*He’s known as the stalwart police captain-turned-mayor” Abe Carver” on the popular and beloved NBC soap opera “Days of Our Lives,” and actor James Reynolds tells EURweb that there are big changes in store for one of the most enduring soap operas that has captivated viewers for 45 years.
In fact, the charming and venerable Reynolds, a 30-year-veteran of “Days,” revealed that the show’s fall lineup is going through sweeping new changes with fresh, new storylines and intriguing plot twists. “I like the new story lines,” he revealed. “Fans will be able to see those characters they are so devoted to in new, exciting situations.”
He said that “Days of Our Lives” has recruited an innovative new writing team, Marlene McPherson and Darrell Ray Thomas, who are infusing the soap with riveting plot lines that promise more romance, excitement and heroic love than ever before.
Fans are no stranger to Reynolds, a native of Oskaloosa, Kansas, who started on “Days” in 1981 as the police captain of the town of Salem.
After nine years, Reynolds joined the cast of the new daytime series “Generations” on ABC, where he earned an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series. He returned back to “Days” in 1991, earning an NAACP Image Award in 2004 for Best Actor in a Daytime Drama, followed by a Daytime Emmy nomination for Best Supporting Actor in a Drama that same year. And Reynolds has also been a popular character on other shows where he has appeared on numerous guest spots on television.
Reynolds said that with the upcoming fall season, his character Abe Carver will be faced with plenty of intrigue. “Abe has been the mayor of Salem for the last four years and he is currently running for re-election. He also happens to be running against his brother-in-law,” Reynolds chuckles. “It will be interesting to see if Abe is re-elected and what challenges he will face in running the town.”
Pausing, he added, “There’s also going to be intriguing plot twists involving Abe’s wife, Lexie, (Renee Jones ) who is struggling to deal with her family as she attempts to raise her son Leo, who has autism.”
With so many soaps getting the axe due to network program changes, Reynolds had some strong opinions on the matter.
“Television is missing something here. They are looking at the bottom line. Attempting to change viewing habits does not mean that the whole genre is dying out—soap operas will always endure.”
Pausing, he added, “Soaps are the number one form of storytelling, whether they are Turkish soap operas in Eastern Europe or telenovelas in Mexico and South America. One of the things about daytime drama is that they have been with us forever.”
Asked why his character Abe Carver is one of the longest running and most beloved characters on soaps, Reynolds reflected,
“I think it is Abe’s personal qualities. I think Abe embodies those qualities of honesty, integrity, and courage that can’t be overlooked. I think people still respond to that. Those heroic characteristics appeal to the public and that is what has made Abe endure year after year.”
In his spare time, Reynolds heads Free State Productions, a film and television production company that produces documentaries, movies and music videos. He also runs the Fremont Center Theatre in South Pasadena, CA with his wife, Lissa Layng.
“It’s been very successful for us. Believe it or not, I direct there more than I act,” said Reynolds, who has won numerous awards for directing.
As far as appearing as Abe Carver on “Days of Our Lives,” Reynolds has no plans of taking a final curtain call. “As an actor, I can’t imagine any other part giving me such range,” he reflected.
“’l’ll do comedy or drama one day, or a fight scene or a love scene the next,” said Reynolds, who estimates that his character Abe Carver has been viewed on television for over 3,000 hours.
“I just can’t imagine doing anything else,” said Reynolds about continuing on the popular soap opera. “I’ll continue on ‘Days of Our Lives’ until they carry me out on a gurney,” he chuckled.
Story by Shirley Hawkins