Despite what one executive deemed "big movie-star charisma," Heigl hasn't seen real box office success since the days of "Knocked Up," a film she once called "sexist" and "hard for me to love." "The Ugly Truth," a poorly reviewed rom-com co-starring Gerard Butler pulled in $200 million, but more recent efforts, like "One For the Money," failed to live up to expectations.
Heigl left Shonda Rimes' "Grey's Anatomy" on bad terms in 2010, after multiple leaves of absences and her openly critical attitude toward the show's writing. She withdrew her name from Emmy consideration in 2008 saying at the time, "I did not feel that I was given the material this season to warrant an Emmy nomination...I did not want to potentially take away an opportunity from an actress who was given such materials."
"She can cost you time every single day of shooting," an source told THR. "Wardrobe issues, not getting out of the trailer, questioning the script every single day. Even getting her deal closed at Warners was hard. She hit that point of 'no.' "
Heigl's mother is another problem altogether.
"I have never experienced anything like Nancy Heigl," the source added.
It's about the mouth. 'F*** you. You are a f***ing liar.' … Whatever you'd say, you were an idiot. The call would be, 'This is the worst craft service we've ever had! There's nothing to eat! This is the worst wardrobe!' You knew that every day, you were going to get slammed. The frustrating part is [Heigl] is incredibly talented and smart.
Another producer told the mag that his network passed on Heigl for a pilot though "on many levels, she would have been perfect for the role.
"But all of us said, 'She's not worth it,'" he said.
But Heigl is reportedly hoping to put her bad PR behind her. NBC recently picked up the pilot of her new show about a CIA agent, of which Heigl is also a producer.
"The story is not only compelling and intelligent but a look behind the curtain at the CIA we haven't seen before in film or television," Heigl said in a statement. "I am thrilled and honored to have been asked to be a part of developing these stories and this character and bringing it all to life."
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