Don’t look for Jessica Simpson when the Kennedy Center Honors are broadcast on CBS Dec. 26.
Unhappy with her attempt to pay tribute to honoree Dolly Parton with a rendition of the country legend’s hit song “9 to 5,” Simpson has withdrawn from the program, which was filmed Dec. 3.
Simpson botched the lyrics when she originally performed the song live, then recorded it again for the broadcast show. However, ultimately Simpson’s spokesperson, Cindi Berger, told the Associated Press after Simpson had viewed the tape, “She really wasn’t happy with her performance, and she did want it to be perfect for Dolly, who she idolizes.”
George Stevens Jr., the show’s producer, said, “We appreciate the time and energy Ms. Simpson put into this event and respect the high standards she has for herself and that of the Kennedy Center Honors.”
At the time Simpson flubbed the song at the Washington, D.C., tribute – which also recognized Andrew Lloyd Webber, Zubin Mehta, Smokey Robinson and Steven Spielberg, and was hosted by Caroline Kennedy – she fled the stage in tears in front of a packed house that included President George W. Bush and First Lady Laura Bush.
“Dolly you make me so nervous. I can’t even sing the words right,” said Simpson, 26.
Later that same week, Parton, 60, told TV’s Inside Edition, “Jessica is so talented that I’m sure that someday they will be paying tribute to her and I would be honored to perform for her. But I’ll probably be so nervous that I’ll forget my wig!”