We’re only hours away from the series premiere of Still The King airing Sunday (June 12) at 9 p.m. ET/PT.
The show features Billy Ray Cyrus as Vernon Brownmule, aka Burnin’ Vernon, a scandal-ridden, washed-up, one-hit-wonder who was kicked out of country music, only to emerge 20 years later as the second best Elvis impersonator around.
Along the way, he pretends to be the congregation’s new minister and reconnects with a former one-night-stand, Debbie, played by Joey Lauren Adams, when he learns he has a 15-year-old daughter, played by Madison Iseman, he’s never met.
So it’s only fitting to get to the know Adams, arguably one of the MVPs of the ensemble cast, as she makes her TV debut.
Q. To kick things off, we always have to ask, what music are you listening to right now?
A. I really like Billy Squire, Luna Shadows, Josh Kelley and Nathaniel Rateliff.
Q. How would you describe your character in the show, Debbie?
A. Debbie raised her daughter all by herself, and loves her daughter very much. And because of this, she’s kind of had to put her dreams on hold. Charlotte’s now 15 years old, so she’s at the point where she can now go back to some of her dreams she put on hold along the way.
Q. How did you prepare for this character?
A. I had never done a TV series before, so it was very interesting. But, of course, I always thought about my own mom.
Q. How would you explain the love triangle that happens between Debbie, Ronnie and Vernon?
A. For Debbie, Ronnie is sort of safe and just secure. He’s so out there, and so funny. He’s the kind of guy that’s non-threatening. And, I don’t feel like Ronnie stifles her. She can control him, and sort of do what she wants to do. She’s in control of that relationship, but then there’s her relationship with Vernon that’s a little more dangerous, and out of her control, which is somewhat exciting to her. You’ll keep going back and forth, rooting for Vernon, and then routing for Ronnie.
Q. How was working with Billy Ray Cyrus, as Vernon, and John Sewell, as Ronnie?
A. He’s so humble and naturally funny. It sounds cliche, but, seriously, everyone on the set was just so nice and giving. It’s very much an ensemble, as everyone is rooting for everyone. Billy is such a great human being — he’s so kind and generous.
Q. Any favorite scenes or lines from the show?
A. Vernon takes Charlotte and he’s got no money, and he takes her crawdad fishing. And he pulls up a cup and he says “I’ve got two in one cup!.” He’s just so childlike and genuine in that moment.
Q. How was filming the show in Nashville?
A. It was just so easy to fall into a community there. And, in L.A., that’s way more difficult. My husband’s a Cowboys fan, and we were able to find a neighborhood bar in East Nashville, where we were living at the time. We watched the game there every Sunday, sit with the same people, and immediately, it was our bar. It was instant community.
Q. Lastly,how would you describe the show in only five words to viewers?
A. Flawed characters with big hearts.