When Tanner Stine made his debut last week as Steve and Kayla's son, Joey Johnson, it wasn't the first time he played the role. The actor made his first debut as Joey in season two of Peacock's Beyond Salem. He took over the role previously played by Daytime Emmy nominee James Lastovic.
Jumping into the role of a legacy character can be quite daunting, but Stine says he hit the jackpot when he joined the Johnson family. When it came to his first day on set, Stine tells Soap Opera Digest , "I remember being a little intimidated, because my first scenes were with Abigail Klein [Stephanie], Lucas [Adams, Tripp], Mary Beth and Stephen [Nichols, Steve]: the Johnson family. And they'd been doing it for so long, especially Stephen and Mary Beth. I had to seamlessly try to fit myself into that routine or that little puzzle. They were all super-supportive and welcoming and made it a lot easier than I had built it up to be in my head."
Maybe it was destined for Stine to be a part of this long-running soap. For starters, he has been friends with Carson Boatman (Johnny DiMera) for over a decade. The two friends even auditioned for the same Days of our Lives role -- the role of Joey. But it didn't play out as you might expect.
"Carson and I had both screen-tested for Joey Johnson, when the [adult version of the character] was introduced on the show seven years ago," Stine recalls. "There were, like, five guys, but neither of us got the part. I had met Mary Beth [Evans, Kayla] then, when we were on stage doing the scene. So we reunited when I got the recast role of Joey."
When he tried out for the role again, he filmed his self-tape audition at Boatman's home. "We used his self-tape space, and he read with me. It was one scene. Then I got a phone call from my manager a week-and-a-half later [that I got the part]. I was at one of my favorite restaurants and was like, 'Well. This calls for a beer.'" Looks like the second time's the charm!
Stine is also friends with Spencer Neville (ex-Derrick) and Molly Burnett (ex-Melanie Jonas).
When it comes to his take on the role of Joey, Stine is interpreting the character without seeing the work of the previous portrayer. "I figured it was going to be a recast, and he hadn't been on the show for a while, so I would just start from scratch. I go with that approach [when I'm tackling a role]. I haven't been to prison, thankfully, but I think we're very similar in our sort of attitude toward life."
Before joining the DAYS family, Stine spent two years on the Nickelodeon series The Thundermans. His other television appearances include NCIS, Teen Wolf, and Impulse.
Stine is the latest character to hop from Beyond Salem to the main show. Earlier this month, Victoria Grace joined DAYS as Wendy Shin, a role she, too, played on the second season of Beyond Salem.
Did you enjoy Tanner Stine's debut as Joey Johnson on Beyond Salem? Are you looking forward to seeing more of him on Days of our Lives? We want to hear from you -- and there are many ways you can share your thoughts.