Sad news for General Hospital fans. ABC has confirmed that Daytime Emmy winner Tyler Christopher, who has played Nikolas Cassadine since 1996, will not be returning to the long running drama.
Christopher originated the role Laura Spencer and Stavros Cassadine’s son in 1996, playing the role from 1996-1999, 2003-2011, 2013-2016. After winning his first Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actor in May, Christopher unexpectedly took a leave of absence from the show. Rumors of contractual issues surrounded his hiatus at the time. Sunset Beach alum Nick Stabile was brought in to temporarily assume the role for the series’ big Cassadine Island summer storyline, which culminated in Nikolas being shot by his unhinged uncle Valentin and is now presumed dead.
During General Hospital Fan Club Weekend in July, Christopher hinted as possibly returning to GH in the fall. Soap Opera Digest was the first to report on Christopher’s exit, stating that the actor and the series had hopes of reaching a new deal, but negotiations fell apart in August. SOD reached out to the network, who confirmed their initial story.
It’s disappointing news to say the least. Sources say the creative team had a story waiting for Christopher upon his return that would have picked up where his character left off — a budding relationship with mob princess Ava Jerome (Maura West) and the fallout from his recent dark entanglements. It is unknown at press time if the series intends to recast.
As for what’s next for Tyler Christopher, he signed on to join the cast of the indie film Pretty Broken earlier this month.
Really bummed about this news. We were looking forward to seeing Christopher reunite on-screen with Maura West. We wish Tyler Christopher the best of luck! Hopefully he’ll land a new series in no time.