Shortly after news broke that Michael Easton would be exiting his role as General Hospital's Silas Clay, the actor promised to answer fan questions about his exit. The former One Life to Live star received a flood of inquiries from loyal viewers, the first batch of which he's already answered. Check out part one of the fan-conducted interview below, and let us know what questions you'd like him to answer in part two!
Michael Easton Fan-Conducted Exit Interview, Part One
The response was overwhelming, and we tried to get to as many of your questions as we could. We're actually going to have to do this in a couple parts. For obvious reasons we didn't reprint expletives or any of the excessively negative comments directed at others. We also occasionally edited some of the longer questions and left out repetitive ones. Hope you can understand.
I appreciate all the questions about Credence and Soul Stealer, but for the time being, I thought it best to just focus on the show. There were more than two hundred questions about other soaps and plans for the future, but with the exception of a few passing references to people I had worked with in the past, I didn't feel it was appropriate to address any of that at this time. I apologize if this upsets anyone.
I also wanted to thank everyone who just sent beautiful words of encouragement and support. It means a lot right now.
Before we begin, I would just like to say, I feel very fortunate to have had this opportunity, and I am grateful to ABC; [GH executive producer] Frank Valentini; [former GH head writer] Ron Carlivati; all the writers, producers and directors; and in particular the amazing cast and crew of GH for allowing me to be a part of their show.
1. Michael, Please don't go! How could you? What happened? ≠- Trina
I'm sorry if I let anyone down. I tried my best. I'll consider taking some refresher courses at the college.
2. Although I really liked Silas, I LOVED McBain and was really holding out hope we'd see him again. -- Jennifer
Not to worry. McBain's out there, somewhere, traveling through the Midwest, doing good deeds and drinking beer. He may also be traveling with a dog named "Boutros."
3. As recently as a few weeks ago (with zero storyline), you were voted #1 actor on ABC in the Soaps In Depth readers' poll. In the middle of a ratings battle, how do they justify letting one of the most popular actor's in daytime just go to a rival show? -- Jeanine
Well, I don't know where I'm going, it's just time to go. And I don't think production or the network needs to justify anything. They all work very hard, and if they believe this is what's best for the show and increasing viewership, then I have to respect that.
4. I originally watched OLTL, and I just feel like after it was cancelled they used you, Roger [Howarth, Franco], and Kristen [Alderson, ex-Kiki] to lure the One Life audience over to GH to boost ratings, and now that they THINK they have us there (they don't), they're cutting you guys loose one at a time. ≠- Tammie
I'd like to think that's not the case. Either way, we're big boys and girls, we signed on the dotted line, we were compensated and knew what we were getting into.
5. Follow up question: Did anyone at ABC ever hear of loyalty? What about what they're doing to the actors with young kids at home? ≠- Tammie
They have been good to me over the years. I appreciate your concern, but business is business. It's my responsibly to provide for my family, not the network or the show.
6. Michael I love that you are intensely private. I liked when Ty Treadway said on SOAPNET that you were the "Johnny Depp of Daytime." Do you think that not being more public (having a Twitter, Instagram, doing lots of press) do you think that hurt you in the eyes of the producers? -- Sandy
I don't think so, but you'd have to ask them. For me, it's always been about the work. And right or wrong, at the end of the day, I live with myself.
7. You've been half of the #1 couple on every show you've been on at ABC. Caleb and Livvie. Natalie and John. Silas and Sam are still at the top of the poll a year after they broke up. How do you explain your success? -- Pam
It takes two to tango. I've had great dance partners along the way. As in life, a good woman will make you better than you really are.
8. What do you say to the GH fan that says, "Good, he was never one of us"? -- Hattie
God bless you. You have a right to your opinion and to be protective of your show.
9. Do you have souvenirs from your work on the roles you played on ABC Daytime? Caleb's ring from Port Charles or McBain's police badges from the Llanview? -- Jeff
I know I have their shoes somewhere. I think McBain wore the same pair for nine years. They just kept sewing on new soles. I liked that.
10. I don't want to sound selfish, but will you still be doing your event August 9th? Please don't cancel. I've waited three years to meet you. -≠ Kathleen
I'll be there. It's for a good cause, and I'll bring a fine bottle of Irish Whiskey so we can have a proper wake for Silas and McBain.
11. How could Ron have done this to you? It was widely reported that you were one of his favorites. -≠ Rose
Not sure who reports these things, but I don't think that could be further from the truth. That being said, I like to give the benefit of the doubt, and I believe Ron will re-emerge from this experience as a wiser and even better writer.
12. You and Thorsten Kaye [Ridge Forrester, The Bold and the Beautiful] were awesome on Port Charles together, too much hotness in one room. Any chance of you two working together again? I'd watch that!
Thorsten has it in his contract that he doesn't have to work with anyone taller, funnier, or if they have better hair. So something would have to give. Besides his unhealthy obsession with Detroit hockey, I think he is one of the finest actors working today.
13. I know a couple of promoters that book appearances, and they told me you were one of the few actors that always donated your fee to charity. And you often did this with little or no fanfare. Just because you are losing this platform, Michael, I hope it will not stop your charitable spirit. -- Tasha
One of the most rewarding aspects of this job has been the ability to give something back and to occasionally be able to bring attention to some worthy causes.
14. Wait...this was Ron's story right? Now that he's gone -- thank heavens -- can't this situation be reversed and you stay on the show? -- Sienna
It's a little unfortunate, as I believe the show is in good hands with Jean Passanante and Shelly Altman, and it would have been nice to see what they might have done with the character, but I'm afraid what's done is done.
15. Will you move back to New York? Your friend and greatest acting partner, Renee Goldsberry [ex-Evangeline Williams, OLTL], is here. Would love to see you and her work together again. I just wanted you to know that you are not alone...you have so many fans including myself, that will follow you wherever you go. ≠- Lisa
You mean Renee Goldsberry of Hamilton fame? Hottest show in New York and soon to have her name up on the bright lights of Broadway? She's a superstar, I'm fairly sure she wouldn't return my calls.
16. I follow about a dozen of the actors in the cast on Twitter and am a little surprised that with the exception of NLG, no one tweeted anything on your last day or during Friday's heartbreaking reveal. Even Valentini, whom you worked with for like eleven years and is always sending out mundane tweets, couldn't at least say, "Goodbye Michael. Good Luck." Sounds to me like the network just wants this terrible decision to go away quietly and has warned everyone not to draw attention to it. #classless. -≠ Jill
I'm not on Twitter so I don't really know about this stuff. I can't imagine the network would censor anyone like that. It may just be a timing or plot thing. So many of the cast came up and said kind things to me my last day, and I appreciated that more than they'll ever know.
17. Who was your favorite character you played on a soap opera? I loved John McBain. -- Donna R
McBain was with me the longest so he probably haunts me more than the others. He also had a really cool leather jacket.
18. Caleb kept Port Charles on the air for two years after it had essentially been cancelled. When you started at OLTL, it was the third ranked show at ABC; when it was cancelled, it was #1. GH's numbers went up almost 30 percent in the first year after you, Roger H., and Kristen A. came over. That's not a coincidence, Michael. You were a big part of that. Why do they suddenly not see that? ≠- Mary V.
I don't follow those things, but I know I have been the beneficiary of a lot of great writing, directing, and was lucky to work with wonderful actors.
19. Michael Jackson or Prince? Beatles or The Stones? Billy Joel or Bruce Springsteen. U2 or The Clash? Biggie or Tupac? Pearl Jam or Nirvana? ≠- Kay
Prince. The Rolling Stones. Bruce. The Clash. Tupac. Pearl Jam.
20. Classic Cartini move (assuming this is one of Ron's desperate final acts). With ratings falling month after month, instead of taking responsibility for some poor storytelling, they start firing actors as if to imply it's their fault. I just checked the episode counts, and in this case, they're letting go of a great actor who worked the second fewest episodes of anyone under contract in that time. Does that make any sense to you? ≠- Elaine
Someone's always coming and going. It doesn't have to make sense. It's like Logan's Run. It's just my time.
21. It's weird. Against all my better judgment, Silas was totally winning me over these last couple months. I loved him and Ava together, and it really seems like Silas is her one true love. -- Jeanie
That's nice to hear. Maura West is an amazing actor. I was very fortunate to get to work with her.
22. I've seen pictures in magazines, and they usually have cake for the actors on their last day. Please tell me it was a Whiskey cake or Rum raisin and everyone got bombed a little -- Lettie
No cake, and that's my fault; they offered. I always thought it was a bit arbitrary to say goodbye to good friends and then start eating pastry. Late one night, I tipped a glass back in the show's honor, thanked the universe for allowing me to be part of it, and wished them all happiness and success for years to come.
23. Things look really bleak for GH right now. Is it headed for cancellation?
Every show, every character, for that matter, is one inspired storyline away from turning it all around. A wealth of hard-working talent remains in that building, and if anybody can make it work, they can.
24. Michael, you are a romantic leading man! We should be seeing you looking into a beautiful woman's eyes and kissing them firm on the lips (or biting their neck). But because GH doesn't know how to tell a love story anymore, they have you running around in a stupid lab coat. Does that about sum it up? -- June
Well, nothing beats a good love story.
25. I'm heartbroken. When did you shoot your last scenes? What did you do on your last day? -- Beth
I tried to leave the dressing room as tidy as I found it and picked up flowers for my wife on the way home.
TO BE CONTINUED...
What do you think about Easton's answers to the fan questions? What else would you love to hear him answer? Share your thoughts in the Comments section below, on our message boards, or by submitting Feedback.
To stay up-to-date on the latest soap news, be sure to like us on Facebook and follow @soapcentral on Twitter.