It's been over a decade since Sarah Joy Brown starred on General Hospital, where she originated the role of Carly Corinthos in 1996 and later took on the role of Claudia Zacchara in 2008, but fans still remember her time in Port Charles like it was yesterday. The actress feels the same, and she recently shared some really interesting insight into some of her most challenging storylines at the ABC soap opera.
The first one that she discusses in a video posted to Instagram is an early scene that she shared with Maurice Benard (Sonny Corinthos).
"As Carly, the most challenging storyline that I did by far for me was playing in Maurice's penthouse and doing the mental illness, the breakdown stuff that Sonny went through," she recalls. "Maurice has mental illness that he struggles with, and he's very honest and open about that, and it means a lot to him, so that storyline really meant a lot to him... he wanted it to really make an impact for people that have mental illness and to bring awareness, and so I didn't want to screw it up!"
She continues, "I was only 21, I was really young, and I came in and wanted to work with Maurice, he wanted to work with me, I got that -- I got to have that -- and then we had this super, super challenging story. So, I was just nervous that I wouldn't live up to his expectations and I wouldn't be able to support him enough... it was so real, it was raw, and it was very difficult."
Although Brown feared that she wouldn't be able to deliver as well as Benard wanted her to in the storyline, those fears were for nothing because she slayed the scenes. And Benard agrees, having commented on Brown's post with the praise, "You were 21 and brilliant."
As for her most difficult storyline as Claudia, Brown reveals that her answer is quite different from what she chose as her most difficult storyline as Carly: it was all about returning to the show with the same face but as a brand-new character.
"The thing that was most challenging for me, really, was how do I come back as a completely different character, convince the fans that this is a totally different character, fall in love with the same guy, marry the same guy, and not have them just go, 'Oh, come on. This is just like Carly,'" she shares. "So, that was really challenging -- and fantastic!"
She continues, "The very first day that Maurice and I worked together again as Claudia and Sonny, we had a scene in a bar and that was the first time that we were going to have our 'chemistry' and we were going to meet each other... and I wanted it to be different -- really different -- than the way that Carly and Sonny get it on, if you will, and the chemistry that they have. But that's a challenging thing because actors have chemistry naturally together, just like people, obviously, and you can't force that. You can try, but that doesn't necessarily mean that the audience is going to buy it!"
That being said, she admits that she did force it, at least in the beginning. "It was challenging to think, 'How do you make different chemistry?' You have to fake it a little bit, so, I think that might have been what I did a bit with Claudia," she reveals.
In the nearly seven-minute clip, Brown also touches on how beloved Carly is to the fans -- starting with her portrayal of the character and lasting through several recasts, the last one being Laura Wright. She opines that the success of the character is due to the fan support but is also "thanks to all the great actors who have played her" and "the writers who have kept the stories interesting."
Brown also answers a big question that she gets asked all the time: Does she regret leaving the role of Carly, who has now been on the canvas for a quarter of a century?
"I could have easily stayed and played Carly for 25 years, but it just wasn't my dream, and it wasn't my goal," she shares. "I wanted to go out and do other things and I'm really glad that I did... If I had stayed in the role of Carly my whole life, and I'd only done that one role, I think I would have gotten to this point in my life and wondered, 'What else? What else could I [have done] with my life?' So, I don't regret leaving."
Check out Brown's full video below, and don't forget to let us know what you think in the Comments section at the end of the article.
This is not the first time that Brown has revisited her time in daytime. In 2018, Brown shone a light on the pay gap between male and female performers in daytime.
What do you think about Sarah Joy Brown's trip down GH memory lane? How much do you miss seeing the actress in the role of Carly? What about as Claudia? We want to hear from you -- and there are many ways you can share your thoughts.