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!