Meet Kelly Sullivan Who Plays Sage on Young and the Restless

Kelly Sullivan. CBS/Sonja Flemming

One year after leaving her dual roles as Kate Howard and Connie Falconeri on General Hospital, Kelly Sullivan is joining the cast of The Young and the Restless in the role of Sage Warner, a woman who has been tending to Adam Newman (Justin Hartley) while he has been presumed dead, but is really healing from his car accident.

In this interview, Kelly talks about leaving GH, getting her new gig on Y&R, working with Justin Hartley, the new Adam Newman, and more.

How did this role on  come about?

Jill Faren Phelps, who's the EP over at Y&R, called me up about a month and half ago. She said, "Hey, there's a character on the show that I would love you to do if you would want to do it." I said, "Absolutely." It was literally like that.

Were you shocked when you were written off of General Hospital?

It's always a shock when you receive news that you're not going to be continuing on. But I understood. And I definitely did not take it personally because it's show business, baby. I would say, "Yeah, I was a little shocked," but I also understand that the powers-that-be -- the writing staff and everyone -- are looking really, really far ahead. I think that they just determined that in order to bring other people in and to facilitate other storylines that changes had to be made and characters had to go. I had a great time. I got to play two characters. That was like a dream come true.

Were you familiar with Justin Hartley's work?

No, I didn't I didn't know his work. The first day we met, we were talking and getting to know each other. And he told me that he had been working a lot in Toronto doing Smallville, Revenge, and Mistresses. Then he was on Passions before, so he knows about daytime totally.

Did you go through any of that stuff, like many actors do, of thinking, "I'm never going to work again," after being written off General Hospital?

Oh no, no, no. I've been working since I was a little one. The most important part of being an actor or an artist is the time that you have in between jobs, because you live our life. You get life experience. You can grow. You can evolve, if you will.

I started a project called Thattagurl.com. It's a website that I created for women about health and wellness. It's a support community. I really got into nutrition and meditation. So that has been my big focal point during the interim. I really enjoyed it. It's been a really great year for me. I'm really thrilled to do this and move on with it.

Are you only one personality this time?

I'm really excited about it. First of all, it's a new character, so it can really be whatever we want it to be. It's a discovery thing every day. The writers, me... we're all trying to figure out together who Sage is. What her relationships are to other characters. It's a getting-to-know-you situation.

Is Sage good or bad?

I think she's all things. Sometimes I'll get a scene and I'll be like, "OOOOO, girl. All right.

Breaking it down." Then sometimes she's very sweet. She definitely wants to secure her place in the world. I don't know quite specifically what that is yet. There's something that has to do with Adam Newman that is going to help her get into her place on the canvas.

Is it nice to be creating a character this time, instead of replacing someone like you did on GH?

Yeah. It's fun. There's a lot more questions to be answered. The way they're introducing me and Justin's Adam is kind of mysterious. You're not really sure. I think they don't want to give the audience a point of view yet. Is she nice? Does she have good intentions? Why is she doing what she's doing? Which I love. As an audience member, I love to feel that complexity of the story.

Last question: Is this character anything like you at all?

Oh, yeah. I think every character is an extension of the person in some way. That's how you ground the person to be human. Every time I get my script, it's like another peek into this person. So it's very exciting.