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Eric Martsolf Weighs in on DAYS’s Tate Switch

Eric Martsolf, Jamie Martin Mann


Eric Martsolf talks about losing Jamie Martin Mann as his TV son.

The news that Jamie Martin Mann had definitively decided to leave DAYS OF OUR LIVES and his role as Tate Black (find out what Mann had to say about leaving here), hit his TV dad, Eric Martsolf (Brady), hard.

“Emily [O’Brien, Theresa] and I were actually quite shocked, but not surprised,” shares Martsolf. “Jamie had made it very known that he was interested in being a college student at University of Michigan, and that that was a priority for him. Because his storyline was taking off the way it did, he just wasn’t going to be able to make it work with the schedule. So [leaving was] for no other reason than he just couldn’t do both.”

Martsolf admits that he did attempt to get Mann to reconsider. “I actually did try,” he says. “I said, ‘You don’t need a degree in musical theater or theater. You’ve got a job right now. This is the best training you can get.’ But he wants the college experience, and I completely got that. So we did what we do on soaps. We found another actor, and I’m happy to say he’s not only good, he’s terrific.”

That actor, of course, is Leo Howard. Nonetheless, Martsolf realizes that the casting switch “will require [the audience] to be okay with it,” since they’ve already invested in Mann and Ashley Puzemis (Holly) as a couple. So Martsolf did what he could to help.

“I know a little bit about taking over a character,” notes Martsolf, who’s had great success as a daytime recast twice – first, as Ethan on PASSIONS, and currently as Brady on DAYS. “So I’ve had some long chats with [Leo], and it didn’t take him long to fly. He’s actually very seasoned. He’s not fresh off the tree.”

Howard approached Martsolf for advice on the situation. “I love that he came for it. I didn’t just give it,” points out Martsolf. “He actually came to me and said, ‘Look, I’ve done this, and I’ve done this, and I’ve done this, but this is a new medium.’ And I was like, ‘I’m so glad you want to talk to me about it.’ It can be daunting for someone [to adjust to the speed that we’re going right now]. It’s crazy. But this kid, he’s got what it takes.”