Popular Soap Opera Actors Who Don’t Act Anymore

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The world of daytime drama can be intense and challenging. Unlike prime- time stars who adhere to a “one show per week” schedule and enjoy some sort of hiatus (usually in the summer), for soap stars it is go, go, go (all the time)! Five shows a week, no breaks in the summer, and lines that need to be learned quickly, sometimes even on the spot. Since the show is constantly evolving and developing, characters are frequently given the ax (left, right, and center) without a moment’s notice, and there are ever-revolving plot twists and turns that need to be dealt with. It’s no wonder why many actors choose to take a break from soaps or sometimes leave the business altogether. Check out our list of some popular soap opera actors who don’t act anymore!

12. Erik von Detten

Rewinding through the Days of Our Lives (DOOL) history vault, fans may remember a young Erik von Detten playing Nicholas Alamain as a child. Erik would move on to be the voice of “Sid” the villain kid who liked to torture toys in Disney’s animated smash, Toy Story, and after that, faded from the acting scene. Interestingly enough, while he is absent from the social media scene, his wife Angela posted an Instagram photo in May 2019 announcing the birth of their baby. Seems like he may be busy with more important personal projects!

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11. Ricky Paull Goldin

Staring in a plethora of soap operas from 1991 to 2013, including Another World, Young and the Restless, Guiding Light, as well as the Bold and the Beautiful (B&B), Goldin has stepped away from the daytime spotlight for years now. Living with his partner Gretta Monahan, a TV fashion personality, the two enjoy a quiet life in Massachusetts, raising their two children, and focusing on family.

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10. Matthew Borlenghi 

Known for his roles on All My Children and The Bold and the Beautiful, soap actor Matthew Borlenghi opted for a “regular” life after his stint with the B&B came to a close. During a 2018 interview, he relayed living a quieter life, with three young kids to focus on, as well as a “regular” job in home improvements. He also works for the Gray Studios acting school, leading the Atlanta chapter.

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9. Rick Hearst

From Days to the Y&R, GH, Guiding Light and more, Rick Hearst has seen it all and done it all in the land of soaps. While his last daytime stint was in the land of Port Charles, circa 2016, he currently lives in Atlanta, Georgia where he owns and operates a restaurant known as “Nonna’s Family Kitchen” and helps former GH colleague Natalia Livingston (Emily Quartermaine) with her acting studio.

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8. Ricky Martin

Better known as the mega singer of the smash hit, “Livin’ La Vida Loca”, Ricky Martin has understandably left his acting career to pursue music. For those that may remember, Ricky started his career in the 1990s mega boy band Menudo and debuted on GH in 1994 as Miguel Morez. If he’s not focusing on his music career and charity work, Martin is spending quality time with his partner Jwan Yosef, and their four children.

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7. Ronn Moss

Speaking of leaving the soaps for a music career, Ronn Moss once enjoyed life as a daytime drama actor playing Ridge Forrester on the B&B. Moss would exit the show in 2012 to pursue a singing career. One of his hit songs was “My Baby’s Back.” Do fans miss him on B&B? Sure! But it seems like he’s living his best rock star life, doing what he loves to do most, singing.

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6. Peter Reckell

It’s been years since Bo Brady left the land of Days, and fans still miss the magic actor Peter Reckell brought to the soap opera. Since exiting the show in late 2015, Reckell enjoys spending time with his family, and he also performed in the hit musical The Fantasticks in 2016.

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5. John Driscoll

Starting his career off as a model for Versace and Armani, Driscoll broke into the acting world with roles in Young Americans and the popular teen show Dawson’s Creek. Still, most fans out there know him from his soap opera roles, including Henry “Coop” Bradshaw from Guiding Light and Chance Chancellor on The Young and the Restless (Y&R). The Chance character returned to the Army in May 2011 and in real-life, Driscoll joined the Army in 2012 to follow in his dad’s footsteps.

4. Stuart Damon

GH fans were devastated by the passing of Alan Quartermaine, a veteran of the show and a fan favorite. Playing the role of Quartermaine since 1977, the only silver lining was that he did have (very) sporadic appearances on the soap playing Alan’s ghost and visiting his sister and wife years after his passing. However, Damon has not been on the show since 2013 when he returned to celebrate the soap’s 50th Anniversary. An accomplished actor, Damon appeared on Broadway and was also well known for his role in the cult classic The Champions. In 1999, Damon won a Daytime Emmy for his iconic GH role.

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3. Michael Muhney

Audiences have not seen Michael Muhney since his tumultuous departure from the Y&R in 2014. The talented actor really could jump into any daytime or prime-time role, but if you check out his Twitter account, he seems quite content with doing charity events, keeping in shape, and spending much-needed time with his young children.

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2. John Reilly

At the age of 84, accomplished actor John Reilly has done a lot in his career. He’s been in films like What’s Eating Gilbert Grape and Touch and Go. He’s appeared on prime time shows like Cagney and Lacey, Beverly Hills 90210, and Silver Spoons. He’s also won the hearts of many soap opera fans over the years with roles in As The World Turns and Days of Our Lives. Still, he may be best known for his soap characters on GH and Passions. He played Sean Donely from 1984 to 1995, and while Anna Devane and Robert Scorpio remain on the soap, their BFF Sean was (for the most part) has always been busy doing other things. The last time the actor was seen on daytime screens was in 2013, reprising the Donely role for GH’s 50th Anniversary.

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1. Anthony Geary

Anthony Geary bid adieu to GH in 2017, with plans of re-establishing himself in Holland and having some downtime. Originating the legendary Luke Spencer role in 1978, not only has Geary broken Daytime Emmy records (eight statues in total), he and sidekick Laura took the soap opera world by storm and shattered ratings when they got married in 1981. Needless to say, he is quite missed, and it shows in the fact that while Luke is not physically in Port Charles, his name still consistently gets dropped, and returns are constantly being teased in storylines.

Picture Perfect / Rex Features

Picture Perfect / Rex Features

Dorathy Gass

Dorathy Gass

Dorathy Gass is an avid fan of daytime drama and has been watching Days of Our Lives, General Hospital, and Young and the Restless for over two decades now. As a full-time freelance writer, she gets to combine her love of soap operas and writing through her Fame 10 articles. Also a mother of two busy girls and a mommy blogger, she's been published multiple times over in Huffington Post Parents and Scary Mommy.

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