Sean Blakemore’s return to “General Hospital” has been cut short. The actor announced today that he is leaving the daytime drama series less than a year since reprising the contract role of Shawn Butler, citing “other obligations” as the reason.
When a fan asked Blakemore if rumors were true of his leaving, Blakemore took to Twitter to set the record straight, saying, “I appreciate you and ALL my wonderful supporters! I was absolutely NOT let go. It was my decision to exit the show because of other obligations.” He added, “The GH family has been great to me! Who knows [what’s] to come in the near future.”
Blakemore did not elaborate on what the “other obligations” were.
Prior to his return to the soap last year, his character had spent time in Pentonville for the shooting of Hayden Barnes (Rebecca Budig), a crime he didn’t commit and was wrongfully convicted of, albeit not many knew the real truth at the time.
Since returning, Shawn reconnected with his ex, Jordan Ashford (then played by Briana Nicole Henry), and their son, TJ Ashford (Tajh Bellow). Additionally, other characters, namely Spencer Cassadine (Nicholas Alexander Chavez) are now aware that it was Nikolas (Marcus Coloma) who shot Hayden, and not Shawn.
With Jordan set to return to Port Charles with a new face (Tanisha Harper) next month, it’s unclear whether the role of Shawn will be recast or if Blakemore’s exit will play into Jordan’s reason for returning.
A rep for “General Hospital” was unavailable for comment at press time. The network has a policy of not commenting on actor contracts.
Blakemore won a Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series in 2016 for his portrayal. He played the character from 2011-2015 and reprised the role for one episode in 2016 for a prison scene, appearing with Steve Burton’s Jason Morgan and Kelly Monaco’s Sam McCall.