Doug and Julie are celebrating her getting a new heart on Days of Our Lives, and, off-screen, their portrayers, fan favorites Bill and Susan Seaforth Hayes, are joyful about something, too!
Days of Our Lives: Soaps’ First Supercouple
The Hayeses are celebrating 45 years of marriage this weekend having tied the knot on October 12, 1974. The pair met on the set of DAYS when Hayes joined the cast in 1970 as con artist Doug Williams, a man hired by Susan Martin (Denise Alexander) to romance Julie.
Originally, Doug was going to be matched with Marie Horton, but after head writer William J. Bell saw the on-screen dynamics between Hayes and Seaforth, he re-worked his long-term story.
“[Bill] threw out the whole plot he had for me and the whole plot he had for Susan and began to write for our characters, working together,” Hayes recalled to LAaRT on PBSsoCal in 2013. “It was a very exciting time.”
“It was the universe going, ‘These two are the best, let’s put them together,'” Alexander said in a tribute to the Hayeses last year when they were awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award at the Daytime Emmys last year.
“Bill Bell would watch the show in real-time, like the rest of the audience in the United States,” Seaforth Hayes shared in the PBSsoCal interview. “He saw sparks between us before we were aware of it.” While Bill and Susan wed in 1974, Doug and Julie didn’t tie the knot until 1976, the same year the actors graced the cover of Time Magazine.
Love On-Screen And Off
Marriage for Doug and Julie didn’t mean the end of conflicts as can be the case with some happy soap opera couples. Crises included Julie being disfigured in a fire, prompting her to divorce Doug, who married Lee (Brenda Benet) on the rebound.
Doug and Julie later re-married, but they left DAYS in 1984. Hayes returned for some screen-time sans Julie a few years later while Seaforth Hayes had a solo stint in Salem in the early 1990s. When she exited in 1993, the show brought Hayes back for an episode so the two could go off in the sunset together. Fans would have accepted nothing less!
Doug and Julie have appeared on and off DAYS ever since. Fortunately, the two have been enjoying quite a bit …continue reading on the next page —>