After 21 years of playing Sami Brady on the soap opera Days of Our Lives, Alison Sweeney has finally called it a wrap.
Sweeney joined the soap opera in 1993 and later won a special fan award from the Daytime Emmys in 2002. Not only has she been busy with the soap, she also took on the role as the host of The Biggest Loser in 2007, and has written two novels- All the Days of My Life (So Far) and The Star Attraction.
In January, Sweeney revealed to talk show host Ellen DeGeneres that she would be leaving the cast after the current season ended. The good news is, she is leaving on good terms and there are no hard feelings. Her decision comes because she wants to be able to spend more time with her family.
“I’m celebrating my 21st year … and I decided that it’s going to be my last year with the show,” she told DeGeneres. “I have worked so much, and my daughter just turned 5 and my son is 9, and I just want to be with them.”
ICYMI: @Ali_Sweeney OPENS up about #DaysOfOurLives EXIT: http://t.co/HvilIDmZNj pic.twitter.com/8xQf2ueomw
— Queen Latifah Show (@qlshow) October 31, 2014
Sweeney wrote a lengthy and emotional letter to her friends on her personal Facebook account after her final episode of Days of Our Lives aired on Thursday.
“When I first found out I was auditioning for Days (in September of 1992), I flipped out!! It was quite literally a dream come true for me because I’d been a mildly obsessed Days of our Lives fan for several years,” the letter read. “I’ve never forgotten what it felt like to tune in every day, anxious to find out what was going to happen to my favorite character.”
“What I’m trying to say, is that I took that fan experience into every storyline I was involved with over the last two decades,” the letter continued. “I always felt the audience watching at home. It has always mattered to me to tell the story as best as I possibly could. Whether it was #Ejami, #Lumi, #Safe, #Kami or … #Sole, or somewhere in between, whether I personally liked the story or not, I did my best to keep Sami true to herself, and played every scene as honestly as I could.”
“No question – I am #teamSami. I have always rooted for her… to finally stop putting her foot in her mouth, being her own worst enemy, eternally needing her parents approval, oh, this list could go on and on,” she added. “It’s impossible to miss Sami’s faults. But I loved her more for them. And I loved playing her faults and her character flaws as much I loved playing the scenes when she persevered!”
To conclude her letter, Sweeney wrote, “This is just my opportunity to say a great big, sincere, tearful, THANK YOU. For everything. Every cheer, every tear, every tweet, post and letter. Thank you for investing in me and my character. #LOVE, Ali.”