Days of Our Lives
“I got a good outlook from a casting director's point of view. They have so much talent at this stage in their careers and work so hard; you have to really analyze everything they do to come up with a winner.” Melissa Reeves (on realizing a casting director's perspective).
Soap opera actress Melissa Reeves was first noticed in the mid 1980s when she played Jade Perkins (1984-1985), Joe Perkins' youngest sister, on the NBC's long-running and award-winning television soap opera, "Santa Barbara." She would later received more recognition while playing Jennifer Horton (1990-2006) on the NBC/SOAPnet's soap opera "Days of Our Lives," for which she won three Soap Opera Digest awards. She also has appeared in several TV movies and guest starred in a number of TV shows.
“When you have such an incredibly strong fanbase that says this is what we like and this is what we don't like, and you go against it, they will switch off.” Melissa Reeves.
This 5' 2" actress, who once dated Jon Hensley, has been married to actor Scott Reeves since 1990 and has two children with him.
Childhood and Family:
My family always gave me a lot of encouragement to pursue a career in the performing arts. My dad is a disc jockey in New Jersey and growing up near New York City, a great cultural center, also didn't hurt." Melissa Reeves.
In a close family environment in Eatontown, New Jersey, Melissa Brennan, nicknamed “Missy,” was born on March 14, 1967 to Lawrence and Marion Brennan. She has one older brother, David, who has a daughter named after her.
On March 23, 1990, Melissa married her present husband, actor Scott Reeves (born on May 16, 1966), whom she met when he was part of the cast of "Days of Our Lives" (1965). They have two children together, daughter Emily Taylor Reeves (born on June 23, 1992) and son Lawrence David Reeves (born on August 4, 1997), who is named after the paternal grandfather and mom's older brother. In 1999, both the Reeves starred in the made-for-television film “Half a Dozen Babies.”
Melissa and her family currently reside in the San Fernando Valley alongside their pets, which includes two dogs named Grace and Coco. When she is not busy, Melissa likes to unwind by quilting, sewing, and painting.
"I took dancing very seriously. Then I landed some commercials when I was fifteen and that gave me the acting bug." Melissa Reeves.
Initially dreaming of becoming a professional dancer, Melissa Reeves commuted into New York City to study dance with Phil Black. She also studied theatre at the prestigious Lee Strasberg Institute in Manhattan and soon landed a role in the HBO movie “Somewhere Tomorrow” (1983; starring Sarah Jessica Parker).
In the following year, she snagged the role of Jade Perkins, Joe Perkins' youngest sister, on the NBC's long-running and award-winning television soap opera, "Santa Barbara," where she stayed until 1985. Her performance in the show earned her two Young Artist Award nominations, for Outstanding Young Actress - Regular Daytime Serial in 1986, and for Best Young Actress in a Daytime or Nighttime Television Series in 1985.
After her contract with "Santa Barbara" ended, Reeves played guest roles in an episode of NBC family drama series starring Michael Landon and Victor French, "Highway to Heaven," and HBO and USA Network's mystery anthology television series "The Hitchhiker." She was also cast in Bert L. Dragin's dramatic thriller film "Summer Camp Nightmare" (1987), which was inspired by William Butler's novel.
In the early 1990s, after a five-year absence, Reeves triumphantly returns to soap opera on NBC/SOAPnet's "Days of Our Lives," playing the role of Jennifer Horton, one of daytime television's most beloved characters. The character was played on a recurring basis by Maren Stephenson from 1976 to 1977 and Jennifer Peterson from 1977 to 1978. When Reeves left in 1995, the character was played by Stephanie Cameron from 1995 to 1998.
“It is with deep regret that I've chosen to leave my role as Jennifer on Days of our Lives. This was entirely my decision, and not the show's. I thank all the fans for their support, and I ask them to understand my need to be with my family right now. We're all healthy, but there are times when families need to be together, and I'm at a point in my life where I need to spend more time with my husband Scott, and our daughter, Emily.” Melissa Reeves (the official announcement she made when leaving "Days Of Our Lives").
Reeves returned to "Days of Our Lives" in the fall of 2000 and remained until the summer of 2006. Her performance in the show won her three Soap Opera Digest Awards, for Hottest Female Star in 1994, for Best Love Story in 1992, and for Outstanding Super Couple: Daytime (shared with Matthew Ashford) in 1991. She was also nominated a Daytime Emmy in 1992 for Outstanding Younger Actress in a Drama Series and two Young Artist Awards in 1988 for Best Young Actress Starring in a Television Drama Series and in 1987 for Exceptional Performance by a Young Actor in a Daytime Series.
On returning to "Days Of Our Lives," Reeves said, “My children are older now and there was never a question where I would work. It was always going to be back at Days. It's like coming home.”
During her "Days of Our Lives" tenure, Reeves starred in the made-for-television movies "One Stormy Night" (1992), "Night Sins" (1993), "Winter Heat" (1994), "Half a Dozen Babies" (1999), in which he acted opposite husband Scott Reeves as a young couple struggling to have baby. She also co-starred with her husband in the short comedy film "Basic Training" (2001).
Soap Opera Digest: Hottest Female Star, "Days of Our Lives," 1994
Soap Opera Digest: Best Love Story: Daytime or Prime Time, "Days of Our Lives," 1992
Soap Opera Digest: Outstanding Super Couple: Daytime, "Days of Our Lives," 1991