Stephen Nichols Exit From ‘Days Of Our Lives’ Due To Contract Talk, Not Disapproval With Storylines

Chris HastonNBC

Days of Our Lives fans were disappointed when confirmation that Stephen Nichols would be leaving the soap was revealed this week. The actor, who plays Steve “Patch” Johnson on the show, is a huge fan favorite, and viewers aren’t happy about his departure.

According to a June 29 report by Daytime Confidential, Stephen Nichols’ exit from Days of Our Lives had much more to do with contract negotiations than it did with his lack of good storylines and screen time.

Sources tell the outlet that Nichols decided to walk away from contract negotiations when Days of Our Lives offered him a lower guaranteed pay. Sadly, it seems that guarantees are being lowered on many soap operas and the insider says that budgets are “tight” for many shows.

“The show wanted to lower his guarantee and he refused. A lowered guarantee doesn’t mean you will necessarily work less. Guarantees are being lowered at every show. Budgets are tight.”

As previously reported by the Inquisitr, Stephen Nichols spoke out after news of his Days of Our Lives exit became known online. The longtime soap star revealed that he loved the cast and crew at DOOL, and still believes there is a lot of story for his character still to tell. This left fans with hope that Steve Johnson could be back in Salem in the future. However, the character’s future is now up in the air.

“For me, Days of Our Lives is home and I want to be there… I love the people, I love Steven Earl Johnson and I love what Mary Beth and I have been able to create together. I was excited to see what this new team would bring for us and for all of Salem. I’ve been in this business long enough to understand the rotations of stories, and I get that we can’t always be at the forefront. And despite my disappointment in the lack of story this past year, I’ve always worked hard and we’ve always tried to find the moments in whatever we’ve been given. I think we did that,” Stephen Nichols wrote via social media, adding, ” I know that there are still years of Steve and Kayla’s story left to be told. “I hope we get to tell that story.”

Days of Our Lives is now reportedly faced with the dilemma of how to write Steve Johnson out of Salem in a believable way. Steve’s marriage to Kayla Brady (Mary Beth Evans) is currently very strong, and he has a son in Salem, Tripp (Lucas Adams). It seems the soap thought they would work things out with Stephen Nichols, and now they’ll be scrambling to figure out what to do with the character of Patch going forward.

Days of Our Lives airs weekday afternoons on NBC.