Over the years, Reba McEntire has become a beloved household name not just as one of the most successful female recording artists in country music history, but also through her acting career which includes a slew of TV shows, movies and Broadway performances.
Known as the “Queen of Country,” McEntire has defined the genre and inspired so many stars who are now getting the chance to share their memories and appreciation for her in an upcoming ABC special titled, Superstar: Reba McEntire.
According to a recent release, the one-hour star-studded program will profile McEntire by exploring “her experiences, triumphs and loses.” The special is set to feature interviews with some of country music’s biggest names that know and admire her, including Carrie Underwood, Wynonna Judd, Vince Gill, Lainey Wilson, Luke Combs, Miranda Lambert, Nick Jonas, Darius Rucker, Luke Bryan, Dierks Bentley, Dolly Parton and Kristin Chenoweth.
In addition to the celebrity interviews, viewers will get an inside look at the “Fancy” singer’s life through rare childhood photos and intimate behind-the-scenes footage that reveals her journey as a powerful woman in a male-dominated industry.
The program will call attention to both the high points in McEntire’s life, such as her relationship with her current boyfriend and co-star, Rex Linn, and some of the low points like the tragedy she endured from the plane crash that ended the lives of her tour manager and seven members of her band.
David Sloan and Muriel Pearson serve as executive producers on “Superstar,” which is produced by ABC News. The program airs Thursday, Dec. 8 at 10/9c on ABC and will be available the next day on Hulu.
Linn has turned out to be a major part of the country star’s life. They first met in 1991 while working on the movie, The Gambler Returns with Kenny Rogers. During this time, their friendship blossomed, but their romantic connection didn’t come until January 2020 when they reunited on the set of the TV show Young Sheldon.
After finding their way back to each other, the couple had a dinner that turned out to be their first date, although they didn’t realize it at the time. Unfortunately, not long after their “date,” the pandemic hit the world. As a result, they were separated to their own homes and unable to be together in person. Luckily, that didn’t stop them from building their connection. McEntire shared with PEOPLE that they would FaceTime “four to five times a day.”
They overcame this lengthy period apart and now, they have reached their two-year anniversary and she says they are practically “inseparable.”
McEntire and Linn have even found their way back to set together. They currently play the roles of husband and wife in the latest season of ABC’s drama Big Sky, which premiered on Sept. 21.
“To play husband and wife, it’s natural for us,” McEntire says. “Rex and I rehearse all the time to make sure that when we step on that set, we’re not wasting anybody’s time. We’re professionals. We have our stuff together, we show up on time, we’re ready. We’re not holding up anybody because time is money on the TV set.”
The real-life couple are also co-stars in the new Lifetime film, The Hammer, which is set to air in 2023. In the movie, the country singer will play Kim Wheeler, “an outspoken, firecracker lawyer who is appointed Judge of the 5th District of Nevada,” and Linn will play “a mysterious cowboy with unknown motives.”
With this TV series and upcoming movie, McEntire adds to her lengthy acting resume which also includes appearances in numerous films like Tremors, alongside Kevin Bacon and Fred Ward, and the 1993 movie, The Man from Left Field, plus her starring role in her popular TV sitcom, Reba, which aired from 2001-2007.
In 2023, Reba McEntire will launch the extended run of Reba: Live In Concert tour, which will feature special guests Terri Clark and The Isaacs. The 14-date trek will kick off on March 9, in Jacksonville, FL.