Tyler Christopher might be returning to General Hospital in the near future. Or he might not. TV Line reported that the General Hospital heartthrob is set to resume the role of Nikolas Cassadine after taking an abrupt hiatus in May, but the actor is putting the brakes on the announcement.
Tyler Christopher reportedly made an announcement about his return at a General Hospital Fan Club Weekend event that he appeared at alongside Rebecca Budig (Hayden), and fans went crazy as soap sites announced the news as official and reported that the actor’s return to the ABC soap will come as soon as next month.
But, not so fast GH fans! Tyler Christopher has now set the record straight and is telling fans to slow down. Tyler took to Twitter to inform fans that he said he thinks he will return to GH in September. But Christopher also made it clear that nothing is official. A General Hospital spokesperson had no comment on Tyler Christopher’s return to the long-running soap.
Tyler Christopher made an abrupt exit from General Hospital back in May under the guise of “personal reasons” and amid rumors of heavy contract negotiations. Former Sunset Beach star Nick Stabile stepped in to temporarily play Nikolas Cassadine during Christopher’s leave of absence, but Stabile made his final appearance on the show last week.
Nick Stabile’s run as Cassadine ended on a heroic note after the character saved his lady love, Ava Jerome (Maura West), from a bullet. But Nikolas tragically fell from a balcony and should, by all accounts, be dead. Of course, does anyone ever really die on a soap opera?
Tyler Christopher made his debut as Nikolas Cassadine in 1996. The character is the firstborn son of Laura Spencer (Genie Francis’ longtime role). After 20 years in the role of Nikolas, Tyler Christopher won his first Daytime Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series earlier this year, beating out his GH “stepfather,” Anthony Geary. While fans are excited for the return of Tyler Christopher to Port Charles, GH writers will have some explaining to do in order to resurrect his character, who has been shot and crashed through a glass window during the original actor’s absence.
As for Stabile, he thanked fans for their support. In fact, many fans would like to see Stabile come back to General Hospital in a different role. Stabile tweeted that he is touched by all of the support and that he also completely understands why fans would like to see Tyler Christopher return to the show.
While his character is known as the “dark prince,” Tyler Christopher does not see it that way. In a 2015 interview with Michael Fairman Soaps, Tyler said his character has many layers, kind of like fellow bad boy Sonny Corinthos (Maurice Bernard).
“Everyone wants to label what is happening as the ‘dark side’ of the character, and I don’t really see it that way,” Christopher said last year. “I think of him more as a shrewd businessman, and more of a risk-taker that’s naïve, and more brash. I don’t see Nikolas as dark at all.”
Tyler went on to explain that to describe his character as dark drums up “connotations of a person that has no mercy, and that is devoid of any ethics,” so he feels that is not an accurate description. Christopher says Nikolas has become more a “more wise character” in recent years.
“I have always thought that Nikolas is a smarter character, and I have always fought for him to become what I think he is becoming,” Tyler said.
Tyler Christopher went on to explain what inspired him to create a “new and improved” Nikolas.
“If you are going to say the character is ‘dark’ …then you have got to have contrast, otherwise, you are just a bad dude,” Christopher explained. “I don’t believe anyone is like that, and that is why the character of Sonny Corinthos became so popular. Sonny is doing all of these bad things, but he has this layer to him that was kind, loving and understanding, and merciful, and that has been the cornerstone to his character. I have sort of taken different pieces from that and tried to implement them into this new and improved Nikolas. I just think a more rounded character is more interesting to the audience.”
Stay tuned for more on Tyler Christopher’s return to General Hospital.
[Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images for DATG]