Alison Sweeney Leaving ‘Days of Our Lives': I ‘Have Worked So Much’ (Video)

After more than two decades on the daytime soap, actress wants to spend more time with her family

Last Updated: July 10, 2014 @ 7:10 PM

Alison Sweeney is pulling up stakes from Salem.

Sweeney, who’s played Samantha on the NBC soap opera for 21 years, announced Tuesday that she’s leaving the show in order to spend more time with her family.

The actress, who’s done double duty as a “Days” cast member and host of the reality series “The Biggest Loser” for the past seven years, added that she will remain on the soap opera for the remainder of the year.

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Sweeney made the announcement on an episode of “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” to air Tuesday.

“So I’ve been on ‘Days of Our Lives’ for 21 years, I’m celebrating my 21st year this year, thank you,” Sweeney said as the audience applauded. “And I decided that it’s going to be my last year on the show.”

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Sweeney noted that she’s been on “Days” since she was 16, and “I have never had more than a two-week vacation in that whole time.”

“I love Sami, I love Salem, I love my job, I love daytime, I love the fans, I love everything about it, but … I just have worked so much, and my daughter had just turned five and my son is nine and I just want to be with them.”

NBC has not yet responded to TheWrap’s request for comment.

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Sweeney said that the fate of her character is uncertain, but “It would be awesome to have some sort of happy ending, but then I think maybe Sami probably deserves some kind of twisted, ‘Breaking Bad’ ending,” Sweeney offered. “She’s caused a lot of people a lot of problems.”

Watch Sweeney reveal her “Days” departure below:
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