Major Star OUT!

Oof. Didn’t see this one coming at all. It’s voluntary, which makes it a bit easier to swallow, but still — this is going to mean a big shift for Days.

Hidden behind a cut for the truly spoiler-free…

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Alison Sweeney (Sami) tells Ellen DeGeneres that this will be her “last year with the show.” I can truly say that I’m blindsided by this. I thought Sweeney and Sami would be with us for the rest of the days of our lives, as it were. I understand it from her point-of-view, of course; she’s had this job since she was 16 years old, she has been pulling double duty with The Biggest Loser for several years, and she has young kids. She should probably try her hand at primetime/ever having a day off sooner rather than later. And I’m fairly confident that, given her stature with the show and the seeming mutual goodwill, that she’ll be back for things like the 50th anniversary or the series finale, if it ever comes to that.

But this does leave a gaping hole in Salem. Since 2007-08, Sami has undoubtedly been the female lead of the show, if not the overall one. When Marlena and John left, the canvas really shifted to center around Sami and her clan. I’m wondering where they head next. Assuming the Will recast works, he’s sort of the natural progression, but Will is also pretty young, and I’m not sure I see them doing the romantic merry-go-round with a gay male character that they’ve done with Sami over the last decade or so. They certainly seem to be building Abigail up, and I suspect Kate Mansi is capable of the task, but they aren’t there yet — though I think the idea of refocusing around Jennifer’s branch of the Horton clan (and maybe adding Mike, Bill, and Jeremy) would be wise. Theresa is… I actually enjoy her, but it’s too soon and she’s not ingrained in the fabric of the show enough. Nicole works very well as a supporting character, but she doesn’t really have the family connections for the show to spin around her, and I’d hate to see her watered down. In a lot of ways, the closest they’ve come to having a Sami 2.0 was Molly Burnett’s Melanie, but I doubt she’ll ever come back for more than a guest stint.

It should be noted that Sweeney’s contract isn’t up until December 2014, so presuming she rides that out, she’ll be airing well in 2015 [insert joke about how she’ll be on air until 2024 with the current taping schedule]. That’s a lot of time to figure out a strong exit and keep the show moving in a good direction. I just… wow. Didn’t expect this announcement at all.

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11 Comments on “Major Star OUT!”

  1. Erin L. Says:

    NOOOO!!!! She is the main reason I keep watching this damn show!!!! On the days that she isn’t on I am sooo bored! I really don’t think there is anyone strong enough to take her place. I wonder if they will do a recast to keep her charactor going. Either way I am not happy about this development.

    I just can’t picture the show without her because her story line is the main reason I started watching. My husband and I were pretty broke so we didn’t have cabel and the only channel that worked was NBC so I was kinda stuck watching it. But the first episode I really watched and got hooked on was when she found out she was pregnant with Sydney and said EJ can never find out it is his. I just had to know what would happen next. I was hooked. Nicole did play a big part in my addiction, when she lost the baby and didnt tell EJ. And I have been watching ever since.

    Sami always has a good storyline, and it is usually the most interesting one on the show. But maybe on the bright side since she is probably one of the highest paid on the show it will free up some money and they can do somthing better with it?

    • mykleraus Says:

      I have a real attachment to Sami, since she was becoming a lead right as I began watching. She’s basically been the ONLY constant on Days in my 17 years as a viewer. It’s going to be very weird to have Salem without her. I really hope that, since they have so much advance notice, they build story around her exit and set up for the transition.

  2. eramer Says:

    Aww nooo! I will miss her 😥
    She is for sure one of the main reasons I’ve stuck with Days as long as I have (to be fair, her love triangles are also the reason I take year long breaks from watching).
    This sucks.

    • mykleraus Says:

      Ha. That 2009-11 period was kind of rough, when it was basically Days of Sami’s Vagina. I really feel like they found her again in the last year or two (yes, even under MarDar), so I’m hoping for a strong exit.


  3. Reblogged this on The Salem Chronicles and commented:
    Who will be the next big lead after Sami’s gone???

  4. Shell Says:

    Awww, so bummed!


  5. […] Some very happy news after this week’s shocking casting announcement… […]


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