Darius Rucker is turning on his comedic charm for CMT this week. On Wednesday night, he played the president of the network in a humorous clip that kicked off the CMT Music Awards. On Sunday, he’ll make another CMT cameo but in the biggest of big roles: Jesus Christ. Well, “Special J,” as the Elvis Presley character calls him, as they tear through barbeque ribs in the back of a convertible. Rolling Stone Country has the exclusive sneak peek of Rucker guest starring on Billy Ray Cyrus’ new CMT sitcom, Still the King, which premieres this Sunday, June 12th at 9:00 p.m. ET. [Watch above.]
“Being on stage is easy compared to acting,” says Rucker. “I mean, I know I can sing but I know I can’t act.”
Still the King‘s leading man, Cyrus plays a former one-hit-wonder who, after a successful stint impersonating Elvis, lies his way into a job as a minister. Joey Lauren Adams (Chasing Amy, Mallrats) plays an old flame who gave birth to their daughter 15 years earlier. Other castmates include Madison Iseman, Travis Nicholson, Lacey Chabert, Leslie David Baker and Jon Sewell. In addition to Rucker, various guest stars include Randy Travis, John Corbett and Erik Estrada.
Cyrus, also the show’s co-executive producer and creator, came up with the idea for Still the King after a gig in Louisiana. While his tour bus was fueling up, he went on a walk and found two major sources of inspiration.
“There was a dilapidated pentecostal church sitting right there,” he tells Rolling Stone Country, “and behind it was the place where Elvis had played the Louisiana Hayride. It just hit me: Dude, there’s your reinvention! I walked back into the bus and immediately wrote the broad strokes of Still the King.”
Read our chat with Cyrus about his TV “reinvention” here.