Another celebrity has spoken out in support of Britney Spears, and this time it’s Dolly Parton. The iconic country singer sat down with Andy Cohen for Watch What Happens Live Thursday (July 29) and opened up about a whole host of topics, including the #FreeBritney movement.
When Cohen asked the “Jolene” singer for her thoughts on Spears’ conservatorship battle, Parton admitted that she doesn’t like to stick her nose in other people’s business, but she did have some thoughts on the pop princess’ plight. “I think she’s a wonderful artist, and I think she’s a wonderful girl, and I only wish her the best,” she began before getting a little more personal about how she can relate in her own way to what Spears is going through.
“I understand all those crazy things. I went through a lot of that myself through a big lawsuit in my early days with Porter Wagoner, trying to get out on my own,” Parton reminded viewers. “So I understand where she’s coming from and how she feels. So I hope that it all turns out the way that it should.”
Back in 1974, Parton announced to fans that she was ending her partnership with country singer and mentor Wagoner — who helped launch her career with his eponymous TV show — after seven years in order to go solo. He later sued her for $3 million, alleging breach of contract. The former collaborators settled out of court years later.
In an interview with in 2008, the year after Wagoner’s death, Parton discussed their behind-the-scenes issues. “He was very much a male chauvinist pig,” she said. “He was in charge, and it was his show, but he was also very strong-willed.”
Spears’ father has been in charge of the pop star during her conservatorship, which went into effect in 2008. In a June 23 hearing, Spears publicly testified in her case for the first time, telling the judge in an emotional speech about how she feels the situation has been abusive, and that she believes dad Jamie Spears and those involved in the conservatorship should be behind bars. Things were so bad, she said, her conservatorship felt like sex trafficking.
Since her testimony, numerous musicians have spoken out to support the #FreeBritney movement. Among them are former boyfriend Justin Timberlake, Madonna, Christina Aguilera, Mariah Carey, Lance Bass, and many more.
In subsequent hearings about Spears’ conservatorship, the pop star has been granted the ability to select her own counsel. Her new attorney, Mathew Rosengart, has vowed to “aggressively and expeditiously” move to remove Jamie Spears as the conservator. The first legal move was made in that direction July 26, when the lawyer filed a petition to appoint a CPA to replace Jamie.
Watch Parton discuss Britney Spears on WWHL below: