A sec­ond chance

Re­formed Suits star Kather­ine Heigl prefers to keep the drama on screen th­ese days, writes MICHELE MANELIS

The Sunday Mail (Queensland) - TV Guide - - FRONT PAGE -

IT’S dif­fi­cult to name a more out­spo­ken, ballsy Hol­ly­wood A-lister than Kather­ine Heigl.

Case in point: af­ter she and hus­band Josh Kel­ley binge­watched Suits, she picked up the phone and called its showrun­ner Aaron Korsh.

Af­ter speak­ing with the Emmy-win­ning, ex- Grey’s Anatomy ac­tress, Korsh promptly cre­ated her a role as Sa­man­tha Wheeler, the new­est lawyer to join sea­son eight of the le­gal drama.

As Heigl tells TV Guide: “I was com­ing into the show as a mas­sive fan-girl and wasn’t think­ing about the pres­sure on me un­til I got there. And then I re­alised, ‘I re­ally hope I don’t mess up my favourite show by be­ing in it!’”

Even those with a pass­ing in­ter­est in the se­ries will know there have been some ma­jor changes to per­son­nel on the pop­u­lar drama.

There was the de­par­ture of Pa­trick J. Adams, who played le­gal sa­vant Mike Ross; but it was the exit of his on-screen wife, played by Meghan Markle, which drew big­ger head­lines – leav­ing as she did to marry Prince Harry and as­sume her new role as the first ever Duchess of Sus­sex.

Heigl says she was dis­ap­pointed not to have met Markle. “Like ev­ery­one else, I feel like I know her as Rachel [Zane], who I’ve been watch­ing on Suits for the past seven years,” she says. “So, it’s crazy to now see her in this new role as roy­alty.”

Dule Hill ( The West Wing) and Amanda Schull ( Pretty Lit­tle Liars) have also been pro­moted to se­ries reg­u­lars.

Heigl has long been one of Hol­ly­wood’s most po­lar­is­ing fig­ures, de­scribed and dis­missed as ‘dif­fi­cult’. It’s a tag which of­ten fol­lows women who speak their mind, though some of Heigl’s ac­tions have also been poorly re­ceived. She fa­mously with­drew her­self from Emmy award con­tention in 2008 be­cause she thought the writ­ing ma­te­rial for her char­ac­ter, Izzie Stevens in Grey’s “didn’t war­rant an Emmy nom­i­na­tion.”

Ad­di­tion­ally, she made dis­parag­ing com­ments about her 2007 break­out hit Knocked Up, in which she starred with Seth Ro­gen.

So does she re­gret any of those com­ments which proved rather hurt­ful to her co-stars, writ­ers and direc­tors at the time?

“My ca­reer took off in my 20s and when it first took off, I’m not go­ing to deny there was some ar­ro­gance,” she says. “I was feel­ing pretty un­touch­able and pretty on top of the world. I felt like I had worked re­ally hard to get there, so I was re­ally gonna rel­ish it. And now, some­times I’ll look at magazine cov­ers from that time and be, ‘Girl, take it down a notch!’”

Heigl has found firmer foun­da­tions in her pri­vate life, af­ter mar­ry­ing mu­si­cian Kel­ley in 2007.

Two years later, they adopted a daugh­ter, Nancy Leigh, from South Korea (where Heigl’s adop­tive sis­ter was born); and in 2012 they adopted a sec­ond daugh­ter, Adalaide. In De­cem­ber 2016, Heigl gave birth to a son, Joshua Bishop. “My chil­dren have given me per­spec­tive,” she says. “I know what re­ally mat­ters now.”

Heigl will be turn­ing 40 soon, but seems in no rush to make the mile­stone.

“Not for another few months!” she laughs. “You know, if it weren’t for this busi­ness, I’d find age­ing a fas­ci­nat­ing sort of science ex­per­i­ment. I find the best part about age­ing is feel­ing like I have a stronger voice be­cause of my age. I keep say­ing to peo­ple, ‘Hey, I’m 39. You can’t tell me what to do. I have earned the right to tell you what I’m go­ing to do!’”

Le­gal ea­gle: Kather­ine Heigl plays Sa­man­tha Wheeler, the new­est lawyer to join sea­son eight of Suits.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.