CMT is launching a new scripted television show in which the “Achy Breaky Heart” singer plays an Elvis impersonator.
Sometimes it’s hard to figure out just what television executives may be thinking when brainstorming new pilots. Country Music Television (CMT) announced the release of four new upcoming shows, including Still the King, which will star Billy Ray Cyrus as…well, basically, Billy Ray Cyrus. Described as a “Scandal-ridden, washed-up, one-hit-wonder”, Cyrus’s character, Vernon Brown, is sentenced to community service after crashing his car into a church. Cyrus instead pretends to be the new pastor of the church, and somehow finds out he has a 15-year-old daughter he’s never met (Please don’t let it be Miley). Somewhere in all this confusion, Cyrus’s character makes a name for himself as a prominent Elvis impersonator in Laughlin, Nevada.
Cyrus is both an executive producer and a writer for Still the King, which may explain the ill-conceived nature of the show’s premise. Cyrus, who has done much more work in Hollywood than he ever got around to doing in Nashville, has said he is excited to work on the show. He’s joined by country singer Randy Travis, who’s been rather scandal-ridden himself in recent years.
“I filmed a pilot with Randy Travis called ‘Still the King,” Cyrus said in an interview with Billboard. “I play a dysfunctional Elvis impersonator who becomes a preacher. Randy’s the sheriff,”
It’ll be interesting to see how Travis plays a sheriff, having been on the other end of the handcuffs in 2012 when he was arrested for drunkenly brawling in a church parking lot in Texas.
Cyrus’s other recent achievements include a memoir called “Hillbilly Heart”, and he is also said to be working on a new album. One can only hope that Still the King will turn out funny, rather than baffling.