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Jennifer Aniston opened up about working with Dolly Parton on the new Netflix original film Dumplin‘ and the first time they met when she visited Jimmy Kimmel Live! on Wednesday.
Parton wrote six songs for the film’s soundtrack, while Aniston stars as a retired beauty queen who acts as beauty pageant judge.
The film follows Aniston’s plus-size teenage daughter Willowdean “Dumplin'” Dickson (Danielle Macdonald). When Willowdean signs up for one of her mother’s pageants in protest, other misfit contestants follow in her footsteps. The new contestants soon revolutionize the small Texas town. Throughout the film, Willowdean often takes inspiration from Parton as she ventures into the world of beauty pageants.
“It’s a movie about learning to love yourself and girlfriends. Many love stories,” said Aniston. “It’s a love story with Dolly Parton. It’s a love story between a mom and a daughter, between friends. And mainly, actually, at the end it’s a love story about Willowdean really just learning to love herself and redefining what beauty is.”
Aniston said that the movie, which is based on the novel of the same name by Julie Murphy, would not have been made without Parton’s involvement. “Dolly is basically another character in the movie. They are so in love with her,” she said about the characters.
She shared that Parton immediately agreed to write songs for the soundtrack after being asked. “She was only supposed to write one song and she ended up writing six,” she said. “The movie wouldn’t have been made if she said no.”
Similar to her character and Willowdean, Aniston is a fan of Parton. She shared that she met Parton for the first time seven years ago, though she may have accidentally offended the singer. “I went up and met her that night cause I loved her since I was little. You know, sang into a hairbrush singing Dolly Parton,” she said. “I told her that I named my dog after her.”
Kimmel asked if Parton took the news as a compliment. “Yesterday Dolly and I were doing press and somehow that came up,” she said. “And then said — it kind of came out that she was like, ‘I know when she said I named my dog Dolly after you, I don’t know how I felt about that.’ And I was like, ‘Oh, God, I’ve insulted her.'”
She said that the interviewer then asked Parton if she would name a dog after Aniston. “And I said, ‘That’s so not a dog name.’ I mean I’ve never met a dog named Jennifer,” she said.
Aniston added that she thought naming her dog after Parton was “cute.”
The interview concluded with Kimmel telling Aniston he had a surprise for her. Guillermo Rodriguez then stepped onstage dressed as Parton. The costume included a sequined dress, a blonde wig and high heels. “Wow, I love it when we can bring major celebrities together,” joked Kimmel.
Watch the interview below.
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