Nascar Races Into Salem with Guest Appearance by Nascar Nextel Cup Driver, Casey Mears
LOS ANGELES -- June 21, 2004 -- NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series driver Casey Mears joins the cast of Days of our Lives, NBC's No. 1-rated daytime television program, on June 30, 2004. The announcement was made jointly today by Sarah Nettinga, director, film, television and music entertainment, NASCAR Digital Entertainment, Days of our Lives Executive Producer, Ken Corday and NBC Entertainment Senior Vice President, Daytime Programs, Sheraton Kalouria.
The driver of the No. 41 Target Dodge plays himself in the scene shot from a fictional NASCAR pit. Philip Kiriakis (Kyle Brandt) enlists the help of Mears by sponsoring the No. 41 Target Dodge with a message pleading Shawn Brady (Jason Cook) to return home to Belle Black (Kirsten Storms). Directing this guest appearance and all of NASCAR's work in the Hollywood community is NASCAR Digital Entertainment in Los Angeles, home to NASCAR's broadcasting, new media and entertainment programming groups.
"We were excited to work with Casey and our television partner NBC to bring this unique collaboration to the mainstream," said Nettinga. "This continues our commitment to increase exposure for our drivers, teams and tracks while offering the NASCAR female fan, which is 40 % of our fan base, an innovative way to see one of their favorite drivers."
"Bringing Casey Mears and NASCAR into the dramatic world of Days of our Lives is a great opportunity to reward our viewers who love this exciting and popular sport. The connection that viewers have to the characters and actors on Days is similar in many ways to the dedication NASCAR fans have to the sport and its charismatic drivers," said Kalouria.
"I think my performance was very natural and spot-on, as I got to play myself," Mears said. "Working with NDE, NBC and the entire crew from Days was a great experience and a wonderful way to bring NASCAR and our No. 41 Target Dodge team to a new audience."
In only his second year in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series, Mears is currently 16th in standings with six top-10 finishes. Mears drives the No. 41 Target Dodge for Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates. Mears made his acting debut at five on FOX's Party of Five and has just finished filming two episodes of the new FX series, NASCAR Drivers:360. The show premiered on May 14 at 10 p.m. on FX and Casey's two episodes air June 11 and 18. Originally from Bakersfield, CA, he currently resides in Huntersville, NC where he partakes in his hobbies of wakeboarding and snowboarding on the occasional off-day.
Days of our Lives celebrated its 38th anniversary on November 8, 2003. The show's success derives from its consistent commitment to excellence in writing and storytelling - supported by a diverse ensemble of performers - and an uncanny knack for anticipating viewer interests. From demonic possessions and baby switches to exciting teen stories and classic love triangles, Days of our Lives remains a perennial favorite among viewers of all ages.
Days of our Lives is produced by Corday Productions Inc. in association with Sony Pictures Television. Executive producer Ken Corday is following in the tradition of his parents, Betty and Ted Corday, who co-created Days of our Lives and helmed the series for many years. Stephen Wyman is also co-executive producer. James E. Reilly is head writer of this show and brainchild of The Salem Stalker storyline. He also created and spearheads NBC's other daytime drama, Passions. Days of our Lives airs on NBC at 1 p.m. PST. Check local listings.
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