Days of our Lives viewers have known for several months that they'd soon be seing baddie Stefan O. DiMera with a new face. But now, fans are finding out more details about the casting swap.
As Soap Central first reported in September 2018, former General Hospital star Brandon Barash (ex-Johnny Zacchara) was hurriedly hired to step into the shoes of the character originated by Tyler Christopher. Though originally described as an "emergency recast," Christopher took to Twitter to reveal that he will not be returning to Days of our Lives.
"My time on @daysofourlives was [nothing] short of pure fun. Such a great group of people to work for and be around every day," Christopher wrote. "Please welcome @BrandonBarash into the [role]. Such a solid actor and an even better person."
Thank you all for the kind farewell's. My time on @daysofourlives was notning short of pure fun. Such a great group of people to work for and be around every day. Please welcome @BrandonBarash into the roll. Such a solid actor and an even better person. #nbcdays #stefandimera— Tyler Christopher (@Tyler2929) March 20, 2019
NBC has confirmed Christopher's last airdate as Wednesday, March 20, and Barash's on-screen debut as Stefano DiMera and Vivian Alamain's son as Monday, March 25.
DAYS head writer Ron Carlivati also took to social media to address the casting change. Carlivati thanked Christopher for his "always thoughtful and totally fearless portrayal of Stefan DiMera."
Thank you @Tyler2929 for your always thoughtful and totally fearless portrayal of Stefan DiMera. It was wonderful working with you this time around and I sincerely hope it's not our last! #days https://t.co/KlgGDRtpGS— Ron Carlivati (@carlivatiron) March 20, 2019
Brandon Barash made his daytime debut as GH's Johnny, a role he played from 2007 to 2013 and again in a recurring capacity from 2014 to 2016. His additional credits include Major Crimes, Timeless, Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders, Scorpion, Lucifer, and Good Trouble.
Barash also took to social media to thank his friend Christopher for his "graceful passing of the proverbial torch." Barash said that he is "honored to join" the iconic NBC soap.
Christopher got his start in daytime as General Hospital's Nikolas Cassadine, which he played on-again, off-again from 1996 to 2016. He can next be seen in the family-friendly film Max Winslow and the House of Secrets, which he filmed in January.
DAYS' Stefan has forged several relationships since coming to Salem in 2017, including romantic connections with Gabi (Camila Banus) and Chloe (Nadia Bjorlin). Time will tell how those connections will hold up with a new actor in the role or if the powers that be will take Stefan in a new direction with Barash in the shoes of the character. His connection with Chloe will be short-lived, no matter what; as Soap Central previously reported, Bjorlin will be exiting DAYS later this year. As for how well Barash can play Stefan -- a villain with nefarious parents -- it shouldn't be much of a stretch; on GH, he played the son of mob boss Anthony Zacchara.
UPDATE (March 20, 2019): This article has been updated to include quotes from Tyler Christopher, Brandon Barash, and Ron Carlivati.
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