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General Hospital Recasts The Role Of Mayor Lomax With Shari Belafonte!

Photo Credit: HutchinsPhoto.com

Photo Credit: HutchinsPhoto.com

Here’s some intruiging casting news out of General Hospital! Shari Belafonte has been cast as the new underhanded Mayor Lomax of Port Charles!

According to Soap Opera Digest, Saidah Arrika Ekulona who has played the part since 2012 is out, and the series has brought in Belafonte.

For those in the know, Shari has a long-running tie to the GH family.  Her husband is Sam Behrens, who played Jake Meyer from 1983-1988 (pictured here with Belafonte).  Look for Shari to make her GH debut in her new recurring role on January 19th.

Shari is best known for her work as Julie Gilette on the 1980’s television series Hotel, and is the daughter of legendary singer, Harry Belafonte.

So, what do you think about the new Mayor Lomax of Port Charles … Shari Belafonte? Comment below!

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Don’t really care for the recasting but hey, love Sam Behrens! Let’s bring back Jake Meyer!

As long as she won’t be in a couple mess of begging someone to love her and all that love gone wrong sappy boring stuff, I’m OK with the recast.

As Lomaxs husband…

I agree! Bobbie needs some lovin’!! Besides Scott, I think Jake would do the trick…maybe, we’d even get more Lucy as a result (older viewers may remember he got Lucy pregnant). Noah Drake is probably on tour, D.L. Brock is dead, Tony Jones is dead, Damian Smith is dead, Stefan Cassadine is dead, Roy DiLucca is living in Miami, and Jerry Jacks seems to have forgotten (like the show) that he was once with Barbara Jean.

Yes Liam! Bobbie and Jake were a great couple! And I believe that’s what started the Lucy/Bobbie rivalry. It was soap magic!

I would love to see Sam with Shari I remember him on GH knots landing and another soap. He is also my Cousin.

Love Sheri, she’s a beauty and talent that’s needed on GH!

Oops, “Shari”.

It’s true, Joe. The mayor is such an obscure figure that most of us do not care for the recast. But, I love Shari Belafonte. If we must have a mayor on GH, I’d rather have Shari than Saidah. I just can’t see Shari playing an unscrupulously bad character en league with the DA.

Why do that I like the actress who played the part. These two bubble head writers are long known for recasting or writing characters into corners so you don’t care or forget they’re even part of the show.

I like the “former” mayor as well

she had a no nonesense approach …. “tough” as nails

ready to pack a whallop

don’t see Shari Belefonte in that arena ???

dang it tho! Sam Behrens…. wasn’t he all that on Knot’s Landing… as Valene husband

Yes, Patrick. But, she could also be bought for a song, no? Did I get that wrong? Isn’t she in the DA’s pocket? It remains to be seen if the recast fits in that same pocket.

Love Shari — excited about this!
Congrats to her! (I also did love Sam as Jake, so it would be an added bonus for him to show up, too.
Lots for him to do!)

Love Shari – think she will be great! And can she PLEASE bring back Sam / Jake Meyer with her!!! PLEASE!!! PC can never have enough Lawyers!! LOL .
Bobbie & Jake were great! <3 Those two!! Think they would still be great together!!

has not been such a major character in the past – will be interesting with re-cast

Wonder if that means a bigger story is coming up? The rigged election? Maybe it’ll bring Felicia back to the canvas too…

Great point and observation, AJ.

Is this another Frank Valentini crush? Didn’t really work for Donna Mills in soap land. Tired of stunt casting. Not to be rude — well, okay, just this onece — but when was the last time Shari did anything relevant? Come on GH, enough with the casting & recasting and over casting!

The role is insignificant/hardly seen..
but- Port Charles needs its’ Mayor.. (no big deal…

hope the character remains insignificant 😉

You’re right, su. I made the same point….the mayor is an obscure figure. However, AJ’s point is foremost in my mind, now that I think about it. Perhaps there’s a story to tell about the rigged election coming to the fore. Shari is a lot more charismatic than Saidah, if that is the case.
I also agree with Ces. I want Shari to act and not sing. Not too interested in that side of her.

I wouldn’t say another FV crush but would definitely say another cheap FV publicity grab by hyping a “name” star in a role that will only last a few days at best.

Mayor Lomax is what I think of as a non-character. Just a prop trotted out on rare occasions to further plot points. I can’t even get a mental picture of the actress who played the role before and I doubt too many would even notice that the role had been recast (yet again) much less with Shari Belafonte if GH wasn’t going out of their way to hype it.

No dis to the very talented Shari B and it’s good of her to do the role but she’s not known for her acting and I expect any of her fans who’d tune in expecting singing would be disappointed. Even if they do try to work in a singing number (from MAYOR LOMAX??) into their Toys For Tots Gala it would still be totally WTF????

IA with you. Enough with the stunts. GH should instead try to focus on actual solid storytelling. There can be room for an occasional guest shot within that but if that’s all you’ve got…you’re toast.

Love your post, KM.

Let me elaborate. KM, I know exactly what you’re saying. I am familiar with Shari…..my Gran loves Harry; so, it goes without saying I grew up hearing about the family, the music etc.
But as I stated above, I, too, am not so certain she can pull off the bad girl act.

Pretty sure I don’t want to see anymore “singers” on the show either. Not my style of music. Tired of stunt casting and just tired of more characters altogether … thought Paul would be a partner for Tracy but alas, he’s turned into another gangster.

None of the current stories are terribly exciting, not unless they can keep Johnny Z on the show!

To have Shari B sing they would have to put out big money..
it is the way it works, she would not perform/sing for free.
lol her manager would never allow it, either..

Why?

That’s a nice recast, since she has some history with GH married to one of GH lawyer guy in real life, so great recast GH

Not familiar with her work, but if this ties up the loose ends to Mayor Lomax’s stories, then I am all for it.

Now I hope they have another fair election for a new mayor since the last one was fraught with “irregularities” and deals and cost us Felicia.

I think the mayor will clash with Paul. I dont think the re-election has anything to do with it?

I was thinking the same thing, Timmm. Perhaps the recast is to bring in a Paul adversary, and not one who can be bought. I think a storyline about Lomax is in the works and it directly involves the DA. If that is the case, it should prove to be interesting.

I haven’t seen a photo of this actress in years. She really resembles her father in this photo.

Cant wait!! She is awesome! I do not think this is stunt casting, we don’t know maybe the other actress got another gig, and they plan to expand the Lomax character. Sheri has the chops to do it and perhaps she wanted to get back into acting. Great addition, just hope she gets screen time.

Yes, and a drop in my Jake Meyer would be nice! He is a lawyer so it is possible

Was the other actress no longer available? Sometimes I think soaps forget that the audience wants actors to remain in their roles and don’t normally take too quickly to recasts, regardless of how often they’re on. I’m just curious about the “why” of this recast. I love Sheri, but I also liked and was familiar with Saidah. You didn’t have to hit viewers who have been with GH for any length of time with the fact that she was the mayor. Now they will. Are they expanding the role?

Well okay BUT bring back JAKE to! PC can always use another attorney AND Bobbi needs a squeeze!

I like the other mayor, also; however, I’m willing to give Shari a chance in the role.

Yes, of course, Belle. I was thinking that Paul and the mayor will be given more air time together. Now, if Lomax and Paul have had an affair in the past, the present Lomax appears too rigid for my taste. Enter Shari. She is so much softer than her predecessor.

I think Robert Scorpio is going to work with his brother and Anna to bring Paul down.

@Harry.
I surely hope so, Harry. Scorpio and Mac should bring Paul, the Don Juan, down. I really like Tracy, and the way Paul is playing her really makes me feel for her. He really is bad news.

I’ve never thought of Shari as a singer, only ever as an actress. She’s an interesting recast for a role that no one likes or wants to see – except to bring Felicia back to the canvas – so I’ll reserve judgment until she appears onscreen.

As with so many others who’ve mentioned it, I would LOVE for Sam Behrens to return as Jake. He was Bobbie’s favourite husband of mine.

I so wish TPTB would let we fans see much more of the characters we’ve loved for so long, such as Mac, Felicia, Lucy, Laura, Bobbie, even Alice, and others who I’ve probably forgotten about since I never see them any more. I can really do without Franco, Nina, Dr. O., Paul Hornsby, Dillon, Jerry Jacks, etc. etc. They take up time that should be reserved for the characters and actors fans really WANT to see. Not too long ago I would have included Kiki in that list, but Hayley Erin has been doing a very good job lately. I have more complaints about who takes up valuable screen time, but this was originally about Shari Belafonte so I’ll quit while I’m ahead (if it isn’t tool late). Welcome, Shari, and feel free to bring your hubby with you!

I already dislike her character, so she’s doing a great job!!!

She is doing a great job. Someone you love to hate.

I knew she looked familiar. She is great in her part as mayor. She looks like”don’t mess with me!

General Hospital

GENERAL HOSPITAL: Dante is Shot as Jason Reveals Himself

Just how was General Hospital going to reintroduce the character of Jason Morgan to the canvas with the highly-anticipated return of Steve Burton in the pivotal role? Well, why we don’t have all the answers, the show wasted no time, and Burton first appeared at the beginning of the Monday, March 4th episode.

In story, while Sonny (Maurice Benard), Selena (Lydia Look) and Ava (Maura West) are at the warehouse, they are facing off with the FBI and the PCPD when John (Adam J. Harrington), Anna (Finola Hughes), Dante (Dominic Zamprogna), Chase (Josh Swickard) et al show up.  Meanwhile on the roof, a man kneels over a skylight window who pipes up with, “it appears they are late to the party.” It’s then revealed just who the man is talking to, and it turns out it’s JASON!

Meanwhile, John and Anna are questioning Sonny and Selina on what they are doing in the warehouse. Selina says they are planning a poker game. Next, the man with Jason aims his gun at Sonny. However, Jason messes up his shot, but the shot rings out. Inside the warehouse everyone scatters about. They realize the show came from the skylight.

Photo: ABC

Jason tells the other man they’ve been compromised and need to leave the location. Below, in the warehouse, Dante thinks that he and Chase can get onto the roof since the shooter didn’t see them. So, Dante takes off with Chase to find the culprit. In the meantime, John orders a CSI unit. Next, Chase returns and says the building is all clear and Dante is pursuing the suspects.

Now on the pier, Dante catches up with Jason (who’s back is to him) and the other man. Dante orders them to freeze. While the other man gets away, Jason stays put and Dante orders him to turn around slowly with his hands up. Dante is shocked to see its Jason. Confused, Dante says, “What the hell?” Next, the other man returns and fires two shots into Dante’s chest.

Photo: ABC

As Dante goes down, Jason runs over to him. The other man calls Jason “Jacobs” and tell him to leave the cop to die. Jason tells the other man to go to the planned site and he will find another way out. Next, the man attempts to fire at Jason who is hovering over Dante, but Jason shoots at him first and takes him out.

Back at the warehouse, Ava sees a bullet hole in Sonny sleeve, as John says that it confirms that Sonny is the intended target. John and Sonny stare each other down due to their dark past.  It’s clear that Sonny doesn’t trust John and vice-versa.  Anna tells Sonny she is not out to get him and doesn’t want him to die. She adds that Sonny, “Must have had an angel on his shoulder because she doesn’t see how that sniper missed from this range.”

Chase returns to the warehouse having dropped everyone off at the PCPD, but says Dante hasn’t checked in with him. Sonny looks very concerned, as Jason is looking very concerned over Dante’s body.

So, what did you think of the first episode back for Steve Burton as Jason Morgan? Will it be revealed that he has been infiltrating this organization to save Sonny? Does Jason not know his true identify? What do you think is going on?  As for Dante, will he pass out from his injuries and not identify Jason was even there on the roof with him? Comment below.

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General Hospital

Steve Burton Confirms ‘General Hospital’ Head Writer Switch Changed Jason’s Comeback Storyline

General Hospital viewers will see today, Monday, March 4th, the beginnings of the return storyline for Steve Burton and his character of Jason Morgan.

Just how did the recent head writing regime change at GH alter the plans for story for Jason’s comeback? As had been rumored, seems plenty. Back on January 22nd, it was revealed that Chris Van Etten and Dan O’Connor had been replaced by Patrick Mulcahey and Elizabeth Korte. At that time, Burton had already signed-on to return to the daytime drama for the first time since being let go towards the end of 2021.

Speaking with Soap Opera Digest, Steve confirmed that what we will see on-air is from the new head writers and that the direction of the story changed, “So apparently there was a whole different story planned and then the head writer switch happened and then they kind of rebooted (the story arc). I know Patrick (Mulcahey, one of the new head writers) a little bit, but I really know Elizabeth Korte (who was promoted to co-head writer).”

Photo: JPI

Burton added, “There’s no one in the building that loves that show, knows the history of the character, and is invested in it 100 percent than Elizabeth. There has never been a more deserved promotion, ever. Once I know that she was (one of the head writers), I was like, ‘Oh, this is gonna be good! I cannot wait.’ And it has been exactly that. Everything has been amazing.”‘

Photo: JPI

In addition, during an Instagram live on Monday with his podcast and comedy show partner, GH star, Bradford Anderson (Spinelli), Burton also commented on the upcoming story arc which brings Jason back to Port Charles. Steve expressed, “The story is not going to disappoint. The scenes are super deep. Frank (Valentini, EP, GH)  and the new head writers took some time to really think this out.”

Burton, being a longtime veteran of the soaps, said Jason’s return is not just isolated to be about him. “Great story on daytime should involve a myriad of people across the board and where it effects everybody,” he shared. The popular fan favorite feels that this story delivers on all levels.

So, what do you think about the head writer change and how it prompted the plans for Jason’s return? Comment below.

 

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Days Of Our Lives

Jason Cook Recalls Landing His Soap Roles as DAYS Shawn-Douglas Brady and GH’s Matt Hunter

Daytime fans remember Jason Cook when he became wildly-popular as Hope (Kristian Alfonso) and Bo’s (Peter Reckell) son, Shawn-Douglas Brady on Days of our Lives from 1999-2006. He later made a brief return in the role in 2015 for the series 50th anniversary.

After departing DAYS, Cook was offered a role on General Hospital as Dr. Matt Hunter, the younger brother to Dr. Patrick Drake (Jason Thompson) from 2008-2012. However, during his time on the soaps, and after, Cook has been focusing on his behind the scenes roles and passion as writer and a director of feature films.

Last week, the Michael Fairman Channel welcomed Jason, along with two of the stars of his latest film, Four for Fun, Brytni Sarpy (Elena, Y&R) and Jacob Young (ex-AMC, B&B, GH). During the conversation, Cook revealed his continued admiration for the soap medium and the actors who work in it, and how it came to pass that he landed his parts on Days of our Lives, and then on General Hospital.

Photo: JPI

Cook spoke on becoming the on-screen son of soap opera’s most iconic couples, Bo and Hope: “I auditioned for Fran Bascom. She was the Days of our Lives casting director at the time. I was never a great auditioner, I don’t think. She made me feel really comfortable. I remember that screen test. And then, I remember when I got the part, I was actually working at a company at a desk job. I got the call at work and I just screamed, and at the time I didn’t quit my job. But then, I got that contract when I was 19-years-old and it totally changed my life.”

Photo: JPI

But, was Jason aware how key to the show being Bo and Hope’s son would be? “Yeah, my older sister was a fan of the show. She definitely let me know that I better not mess it up, because I was gonna ruin her favorite couple,” he shared. “I remember she printed out the family tree and it looked like a physics diagram. It was so complicated. A lot of detailed work went into it. But, I was excited.”

After being a known entity with a large fan following, eventually Cook made his way to a new role on General Hospital. Jason explained, “GH was fun. That was a situation where Brian Frons (ex-ABC Daytime President) brought me over there. I just told him I didn’t want to be like or want to do Shawn. He’s like, ‘Well, what do you wanna do?’ I said, ‘How can I screw things up around here and shake things up?'”

Photo: JPI

From that conversation things began to formulate. Cook revealed, “We started talking about the TV series House. I think in soaps, there’s an assumption if you’re going on a show that everybody wants to be the hero. I was like, ‘I don’t want to (be). I want to screw everything up.’ And then, they wrote it in that Matt Hunter burns the hospital down within like six months. I was like really proud about that. The other part that I loved about that character is that Matt, and his older brother Patrick (Jason Thompson), were both neurosurgeons. And if you (an actor) resigned your contract (with the show) you go to Patrick, you see Patrick. And if you don’t resign your contract, you see my character, because my character was going to kill you every time.”

For more on the interview, make sure to check out the replay of the livestream conversation below with Jason, Brytni Sarpy and Jacob Young.  Now let us know, did you enjoy Jason as Shawn-D and Matt on GH? Do you hope someday he might return on-screen to the soaps? Let us know in the comment section.

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Peter Reckell returns for a second visit with Michael Fairman following the wrap-up of his recent run as Bo Brady on Days of our Lives.Leave A Comment

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