Shemar Moore, who played the role of Malcolm on The Young & the Restless from 1994-2005 and won an Emmy as Outstanding Supporting Actor in 2000, announced last week that he’d be returning to the show where he made his acting debut on September 9 and September 10, 2014.
Since leaving Y&R, Moore appeared as Derek on the primetime hit, Criminal Minds, and in movies like Diary of a Mad Black Woman.
While it’s pretty common for actors to return to soaps after taking a few years off – General Hospital’s Anthony Geary and Genie Francis, for instance, left on separate occasions at the height of Luke & Laura-mania, only to come back after a decade’s absence – few do so after achieving lasting success in primetime or films.
PS: When I interviewed Victoria Rowell (Dru; Y&R) for my book on Soaps' Greatest Moments, she had this to say about working with Shemar Moore:
There was a responsibility, all the way around, for the actors to do the best job that we possibly could. Obviously, being leading African-American actors in a genre that typically is not African-American in front of the camera in large numbers, I knew that this was an awesome opportunity. And Kristoff St. John, Shemar Moore, myself, and Tonya Lee Williams (Olivia), we worked to the best of our theatrical ability to make sure that we brought forth our best work. Because we knew the gravity of the situation. We knew that we were in a plum position. And so, when we were given this extraordinary storyline, we wanted to give it its full due. We knew the longer the story was written for us, this meant the audience was very captivated by this story, and we also knew that we were inspiring the writers to write for us.... The characters of Drucilla and Malcolm, they’re iconic soap figures. With no race involved, they’re just iconic. I think because Shemar and myself also navigate though primetime and film, this helped further and grow an audience for our daytime characters.