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Dolly Parton Sticks Up for Miley Cyrus

One misstep, and Miley Cyrus‘ name is all over the press. The teen sensation and daughter of Billy Ray Cyrus has received a lot of criticism lately, as a result of several embarrassing moments caught on tape: smoking cigarettes and salvia, referring to herself as a “stoner,” wearing revealing outfits and cursing at a fan who wanted a photo. But there’s one person who’s not criticizing the 19-year-old singer/actress: her godmother, Dolly Parton.

“I remember myself at her age. We’ve all been a bit too hard on her,” the country icon told Parade. “I hope she holds it together because there’s a world of things she can do. She should keep an eye on things and make wise decisions.”

In fact, Miley is the one person Dolly mentioned when we asked her to name a young artist who is impressing her these days. “She’s like a little Elvis! The kids love her because she’s Hannah Montana, but what people don’t realize about her is she is such a fantastic singer and songwriter,” Dolly told The Boot. “She writes songs like she’s 40 years old! She’s really deep. I’m amazed at the talent that child has and the effect she has on people.”

Readers of Hollywood Life agree. They voted Miley as “Role Model of the Year,” thanks to her mission trips to Haiti, charity concerts and tireless fan interaction. Still, Miley just wants to be able to live her life as a normal teenager who’s allowed to mess up every now and then. “My job isn’t to tell your kids how to act or how not to act, because I’m still figuring that out for myself,” she said in a 2010 interview with Harper’s Bazaar. “To take that away from me is a bit selfish. Your kids are going to make mistakes whether I do or not. That’s just life.”

Both godmother’s and goddaughter’s acting careers are in the spotlight this year. Dolly’s new movie, ‘Joyful Noise’ opens in theaters Jan. 13. Miiley has two films coming out in 2012, the teen comedy ‘LOL’ and animated movie, ‘Hotel Transylvania.’

Watch a ‘Joyful Noise’ Movie Clip + Interviews

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