“I thought I was going in to do a last audition and meet everybody from the crew. Then they brought me into this room and were putting up these video cameras and miking me,” reveals Alyvia Alyn Lind as we chat via webcam (watch above) about the audition process to play young Dolly Parton in the telefilm “Coat of Many Colors.” She adds, “And then Dolly came in and said, ‘I know you think you’re here to meet all these businessmen, but really you’re here for us to tell you that you are going to play me as little Dolly.'”
The TV movie aired in December on NBC with Jennifer Nettles and Ricky Schroder playing Dolly’s parents and Gerald McRaney her grandfather. It detailed the story behind the lyrics of Parton’s hit 1971 song about her mother making her a coat from donated rags to help cheer her up after the premature death of her baby brother.
Lind, who received a Critics’ Choice Awards nomination as Best Movie/Mini Actress this year, was already a fan of Parton’s work before taking the role. “I’ve always loved country, and I’ve loved her songs because they’re not completely country. They have kind of a modern thing going on. My favorite movie in the world is ‘9 to 5,’ so that got me pretty excited when I heard I was going to play her.”
Because over 16 million tuned, NBC recently announced the sequel “Christmas of Many Colors: Circle of Love” will go into production soon for a planned holiday airing next December. Sam Haskell returns to produce with Lind, Nettles, Schroder, and McRaney reprising their roles. The plot centers on a blizzard threatening the family’s home with Dolly’s father trying to save enough money to finally buy his wife a wedding ring.