They grow up so fast. With her new folk-inspired CD Wild Hope (shop Amazon.com) and a slew of accomplished acting roles, singer-actress Mandy Moore has far and away eclipsed the sugary memory of "Candy," the pop confection that launched her career when she was 15. Tonight at 10:30 pm/ET, Moore, who is about to go on tour with Paula Cole, is profiled in Oxygen's I Am Mandy Moore, an hourlong documentary and concert that offers a candid look at the now-23-year-old's life. We asked her about that, Kelly Clarkson's recent travails and her torrid affair with Vincent Chase.
TV Guide: You're undergoing a total reinvention in your music career. Is that why you did this Oxygen special — to give your fans a taste of the direction you're headed in?
Mandy Moore: Yeah, that absolutely was in the forefront of my mind. I've sort of evolved and grown up. And I felt like [Oxygen] was the most appropriate place to showcase the evolution. It was maybe an audience that wouldn't necessarily have gravitated towards previous records of mine.
TV Guide: The special is part concert, part reality — like Behind the Music, but without the downward spiral.
Moore: [Laughs] Exactly! Hopefully that won't come for a while.
TV Guide: How have you been able to sidestep the troubles that have plagued Britney and Lindsay?
Moore: I think it all sort of comes down to family and having this wonderful support of people in your life. I know this sounds Pollyanna-ish, but it's not. I don't relate to that kind of lifestyle and exposure. That is never really the situation I've been in. And I feel lucky for that.
TV Guide: There's a scene where you're reading the lyrics to "Candy" on your BlackBerry. Have you really forgotten them?
Moore: [Laughs] I don't know the lyrics anymore! It's something in my brain that blocks it out on purpose.
TV Guide: Wild Hope is a departure for you, and you've openly dissed your past work. Did you have any reservations about alienating old fans?
Moore: No, because I feel like people who were fans of the music before have grown up. I think there's something to be said for maturing. I would never hold it against someone if they liked my previous music, but I hope that they're willing to give this record a shot, too.
TV Guide: You and Kelly Clarkson have had similar experiences with your latest albums, in that you both strived to write your own material. But yours seems to be better received. What do you think you did differently?
Moore: Well, to give Kelly credit, I think she's incredibly talented, and I also feel there's more focus on her music and this record in particular because she's had such success. I didn't have any of those expectations to live up to. I don't know if it's fair to compare the two, but I feel like I lucked out because I've been absent from the music scene for a couple of years and no one was sort of anticipating me coming out with another record.
TV Guide: Prior to this CD, you've focused primarily on acting. What do you have coming up?
Moore: I have this little indie movie that got sold at Sundance coming out [on Aug. 24] called Dedication, with Billy Crudup and Tom Wilkinson. I play a children's-book illustrator to Billy's children's-book author, and we're sort of forced to work together.
TV Guide: How was it playing "yourself" on Entourage?
Moore: Oh, man. It was so much fun. It was kind of nice to be the girl with all the guys.
TV Guide: So... would you date Vincent Chase?
Moore: [Laughs] He's very handsome, but I don't know if I would want that sort of attention on my private life again.
TV Guide: You're an admitted roller-coaster fan. What past costars would you like to be stuck on a roller coaster with?
Moore: I think it'd be fun to be stuck with Diane Keaton. Because she so doesn't strike me as the type of person that'd want to ride on a roller coaster.
TV Guide: You didn't ask her to ride one with you when you were filming Because I Said So?
Moore: No, no. That's the last thing I probably would've asked Diane!
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