Hayden Panettiere has confessed she feared her career could have been over when Heroes was axed in 2010.
The 24-year-old actress had her big break starring as invincible cheerleader Claire Bennet in the sci fi show in 2006.
Hayden now stars as scheming country music star Juliette Barnes in hit ABC show Nashville. But she admitted there was a time when she wondered if she was ever going to get another good role.
"It hit me like a ton of bricks: There is a genuine possibility that no one will ever take another chance on me," she admitted
"That was an important gap between Heroes and this show, a huge transition to make gracefully. I don't know how gracefully I did it, but somehow I did."
But fortunately Nashville came along.
Hayden admitted: "Nashville was perfect timing with the perfect character. Juliette is so not the good girl that I played on Heroes, but she has to put on the facade as a good girl to get what she wants. Juliette is tough, but when she cries, she means it: She's a very damaged young woman running from a dark past. How much more perfect could I ask for?"
Hayden revealed she has drawn on personal experience to play Juliette, but insists she is nothing like her in real life.
She revealed: "A lot of what I've drawn from is my own personal experience. I grew up in the entertainment industry, in the spotlight, and have had to deal with some of the same struggles. In this business, there are so many doors wide open to walk through and it looks like the normal thing to do. The difference is, I've always had people around me to yank me back before I went too far."