Soap opera fans are getting a double dose of The Nanny star Charles Shaughnessy, who has reprised his role as Days of our Lives' Shane Donovan for the NBC soap's Peacock spinoff Beyond Salem and also made his General Hospital debut in the role of Victor Cassadine on September 2. The actor's DAYS gig is short -- the five-episode limited series wraps on Friday, September 10 -- but his GH gig will, fortunately, be much longer.
In a new interview with Soap Opera Network, Shaughnessy reveals that he will be in the shoes of villainous Victor for at least half a year.
"I just finished my DAYS: Beyond Salem job and literally about two days later my agent called and said that he had been working for a while with General Hospital, and that there was interest in me joining General Hospital for the next six months," the actor shares. "So, I'm actually doing that for six months."
Not much else is known about what the powers that be at GH have in store for Victor's return to the canvas, but whatever it is, it's bound to be wildly entertaining. After all, the Russian royal -- previously played by Thaao Penghlis (Andre and Tony DiMera, DAYS) -- has quite the history with the residents of Port Charles, starting with his failed plot to take over the world in 1981, when he used the infamous Ice Princess diamond to create a machine that controlled the weather. Victor's nefarious plot was halted, and he was sent to prison after his girlfriend, Tiffany Hill (Sharon Wyatt), unexpectedly turned on him and helped Robert Scorpio (Tristan Rogers) and Luke Spencer (Anthony Geary) destroy the weather machine.
Several decades later, Victor returned to Port Charles as the Director at the WSB (World Security Bureau), a position he used to secure known criminal Dr. Liesl Obrecht (Kathleen Gati) the role of Chief of Staff at General Hospital in exchange for her revealing the whereabouts of his family members, Helena Cassadine (Dimitra Arliss/Constance Towers) and Stavros Cassadine (Robert Kelker-Kelly).
Upon learning that Helena and Stavros were both alive but in a cryogenic state, Victor embarked on a reign of terror to make sure they were revived -- including orchestrating a car accident involving Patrick Drake (Jason Thompson) as a way to force Robin (Kimberly McCullough) into helping him, and kidnapping Maxie (Kirsten Storms), Lulu (Emme Rylan), Dante (Dominic Zampgrogna), and Nathan (Ryan Paevey) for various reasons that would ensure his reunion with his family went exactly as planned. Liesl tried thwarting Victor by claiming that Nathan was his son, and when that plan failed, she shot him in the chest, which activated an explosion that was thought to have killed Victor -- until now!
As GH fans have seen, the very-much-alive Victor has something up his sleeve involving Liesl, who he's currently holding hostage. Will the character's six months on the canvas be a simple tale of revenge against the doctor who shot him seven years ago, or does Victor have something else in mind?
Shaughnessy hasn't been able to reveal any storyline details, but in an interview with Soap Opera Digest, the actor said that he is thrilled to be part of the Port Charles world.
"It's kind of fun to be in a whole different realm with different people and different actors and different characters and stories. That's fun," he shares. "So, I consider myself incredibly fortunate."
In addition to playing DAYS' Shane on-again, off-again since 1984, Shaughnessy is widely known for playing the role of Maxwell Sheffield in the 1990s sitcom The Nanny. His other credits include The Magicians, Mad Men, Masters of Sex, Driven, and The Bay. He also briefly appeared on GH in 1984 as Holly Sutton's (Emma Samms) cousin, Alistair Durban.
What do you think about Charles Shaughnessy taking over the role of Victor Cassadine? What do you think the writers have planned for Victor's six months on the canvas? We want to hear from you -- and there are many ways you can share your thoughts.