Sydney Penny and Crystal Chappell

The doctor is in! Daytime fan fave Sydney Penny — so triumphant as the tragic heroine Julia Santos on All My Children — is joining NBC's Days of Our Lives for a seven-episode stint. A network rep tells TV Guide Magazine that Penny will play Dr. Norman at the rehab center treating drug addict Carly Manning (Crystal Chappell).

And there's more cool casting news here. Carly's son, Nicholas Alamain, will return to the show as part of Carly's rehab story and this time the role will be played by former Make It or Break It heartthrob Cody Longo. After mother and son are reunited and Carly seems to be on the mend, look for Chappell — who has been fired along with several other Days stars — to be ushered off the series.

Penny, who will start airing on Days August 30, was Emmy-nominated for her roles on AMC and Santa Barbara and also had suds runs on The Bold and the Beautiful, Sunset Beach and Beverly Hills, 90210. The actress is still fondly remembered by romance nuts as the young Meggie in the classic ABC mini-series The Thorn Birds.

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