Selena Gomez is getting a taste of acting outside the Disney Channel system for the first time in her career with her new Hulu series, Only Murders in the Building, co-starring comedy legends Steve Martin and Martin Short. While talking about the show at the Television Critics Association Summer Press Tour on Friday, Gomez admitted regretting spending so much of her formative years at the Disney Channel. Only Murders in the Building is her first TV series since Wizards of Waverly Place ended in 2012.
"I signed my life away to Disney at a very young age and I didn't know what I was doing," Gomez, 29, told reporters when asked how the experience making the new show compared to her Disney Channel work, reports Entertainment Tonight. "What I'd say is the level of sophistication of the material is the first reason why I wanted to do this."
When she was a child actor, Gomez "didn't know what I was doing. I was just running around on set," she recalled. While making Only Murders in the Building, Gomez felt like a "sponge" and tried to "soak up all the wisdom" she could. "It's really nice to be back on TV and it's nice to be cast as my actual age, which never happens," she said.
Only Murders in the Building was created by Martin and John Hoffman. The series stars Martin, Short, and Gomez as three strangers obsessed with the true crime genre who become linked by a real crime. The show runs 10 episodes and will debut on Hulu on Aug. 31. Although it is far from a Disney Channel series, it is still a Disney project since Disney-owned 20th Television is one of the studios involved in the production. Disney also owns Hulu.
Gomez said she doesn't know if she is a good actor, but Martin and Short taught her a lot during production. After they filmed the last episode, Gomez joked that she wanted to remake the first episode "because of how I developed and felt towards the end." She also called Martin and Short "two crazy uncles" who are "so humble and kind."
Martin, 75, and Short, 71, also showed Gomez with praise. "When Selena is on screen the show is elevated and more mysterious. The camera loves her," Marin said. Gomez "grounds everything in this dry, hilarious delivery. It was a dream to work with this brilliant young lady," Short added.
During the panel discussion, Gomez also spoke about the infamous paparazzi photo of herself wearing a (fake) blood-stained sweater taken during filming. Gomez was "super paranoid" after the photo surfaced, but, "I think once it came out, it was what it was," she said, reports The Wrap. Martin was never worried though, adding that he didn't think anyone could "interpret a plot point of the show from a photograph of anything we did" because it was only a tiny hint of what happens in the 10-episode show.