Just one day before NBC officially announced the cancelation of Smash, star Katharine McPhee talked to The Hollywood Reporter about the inevitable conclusion of the fictional Broadway drama.
“Sure, I wish that it could have five more seasons, but we had two great seasons and all I can say is I loved every moment of it,” said McPhee, whose costars included Debra Messing, Anjelica Huston, and Megan Hilty. “I loved getting to the set, I loved the people, I loved my crew. We did amazing things on the show in two years.”
The former American Idol runner-up is certainly no stranger to show business. She’s been trying to break into acting for as long as she’s been singing, and having grown up in Los Angeles, McPhee knows what trials lie ahead. “With this business, you can never predict what people are going to like or love or hate,” she told THR. “All I know is that when the show started and people were so excited about the pilot, I was excited to finally be a part of something that could showcase me. Everyone has perceptions about what you’re capable of and what you can do and this show was a huge gift.”
Soon after news broke on Friday that the network was pulling the plug on the show two seasons in, the 29-year-old took to Twitter with a lengthy response to her fans. Among McPhee’s tweets:
“Love you all! Your passion is so heartwarming! Life is about chapters and the relationships you make along the way. Next chapter! Exciting. And I love this girl @meganhiltly soooooooo much! One of the many great things I gained!”
Now with Smash shoots permanently wrapped, does McPhee, who said she “fell in love with New York — the city and the people,” plan to stay on the East Coast? It’s unlikely. Said McPhee: “The reality is everything I need to do and create and pursue at the moment is in L.A.”
That includes working on new music for Columbia Records. Among her collaborators on songs for a forthcoming album are Linda Perry, Ryan Tedder, Salaam Remi and Sia.
Katharine McPhee, star of NBC’s Smash and 2006 American Idol runner-up, has begun recording her new studio album.
The still-untitled LP will be her debut for Columbia Records and third nonholiday LP overall. It’s due out later this year and, according to a press release, will feature songwriting collaborations from Linda Perry, Salaam Remi, OneRepublic’s Ryan Tedder and Sia, best known for her collaborations with Flo Rida and David Guetta.
Recently, McPhee returned to Idol, where she performed OneRepublic’s new hit “If I Lose Myself” alongside Tedder.
McPhee’s self-titled 2007 debut (released through RCA) debuted at No. 2 on the Billboard 200 and produced the hit single “Over It,” which spent 16 weeks on the Hot 100 and peaked at No. 29. McPhee followed in 2010 with Unbroken (which debuted at No. 27) and the holiday album Christmas Is the Time to Say I Love You.
Well at least NBC didn’t cancel it. The network announced today that it will relegate the very low-rated Smash to Saturdays beginning April 6, where it will live out its final days. NBC ordered a total of 17 episodes for its second (and obviously last) season, but hey — change was needed: Tuesday’s episode earned a 1.4 rating in 18-49 this week and a mere 4.78 million in viewers. Last year, it averaged 9.65 million and a 3.4 rating in the demo.
Katharine McPhee’s Golden Rules
“I’m mostly daring about things I’m really passionate about,” says Katharine, who shares her tips for how to go big (never home!). . .even when you’re not feeling ballsy.
IN HER CAREER
“There are people who are bold at industry parties, who go up to big producers and directors and introduce themselves, and I’m not really like that. I’m really kind of shy, and I’m not the best self-promoter. Even with Twitter, I’m always like, OK, if I write this, does this make me sound. . .” she says. “There are so many ways to be bold. I think being bold is also being consistent and persistent—plugging away at what I want.”
FOR A KICK-ASS AUDITION (OR ANY BIG EVENT)
“You get one opportunity to audition. I like fighting for things in the traditional way—by being as prepared as I possibly can.” Her strategy for battling through fear is simple but effective: “I try to take as many deep breaths as I can, but you have to force yourself. When your heart is racing, you want to take little, shallow breaths.”
FAVORITE FASHION RISKS
“I like boho with a gypsy twist; that’s sort of my way to push it,” she says. “But I’m totally into the high-waisted skirt with the peekaboo top where your tummy peeks out.”
TAKING CHANCES WITH HER MUSIC
Of her third album, currently untitled (with hopes for a summer launch), Kat says, “I’ve wanted to have a fun record for so long, and it’s fun! I’m not a serious person at all, and people who know me [know] I’m so goofy, and I want that to come out in the music.”
MAKING MEGA HAIR CHANGES
In 2009, Kat chopped her long locks into a short shag—and then went platinum. “I loved it. . .until my hair just started breaking like crazy,” she says. What’s next on her hair docket? “I have never been red; that would be fun.” She’s also into the blue-streaked French twists from Oscar de la Renta’s spring runway.
ONE PLACE SHE’S NEVER BOLD
With relationships. “I’m definitely not the aggressor. The first time I met [my husband, Nick Cokas], I didn’t think of it as anything—especially because I met him at a workplace. There, you’re focused on what you’re there for, and then you’re like, Oh, you’re cute!”
“It’s not just going to be about Bombshell,” Katharine told HollywoodLife.com on Feb. 10 at the DVF Fall 2013 show at Lincoln Center during Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week. ”There are going to be quite a few different shows going on. And maybe perhaps a couple love triangles.”
But while we wait for that mess to sort itself out, we’ll have plenty to keep ourselves entertained, like a few show-stopping performances by Jennifer Hudson!
“Jennifer was great,” Katharine told us. “She got to do these big musical numbers, and I wasn’t there when she was shooting them, but it was fun to watch them back.”
Karen’s Romance With Jimmy In Season 2
“You’ll see Karen trying to focus on what it is that she’s professionally working on, but also being torn by being attracted to somebody, and how that balance affects her life,” Katharine added.
That, we assume, was a nod to Jeremy Jordan‘s Brooklyn songwriter character, Jimmy. When HollywoodLife.com visited the show’s NYC set earlier this year, Jeremy told us all about Jimmy and Karen’s love story, though he urged us not to think of it that way.
“It’s more of a chemistry story,” Jeremy explained during our recent visit to the show’s NYC set. “It’s this constant tug and pull; just when you think something might happen with them, something gets in the way.”
Katharine McPhee is one of the most diverse people on television. McPhee currently stars on the NBC hit musical/drama Smash, where she does it all—singing, dancing, and acting. As many remember, McPhee was a contestant on the talent show American Idol, where she came in second place behind Taylor Hicks.
Some former American Idol contestants distance themselves from the show due to their fear of being typecast, but McPhee is not one of them. She told us that it was a challenge coming off of a successful show like American Idol, but that didn’t stop her from pursuing her career aspirations. McPhee is very appreciative of her time on IDOL. (source)
Smash covers this week (January 12th) Entertainment Weekly issue with a gorgeous new photoshoot of our girl Katharine McPhee together with Megan Hilty and the new entry Jennifer Hudson. Scans from the issue and outtakes from the photoshoots have been added to the gallery. Also at the EW site you can read an article and watch the behind the scenes video from the photoshoot!