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GH’s Adam J. Harrington Didn’t Originally Audition For Jagger

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When Adam J. Harrington first met with General Hospital’s casting director, it wasn’t to audition for the role of John “Jagger” Cates. While chatting with his co-stars Steve Burton (Jason) and Bradford Anderson (Spinelli) on their Daily Drama podcast, the Port Charles newcomer explained to the hosts that he’d originally been in the running for someone else when he did a chemistry read with Laura Wright (Carly) toward the end of 2023.

“Did it, was told I wasn’t going to get the character, but, ‘Hang tight, there’s something else,’” he recalled, adding that several months went by before he heard back from GH in December with a job offer. “All of a sudden, it was like ‘Great, here you go.’ But I still didn’t know who I was playing.”

With a laugh, Harrington admitted, “And I should have asked, at that point. First lesson. I think there would have been some questions. Then after the deal’s done, I’m like “By the way, who am I playing?” And they still just sent me a one-sheet, with the name John Jagger Cates and the description.”

GH John Anna station
Harrington said he signed on to GH before knowing just how deep his character’s ties in Port Charles ran.Christine Bartolucci/Disney

As he prepared for his new role, Harrington turned to YouTube for research and discovered that he’d be playing a recast of the character made popular by Antonio Sabato, Jr. 30 years ago. “I spent a good three or four days, Steve, watching all of your storylines in the ’90s,” he told Burton. “That’s how I kind of found out. I thought that because after I had come in and read, it was going to be a new character.”

To “reboot” Jagger as a grown man — the successful FBI agent who now goes by John — Harrington felt it was important to tap into the character’s upbringing during those early days in Port Charles. “No matter what he had become in the 20 or 30 or 70 years since we’ve seen him, that would still be there,” he pointed out. “Given his upbringing and what he’d gone through, it was common that there’s a sense of humor in there that’s either used defensively or as a way of getting through the world.”

The powers that be at the soap also suggested Harrington put his own twist on John. “What I had been told from the brass [was], don’t worry about following that same emotional storyline. He’s gone away for a very, very, very time, become successful and has come back,” he shared. “Basically, they were saying ‘You bring in you.’ But I also wanted to honor the circumstance and without stepping on anyone’s toes, try to also honor maybe one little aspect of the character.”

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