Saying goodbye to James Lastovic, who exits Days of Our Lives (DOOL) as Joey Johnson on August 22, was hard on his TV parents, Mary Beth Evans and Stephen Nichols.
“Stephen and I both really love James,” confides Evans. “Whatever his journey was, he was a good Patch and Kayla son. And he let me rub his ears and hug him and touch him in scenes… He always just rode with hit. It was tough [seeing him go].”
The reason is simple. Evans and Nichols have always warmly embraced their daytime children.
“We get very attached to these kids,” admits Evans. “When we had our wedding and Shelley Hennig [ex-Stephanie] came back, Stephen and I were so happy, because we adore her. We love her.”
Evans and Nichols feel the same way about Lastovic. “Stephen and I adore him, so it was very sad to see him go,” says Evans. “We have taken him out to lunch, and we saw him at the Emmys. We will get together for lunch again, I’m sure. Right now, it’s the summer and we’re all in and out so much, but we’ll make it happen.”
Words of Wisdom
Did the duo send Lastovic off with any advice or encouragement before he exited DAYS?
“Of course,” shares Evans. “We told him that he’s going to work and that this is just the way things go on soaps… That he could come back. That’s always a possibility and has happened more times than not.
“Also, he’s young and he’s good,” continues Evans, who encouraged Lastovic “to keep going to classes and keep his chops up… to keep auditioning… It’s the same for all actors.
“I think he learned a lot here. He felt he did, and he was excited for the future. Plus, he met his sweet girlfriend [Paige Searcy, who played Jade] on the show. All positive things came out of [being on DAYS], and I think he felt that way too.”
Gone But Not Forgotten
Although Joey will be off the canvas while he serves time for killing Ava, Evans assures the character won’t be forgotten onscreen.
“I said to Albert [Alarr, DAYS co-executive producer], ‘I just don’t want it to be that he goes off to prison and we never talk about him again,’” recounts Evans. “And we have talked about him, which is nice.
“I’ve always disliked that about soaps, where it’s out of sight out of mind. This is our son, and I didn’t want it to be like that. Fortunately, it won’t be.”
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