Why did Michelle Stafford leave General Hospital?

Michelle Stafford as Nina on General Hospital.
Michelle Stafford created Nina on General Hospital. Pic credit: ABC

Michelle Stafford is back at The Young and the Restless and the role of Nina has been recast with Cynthia Watros stepping in. The news of her departure was shocking when it was announced several months ago.

There were plenty of rumors surrounding why Michelle Stafford chose to leave General Hospital. Everything from her being let go to other, more complex situations were tossed around, though none of them appeared to be the truth.

In 2014, Michelle Stafford debuted in the role of Nina Clay on General Hospital. She was the comatose wife of Dr. Silas Clay (Michael Easton) and was brought in just in time for May sweeps that year.

Over the span of five years, Nina had become a fan-favorite. Her marriage to Valentin (James Patrick Stuart) was something that garnered a lot of attention as the two had impeccable on-screen chemistry.

The reason behind Michelle Stafford’s exit was contractual. It was time to renew or exit and it was quite obvious that the General Hospital people weren’t giving her what she wanted. Of course, when The Young and the Restless caught wind of that, it was game on.

Now, Michelle Stafford is back airing on The Young and the Restless in the role she originated back in 1994. General Hospital viewers aren’t thrilled with the change but Y&R viewers are happy that “Red” is back in Genoa City.

General Hospital airs weekdays on ABC.

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