As The Voice fans brace themselves for Blake Shelton‘s departure, Reba McEntire reminded folks that she was nearly an OG member of the cast. It turns out producers approached the country music legend before Shelton. After McEntire rejected the offer for the show, the producers turned to Shelton and he remained with them for over a decade. With his departure, she may be more open to changing her mind.
Reba reflected on the choice recently with Entertainment Tonight. “I got [a look at] the Holland version of The Voice. They sent it to me and I said, ‘I can’t see me doing that.'” She reasoned that being locked in long-term wouldn’t really appeal to her. “Because, you know, I’m a gypsy at heart,” McEntire explained. She also explained that being negative to hopefuls didn’t appeal to her very much.
McEntire eventually graced the inaugural season of The Voice as a mentor to Team Blake and has since featured in other seasons as a celebrity advisor. Yet, after witnessing the show for herself, she was pleasantly surprised to find that her expectations of how much criticism she’d have to give were exaggerated.
“Oh, sure! I mean, after you see a very successful show that’s been running, what, 15 years? Uh, yeah!” McEntire told ET back in 2020. “I’m like shoot, I should have done that.”
‘The Voice’ isn’t the only high-profile onscreen gig Reba McEntire has turned down
Of course, whoever replaces Shelton after such a long run will have big shoes to slip into. “To fill Blake’s chair? Wow. That’s gonna be tough,” McEntire reasoned. “He did a great job and kudos to him.”
This isn’t the only time Reba passed on a high-profile gig infant of the camera. In a past episode of “Watch What Happens Live,” McEntire revealed that she declined the role of Molly Brown in the 1997 hit film Titanic due to scheduling conflicts. Kathy Bates was later cast as Molly instead.
McEntire is certainly keeping up with a hectic schedule, due to her ongoing music career and the recent launch of Reba’s Place: an authentic space crafted within a renovated building. McEntire had to be saved by firefighters during a visit in 2021 when she was on the search for the perfect location for her eatery. Little did she know it would eventually become the very same building, after undergoing a complete renovation.
Reba’s Place is a destination not just for food and drinks, but also for entertainment. On the third floor, Reba has created something special. It’s a spot called Jack’s Library in honor of her late mother. It houses an impressive array of books from her personal collection. “Mama would be here every day eating,” McEntire explained “Whether it was lunch or dinner, she would love it.”