Jay Kenneth Johnson 411

BIRTHDATE: February 24 BIRTHPLACE: Springfield, MO
STAR SIGN: Pisces
YEARS ON SHOW: 1999-2002, 2006-present

Growing up in Springfield, MO, Jay Kenneth Johnson attended Baptist church every Sunday, and always imagined he would be working a normal desk job someday. Less than two years and four different majors into his college career at Southwest Missouri State, he dropped out and moved to Los Angeles against his parents' wishes.

After only seven months in California and a short stint as Brendan on Y&R, Johnson landed the role of Philip Kiriakis on DAYS OF OUR LIVES. Johnson was also in the running to replace Jonathan Jackson (Lucky) on GENERAL HOSPITAL, but DAYS offered him a contract first. He grew up watching DAYS with his grandparents, so he was thrilled to join the cast, and even a little starstruck. “I was walking down the hall and saw Joe Mascolo (Stefano) and Kristian [Alfonso, Hope]. I had been watching them for 10 or 15 years. It was so wild!" he says about one of his first days on the set.

Johnson's character, Philip, was surprisingly beloved by fans. His spoiled rich kid persona didn't deter fans from flooding Johnson with love letters and marriage proposals. Philip's relationship with Chloe ("Phloe") was a big hit, but their love was foiled when Brady Black interfered.

In 2002, Johnson left DAYS to pursue prime-time, and did so on FOX's drama NORTH SHORE. While shooting the series, Johnson lived on the beach in Waikiki. He never ruled out the possibility of returning to DAYS, which he did after four years. In 2006, Philip returned a new man (with a new face) determined to get his daughter back. "He's definitely got some anger management issues... I attribute it to everything he's been through. He lost his leg. He got his face blown off. His daughter was taken from him." Viewers are trying to get used to the new, angry Philip, but Johnson is enjoying and embracing the challenge.

Subscribe to Soap Opera DigestSubscribe Give a Gift Renew Customer Service Subscribe

get sod everywhere