Actress-singer Mandy Moore joins the seriocomic FOX show “Red Band Society” in a recurring role Wednesday (Nov. 5). Her character, Erin Grace, returns from an overseas experience with Doctors Without Borders … and in rejoining Ocean Park Hospital, Grace causes very evident discomfort for her former fiance, Dr. Adam McAndrew (Dave Annable).
“I’ve been trying to find something good,” the pleasant Moore tells Zap2it after working on several series pilots that didn’t go. She deems “Red Band Society” to be “a great show, and I’ve been having a great time with everybody. Starting with [a scene with Oscar winner] Octavia Spencer was not a bad introduction. It’s a pretty good gig.”
Moore recalls that when she received the offer, “They had a sketch of who they wanted the character to be. There was really nothing to go on, but I watched the pilot and fell in love with the show. I just thought it was unique with an original voice, something I hadn’t really seen on network television. It had a lot of heart and something about it really resonated with me, so I thought, ‘Yeah. Why not?’ “
The fact that Grace has such professional power “really sold” Moore on the job, “especially her having taken off to see the world. All of that is stuff I’m interested in in my personal life, so that definitely had some resonance with me as well.”
Acting with Annable — the husband of frequent TV actress Odette Annable (“House,” “Banshee”) — has a been an added treat for Moore, who maintains, “You couldn’t have a nicer guy to work with. He’s the biggest sweetheart of them all.”
Having guest-starred on “Grey’s Anatomy” and “Scrubs,” Moore muses that hospitals have become familiar settings for her: “I kind of thought about that, but I think this is where it ends. Fortunately, I don’t have too much ‘doctor stuff’ to play out here. The biggest thing about my character’s presence is the backstory of the relationship she’s had with Adam. That factors in way more than her having a full caseload.”
Married to singer-songwriter Ryan Adams, whose current eponymous album she’s heard on, Moore has been working on her own release that she expects to have out “sometime soon.”
Her previous one, “Amanda Leigh,” was in 2009 — the year she and Adams wed — and she reflects that “a lot has happened in my life since I last put out a record. That has found its way into the material, and we’ll figure out a way to get it out there. Music is always a big part of my life.”