Charles Shaughnessy and James Patrick Stuart talk about daytime's supervillain, Victor Cassadine.
Charles Shaughnessy made his final appearance recently as the late supervillain Victor Cassadine on General Hospital’s May 8, 2023 episode. It is a soap, so final is never really final. After all, Victor has already been killed off twice.
Charles Shaughnessy and James Patrick Stuart: He Did A Bad, Bad Thing
At a recent fan event hosted by Coastal Entertainment, Shaughnessy and castmate James Patrick Stuart (Valentin) reveled in Cassadine’s wild ride.
Thaao Penghlis (Tony, DAYS) originated Victor Cassadine in 1981. The character went to prison and was thought to be dead, only to return in 2014. During that run, he was “killed off” again. But in September of 2021, Victor showed up alive and well as Dr. Liesl Obrecht's (Kathleen Gati) captor, this time played by the Daytime Emmy award-winning actor Charles Shaughnessy (ex-Shane, Days of our Lives).
For Shaughnessy, Cassidine was the role of a lifetime. “Victor is such a great character,” the actor exclaimed. “He's such a bad, bad man, but with a great sort of smile. He's like always smiling, but he's got a knife in his hand.”
The actor described just how dastardly the villain was. "He definitely didn't just cross the line. He lept over the line, and it just got worse, and worse, and worse, until finally, it was like, oh my goodness, even I was saying [to James Patrick Stuart], 'you know, bury this guy, James.'"
“He's been a delight,” Shaughnessy shared with the fans. He let everyone know what fun it was to play Victor and his admiration for the cast and crew of General Hospital. “And the people? I mean, you know, James will tell you that the cast of actors, the ensemble of actors on that show, are just so terrifically talented, and professional, and imaginative. But also really nice.”
The veteran soap actor noted, despite the stellar cast, there were no overblown egos on the set. “There isn't AAA sort of out-of-control ego among them, which is not always the case, especially in a cast that size," he said. "At least I never saw it. So it's been a real joy, I have to say, and I've just loved it.”
James Patrick Stuart couldn’t say enough good things about his co-star. “He was just phenomenal. And there have been times when I've been on the set with you, honest to God, Charles, and I watch you go on with your monologue and how effortless you make it.”
One particular scene stood out for Stuart, and he shared it with his castmate during the Zoom. “You had me on my knees just before you shot Anna, monologuing. That wonderful monologue.” He described how the whole set was in awe of the performance. “There wasn't anybody on that set that wasn't just eating popcorn.”
Stuart remembered his thoughts during those moments. “Look at him go. Look at him go." A talented actor in his own right, Stuart was truly moved. "I usually try to stay in character, but one of the thoughts that popped in my head was, 'Well, there goes my Emmy nomination next year.'"
Shaughnessy won over fans playing the big bad legacy character, dazzling and shocking them sometimes in the same breath. With the reading of Cassadine's will coming up, time will tell if this is the last we see of Victor Cassadine or the actor who brought him back to life.