Today is the day! After months of anticipation, Nashville Season 5 kicks off tonight with a two-hour premiere beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET on CMT.
In addition to its new television home, fans can expect big changes to the former ABC show, including a significantly slower pace, the departure of two series regulars, a few fresh faces and a live aftershow on Facebook.
“When I say 'slowing down,' I want to make sure that it's clear . . . you don't try and tell seven stories in one episode, you try and tell two or three stories in one episode,” new series showrunner Marshall Herskovitz told The Hollywood Reporter last month. “For instance, if I'm telling stories about Scarlett and Gunnar, I can’t tell a complete story about them in every episode because I'm using episodes to tell other people's stories. So the rate at which we tell the Scarlett-Gunnar overarching story slows down. It's not that the episodes feel slow, it's that we just take longer to complete these story arcs.”
Also new is the premier of a Facebook Live aftershow, dubbed Nashchat, which launches Thusday night at 11 p.m. ET on CMT's Facebook page. Hosted by singer Amy Brown, Nashchat will take place in a living room in Nashville where it will be filmed live each week. THR reports that viewers can expect interviews with cast and crew, music, episode recaps and an interactive element. Chris Carmak (Will Lexington) is scheduled as the show's first guest.
"Fans saved Nashville. Now we're inviting fans into our living room to celebrate the characters, stories and music they love," CMT President Brian Phillips told THR. "With Nashchat, we'll create a home across all social media culminating with a Facebook Live interactive recap and fan chat immediately following new episodes."
CMT has also partnered with Hulu to stream each episode the day after they air, so you don’t need to worry if you miss an episode here or there. We’re also happy to report that most of the series regulars are set to return, minus Will Chase (Luke Wheeler) and Aubrey Peeples (Layla Grant).
Don’t forget to tune in for the Season 5 premiere of Nashville tonight at 9 p.m. ET on CMT and head over to CMT's Facebook page at 11pm for Nashchat’s maiden voyage.