Hayden Panettiere: Loved ones kept me grounded

Hayden Panettiere

Hayden Panettiere is glad she was surrounded by people who would tell her to “knock it off” if she behaved badly as a young star.

The actress portrayed cheerleader Claire Bennet in the show Heroes and before that had some smaller TV parts. It means the 23-year-old star has been in the industry for some time, but she has never gone off the rails. She puts that down to the people who surrounded her in her younger years.

“As a child actor, you can be surrounded by a lot of ‘yes’ people. If they let you get away with a certain behavior, you start thinking it’s completely normal,” she explained to Company magazine. “Being part of a cast you know will always be honest and that you can trust, like I had with Heroes, was a blessing. I had a bunch of ‘big brothers’ on the show who put me in my place, were brutally honest with me, and told me to knock it off. If anybody started acting like a diva, they’d get put back in their place. That’s what you need.”

Hayden now plays country musician Juliette Barnes on TV show Nashville, alongside Connie Britton. Getting to sing on camera was one of the reasons she took the role and she even relocated to Nashville so she could learn about that genre of music.

“We all goof around. That’s the great part of being on a TV show – you all enter into this experience, this adventure, from the same place, with the same concerns and fears,” she explained.

“I moved [to Nashville] to immerse myself in it all. But now, even if something did happen to the show, Nashville will always be a part of my life and I’ll always have a base there.”

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