Fans of Rebecca Budig have been wearing black and drowning their sorrows in martinis ever since news broke that the über popular actress has been let go from General Hospital. And though there's a huge risk that sloshing vodka and shedding tears will fry computer keyboards across the land, they've been airing their frustration and sadness about her exit on social media sites. After all, Hayden's story was finally getting good, especially the romantic connection between the character and GH's Finn (Michael Easton). And none of this has been lost on Budig, who shares she's mourning the loss just as much as fans are.
"When I saw [the fan outcry about my exit], all I felt was very humbled by it, and incredibly flattered," she tells Michael Fairman. "It felt really nice that people cared so much about me as an actress. There are no words to really describe it. For a long time, I really didn't know how people felt. For a long time, I don't think people really bought Hayden. The didn't really love her, and I get it."
She continues: "I was struggling with it, too, by the way. We were all struggling with it. We were all going, ‘Who is she? What is she doing here? [Laughs] What is she doing on the show?' [Laughs] Even for me, it was hard to find a hook in this character. Slowly, I found a hook for her, especially with those scenes they wrote when I was leaving. I really started to find a hook in her, so it was the best feeling in the world to feel like people cared and that they loved [Hayden and Finn], and it was so nice. The message that Michael Easton wrote and posted on his Facebook page after learning the news of my exit was just beyond. It was almost like a love letter. It was the sweetest thing I think anyone has ever written about me, ever in my life."
Considering the fan base she carries, there's always a chance Budig could return to GH. The show's executive producer, Frank Valentini, recently teased that viewers never know what the future might hold. However, there's also buzz that the fan favorite could be heading over to Days of our Lives -- though she herself shoots the rumor down.
"I swear on my daughter, and that is my life: I am not going to DAYS," she reveals. "No one has called me."
For more from Budig about her final GH scenes, her connection to costars, and a few memories from her time as All My Children's Greenlee, check out Michael Fairman's full interview here.
How do you feel about Budig being written off the canvas? Did you enjoy her final scenes as Hayden? How much would you love to see the actress return to GH? We want to hear from you -- and there are many ways you can share your thoughts.