GH's Carly Says Goodbye

Soap Opera Digest- 4/24/01

"I did cry my eyes out," shares Sarah Brown (Carly, far r. with Executive Producer Jill Phelps) on her final day on the GENERAL HOSPITAL set earlier this month. "I tried not to, but it's like going off to college after high school. Its poetically, beautifully sad."

After Brown taped her final scenes, which will air on April 24, cast and crew gathered to say goodbye on a sweet note. "They brought in a cake, and everyone came up," she smiles. "I was in such an emotional state, but I told everyone that I really felt like I grew up at GENERAL HOSPITAL. I learned so much about my craft, and I really wanted to thank every single person who I worked with."

Did it make her reconsider her decision to leave? "No, it really didn't," she admits. "I am completely at peace with my decision. I'm really listening to my heart. It's like a subconscious feeling when something has given you or you've given it as much as you can, and it's time to move on and get to something else."

Up next for the actress is a film in Vancouver called Shock Treatment. "It's a really great role, different from Carly in every way possible," she says. "She is an underwear model and her deal is that people only know her by her butt [laughs]. It's actually a great psychological thriller."

Brown also intends to pursue directing. "I want to do it all. I want to write, produce, driect. I also want to be able to have my family and be really good at that. So that's my goal in the next couple of years. I'm incredibly excited. As difficult as it was to leave and as much as I'm going to miss that place, I'm looking forward to having time with myself to pursue the dreams I've had since I was a child."

As for how she feels about her character being recast, "It doesn't bother me in any way," Brown notes. "And if [my replacement] wants to go out and have coffee with me and pick my brain, I'm ready, willing and able, if for nothing else than to keep the continuity of the character for the fans. But I understand that it's just business. It's not personal to me. I need to leave, and they need to do whatever they need to do to make it okay for the show. I hope people understand that. I have every faith that it will be handled responsibly.

"I'm not looking to come back, and I don't mean that in any negative way whatsoever," she concludes. "I've loved it. I've just run the gamut with the character and I really want to move into new things in my life. That's the only reason."

And to her fans, "I want to say how much I appreciate, respect, adore them and their support for not only the character of Carly, but the storyline of Sonny and Carly, and for myself as a person. I'm so very grateful for my experiences. I couldn't have asked for anything better. I never expected this kind of ride."

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