Why this Netflix star was ‘terrified’ to fulfill Dolly Parton


On the aircraft from New York to Los Angeles, the place she’d be assembly Jennifer Aniston for the primary time, Danielle Macdonald made the error of watching “Mates.”

“I used to be like, ‘Why am I doing this to myself? That is loopy!’ ” the 27-year-old Aussie remembers considering. By the point she arrived at Aniston’s home, she was a nervous wreck.

However the feeling dissipated as quickly because the “Mates” star walked out and gave her an enormous hug.

“I immediately relaxed,” Macdonald tells The Submit. “I used to be like, ‘Oh, OK, you’re a human being.’ ”

That helped, because the two play mom and daughter in “Dumplin’,” the brand new dramedy streaming Friday on Netflix. Based mostly on Julie Murphy’s bestselling younger grownup novel, the movie follows a plus-sized teenager named Willowdean, who lives in small-town Texas together with her mom, a former magnificence queen who now runs the Miss Teen Bluebonnet pageant. When Willowdean decides to compete within the pageant as a type of protest, she and her mother change in surprising methods.

The characters’ relationship is commonly contentious, however Macdonald says that she and Aniston bonded straight away. They began out by discussing their households, and on set, performed round on apps collectively and watched animal movies.

“It was simply so snug,” Macdonald says.

She’s additionally rising more and more snug in Hollywood.

Macdonald with Jennifer Aniston in a scene from the movie.
Macdonald stars within the film alongside Jennifer Aniston.Bob Mahoney / Netflix

Born and raised in Sydney, Macdonald started performing little reveals at residence together with her older sister, Tania. She began taking performing lessons in eighth grade, and moved to LA earlier than she turned 19.

Within the years since, she’s appeared in small components on TV’s “Fairly Little Liars” and “American Horror Story.” Her breakthrough function got here in 2017, when she performed a rapper within the Sundance hit, “Patti Cake$.” After “Dumplin,’ ” she’ll star alongside Sandra Bullock within the Nextflix film, “Chicken Field,” debuting Dec. 21.

However Macdonald nonetheless will get star-struck, particularly when she meets a music legend. The day she and Aniston recorded backup vocals for “Push and Pull,” considered one of six new tunes Dolly Parton wrote for the film, Macdonald arrived on the studio in dress-down mode: moist hair, no make-up and what she calls “aircraft garments,” for her flight to Australia.

And there was Parton herself.

“I don’t know that I’ve ever been extra terrified in my life,” says Macdonald, who grew up listening to “Jolene” and “9 to five” again in Australia.

However Parton, she says, couldn’t have been kinder.

“She was like, ‘You’re doing nice. You’ll get there.’

“So it took me a short while to only form of cool down,” Macdonald says, including with self-deprecation, “and at last do one thing that sounded half-decent!”

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