Nashville Preview: DWTS Pro Steps It Up as Juliette's Hollywood Hunk

Nashville Season 3 Preview Derek Hough

He’s waltzed, tangoed and cha-cha-cha’ed for years, but Dancing With the Stars pro Derek Hough had to learn a whole new routine in order to make his Nashville debut (ABC, Wednesday 10/9c).

“This really isn’t dance-related,” Hough tells TVLine, noting that other roles he’s had — the comedy Better With You, the upcoming film Make Your Move — allowed him to fall back on decades of training in fancy footwork. “This is the first one where it’s straight acting.”

It’s ironic, then, that Hough plays a hotshot Hollywood stud who crosses paths with neophyte actress Juliette. Read on to hear how their roles flip-flopped when the cameras were off, whether Juliette and Hough’s Noah West might put in some (ahem) extra rehearsal time together and why the five-time DWTS champ has taken to yelling “Life!” at this season’s partner Bethany Mota.

TVLINE | Your character, Noah West, is described as a charming, beguiling actor. What more can you tell us?
He’s not country at all. He has no country ties. He’s a Hollywood actor… It’s fun to be able to play a character within a character, because I play Noah West, who plays Patsy Cline’s husband [in the biopic]. That was fun, to be on a movie set while on a TV set.

TVLINE | Was it daunting, acting without the part having any sort of dance connection?
It’s funny… Hayden [Panettiere’s] character comes in, Juliette, and she’s not an experienced actress. I’m kind of making her feel at ease. In the first episode, there’s a scene [where] we’re sitting there, and I was twiddling my thumbs a little bit. She asked me if I was nervous, and I said, “A little bit,” and she was really comforting. She was wonderful. It’s funny how in the script, it’s the other way around.Nashville Season 3 Preview Derek Hough

TVLINE | How would you characterize Noah’s interaction with Juliette overall? She can be cold when she wants to.
It’s been pretty positive.

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TVLINE | You’ve teased that Noah and Juliette might be involved in a triangle.
She’s obviously a beautiful girl, and he’s a Hollywood actor. Yes, he is definitely attracted to her.

TVLINE | Dancing is more physically challenging than acting, but I’d imagine this part was tough, just because it’s a new thing for you.
It’s just different. To be honest with you, one of the most challenging things was the waiting around. I’m used to being part of a live show that’s very much like boom-boom-boom-boom-boom. Scripted television is a lot different. You’re there for maybe 10 hours, and you work for about two of those hours… I’m used to being able to tell a story with my body. To show expressions through words, it’s different. It’s a different experience.

TVLINE | Did filming Nashville overlap with this season of Dancing With the Stars?
I’m finished now, but I was still filming a week or two into the show.

TVLINE | Your partner, YouTube personality Bethany Mota, seems to be a real contender for the Mirrorball Trophy. Did you have a feeling that would be the case?
When I first started working with her, I just thought she was just adorable and the cutest thing ever, but I noticed she had bad posture. And it’s funny; it’s been an ongoing thing. I joke around with her and I say, “Life!,” meaning we need to work on her posture [in real life, not just on the dance floor]… Every time I say “Life!,” she pulls her shoulders back.

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  1. Louie says:

    Ugh! Make it go away…

  2. Natali says:

    Can’t wait!!!!!

  3. Mary says:

    Hopefully this is just a short stint on the show, I find him to be a little obnoxious.

  4. Felicity says:

    Ugh, enough with promoting DWTS and the Houghs. Who at ABC are they sleeping with? His facial hair takes him from looking his usual smarmy to downright douchy.

  5. mea says:

    Can hardly wait to watch hot, sexy, gorgeous Derek Hough on Nashville…a little over 9 hrs now.

  6. joe says:

    anther ex boyfriend of ryan seacrest….maybe this sister “HOUGH” can act…doubt it…

  7. I thought he was very good in his role on Nashville. You haters should take a second look and I think you’ll change your mind. :-)

  8. JJ says:

    I thought Derek Hough did fine with his small part in this episode. He’s very handsome, and unlike Avery at this point, looks clean and showered and smiles. I don’t think Juliette should tell Avery about the baby until he is sober. He is beginning to seem like Deacon when he was drunk. His nasty song about Juliette was uncalled for. Lay off the booze, Avery. Get a job, and remember how you crappy you treated Scarlette in the first season. He thinks too highly of himself. He threw his first band under the bus, burned his master recordings, and now seems to just sit around telling everyone else what they should do, how they should act. Grow a pair, as Lamar would say, and get back to your music. He was griping about Juliette paying for everything, well, thank goodness she worked hard on her career all her life so she has some money. The upcoming baby will need parents who can provide for it. Juliette should just stick with Glenn and Emily to help raise a baby. At this point, Avery can’t provide anything except nasty comments and drunken tears. I realize Juliette has to tell Rayna about the pregnancy, but I sure wouldn’t take any advice from her. The only way Deacon found out about Maddie was from Maddie herself. Love these recaps and the humor!