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NASHVILLE SHOCKER: Connie Britton Bids Farewell To Rayna James!


After all the reports if Connie Britton was on for the full 22-episode season of Nashville on CMT, or only for the first half, it turned out after last night’s heartbreaking episode that Rayna took her last breath, and Britton made her official exit for the series leaving devastated #Nashies from coast to coast!

On last night’s episode, “If Tomorrow Never Comes” after being held at knifepoint by a crazed stalker, a car crash and emergency surgery, Rayna unexpectedly slipped away.  Look for Rayna to appear in flashbacks in two more episodes, before Britton is gone completely from the canvas.

Britton took to Instragram to address her departure from the series which was entirely her decision:  Thank you Rayna Jaymes. For your magic and your dignity. And thank you to all the creators of Rayna Jaymes, for there were many. Callie Khouri, who gave her life. Deacon, Maddie, Daphne, who shaped her as her family. Teddy, Tandy, Lamar too. Juliette, Scarlett, Bucky and the ones who crafted her into a business woman. Along with countless other compatriots and combatants. And then of course the crew of “Nashville” who brought her to life, every crew member in every department who made Rayna live each week.

And then there’s the music. T Bone, Buddy, Tim, Frankie and all the brilliant songwriters who gave Rayna a voice. There was no music, and no Rayna, without you.  But finally and most importantly, the fans. You made Rayna. You supported her and loved her and gave her inspiration just as she was able to inspire you. You were the energy source, the power behind her heart and soul and life. Rayna lived for you. And, from the depths of my heart, I thank you, for her and for me. It has been an honor to be a part of that creation. And as I know she would want it, the show must, and will go on. Long live Rayna Jaymes. #RIPRayna #NashvilleCMT

Connie told The Hollywood Reporter that her exit scenes were so emotionally difficult:  “It was incredibly emotional. It was very difficult for me and it still is. It’s hard for me to talk about without getting a little choked up [pauses] … because I love this character so much and the people I’ve been fortunate to act with for the last five years and our crew. This has become an essential part of my life. It was really tough doing those last couple weeks especially. Those scenes were so emotional. Toward the last couple days, which is when we shot the really intense scenes in the ICU and the one where Rayna actually dies, nobody could get through them without crying. Saying goodbye is really hard.”

News on Thursday also has Britton landing her first major role post Nashville.  She has signed on to star in  The Land of Steady Habits. Netflix’s ensemble comedic drama that adapts the Ted Thompson novel. Britton will play a divorcee who develops a connection with Mendelsohn’s character, first meeting him in a strip club.

So what do you think of a Nashville without Connie Britton? Did you watch the heartbreaking final death scenes of Rayna? Were you shocked? Comment below!


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I am really going to miss Rayna on one of my favourite nighttime shows. I loved her character and especially her and Deacons love story! I looked forward to Thursday night and was so happy when CMT picked up this amazing show. I know this show will go on and continue to be fantastic but Rayna will occupy a space that no one will replace in my heart and in Deacons!!!

Right now, the shock still fresh, I can’t picture the show being as good without Rayna/Connie. But I will still keep watching. I just hope this won’t be an excuse to have more of that obnoxious Matty taking front and center. We need more musical performances and a new country diva. And let Gunnar keep his hair…those ridiculous shaved side cuts rarely look good on anyone!

It won’t survive. It seemed not so very gracious to court the audience to come to Nashville’s rescue and help it not to be cancelled and to go to CMT this season–then to pull the rug out from under the loyal viewers. And I must say that Connie’s earlier comments were misleading to the audience–not cricket. And I found myself so very upset and angry as I watched the show unfold.
And I have seen it happen again and again–the lack of objectivity on the part of the people involved in a show. It’s happened again here unfortunately. Really, the show went off the rails after the first season and never found its footing again. It was like trying to revive a dead horse.
I guess “they” just don’t see that Rayna’s character, along with that of the wonderful Charles Esten’s character Deacon, was the heart of the show.
Now it has nothing/no one to hold it together. I predict it will collapse from within and that the ratings will drop dramatically. I, for one, am NOT interested with the bratty older child. And what will Deacon do? No one on the show will have the chemistry Esten had with Britton. Such a waste! He is so very talented. If he made a whole album I would listen to it. He’s paid his dues and he deserves better. Hope he find an insanely successful show to go to. I will not watch Nashville again.
The Hayden P. character is too self centered for me to care for her. And Jonathan Jackson, another talented character is wasted, has no chemistry with Hayden, and is sidelined to listening to her whine and carrying/tending to the baby–for how many seasons has this been going on. So sad! Sometimes TPTB cannot see the forest for the trees. The show will pay dearly. I read the interview where Connie said she would have wanted the marriage to have been explored more fully–I agree. Writing together was a great beginning and the song that closed the episode 2 weeks ago was sweet and promised more juicy bits to follow. Alas! Then the character of Rayna was killed. I don’t care that she said the new producer–and she–thinks they have done all they can with the character–not true And the bad thing in that Connie said they all knew going in that her character would be killed. They didn’t play fair with the audience and the audience has a LONG memory. Mark my word–the show is over–kaput.
The promos showed a rehashing of the same stale storylines. Nope, not watching!

Connie wouldn’t have stayed that much longer. What I think they SHOULD do…in light of fan reaction and disappointment, is create some new episodes to be seen as Deacon’s flashbacks…where we see their life together as a married couple. That way we can get the relationship we waited four years to see….


Amen, JK….the show lost me in the beginning season due to the absolute overemphasis on Rayna’s Britton, who I never liked, even on Friday Night Lights. I thought Powers Boothe’s character was magnificent, and Tandy and Teddy made for good soapy fun, too, but in the end, they were underutilized/gone too soon. (Deacon, I never took to…way too skeevy for my taste….) Hopefully, the show will now skew younger with far more screentime for Jonathan Jackson and his age group….he is a real star, and perhaps spotlight the truly cosmopolitan nature of the city and its citizens… more high society-oriented stories, too. That’s what makes a soap fun to watch…..

Very sad. I am still shocked! In a world of hints & spoilers in tv …,never saw it coming. I loved the way CMT made Rayna somehow a more loveable character.

I loved her as Rayna on Nashville and am VERY unhappy she is gone. Hope the show can go on without her. There are other good actors on that show though.

When CMT picked up the show it was reported CB was not signing for the whole season. Later just prior to airtime the reports said she was staying put. I don’t like that they misled me as an audience member. The writing is not balanced for the number of characters they have. This will be their downfall. I do like that Juliette is slowly maturing. Now that Rayna is gone Juliette may just surprise us. I can hope.

Jonathan Jackson should be showcased more. He has 6 daytime Emmys and he delivers heart wrenching material. More music and less teenage angst and bed hopping.

I stopped watching it halfway through season 2. I gave it a shot when it went to CMT and i was still bored with it. Season 1 was amazing though.

That is the end of Nashville!

I totally agree.

The show is cancelled by one network and is lucky enough to get picked up by another. Within 10 episodes of the “saving,” the show kills off the main character?Who in their right mind would think this is a good idea for the show to keep it going.

On the one hand, maybe Connie Britton wanted to leave the show. I don’t know. However, if Britton had wanted to leave, why did CMT even bother to bring it back? ABC cancelled it and the main actress wants out. Not a wise investment by CMT if this is the case.

On the other hand, if the writers and producers came up with the idea of killing her off, they’ve botched up the second chance that they got for this show.

Either way, I bet Nashville will be off the air for good by the end of the year even if it manages to make it to a second year on CMT.

Yes, Barbara, it was Connie’s choice. She didn’t even want to do CMT but was persuaded it seems, to appear for a few episodes. They tried to get her to stay; she wanted out…back to L.A. and other series/films.

I wasn’t surprised that they killed her off. Connie wasn’t at all upset when the show got cancelled and was looking forward to getting back to L.A. I think she was persuaded to do a few episodes to help kick off the CMT version.

What do I think? I think it was disrespectful to the fans who pushed for Nashville’s renewal. Without fan demand CMT would not have considered picking it up. And, regardless of how many other characters we love, Rayna was the central heart of the show. There was just something about her presence that ruled the show.

With that said, we have no control over whether an actor wants to go on to other projects. It’s, of course, his or her right, just as it is any of ours to change jobs, etc. But, still, there should be a recognition that if you have loyal fans who have rallied for renewal…and you KNOW that leaving would put quite the crimp in the show and the fans enthusiasm, I think you need to reconsider. At least stay the entire season.

I was upset from the beginning that they dropped Luke and Layla. Considering that they knew Connie would be leaving, I think it would have been wiser to keep the Nashville “family” together instead of introducing Juliette’s “angel” and a gospel Church. I’m thinking that’s where Maddie and her boyfreind will be headed as well…given Maddie’s grief and probable need for forgiveness.

I’m heartbroken. Just as in real life when you may know that someone ill may pass…it doesn’t mean you’re emotionally prepared when the time comes. Grief takes over. That’s how I felt watching this episode. It was beautifully written, exquisitely executed and gut-wrenching. I’m still reeling….

I was under the impression that Connie said she was staying with Nashville – throughout. What happened? Hope Nashville survives – I still enjoy the country aspects of the show – and the music. Rayna’s death and Connie’s leaving is just heartbreaking.

I cried like a baby watching her children cry as she died. And the next one shows her sister trying to take them from Deacon. I’m not a fan of that character but she is doing her job making me hate her.
I too would like to see more singing, more Nashville and please let Charlotte grow out her hair!

I was totally shocked to see Rayna die and it wasn’t even a cliffhanger. I think the other great actors/actresses can carry the show without Connie but the writing will have to get alot better. Dallas couldn’t survive without the great JR (Larry Hagman) so we shall see. I hope they will concentrate on more music and definitely put the talented Avery front and center. Avery & Julette should be Nashville’s super couple and start performing together.

The show is going to fall flat if the writers continue to place the two teen girls in every scene. I am already fast forwarding those scenes.

Please writers, do not bring the alcoholic story back for Deacon. Viewers much rather see a strong man handling his grief in a responsible manner. Allow Deacon to become a country super star!

I have stopped watching. To me Connie was the star. I started watching in the beginning because I had loved Hayden P. and Jonathan J. for years, but to me Connie out shown them. I do not want to see the younger sister’s jailbird father and Connie’s sister fighting over custody of the girls, when they want to be with Deacon. Also Scarlet’s blatant disregard for her boyfriend’s feelings, throwing her disloyalty in his face.


Hayden Panettiere Reveals Filming ‘Nashville’ was ‘Traumatizing’; Writers Used Her Personal Struggles with Addiction, Postpartum as Storylines

Nashville and former Guiding Light star, Hayden Panettiere (ex-Lizzie, GL) opened up about her final seasons on the ABC country music primetime drama, where the show touched too close to home for the actress who played lead character, Juliette Barnes.

In an interview with The Messenger, Hayden shared that during the run of the show from 2012-2018, she feels that the writers, more often that not, pulled from her real life while crafting Juliette’s storylines.

Hayden said on the years she spent filming the series that it was “also very traumatizing because I felt like I was acting out my own life.”

Photo: JPI

Previously, the actress had shared that her dependency on alcohol and opioids as a teenager led to her dependency in her adult life. In addition, Nashville told the story of Juliette’s postpartum depression, which also mirrored Panettiere’s experience who went through the same thing when her own daughter was born.

Explaining what went down behind the scenes, Hayden recalled: “Straight from the beginning, it was like, I’m dating a football player, (and then) Juliette dates a football player. And then they turned her into an alcoholic. Then they turned to her leaving her daughter and going to this crazy (place) in Europe, and it was very obvious.”

Photo: ABC

The actress added, ‘They weren’t doing their homework. They weren’t creating new storylines. They were just looking at my life and going, ‘Oh, let’s just take what she’s going through and put our little spin on it.’ And then, ta-da! It’s done and done.”

Photo: JPI

Hayden added that she didn’t have time to care of herself and the pain she was going through physically and emotionally, so she tried to watch mindless TV and shows to help her calm down. Panettiere also felt that when she knew she had to go back to the set of Nashville, she did, “anything to keep my mind off of that because I knew that next day I was going to be back at it again. I was like, tear central. I don’t even think on a soap opera that I cried as much (as I did) on Nashville.”

Hayden is set to make three upcoming appearances of her A Conversation With Hayden Panettiere live series in New York on February 23 and Washington D.C. on February 24.

So, do you think the Nashville writers literally stole creative ideas for the character of Juliette Barnes based on Hayden’s personal struggles? It certainly on paper seems so. Share your thoughts via the comment section below.

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General Hospital

Jonathan Jackson Reunites with Stars from ‘Nashville’ for New Tour Across the UK

He won five Daytime Emmys as General Hospital’s Lucky Spencer and now actor and musician, Jonathan Jackson is scheduled to head to the United Kingdom this fall, when he reunites with some of the cast of the former ABC primetime music city drama, Nashville.

Jackson shared on his Instagram, “This has been in the works for a while, and I’m thrilled to announce that the NASHVILLE cast and I are reuniting for a special UK tour this October. I’m excited about this!”


On Nashville, Jonathan Jackson starred for six season as Avery Barkley before the series concluded in the summer of 2018, after it moved from ABC to CMT for its final two seasons.

Joining Jonathan on the Nashville reunion tour are his former co-stars Clare Bowen, Charles Esten, and Sam Palladio. The fab four will play shows in Glasgow, Birmingham,  London, and Cardiff, as they tour the UK.

Photo: GigsandTours

If you are in the UK and wanted to get your tickets early, the presale is already underway.  The general sale tickets will become available tomorrow on Thursday, March 9, beginning at 9:30 a.m.  Go to Gigs and to purchase.

With GH’s 60th anniversary just a few weeks away, do you wish somehow Jonathan Jackson was brought back just for even a little while to reprise his role as Lucky? Would you like to see the ‘Nashville’ tour here in the states? Comment below.


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Guiding Light

GL and ‘Nashville’ Alum Hayden Panettiere Loses Her Younger Brother Jansen at 28-Years-Old

Just devastating news to report on Monday evening.  Hayden Panettiere’s (ex-Lizzie, Guiding Light, ex-Juliette, Nashville) younger brother Jansen Panettiere has died at only 28-years-old.

According to TMZ,  Jansen died over the weekend in New York.  His cause of death is not available, but there was no foul play suspected in Jansen’s death.  Police responded to a call and came to a residence at 5:30 p.m. on Sunday where they found Jansen.

As with his sister, Jansen was deep into his acting career and was only five years younger than Hayden.

Throughout his career he appeared in Even Stevens, The X’sTiger CruiseRacing StripesThe Martial Arts Kid, The Walking Dead, Major Crimes, and the holiday film Love and Love Not.

Less than 3 weeks ago, Jansen shared an adorable picture on his Instagram with his hair being cut by his big sister, Hayden.

Jansen is survived by Hayden and their parents, Lesley Vogel and Skip Panettiere.

Send your love and condolences to Hayden and her family on the sudden passing of Jansen via the comment section below.

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