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Dolly Parton’s ‘Coat of Many Colors’ Becomes Most-Watched Broadcast TV Movie in Three Years

Dolly Parton Coat of Many Colors ratings reviews
Matt Winkelmeyer, Getty Images

America loves Dolly Parton — at least according to the ratings for her first NBC TV movieCoat of Many Colors.

According to a press release, 13 million viewers tuned in during the film’s debut on Thursday night (Dec. 10), and the movie earned a 1.8 rating among adults 18-49. Rolling Stone Country reports that Coat of Many Colors, which was the most-watched movie on broadcast TV since May of 2012, also earned NBC its best total-viewer results in the time period since 2009’s ER series finale, excluding sports and live musicals.

Based on Parton’s childhood and named after a single that she released in 1971, Coat of Many Colors is set in 1955 and is “a family-oriented, faith-based story about the incidents in her and her family’s life around the time she was 9 years old.” Jennifer Nettles and Ricky Schroder play Parton’s mother and father, respectively, while Alyvia Lind plays young Parton.

“It really kind of evolves and details a lot of my whole life in bits and pieces. And it really shows family,” Parton says. “I don’t know if people, besides me, miss having shows like Little House on the Prairie or The Waltons, but it’s kind of like that. It just shows the simple life of back then, back when.

“[It’s] a show about people who made me who and what I am,” she continues. “It shows that I love music, and I love my folks … It’s really got a lot of great elements.

Coat of Many Colors is now streaming on and through NBC apps and cable on-demand programs.

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