Profile of John Aniston

A complete biography of the 'Days of Our Lives' actor who plays Victor

John Aniston
John Aniston. Courtesy: Getty Images/David Becker

Just the Facts:

Birth Name:
Yannis Anastassakis
Date of Birth:
July 24, 1933
Birth Place:
Crete, Greece
Astrological Sign:
Victor Kiriakis (1985-1997; 1999-present)

Acting Roles:

• Harold, The Paul Reiser Show (2011)
• Gerald, The Gold & the Beautiful (2011)
• Wallace, Mad Men (2010)
• Wolf, Cold Case (2009)
• Jim, Worst Week (2008)
• Mr. Gable, The Awakening of Spring (2008)
• Detective Macomas, Fixing Rhonda (2008)
• Merrit, Journeyman (2007)
• Nigel, Sands of Oblivion (2007)
• Wise Man, Order Up (2007)
• John Victor, Old Enough to Fight (2004)
• Constantine, My Big Fat Greek Life (2003)
• Douglas, Gilmore Girls (2002)
• Alexander, The West Wing (2002)
• Quarren Ambassador, Star Trek: Voyager (2001)
• Alex, L.A. Heat (1999)
• Gordon, Fired Up (1997)
• Carlton, Diagnosis Murder (1997)
• Colonel Alzar, Airwolf (1985)
• Martin, Search for Tomorrow (1978-1984)
• Eddie, Love of Life (1975-1978)
• Albert, Kojak (1974)
• Phil, That Girl (1970)
• First IMF Captain, Mission Impossible (1969)
• Achmed, Now You See It, Now You Don't (1968)
• Frank, The Virginian (Frank, 1968)
• Economides, I Spy (1967)
• Greek #2, Combat (1964)
• Birdman of Macy’s, Love with the Proper Stranger (1963)
• Officer #1, 87th Precinct (1962)


Divorced from Nancy Dow; they had one child, Jennifer Aniston. Married to Sherry Rooney since 1984; they have a son, Alexander.


• Aniston peaks fluent Greek and Spanish.
• Was slated to play the role of Ted Baxter on The Mary Tyler Moore Show before Ted Knight was found.
• Appeared on the first cover of Soap Opera Digest in November 1975.
• Originally auditioned for the role of Doug Williams on Days of Our Lives, which went to actor Bill Hayes.
• Has worked on Days without a contract since 2000. “A script arrives at my door. That’s how I usually find out when I’m working,” says Aniston.
Friends producers once talked to him about playing his real-life daughter Jennifer Aniston’s father on the NBC sitcom, but it never came to pass.
• Has always dreamed of having his own nighttime comedy series.


Born on the island of Crete in Greece, Yanni Anastassakis, aka John Aniston, and his family moved to the United States when he was a child.

His father promptly changed the family name to Aniston.

In time, Aniston developed a love for performing, which led him to procure a bachelor’s degree in Theater Arts from Pennsylvania State University. After he graduated, Aniston served in the United States Navy as an intelligence officer. Later, he served in the reserves, where he attained the rank of Lieutenant Commander.

Aniston began his acting career on the New York stage, when he appeared in the Broadway musical Little Mary Sunshine. Over the years, he has acted in over 40 theatrical productions on Broadway, off Broadway and in regional stock theaters.

In 1975, Aniston broke into daytime, when he was cast as Eddie Aleata on Love of Life. He met his future wife, Sherry Rooney, on the set. In 1978, he left the soap to join the cast of Search for Tomorrow as Martin Tourneur, Mary Stuart's love interest. Aniston joined the cast of Days of Our Lives in 1985, when he won the role of prominent crime lord Victor Kiriakis.

In addition to his thriving soap career, Aniston has had great success in nighttime television. Over the years he’s guest starred on numerous hit shows from West Wing to Mad Men to Cold Case.

Aniston currently resides in Los Angeles with his wife, Sherry.