Every now and then, a daytime soap drama gives a once unknown name a shot. The Young and the Restless eventually settled on Michael Graziadei for the role of Daniel Romalotti Jr. in 2004. However, child actors aside, two others were hired and fired first. What’s the deal?
Here are the actors who played Daniel Romalotti Jr. on ‘The Young and the Restless’
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Long before The Young and the Restless aged the character of Daniel Romalotti Jr. — the son of Phyllis Summers (Michelle Stafford) — children played the role.
Twins, Desiree and Hannah Wheel, Michael McElroy, Chase MacKenzie Bebak, and Roland Gibbons all took the Y&R stage at different times throughout the 1990s through 1998 when the character was written out.
By 2004, the show wrote Daniel back in, but the moved him up in age. The daunting Y&R re-cast originally led to Cam Gigandet, and the Owen Beckman before Graziadei landed the role. He stayed on until 2012 with a few appearances through 2016 after his contract ended.
For now, Daniel lives in Georgia. He is rarely mentioned and hasn’t been re-cast for any appearances at this time.
Why were Gigandet and Beckman fired?
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Many fans of The Young and the Restless may not remember the two actors who portrayed Daniel before Graziadei and there’s a good reason for that. Gigandet took over the role in March 2004. However, it was short-lived.
After just a few days o the set, Gigandet was let go. The final airdate of his performance was early May 2004. Reasons for the firing via multiple outlets have been stated as Gigandet’s “not a good fit” for the character.
“So much relies on your confidence,” he told Men’s Health in 2008. “To be let go from a soap opera is the most embarrassing confidence basher in the world. It’s like, ‘Oh, if I’m not good enough for that, I’m not good enough for anything.’ So that was tough. But you learn that none of that stuff matters. You keep pushing forward.”
Casting directors then hired Owen Beckman. Worse than what happened to Gigandet, Beckman’s filmed scenes were deleted when Graziadei took over May 10, 2004, according to Soap Central. The reasons for his sudden exit are unknown and The Young and the Restless remains absent from his list of IMDb credits.
Graziadei continued with the role, renewing his contract again in 2009. He left the show in 2012 (with a final airdate in January 2013) to pursue other projects but appeared in a handful of episodes in 2013 to phase out his on-screen mother, Stafford, who also left the show in 2013.
Did Gigandet and Beckman go on to other projects?
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Beckman’s first official role should’ve been Y&R. Instead, he appeared on CSI: NY in 2005. After that, the actor landed roles in 7th Heaven, Invasion, Cold Case, NCIS, Without a Trace, The Mentalist, and more. His most recent project, The Allnighter, is in post-production with no release date listed.
As for Gigandet, Y&R fans may have followed his journey a little more closely as he went on to do some big things. Aside from appearing in seven episodes of Y&R, that was only the beginning.
Gigandet snagged roles in Jack & Bobby, The O.C. — in which he previously referred to the cast as “miserable” — and more. Many remember him from his role as James in the Twilight franchise saga. His recent releases include the recurring role of Jake in the TV series, Ice, as well as the upcoming feature-length film, Tom Clancy’s Without Remorse, opposite Black Panther‘s Michael B. Jordan.
The Young and the Restless airs weekdays on CBS.
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