As General Hospital’s Jon Lindstrom Celebrates 30 Years in Port Charles, He Reveals the Surprising Characters He *Almost* Played — and the Actor Who Nearly Got *His* Part
We know him as Kevin and Ryan, but can you imagine him as Frisco? Or… ?
In a way, it seems like Jon Lindstrom was always destined to check into General Hospital. Even before he was tapped to play Kevin Collins, the show’s then-casting director kept giving him bit parts. “Then he brought me back in a few times over the years,” the actor tells SoapCentral, “once for Jimmy Lee Holt, which went to Steve Bond, of course, and once for Frisco, which went to my friend Jack Wagner, who I’ve known since we were waiting tables.”
Credit: ABC (2)
After Mark Teschner took over as casting director, he brought in Lindstrom to read for then-executive producer Gloria Monty. He even got a callback… only to find out that within days, Monty had left the show. “I thought, ‘OK, well, that’s gone,’” Lindstrom says.
But lo and behold, a few months later, the veteran of Rituals, Santa Barbara and Generations was brought back to read for new executive producer Wendy Riche. Eventually, the contenders to play Kevin were whittled down to him and Michael O’Leary, who was on a break from his long-running Guiding Light role of Rick Bauer. “We were like, ‘I guess it’s down to us, dude!'” Lindstrom recalls with a laugh.
Credit: George De Sota/JPI
After reading first as Mr. Nice Guy, then as Kevin’s actual stalker-ish self, Lindstrom got the part — and, as you well know, ultimately the role of the serial killer’s far stabler twin, Ryan Chamberlain, too. If you were wondering, there were no hard feelings between him and O’Leary. “Michael went back to New York and went back to Guiding Light” — where, ironically, Rick was thrust into a storyline with Annie Dutton, played by Cynthia Watros, who is now Nina on General Hospital.
How’s that for six degrees of separation? “I talked to him not that long ago,” Lindstrom says. “He’s a great guy.”
Check out photos of Ryan and Kevin and more of soaps’ most unforgettable good-and-evil twins in the gallery below.