Image Credit: Noel Vasquez/FilmMagic.comSince the cheerleader herself couldn’t even save Heroes from its inevitable demise, Hayden Panettiere is back on the market. Career-wise, that is. And it looks like she’s already moving on from the NBC superhero series by booking her first post-Heroes gig: According to The Hollywood Reporter, Panettiere is in talks to star in Wes Craven’s upcoming sequel Scream 4. (The actress would play Neve Campbell’s cousin’s “nerdy film geek” pal; Twilight‘s Ashley Greene is in talks to play Campbell’s cousin.)
It seems wise for Panettiere to attach herself to an anticipated franchise film — even if she might get lost amongst the film’s large ensemble — but I’m hoping the actress finds another TV vehicle worthy of her small-screen talents. After all, with the exception of schmaltzy guilty pleasure Remember the Titans, Panettiere has yet to hit on the big screen: Raising Helen, Ice Princess, and I Love You, Beth Cooper hardly made an impression audience- and box-office-wise — and those are some of her more high-profile projects. (As for Bring It On: All or Nothing — well, Panettiere should probably retire her cheerleader’s uniform to avoid typecasting, right?) Though I stopped watching Heroes in the middle of season 2, I can confidently say that Panettiere was one of season 1’s highlights: She possesses that rare on-screen relatability and manages to make even the cheesiest TV moments (e.g., all that Burnt Toast Diner craziness, Claire’s showdown with Debbie, Claire’s in-air flight with West) bearable. (Okay, I’ll admit it: Meryl Streep couldn’t even make that last Superman-inspired moment bearable.) Plus, as we’ve seen since her days as child actor in Titans and Ally McBeal, the girl’s got acting chops. So I’m crossing my fingers that Panettiere graces my television set again soon — and not just in one of her Neutrogena ads.
Who’s with me, PopWatchers? Do you agree Panettiere deserves her own series?