News - Soap Buzz

12 January 18th, 2011 Jay Johnson and Shelley Hennig leaving Days of our Lives!

Photo Credit: JPI Studios

We heard the rumblings of this late last week, but we can now confirm, and as Soap Opera Digest printed today, Days of our Lives younger set is about to be minus two more major players.  Both Jay Kenneth Johnson (Phillip) and Shelley Hennig (Stephanie) have decided to leave the NBC soap series.  This comes on the heels of the news of the firing of Mark Hapka (Nathan).

Both Hennig and Johnson spoke with SOD and offered their thoughs on why it was time to take the leap from daytime to pursue primetime and film careers: ”It just feels right,” says Hennig.  “I have been preparing for this for awhile, so I have said my mental good-byes. I will miss the faces I see here every day, but everybody has been really encouraging and has embraced my decision…. I feel like I’m going out with a bang after last week’s air shows and I feel great about it creatively and I am thankful to the writers for giving me that. I am thankful for this role that DAYS has given me and will miss playing this character. I am forever thankful for the fans and this wonderful gift that was given to me. It’s been a lot of fun to play and I wouldn’t change anything.” Hennig’s last tape date is February 2.

Johnson stated,”It feels perfect. The story ended and there’s a lot of stuff going on out there. I thought about it a lot; it just felt like the right time. I want to thank the fans for continuing to watch and following me from my first stint to the other shows I’ve done and back to here. I hope they keep an eye on me in the future.”

We at On-Air On-Soaps wish two of our dear professional friends the best of luck in their new endeavors!

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  1. Paul8148 says:

    They have to be recasting Phillip right? Brent Claywell?


  2. royd says:

    JKJ leaving just SUCKS! Sacrificed at the altar of Melanie. Dena Higley has scant regard for legacy families and characters. Every actor in close contact with the character of Melanie has been turned into a prop for her. Who wants to sign up for that endless monotony. JKJ has been treated like a man bag for too long!!


  3. lovingit says:

    3 actors deciding to leave at the same time speaks volumes. These are great actors who’s characters have been badly neglected for some time and I don’t blame them one bit for moving on but I will miss them especially JKJ in the role of Phillip. People have been posting for months on all the boards how things need to change at DOOL. Since they seem to ignore their viewers hopefully this will be wake up call for them to make the needed changes in the writing dept. They need to get rid of the dead weight both in the writing dept and one actor and focus on better utilizing the amazing talents on the show. We have barely even seen Justin and Adrienne and the Bope and Chad sl have been way to spread out.


  4. chelsea says:

    I am sick of Dena Higley’s total disregard of the history of Days of Our Lives and it’s characters. I have watched this show since 1983 and the direction this show has taken makes me sick. She takes great characters like Philp, Chloe, Stephanie etc and uses them as props for the characters she wants on screen and it shows. It’s time for Dena Higley to go.


  5. Ruthie says:

    Wow. It seems as though the show is falling apart. I’m a long-time viewer who rarely tunes in anymore because the show is not enjoyable to me. If they lose James Scott I will never watch the show again. He is the only actor I still enjoy.


    Michael Jenkins replied

    I agree with you, once James leaves, I will no longer watch Days.


    Bettyrj replied

    I am in total agreement with you. James goes, I go! I can do better with my time than watch Days go down the toilet!

    sara replied

    Me too James goes, I go! The one reason I keep watching is James Scott!!!!

  6. SoapStud79 says:

    I never put my ‘eggs in one basket’ when it comes to soap operas, meaning I never watch any soap for just one actor or character. I will miss JKJ as Phillip, but I am glad to see SH’s Stephanie depart. I wonder if these roles will be recast or if the show will just focus on the other characters coming to the canvas, including Dario, Abby, and Taylor.


  7. Brian T says:

    The show is losing a lot because three of it’s best actors are leaving. First Mark and now Jay and Shelley. Although I don’t care for Stephanie any longer (ever since she and Phillip broke up), I do think Shelley is an amazing young actress. Jay and Mark are also both very good actors and were given terrible material to work with. I wish them all the best and I pray that the show will wake up and give the other characters some real s/l besides Sami/EJ/Rafe/Nicole and Chloe/Daniel/Melanie


  8. Skyla says:

    OH NO!!! I can’t believe JKJ is leaving!!! and right on the heels of his chracter having two babies, though I really think Chloe’s baby will end up being Daniel’s in the long run. I don’t mean to sound harsh but I didn’t care one way or the other about Mark Hapka except to hope he has succes in the future and quite honestly I haven’t been a fan of Stephanie for years, the last time I really liked her was back when she was with Max but Shelley is a great actress and I’m sure she’ll be sccessful in all her future endeavors. My brother will be sad though… when he’s sort of forced into watching Days all he can talk about is Stephanie.. and then Chloe. I’m fairlycertain JKJwill go far but I am completely bumbed about this!!!


  9. CONNIE says:

    Once James Scott is out of Days. I who have been watching DOOL for the past twenty years will STOP BIG TIME>!!


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