to dive into something real.

Photo: JPI

Would you welcome the opportunity to play a gay character on daytime; in a medium where there are very few represented in storylines?

KEVIN:  I’d have no problem with that.  Do you know anybody who is starting that?  Let’s do it!  (Laughs) First of all, there’s nothing to hide anymore.  There’s nothing to pretend you’re not anymore.  I would think that bringing in a storyline that deals with anything outside the norm that we are used to seeing would be interesting.  How many times can you retell a story?  How many times can you set the same story up with another couple?  So, why not be diverse and have a stylized story being told through the lens of a gay person.

Photo: AfterForever

In closing, so many go through life without acknowledging people who had an impact them.  We don’t give pats on the back, often enough, and especially in Hollywood, where people can be very self-involved.  You have already paid tribute to Michael Slade in our discussion, but what gift from him is your personal takeaway?

KEVIN:  The gift that Michael really gave to me is to remember to be kind to myself and to others, and to acknowledge and salute the person who is in front of us, because we don’t know when we will have, or if we will have, another moment to do that.

Now below, check out the trailer for Riley’s Unforgettable School Project.  Then let us know, what do you think of its concept? Kevin’s thoughts on the passing of his collaborator on the project, Michael Slade? And, do you hope DAYS brings back Dr. Craig Wesley? Share your thoughts via the comment section.

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Breaking News

REPORT: Dan Feuerriegel is DAYS New EJ DiMera

Could Days of our Lives finally found their new EJ? Rumors have been circulating on the internet for weeks that the character of EJ DiMera may finally have a new face and a new actor portraying and heading back to Salem, especially since Sami (Alison Sweeney) is back on the canvas.

The role was previously played by longtime fan favorite James Scott, who had made it very clear he would never return to Days of our Lives.

Photo: DFeuerriegelIG

Now according to Daytime Confidential and their report from setside sources, the new EJ will actually be played by former Spartacus actor Dan Feuerriegel.

The Australian-born actor has been seen in Starz’ Spartacus franchise in the role of Agron.

According to the report, look for the new EJ to make his debut sometime this summer.

DAYS fans know that in story, EJ was brought back form the dead, from the serum from Dr. Rolf, but then was injured in an explosion and had reunited with Sami and had been recovery in Europe.

So, if this reports turns out to be true, what do you think of the new EJ? Comment below.

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Y&R’s Joshua Morrow, Amelie Heinle, Mark Grossman, Hunter King and Melissa Ordway chat with Michael Fairman about being a part of and portraying the Newman Children as the show celebrates its 48th anniversary.Leave A Comment

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