Before moving on to appear in primetime series such as Dawson's Creek, Smallville, and Dark Angel, Supernatural star Jensen Ackles portrayed Eric Brady on Days of Our Lives from 1997 until 2000 when the character left Salem for the vague destination of Colorado. Now, the long-running NBC daytime soap opera has recast the role for the first time since then with soap veteran Greg Vaughan, who previously appeared on CBS's The Young and the Restless from 2002 to 2003 as Diego and then on ABC's General Hospital from 2003 until 2009 as the third actor to play Lucky Spencer.
Speaking exclusively to Entertainment Weekly, Vaughan joked, "I seem to be that go-to guy [for roles originated by others]," adding, "But it’s more than that. The roles speak to me. It’s such a great ensemble." He started taping episodes for Days of Our Lives this past week and they will begin airing in November during the sweeps period as a hook to attract viewers who might remember the character. Upon his return to Salem, it will be revealed that Eric has been traveling the world doing philanthropy work.
When loyal viewers last saw Eric, he had had a steamy romance with Nicole Walker (Arianne Zucker) and told her that he still loved her before leaving town. During his stint on the show, Ackles won a Soap Opera Digest Award for Best Male Newcomer in 1998 and received three consecutive Daytime Emmy Award nominations in 1998, 1999, and 2000 as Outstanding Younger Actor in a Drama Series.
Any closet Days fans out there? I don't mind admitting I got hooked on it during summer break one year in high school, right around the time Jensen Ackles assumed the role of Eric Brady, and coincidentally stopped watching shortly after he left. Can Greg Vaughan do the character justice and bring back those lapsed viewers?