Katherine Heigl appeared before an audience of reporters Sunday at the Television Critics Assn. summer press tour to promote her new NBC series, “State of Affairs.”
In the “Homeland"-esque drama, she plays Charleston Tucker, a CIA analyst responsible for compiling the daily intelligence briefing for the president, played by Alfre Woodard. Tucker also is bent on finding the person responsible for the death of her fiance, an aid worker -- and, oh yeah, the president’s son -- who was killed in a terrorist attack. The series is getting a plum time slot on Monday nights after “The Voice,” used last year to launch “The Blacklist.”
But the former “Grey’s Anatomy” star, whose film career fizzled after a breakout role in “Knocked Up” and who was last seen on the small screen in a NyQuil commercial, spent a good deal of her time on stage Sunday dealing with questions about her reputation within the industry.
“I certainly don’t see myself as being difficult,” she said. “If I have ever disappointed anybody, it wasn’t intentional.”
As for her decision to return to television after a string of mediocre romantic comedies, Heigl said that even though she loves both starring in and watching films like “The Ugly Truth” and “Life As We Know It,” “I had stopped exercising different muscles of my ability. And in that moment I felt that I was sort of letting down my audience, that I wasn’t challenging them either.”
Working on “State of Affairs,” which was pitched to Heigl and her mother and fellow executive producer Nancy Heigl by former CIA briefer Rodney Faraon, has given her an opportunity “to show a different side of myself as an actor and performer and storyteller."
Heigl was also asked about the role her mother plays as an executive producer, to which she replied, “She bakes us cookies and pours us milk.”