Five Favorite Films With Billy Ray Cyrus
The co-star of Hannah Montana: The Movie shares his favorite films, his influences, and how David Lynch helped Miley get into showbiz.
Art imitates life (and vice versa) in Hannah Montana: The Movie, in which teen idol Miley Cyrus stars as the titular character, a 16-year-old A-list celebrity desperately trying to balance stardom with her normal life. That normal life is her "real" life as Miley Stewart, a high schooler whose pop identity is only known to family and friends and who is about to get a wake-up call in the form of an extended stay in the homegrown Tennessee countryside where she grew up, courtesy of dad Robby Ray Stewart (played by Miley's real-life father, country music star-turned-actor Billy Ray Cyrus). RT talked to the elder Cyrus about his favorite films, his transition from "Achy Breaky Heart" recording artist to Hollywood thespian, and how he credits David Lynch (and a letter from Johnny Cash) with helping daughter Miley become the teen entertainment phenomenon that she is today.
Oh my gosh! The incredible acting; the performances that are delivered in such an incredible true story. It's a great film.
is an inspiration to me as an actor. He, Robert Redford
, and Michael Landon
, might be three of my biggest influences as an actor. In each of those cases, it's the fact that they play everything with a "less is more" style. There's just something about that style that I try to tap into every now and then; it's definitely my approach to a lot of things.
I'm just a sucker for a good love story. And that would be another of my influences by Robert Redford. He's been a definitive inspiration as an actor and as a role model, if you will.
Let's go with Elephant Man
-- no, I'm going to go with Blue Velvet
, for my David Lynch
pick. I'm going to go with Blue Velvet
because I love Roy Orbison so much. He was a great influence on me musically, and still is. That's when I kind of put two and two together -- with Blue Velvet
-- and thought, film is a great way for your music to be heard, without radio. It's a great way for your music to be heard.
And that came out before you actually met David Lynch and starred in his film, Mulholland Dr.
Oh yes, it came out considerably before. I'm pretty sure I was a young hellion at the time, about wild enough to shoot at. Just rockin' and rollin', playing these little bars and clubs up in West Virginia and Kentucky and Ohio. Wild as can be, just crazy. It appealed to me.
I'm gonna go with the most recent film I saw that was really good. I thought Twilight
was pretty killer. Put it up there, I'm gonna go with it! Even though it was about vampires, I thought it was told in a really cool way. I thought the acting was strong. And, I thought the music that accompanied the film was really cool.
Next: Billy Ray Cyrus on auditioning for David Lynch's Mulholland Dr., how he credits Lynch with starting Miley Cyrus' acting career, and his close friendships with country legends Johnny Cash, Carl Perkins, and Waylon Jennings