Exclusive: Parenthood Raids FNL Talent Pool Again, Casts Jurnee Smollett for Season 5

Jurnee Smollett Parenthood Season 5Clear eyes, full hearts, contain your understandable excitement: Another Friday Night Lights MVP is headed to Parenthood!

Former FNL boss-turned-Parenthood showrunner Jason Katims has recruited Dillon grad (and current True Blood co-star) Jurnee Smollett to join the NBC tear-jerker in a major recurring role for Season 5, TVLine has learned exclusively.

RELATED | Parenthood Season 5 Spoiler: Is Somebody Getting Married?

Smollett will play Heather Hall, a smart, feisty, up-and-coming political dynamo who Kristina hires to be her campaign manager (Kristina is running for local office, in case you didn’t hear).

This brings to seven the number of FNL actors Katims has brought on to Parenthood. In addition to Smollett, Matt Lauria, Minka Kelly, Michael B. Jordan, Derek Phillips, Angela Rawna and Jeff Rosick have also appeared on the show.

Parenthood‘s 22-episode fifth season bows Thursday, Sept. 26 at 10/9c.

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  1. Samantha says:

    YAY! I adore Jurnee as an actress. Quite talented!

  2. neha says:

    I LOVED her on FNL!

  3. BY says:

    Yes! A great addition to an amazing show. Jurnee is definitely one of the better rising talents out there right now.

  4. JB says:

    Tony Lucca, who sang “Devil Town,” which was played several times on FNL, also appeared on Parenthood.

  5. Laura says:

    I still think of her as Michelle’s little friend on Full House! Loved her on FNL and look forward to this season of Parenthood!

  6. Cassandra says:

    Parenthood is like friday night lights little brother.

  7. PLP says:

    Never saw her on FNL or True Blood..never was drawn to those shows for some reason, but really loved her on The Defenders, so will be tuning in. Do so hope there are better storylines this year. Love the actors, love the characters, just needs better stories in my book.

  8. Katims continues his fair share of casting FNL grads to Parenthood. Don’t know if Zach Gilford nor Jesse Plemons are interested.

    • The trouble with Zach Gilford and Jesse Plemmons is that they are out girls for them to romance. And they made the huge mistake of making Drew straight, so …

      (There is a world out there somewhere where Scott Porter played Mark, though, and that world is a better world.)

  9. Matthew Swanson says:

    Did anyone else see another FNL alum on Dexter last week or am I crazy?

  10. dude says:

    Loved her on FNL! My two favourite FNL grads have officially been on Parenthood (Minka Kelly and Jurnee Smollett).

  11. Austin says:

    Denise :3

  12. Josh says:

    She’s wasted her time and talent on True Blood. But I loved her on FNL!!!

  13. schu says:

    Wish somehow someway Minka Kelly could be brought back. But I’ll accept this, moreso that Kristina is running for office!? How did I somehow miss that!?

  14. Diane says:

    Great now we will see much less of our regulars. Why keep adding to a show that has proven to be a big favorite with all the original stars? Sure hope this won’t turn out with cancellation at end of this season!

  15. Anna says:

    Oh god, I cannot stand her as an actress. She’s pretty, but she’s so bad. She ruined so many scenes with Michael B. Jordan (who is fantastic) on Friday Night Lights. I am so not looking forward to her ruining Parenthood scenes as well.

  16. Xandra says:

    I’d love to see Jesse Plemons appear, and I hope he plays a huge part in the final episodes of Breaking Bad.

  17. Nina says:

    Sam Jaeger was in an episode during season 4 of FNL too!

  18. RamonaLynn says:

    “…has brought on to Parenthood”

  19. Don’t forget Sam Jaeger was on FNL as well – he was the Under Armour salesman in season 4.

  20. Parenthood so good can’t wait til it comes back.

  21. Love this show, can’t wait til it comes back.

  22. sarah says:

    I think Amber would make a good campaign manager but I like Jurnee too so that will be good.

  23. free says:

    omgggggg.My favorite show and I really love her.yayyyyy