Days of Our Lives Vanessa Williams Cast Valerie Grant

Days of Our Lives Recast: Melrose Place Alum Takes Over Groundbreaking Role

Dr. Valerie Grant is — after a decades-long absence — back in.

NBC’s Days of Our Lives has cast Melrose Place and Soul Food actress Vanessa Williams as Dr. Grant, a role that originated in the 1970s and was controversial at the time, our sister site Deadline reports.

In the late ’70s, Valerie (then played by Tina Andrews) and David Banning were daytime’s first interracial couple. They planned to marry, though that endeavor went south after he had an affair. Diane Sommerfield later took over the part; Valerie left the fictional Salem in 1982.

Per Deadline, Valerie — now a cardiologist — will come back to town in a storyline involving her old love, Abe Carver. Her first airdate is Tuesday, Oct. 25.

In addition to the original Melrose Place and Soul Food, Williams’ TV credits include a recent stint on The Flash as well as roles on Chicago HopeMurder One and The Cosby Show.

Williams’ joining the cast is the latest in a recent spate of Days casting news: Greg Vaughan, Christie Clark and Austin Peck all will return to the soap in early 2017.