OFFSTAGE: Hayden Panettiere Won’t Copy Taylor Swift

(CMT Offstage keeps a 24/7 watch on everything that’s happening with country music artists behind the scenes and out of the spotlight.)

My potential new favorite TV show Nashville will finally premiere on ABC on Oct. 10. And one of the stars, Hayden Panettiere, claims that her character is nothing like Taylor Swift, even though that’s the gossip on the street.

“I’ve heard the Taylor Swift [comparison] quite a bit. I think aside from being about the same age and blond — and not even the same height at all! — once you get to see Juliette you’ll disagree wholeheartedly. I think Taylor would disagree. She’s much nicer than my character,” Panettiere said at a press event.

I’ve never thought Panettiere was going to play a version of Swift, because I’m so convinced she is going to play a version of Chiles Stanton from the Country Strong movie. Remember her? The snotty, back-stabbing beauty with so much to learn, played by Leighton Meester?

Yes, I firmly believe that Nashville is going to play out like a sequel to Country Strong and I cannot wait. Connie Britton plays the industry veteran Rayna James, just like Gwyneth Paltrow played Kelly Canter. And hopefully, as long as I’m drawing film-to-TV comparisons, Eric Close will play the level-headed husband as well as Tim McGraw did.

Alison makes her living loving country music. She's based in Chicago, but she's always leaving her heart in Nashville.