Sony Pictures commits to “Run, Rose, Run” theatrical release starring Dolly Parton, with Reese Witherspoon set to produce via her Hello Sunshine banner.

In a highly competitive bidding situation, Sony Pictures has landed the film adaptation of “Run, Rose, Run,” set to star 11-time Grammy-winning and two-time Academy Award-nominated singer-songwriter Dolly Parton.

“I am thrilled to be bringing ‘Run, Rose, Run’ to Sony Pictures,” Dolly shared. “I'm looking forward to working with Sony and being in the movie as well. It's a good time to be excited, working with some of my favorite people.”

Dolly’s first novel, “Run, Rose, Run,” co-written with best-selling author James Patterson, has remained a New York Times best-seller since its publication by Little, Brown & Company on March 7. A novel glittering with danger and desire, the story is about a young woman who heads to Nashville to pursue her music-making dreams and is taken under the wing of a giant female musical icon. The source of their heart-wrenching songs are secrets that both have tried to hide. Featuring twelve original songs that tie into the storyline, Dolly also released a companion album of the same name through her own Butterfly Records, which debuted to number 1 on the Current Country Albums, American/Folk and Bluegrass charts.

“Run, Rose, Run” debuted at the number 1 spot on The New York Times bestseller list and spent 5 weeks at #1, making it the longest-running #1 New York Times bestseller of the decade and the bestselling novel of the year. The book’s success led to a fierce bidding war when the film project was announced shortly after, and it was Sony’s commitment to a theatrical release that secured the deal.

“Run, Rose, Run” - The Film

Dolly and James Patterson, via his company James Patterson Entertainment, will produce the feature alongside Reese Witherspoon via her Hello Sunshine banner, which worked with Sony Pictures on the upcoming adaptation of best-seller “Where the Crawdads Sing.” Lauren Neustadter is also producing for Hello Sunshine with Ashley Strumwasser executive producing, while Maia Eyre will oversee the project for Sony Pictures.

James Patterson said, “I want to watch this movie and say ‘I love this film.’ And that’s exactly why I’m so excited to be working with Hello Sunshine and Sony Pictures. They’re the best at what they do.”

“Dolly Parton and Jim Patterson. Are you kidding me? An entirely unique dynamic duo. Plus Hello Sunshine! We feel lucky as hell and grateful,” said Tom Rothman, Chairman and CEO of Sony Pictures’ Motion Picture Group.

Having starred in hit films including ‘9 to 5,” “Steel Magnolias” and “The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas”, “Run, Rose, Run” marks the first time Dolly will have a starring role on the big screen since her popular 1992 flick, “Straight Talk.” In addition to starring in and producing the film, Dolly will also be writing original songs to be featured in the big-screen adaptation.

Reese Witherspoon shared, “Counting my lucky stars that I get to collaborate with this dream team! Working with Dolly and James, who are both master storytellers, is a dream come true for me. I am overjoyed to have Sony Pictures on board as we work alongside Dolly Parton – a luminous personality, magnetic presence, and brilliant songwriter and storyteller – to bring Dolly’s gripping and heartbreaking story to the screen. We hope that this film will not only entertain but also inspire women and girls everywhere to keep dreaming.”

Hello Sunshine Partners with Dolly Parton and James Patterson to Produce Their #1 Bestselling Novel, "Run, Rose, Run" as a Feature Film

Dolly Parton is set to star in Hello Sunshine’s feature film adaptation of "Run, Rose, Run," her recently-released novel, co-authored by James Patterson.

Dolly and James will produce the feature alongside Reese Witherspoon and Hello Sunshine’s President of Film and Television, Lauren Neustadter. Ashley Strumwasser will executive produce for Hello Sunshine.

“I'm proud, excited and honored to be working with my good friend Reese Witherspoon and Hello Sunshine on the movie of 'Run, Rose, Run' from the novel I co-wrote with James Patterson," Dolly said. "James and I love Reese and look forward to working with her and her wonderful team.”

The Chart-Topping Novel and Album

Published on March 7, 2022, by Little, Brown and Company, the novel "Run, Rose, Run" debuted at #1 on The New York Times Best Seller list. Dolly also released a companion album of the same title on March 4, 2022, through her Butterfly Records label. The album debuted at #1 on the Current Country albums, Americana/Folk and Bluegrass charts.

Set in Nashville, "Run, Rose, Run" is about a young woman who comes to country music’s capital city to pursue her music-making dreams. The source of her heart-wrenching songs is a brutal secret she has tried desperately to hide, but the past she has fled is reaching out to control her future—and it may destroy everything she has worked for.

“It has been a joy working with Dolly Parton on this book," James said. "It’s a great story that we are both proud of. And, in partnership with Reese Witherspoon and Hello Sunshine, we will produce a great movie.”

From Page to Screen

Reese Witherspoon shared,

"Growing up in Nashville, I’ve loved Dolly since the moment I heard her magical voice and saw her luminous personality shine onstage. Beyond her magnetic presence as an artist and performer, she is one of the greatest songwriters and storytellers of our time. Her impact knows no bounds — as a musician, actor, writer, businesswoman, activist and all around incredible human being — Dolly Parton is not only an icon to me, but a true inspiration to women and girls everywhere.

"My admiration for [Dolly] grew to even greater heights when reading 'Run, Rose, Run,' a gripping and heartbreaking book I couldn't put down. I couldn’t feel more honored to be working alongside her and James to bring this remarkable story to the screen."

"Run, Rose, Run" — Available Now

Get Dolly’s latest album, “Run, Rose, Run,” available now on all digital streaming platforms and as a digital download, as well as on CD, standard vinyl and some special vinyl color variants. The novel, co-authored by James Patterson, is now available in stores and online in hardcover, ebook and audiobook.

Dolly Parton’s First Novel, “Run, Rose, Run,” Launches with Companion Album and Virtual Book Tour

Musical icon Dolly Parton teamed up with world-renowned bestselling author, James Patterson, to write her first-ever novel. “Run, Rose, Run” is a fiction thriller about a young singer-songwriter on the rise and on the run, determined to do whatever it takes to survive. The highly-anticipated novel is now available for purchase, along with the companion album. Dolly and James are embarking on a virtual book tour in support of the new releases.

“Run, Rose, Run” Virtual Book Tour

Dolly Parton and James Patterson have launched a virtual book tour to celebrate the release of their novel, “Run, Rose, Run.” The tour began streaming live Sunday, March 6, with the exclusive “Run, Rose, Run” Virtual Book Launch Event, sponsored by the American Booksellers Association in support of independent booksellers. Other virtual engagements will be organized through major booksellers, including Books-A-Million, Indigo, Waterstones, Amazon, Barnes & Noble and AARP Book, now through Friday, March 25.Dolly Parton and James Patterson

Wednesday, March 9
2:00 PM PT/5:00 PM ET

4:00 PM PT/7:00 PM ET

Thursday, March 10
1:30 PM ET/6:30 PM GMT

Wednesday, March 16
1:30 PM PT/4:30 PM ET

3:00 PM PT/6:00 PM ET

Friday, March 25
3:00 PM PT/6:00 PM ET

Ticket Information for the Virtual Book Tour

Your ticket includes admission to the exclusive event and a hardcover copy of “Run, Rose, Run” ($30 retail price), as well as sales tax, shipping, and handling (if applicable). Visit for attendance information and to purchase tickets.

“Run, Rose, Run” - The Album

Dolly’s latest album, “Run, Rose, Run,” is available now on all digital streaming platforms and as a digital download, as well as on CD, standard vinyl and some special vinyl color variants. The album serves as a companion to the original novel, “Run, Rose, Run,” which Dolly co-authored with James Patterson.

Official “Run, Rose, Run” Merchandise

Exclusive “Run, Rose, Run” merchandise, created for Dolly’s latest album and book release, is available now. Each item complements the story and music as told by Dolly Parton. Get Dolly’s new album “Run, Rose, Run” and order the novel today.

James Patterson gives us a glimpse into collaborating with Dolly Parton on their forthcoming novel, “Run, Rose, Run.”

James Patterson is known around the world as one of the greatest authors of all time. With over 100 books on the New York Times Best Sellers list, it’s no wonder Dolly Parton was thrilled to receive a personal invitation from James to co-author a novel with him.

These two creative geniuses have combined their talents to bring us something incredibly special. In this interview, James tells us about the writing process and shares what it was like to collaborate with the world’s most beloved entertainment icon on “Run, Rose, Run.”


You have written well over 100 New York Times bestsellers, and you’re widely known as one of the most diverse writers of our time. What was your inspiration for this particular book?

I’d always admired what Dolly does to get people reading–adults and kids. Dolly’s also a gifted storyteller. Every one of her songs is a story. I thought we’d make a good team. As it turned out–I was right. I’m enjoying being on Team Dolly.

Did you develop the plot or the characters first?

I don’t think you can separate the plot and the characters. Dolly and I developed both in layers, or drafts. The plot kept getting thicker, and the characters kept getting more complex and interesting. I think readers are going to really enjoy our book.

Who is your favorite character in Run, Rose, Run?

It would have to be a tie between Ruthanna and AnnieLee. Ethan wouldn’t be far behind. One of my rules is that you have to be incredibly involved with your heroes–and really despise the villains.

What was it like to collaborate with one of the world’s most beloved superstars, and what was your favorite part about the process?

My joke about Dolly and everyone who works with her is that they’re incredibly nice, incredibly smart and relentless. Man, do I love that. My grandmother used to say, ‘Hungry dogs run faster.’ I think Dolly and I are hungry, in a good way.

What is your typical process for co-authoring a book?

I don’t have a “typical” process for co-authoring, but it usually starts with a long outline, which goes through several drafts. One of my jokes is that the other author and I alternate words. The one thing that always holds true is that the co-authors and I work really hard to make the best book we can. I know that’s what happened with “Run, Rose, Run.”

You and Dolly share a passion for literacy. You are known for campaigning to make books and reading a national priority. When was this passion ignited in you, and how has it affected your approach to writing?

Whenever I appear at a school or conference for librarians or teachers, I’ll say 'I’m here to save lives.' That’s what happens when you get kids reading at grade level. It gives them a chance to finish high school and go to college, if that’s appropriate, and get a better job when they get older. My mom was a teacher, and she always told the kids at school that she was there to help them look through windows, not look in mirrors.

Has music been an integral part of your life?

Yes, indeed. I like country, but I’m a rock n’ roll junkie. I was actually at Woodstock–and I was an usher for nearly two years at the Fillmore East. When I was at Vanderbilt, I also spent a few evenings at the original Grand Ole Opry.

When did you start writing?

I think when I was a year and a half. But you probably mean when did I start writing stories. I think I started composing them in my head when I was four or five. I started writing them down on paper when I was fourteen or fifteen.

Who has been the most influential person in your life with regard to your love of writing?

About a thousand unbelievably talented novelists and non-fiction writers who I’ve read–but in particular, my grandmother. She told me I could do anything I wanted to do–except maybe play basketball in the NBA. Actually, she didn’t say ‘maybe.’

Both you and Dolly are philanthropists. Is there a charity or cause that you are especially passionate about?

I concentrate on charities that help kids become better readers, help bookstores to survive and help students who want to be teachers get through school without too much debt.


Now available for pre-order, the “Run, Rose, Run” novel will be published simultaneously in hardcover, ebook and audiobook and will release on March 7. The album, also available for pre-order, is slated for a March 4 release.

Dolly Parton shares the fascinating story behind her collaboration with world-renowned best-selling author, James Patterson, on “Run, Rose, Run.”

Dolly Parton is truly one of the most diverse creatives of our time. She’s a quintessential dreamer who simply never stops reaching for the stars and somehow always manages to sprinkle stardust on her faithful following of ardent fans. Dolly doesn’t just dream big dreams for herself. The beauty of who she is and what she does is that she brings us all along on her magical journey.

So when world-renowned author, James Patterson, reached out to her about collaborating with him on a novel, Dolly did what she does best. She created another work of art for us to treasure. We sat down with her for a Q&A to give you a behind-the-scenes look into the amazing collaboration on the forthcoming book, “Run, Rose, Run,” that she and James are releasing into the world on March 7.


We know how passionate you are about literacy. Your children’s book, Coat of Many Colors, is a favorite among children enrolled in your Imagination Library book gifting program, but you’ve also written autobiographical and inspirational books for adults. Was it a dream for you to write a novel, and how did this project come about?

The way this came about, James Patterson called me out of the blue and asked if I would like to write a book with him. I thought, 'What in the world does James Patterson need me for? He's doing all right.' I told him, "Well, I don't know...I've never thought about it. I've read all of your books but have never thought about writing one with you. What would it be about?" He said, "Well, let's get together and we'll figure something out." So he flew to Nashville, and we visited for a long time. We realized we liked each other a lot. I told him I couldn't be involved in anything that I'm not personally very involved in. I don't want to just put my name on something and it not be something I've really contributed to. He said he had always thought about writing a book about Nashville, which I do know something about. So we came up with the idea of what it would be about. He went back home and started writing, and I started thinking about it. We exchanged ideas and before we knew it, we had a book going, and now we have a novel.

Did you draw any inspiration from your own musical journey when writing this book?

I had to draw a lot of inspiration from my own musical journey, with all of the ups and downs, the heartaches, the tears and the joys. I've been at it a long time and been through it all. So yes, I drew a lot from my own musical journey.

How did you come up with the title?

Well, I did not come up with the title. We kicked around so many different titles. I'd have a few and he'd had a few. One day he called and said "What do you think about 'Run, Rose, Run'?" I said, "Wow, I love it." She's on the run, and you realize that AnnieLee Keys is actually Rose McCord, thus the title is "Run Rose Run.” To me, I thought that was absolutely a great title.

Which of the characters do you relate to most, and why?

I relate to both of the characters, the young AnnieLee Keys(Rose McCord) and Ruthanna Ryder, who is the older person and is just kind of who I am now, with my own career and mentoring people, writing, having my own studio and not touring. There are a whole lot of similarities in both of those characters for me.

How did co-authoring a book compare to co-writing a song? Were there any similarities?

Any time you work with anybody, whether it's a song or book, it's a very creative process. You have to think about the subject matter; where this should land and where that should land. So it's very similar, but you just don't have to rhyme so much. Your mind is allowed to be a little freer as you go, because you don't have to keep it down to two and a half minutes for radio or that sort of thing. So you have more freedom in writing a book than you do a song.

What was it like to co-author a novel with the iconic James Patterson?

It was amazing. James Patterson, as we all know, is one of the greatest writers of all time. I was honestly kinda floored—and flattered—when James asked me to work with him. And it was fun. When he came down to my little place at my office the first time we met, when I saw him get out of the car and come up to my doorstep, I thought ‘I like this person.’ You know how you just know if a person feels right? You just get a feeling or some sort of aura about everybody. I thought, ‘He's so relaxed, so smart, so at peace, so in control of who he is.’ And I felt there was no BS about him...even though he is fun and has a crazy sense of humor like me. So we have really wound up being good friends. I am sure we'll always be in touch long after this book.

You teamed up with Kelsea Ballerini and a stellar cast to record the audio book. How did that come about?

I love Kelsea Ballerini. Usually if I've written a book, I'll read the whole thing myself. But we thought 'Wouldn't it be great to have the characters take on their own personality?' I read the Ruthanna—the older woman—part. Then we thought, ‘Who should we get to read the AnnieLee Keys/Rose character?’ Of course, Kelsea's name came up, and we all said ‘YES!’ She's very sweet, and I thought that was a good call.

Tell us about the 12-song companion album that is releasing simultaneously with the book. Did you know from the beginning you wanted to release a companion piece, or was it an idea that came organically during the process of writing the novel?

Early on, when I started writing with James and, of course, we couldn't be together every day, we had phone calls and exchanged emails and all the ways you work when you're older people like us. He would send me ideas, and I'd send him my thoughts. I thought, 'I bet I can contribute to this more by writing a lot of my thoughts about the characters and their situations in a song.’ So I started writing songs and sending them to him. He said “Wow, this is a great idea. I can expand on the characters and get more in-depth on who they are and what they're actually thinking from a woman's point of view, especially the AnnieLee and Ruthanna songs.” And the male character, Ethan, I know him, because I hung out with all of these guys in the music business—Porter, Kenny, Merle Haggard and all the greats. I've been in it a long time, so I related to all of these characters. I thought, 'I can write songs for all of them.’ So I started doing that, and James loved it. Then I thought, 'Wow, this is a really good album. I can put these songs in an album. Nobody's ever really done a soundtrack for a book that I know of.' So I thought it would be a great vehicle for promotion and marketing to have both of them come out together. James and I have a very strong publicity and marketing department, plus the publishing company. Everybody got on board, and we've really made it work for us, I think. I'm excited about that. You can listen to the album and know what the book is about. And if you read the book and listen to the songs, you really completely know what it's all about and kinda link them. It's kind of a little fun thing all on it's own, something different.

Your breadth of writing is unparalleled, from songs to Broadway musicals to movies to books. Can we expect more novels like this from you in the future?

I really don't know. I had always thought that I would write novels, but I thought it would be when I was older. Then I realized I am older. (HA!) So I don't know. It will depend on how things go. I'm a creative writer, and the spirit has to hit me on what I'm going to write about, but it's certainly not off the table. I don't know if I'll write another one with James. I think once is enough for something that great, but I'm not saying we won't. But we do think this is going to turn into a movie, so we'll be working together for years just on this one book. Whether or not I write another novel depends on how smart I am when I am older. If my mind will do it, I might.

Both you and James are known as philanthropists and giving plays a central role in who you are. Tell us about your beloved Imagination Library and how it all began.

As you know, I am very involved in a lot of things. I am proudest of the Imagination Library. Most people know how it started, I know you do, but for those who don't, the Imagination Library is a program where we send books to children once a month from the time they're born until they start school. They get the book in their mailbox with their name on it. They learn to love to read and love books. It's a wonderful thing. I think it's so important, because what inspired that was my own Dad, who couldn't read nor write. It was the same for many of my relatives from the mountains who didn't get a chance to go to school, because they had to work hard and help provide for their families. Plus, the schools were sometimes miles away, and they were usually one room schools. So a lot of people didn't get an education. My Daddy was so smart, but that always embarrassed him and kinda crippled him in a weird sort of way. That always troubled me, because he was so smart and I loved him so much. So when we started the Imagination Library, I thought, ‘I'm gonna get Daddy in on it and let him feel important.’ So I would take him with me and involve him in any way I could. He lived long enough to see the Imagination Library doing good. I'm a person of faith, so I believe there's life on the other side. So I just always know when all of those great things happen with the Imagination Library and it gets so much publicity, I feel like Mama and Daddy are looking down and trying to help bless my work. I don't know what all of James' inner feelings are about charities, but I'm sure he has many of them as well, based on some sort of truth and personal emotion. I will always try to do my best. I believe that when you are in a position to help, you should help.


Now available for pre-order, the “Run, Rose, Run” novel will be published simultaneously in hardcover, ebook and audiobook and will release on March 7. The album, also available for pre-order, is slated for a March 4 release.



All Things Dolly
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