Dolly Parton Breaks Silence on Disney Controversy

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Dolly Parton in 'Hannah Montana'

Credit: Disney

Dolly Parton has become one of the most iconic figures in the United States today, and for good reason.

Dolly Parton is a legendary American singer, songwriter, actress, and philanthropist known for her distinctive voice, iconic style, and impressive contributions to the world of entertainment. Born on January 19, 1946, in Sevierville, Tennessee –just outside of Pigeon Forge in East Tennessee– Dolly’s career spans several decades, earning her a place among the most influential figures in country music and pop culture. Her contributions to music are immeasurable, with numerous chart-topping hits and accolades, making her an enduring icon in the industry.

Dolly Parton Dollywood
Credit: Dollywood

Dolly Parton’s career began in the mid-1960s when she moved to Nashville to pursue her dreams. She quickly gained recognition for her songwriting talent, penning hits for renowned artists like Porter Wagoner and Skeeter Davis. In 1967, she teamed up with Porter Wagoner for a successful partnership that produced numerous duet albums and hits. The dynamic between the two garnered significant attention and catapulted Dolly to stardom. Her breakthrough came with the single “Jolene” in 1974, and her song “I Will Always Love You” became one of her most iconic compositions, later famously covered by Whitney Houston in The Bodyguard (1992).

Dolly’s appeal transcends her music. Her vibrant personality and trademark style, including her wigs and flamboyant outfits, have made her a beloved figure. She’s also an accomplished actress, with notable roles in movies such as 9 to 5 (1980) and Steel Magnolias (1989). Her magnetic charm and wit have endeared her to audiences worldwide.

In addition to her career, what many forget is that she is connected to Miley Cyrus, and the two share a special bond. Dolly is Miley Cyrus’s godmother, a connection that has cemented their close-knit family ties. This relationship provided a unique opportunity for the pair to collaborate professionally, most notably on the Disney Channel show Hannah Montana (2006-2011).

Miley Cyrus in the music video for "Flowers"
Credit: Columbia

Dolly made guest appearances on Hannah Montana as Aunt Dolly, a character that mirrored her real-life persona. Her presence on the show was met with great enthusiasm from fans and further solidified her status as a pop culture icon. However, over the years, there have been controversial moments related to the show and Miley Cyrus’s comments.

Miley Cyrus, who played the titular character on the show, has made various negative remarks about her time on Hannah Montana. She has expressed frustration with the show’s constraints and the pressures of child stardom. While her discontent may not have been directed at Dolly Parton, it has stirred debates and discussions about the challenges faced by young actors in the industry.

Just recently, Miley Cyrus talked about her schedule with the show. She revisited her calendar, which started at 5:30 a.m. and included nine interviews, meeting with editors, two photoshoots, and then doing it all over again the next day before flying back for more filming.

“I’m a lot of things, but lazy ain’t one of them,” Cyrus said. “I do think this girl deserves a little endless summer vacation.”

Hannah Montana co-stars all together, Miley Cyrus and Mitchell Musso
Credit: Disney

While Miley has been critical of Disney since her work with the show ended, Dolly Parton recently shared some photos on Instagram that reminded many fans of the good aspects of the show and the fun that the family had filming together. It also shows that she and Miley still maintain a strong family connection.

“Reminiscing on my time as Aunt Dolly on Hannah Montana,” Dolly shared in the Instagram post.


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A post shared by Dolly Parton (@dollyparton)

There were thousands of comments on the post reminiscing about the beloved portions of the show and some of Dolly’s most famous lines. Disney Channel’s official Instagram account even replied saying, “Aunt Dolly forever.”

What did you think of Dolly Parton’s work in the iconic Disney Channel show? Let Inside the Magic know in the comments!

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