Movies & Television

Carson Meyer As Willadeene Parton – Interview

Published December 3, 2015 / Last Updated December 3, 2015
Dolly Parton Productions

Dolly Parton Productions

Managing Editor at Dolly Parton Productions
Team Dolly is a collaboration of writers, editors, and publishers assembled by Dolly Parton Productions. Each member is dedicated to accurately publishing the latest news and historical archives of the living legend that is Dolly Rebecca Parton.

Managing Editor - Jacob Timmons
Creative Director - Sarah Chapman
Senior Editor - Amanda Webb
Dolly Parton Productions

Carson Meyer, a young actress with an old soul, portrays Robert and Avie Lee Parton’s first-born child, Willadeene, in “Dolly Parton’s Coat of Many Colors.”

Carson, like her character, naturally found herself watching after the younger children on set and even shared her favorite hobby with a few, which became a big hit.

Dolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors
DOLLY PARTON"S COAT OF MANY COLORS -- "Dolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors" -- Pictured: (l-r) Parker Sack as David Parton, Dylan Michael Rowen as Denver Parton, Blane Crockarell as Bobby Parton, Farrah Mackenzie as Stella Parton, Alyvia Alyn Lind as Dolly, Jennifer Nettles as Avie Lee Parton, Ricky Schroder as Lee Parton, Carson Meyer as Willadeene Parton -- (Photo by: Quantrell Colbert/NBC)
Dolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors
Stella Parton as Mrs. Corla Bass
DOLLY PARTON'S COAT OF MANY COLORS -- Season: 2015 -- Pictured: Stella Parton as Mrs. Corla Bass -- (Photo by: Jeff Lipsky/NBC)
Stella Parton as Mrs. Corla Bass
Alyvia Alyn Lind, Mary Lane Haskell
DOLLY PARTON'S COAT OF MANY COLORS -- "Dolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors" -- Pictured: Mary Lane Haskell as Miss Moody -- (Photo by: Quantrell Colbert/NBC)
Alyvia Alyn Lind, Mary Lane Haskell
Mary Lane Haskell, Alyvia Alyn Lind
DOLLY PARTON"S COAT OF MANY COLORS -- "Dolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors" -- Pictured: (l-r) Mary Lane Haskell as Miss Moody, Alyvia Alyn Lind as Dolly Parton -- (Photo by: Quantrell Colbert/NBC)
Mary Lane Haskell, Alyvia Alyn Lind
Ricky Schroder, Jennifer Nettles
DOLLY PARTON"S COAT OF MANY COLORS -- "Dolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors" -- Pictured: (l-r) Ricky Schroder as Robert Lee Parton, Jennifer Nettles as Avie Lee Parton -- (Photo by: Quantrell Colbert/NBC)
Ricky Schroder, Jennifer Nettles
Gerald McRaney as Reverend Jake Owens
DOLLY PARTON"S COAT OF MANY COLORS -- "Dolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors" -- Pictured: Gerald McRaney as Reverend Jake Owens -- (Photo by: Quantrell Colbert/NBC)
Gerald McRaney as Reverend Jake Owens
Jennifer Nettles, Ricky Schroder
DOLLY PARTON"S COAT OF MANY COLORS -- "Dolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors" -- Pictured: (l-r) Jennifer Nettles as Avie Lee Parton, Ricky Schroder as Robert Lee Parton -- (Photo by: Quantrell Colbert/NBC)
Jennifer Nettles, Ricky Schroder
Dolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors
DOLLY PARTON"S COAT OF MANY COLORS -- "Dolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors" -- Pictured: (l-r) Jennifer Nettles as Avie Lee Parton, Parker Sack as David Parton, Dylan Rowen as Denver Parton, Carson Meyer as Willadeene Parton, Alyvia Alyn Lind as Dolly Parton -- (Photo by: Quantrell Colbert/NBC)
Dolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors
Dolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors
DOLLY PARTON"S COAT OF MANY COLORS -- "Dolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors" -- Pictured: (l-r) Blane Crockarell as Bobby Parton, Alyvia Alyn Lind as Dolly, Jennifer Nettles as Avie Lee Parton, Farrah Mackenzie as Stella Parton, Dylan Michael Rowen as Denver Parton, Carson Meyer as Willadeene Parton, Parker Sack as David Parton -- (Photo by: Quantrell Colbert/NBC)
Dolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors
Dolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors
DOLLY PARTON"S COAT OF MANY COLORS -- "Dolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors" -- Pictured: (l-r) Front Row, Carson Meyer as Willadeene Parton, Farrah Mackenzie as Stella Parton, Alyvia Alyn Lind as Dolly, Dylan Michael Rowen as Denver Parton, Parker Sack as David Parton, Blane Crockarell as Bobby Parton, Back Row, Ricky Schroder as Lee Parton, Jennifer Nettles as Avie Lee Parton -- (Photo by: Quantrell Colbert/NBC)
Dolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors
"Dolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors"
DOLLY PARTON"S COAT OF MANY COLORS -- "Dolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors" -- Pictured: (l-r) Jennifer Nettles as Avie Lee Parton, Parker Sack as David Parton, Dylan Rowen as Denver Parton, Carson Meyer as Willadeene Parton, Alyvia Alyn Lind as Dolly Parton -- (Photo by: Quantrell Colbert/NBC)
"Dolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors"

Q. As you started to develop your character, what things about Willadeene stood out or perhaps surprised you?

A. I bought all of her books, her cookbook and “Smoky Mountain Memories.” I did a lot of reading about her. I loved that she kept the letters from her sisters and kind of held all those memories so dear to her. And then Stella [Parton] being on set told me great stories about her sister. One of my favorite’s is that Willadeene would put perfume on the girls before she would go out which would always make them happy.

Q. The Parton family is known for their tight-knit bonds. While filming, did the cast develop similar family-like relationships?

A. Oh yeah, absolutely. I think working with all the kids it’s hard not to feel like a family. We were all staying at one hotel, so we would all go to the pool after. I taught the girls how to knit, which was really fun, and crochet because I’m a big crocheter myself. It reminded me of being at summer camp. I loved everybody on set. It was a really, really special group.

Q. Considering everything you have done in your career, where does this role rank in your list of achievements?

A. It’s the greatest thing that’s ever happened to me! I’ve always been a huge Dolly fan my whole life. I’ve read all of her books, her movies, her songs. I just think she’s a really, really special person and somebody that’s worthy of all the success and fame that she’s achieved. So for me to be able to work with Dolly is a dream come true.

Q. The song “Coat of Many Colors” first debuted in 1971, yet it still has a powerful message for people today. Why do you think people relate so well to this story?

A. This idea that you can’t buy love and that nothing else really matters. It’s all just family…the importance of family and community and faith and all the things that have nothing to do with material objects.

Q. Other than “Coat of Many Colors” do you have a favorite Dolly song?

A. Yes, “Heartbreak Express” has always been my favorite. I used to listen to it on constant replay in the car on my way to school when I was in high school. It’s gotten me through so many heartaches and heartbreaks.

Q. What was your favorite moment of making the film or your favorite takeaway?

A. I don’t know if I can pin it down to one moment. I had a hard time sleeping, because I was so excited for the next day of work. I loved every moment of it.

See more cast interviews and tune in Thursday, December 10 at 9/8c on NBC to watch Carson Meyer as Willadeene Parton in “Dolly Parton’s Coat of Many Colors.”

Important Links:
Dolly Parton ProductionsCarson Meyer As Willadeene Parton – Interview

Ricky Schroder As Robert Lee Parton – Interview

Published December 3, 2015 / Last Updated December 3, 2015
Dolly Parton Productions

Dolly Parton Productions

Managing Editor at Dolly Parton Productions
Team Dolly is a collaboration of writers, editors, and publishers assembled by Dolly Parton Productions. Each member is dedicated to accurately publishing the latest news and historical archives of the living legend that is Dolly Rebecca Parton.

Managing Editor - Jacob Timmons
Creative Director - Sarah Chapman
Senior Editor - Amanda Webb
Dolly Parton Productions

Starring as Dolly Parton’s father in the new NBC movie, Ricky Schroder shares his thoughts on his character, Dolly’s approval of his performance and more.

Ricky Schroder plays Robert Lee in “Dolly Parton’s Coat of Many Colors.” This father of four said he was naturally drawn to watching over the children on set.

Ricky Schroder as Robert Lee Parton
DOLLY PARTON"S COAT OF MANY COLORS -- "Dolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors" -- Pictured: Ricky Schroder as Robert Lee Parton -- (Photo by: Quantrell Colbert/NBC)
Ricky Schroder as Robert Lee Parton
Jennifer Nettles, Ricky Schroder
DOLLY PARTON"S COAT OF MANY COLORS -- "Dolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors" -- Pictured: (l-r) Ricky Schroder as Robert Lee Parton, Jennifer Nettles as Avie Lee Parton -- (Photo by: Quantrell Colbert/NBC)
Jennifer Nettles, Ricky Schroder
Ricky Schroder as Robert Lee Parton
DOLLY PARTON"S COAT OF MANY COLORS -- "Dolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors" -- Pictured: Ricky Schroder as Robert Lee Parton -- (Photo by: Quantrell Colbert/NBC)
Ricky Schroder as Robert Lee Parton
Ricky Schroder, Jennifer Nettles
DOLLY PARTON"S COAT OF MANY COLORS -- "Dolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors" -- Pictured: (l-r) Ricky Schroder as Robert Lee Parton, Jennifer Nettles as Avie Lee Parton -- (Photo by: Quantrell Colbert/NBC)
Ricky Schroder, Jennifer Nettles
Ricky Schroder as Robert Lee Parton, Carson Meyer as Willadeene Parton
DOLLY PARTON"S COAT OF MANY COLORS -- "Dolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors" -- Pictured: (l-r) Ricky Schroder as Robert Lee Parton, Carson Meyer as Willadeene Parton -- (Photo by: Quantrell Colbert/NBC)
Ricky Schroder as Robert Lee Parton, Carson Meyer as Willadeene Parton
Ricky Schroder, Jennifer Nettles
DOLLY PARTON"S COAT OF MANY COLORS -- "Dolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors" -- Pictured: (l-r) Ricky Schroder as Robert Lee Parton, Jennifer Nettles as Avie Lee Parton -- (Photo by: Quantrell Colbert/NBC)
Ricky Schroder, Jennifer Nettles
Ricky Schroder, Alyvia Alyn Lind
DOLLY PARTON"S COAT OF MANY COLORS -- "Dolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors" -- Pictured: (l-r) Ricky Schroder as Robert Lee Parton, Alyvia Alyn Lind as Dolly Parton -- (Photo by: Quantrell Colbert/NBC)
Ricky Schroder, Alyvia Alyn Lind
Ricky Schroder as Robert Lee Parton
DOLLY PARTON"S COAT OF MANY COLORS -- "Dolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors" -- Pictured: Ricky Schroder as Robert Lee Parton -- (Photo by: Quantrell Colbert/NBC)
Ricky Schroder as Robert Lee Parton

Q. As you started to develop your character, what things about Robert Lee stood out or perhaps surprised you?

A. I wanted to do a good job in my character for Dolly and her family. This movie is so dear and important to her that I really wanted to honor who her father was and their relationship, because she just adored him. Dolly gave me just a few tidbits of information here and there when we were producing the movie that were extremely helpful about him and his nature and his humor; how he didn’t like to waste words. He was a man of few words. It was an honor to play him.

Q. The Parton family is known for their tight-knit bonds. While filming, did the cast develop similar family-like relationships?

A. It’s very easy to want to be a father and protector and teacher for those kids. They’re such sweet kids, the whole clan. You know, you work together with your coworkers so many hours, and you just get to like them. You get to know them a little bit, you get to know their personalities. I have an extra kind of soft place in my heart for those kids, because they have to work so hard, especially little [Alyvia]. She worked so hard. She carried so much weight, so well, on her broad shoulders that you can’t help but feel protective over those kids. That was a wonderful time with those kids.

Q. Considering everything you have done in your career, where does this role rank in your list of achievements?

A. Well, I’ll let you know when I see it [laughing]. I have every expectation that it’s going to be a movie that I’ll be so proud of. I had a lot of good feelings making this movie.

Q. By today’s standards, with four children, you have a big family. Was there ever a moment while making this film, you stopped to think about the challenges Robert Lee faced raising a family of 12?

A. Sure, enormous challenges to feed 12, plus yourself and your wife, 14 people. I’m not going to discount the challenges that parents today face either. There’s just massive challenges and pressures on today’s parents, maybe not providing the basics as what Lee needed to provide… [but] enormous responsibility for sure.

Q. The song “Coat of Many Colors,” first debuted in 1971, yet it still has a powerful message for people today. Why do you think people relate so well to this story?

A. Because of Dolly, I think. We all want to know where she came from. She is so special and unique. That’s really what this movie shows people, where Dolly came from and who loved her and who was with her and helped nurture her.

Q. Other than “Coat of Many Colors” do you have a favorite Dolly song?

A. Probably one of my favorites is the duet with her and Kenny Rogers, “Islands in the Stream.”

Q. What was your favorite moment of making the film or your favorite takeaway?

A. I’m so proud of so many people who worked so hard on the movie. My favorite takeaway… probably a note that Dolly wrote me one day when we were in production. She said she had been watching the dailies, you know the work from the previous days. She was so glad she chose me to play her father. That was a pretty special moment to get that letter from her.

See more cast interviews and tune in Thursday, December 10 at 9/8c on NBC to watch Ricky Schroder as Robert Lee Parton in “Dolly Parton’s Coat of Many Colors.”

Important Links:
Dolly Parton ProductionsRicky Schroder As Robert Lee Parton – Interview

NBC to make Dolly Parton TV movies

Published May 11, 2015 / Last Updated August 23, 2015
Team Dolly

Team Dolly

Team Dolly is a collaboration of writers, editors, and publishers assembled by Dolly Parton Productions. Each member is dedicated to accurately publishing the latest news and historical archives of the living legend that is Dolly Rebecca Parton.

Managing Editor - Jacob Timmons
Creative Director - Sarah Chapman
Senior Editor - Amanda Webb
Team Dolly

NBC announces plans to make a collection of Dolly Parton TV movies based on her life and music

Update (Aug. 19, 2015): It’s official, “Dolly Parton’s Coat of Many Colors” is set to air on NBC, Thursday, Dec. 10, from 9-11 PM!

Update (May 11, 2015): NBC confirms first in series of made-for-TV movies will be “Coat of Many Colors.”
Read more about the movie on NBC.

In early January 2015, Dolly and NBC announced their joint plans to make a collection of two-hour television movies based on Dolly’s life and songs. Not only will Dolly produce the films, she will also reunite with Bob Greenblatt on the project. She remarked,

“I am so excited to be involved with my friend Bob Greenblatt, who produced the Broadway version of ‘9 to 5: The Musical’ with me, and my longtime friend and former agent Sam Haskell. We want to create projects for NBC that are both fun and inspirational with a family audience in mind.”

The network noted the films will incorporate Dolly’s always-present positive outlook on life which has inspired her fans and those around her. In a release, NBC Entertainment chairman, Robert Greenblatt said,

“I don’t know anyone in the world who doesn’t love Dolly Parton, and the idea of developing television movies inspired by her incredible life and the stories she has sung about for decades is exciting to all of us at NBC.”

Dolly wrote many of her hit songs based on personal experiences from her childhood and from other times in her life. Songs like “Coat of Many Colors,” “My Tennessee Mountain Home” and “I Will Always Love You” were inspired by real events. Through these songs and many others, Dolly builds strong emotional connections with her fans. Now these beloved stories are set to play out on the small screen for loyal fans and new audiences alike.

Team DollyNBC to make Dolly Parton TV movies

HBO’s ‘Foo Fighters: Sonic Highways’

Published October 31, 2014 / Last Updated August 23, 2015
Team Dolly

Team Dolly

Team Dolly is a collaboration of writers, editors, and publishers assembled by Dolly Parton Productions. Each member is dedicated to accurately publishing the latest news and historical archives of the living legend that is Dolly Rebecca Parton.

Managing Editor - Jacob Timmons
Creative Director - Sarah Chapman
Senior Editor - Amanda Webb
Team Dolly

HBO series, ‘Foo Fighters: Sonic Highways,’ features Dolly in Nashville episode

Dolly appeared in the Nashville episode of the HBO series “Foo Fighters Sonic Highways” on October 31, 2014. Dave Grohl the singer and primary songwriter for the rock band Foo Fighters directs and stars in the documentary series.

The Nashville episode focuses on the city’s rich songwriting culture and the Country Music business. Grohl commented on why he wanted to interview Dolly for the show,

“Nobody is cooler than Dolly Parton. Her story is amazing.”

The show follows Foo Fighters as they road trip across the country using inspiration from the famous cities they visit to create the songs for their current recording project. The upcoming recording project, “Sonic Highways,” is a commemoration of their 20th anniversary as a band and an attempt to create a sonic map of American music.

View an extended version of Dolly’s interview with Grohl.

Team DollyHBO’s ‘Foo Fighters: Sonic Highways’

‘American Pickers’ shop for Dolly!

Published May 7, 2014 / Last Updated October 17, 2015

Dolly gets help from History’s “American Pickers” at Dollywood

Dolly requested History’s “American Pickers” to outfit the newest attraction at Dollywood, FireChaser Express, with vintage firefighter-themed items. American Pickers Danielle Colby delivered the antiques collected from across the country to Dolly as she prepared to open the ride to the public.

The episode aired on Wednesday, May 7, 2014 on the History Channel.

The Dollywood Company‘American Pickers’ shop for Dolly!