Sources close to the show tell Variety that the original cast is almost set to return, but you can bet on it being a done deal.
Both CMT and Lionsgate declined to comment.
Despite reports that Will Chase and Aubrey Peeples will not return, Variety has learned that discussions are currently happening to bring the actors back for a few select episodes to wrap up their storylines — though they would not be back as series regulars.
Before CMT had officially picked up “Nashville” after ABC cancelled the fan-favorite show after four seasons, Lionsgate had been aggressively shopping the series around. During the process, Lionsgate’s head of TV, Kevin Beggs, noted that the cast is all under long term deals. Today, TVLine was first to report the news of Britton, Panettiere and the other core cast members returning.
For Season 5, Ed Zwick and Marshall Herskovitz will serve as showrunners. The duo was brought on to the show before ABC cancelled it.