Actress Megyn Price stars in the Lifetime original movie, A Country Christmas Story, set to air Saturday, November 9 at 8 p.m. In the story about a young girl with big dreams, Megyn costars with Brian McKnight and country legend Dolly Parton.
The Rules of Engagement star opens up to Celebrity Baby Scoop about her daughter Grace, 6, who is a natural entrepreneur and “way funnier” than mom. Megyn goes on to talk about the joys of motherhood and her upcoming projects.
CBS: You are set to star in A Country Christmas Story. Please tell us about the movie and your role.
MP: “It is a dramatic role, which is a departure for me from my normal comedy roots. It’s a really pretty story that I fell in love with. The movie is about a mother, played by me, and a daughter, and both of them are kind of on their own.
The girl has big dreams, which terrifies her mom. In the movie, rather than trying to thwart her dreams, I am trying to protect her from what I see as future disappointment. The girl goes ahead with her dreams anyway. It’s a really beautiful story of a mother, a daughter, and a grandmother. Everyone works together to help the little girl achieve her dreams.”
CBS: How did you get involved in the movie?
MP: “I read the script and met with the director. We saw eye to eye and had the exact same ideas for the character and the story, and we also had the same favorite scenes. Basically, we had the same take on everything and I loved his approach to the movie, so I signed on.”
CBS: What was it like working with Dolly Parton and Brian McKnight on the movie?
MP: “I didn’t have any scenes with Dolly Parton, which was such a disappointment for me! She was in Nashville and I could only shoot in LA, so I didn’t have any scenes with her. Brian McKnight came on after I did, so I did not know he was going to play my husband! I had to call all of my girlfriends from high school and tell them that he was playing my husband [laughs]. They got a huge kick out of that. He was so great to work with. His musical talent is incredible, which everyone knows, but he’s also such a warm and open person. He was a joy.”
CBS: You starred for seven years as Audrey Bingham on Rules of Engagement. How did that role help you grow as an actress? What was it like working with David Spade on the show?
MP: “ When I did the show Grounded for Life, I pretty much just played myself. When I played Audrey, I was young at the time and she was so not me, that it really helped me hone my inner super, hyper-confident woman. I think playing Audrey really helped me feel like I was ten feet tall.
Working with David Spade was so great. He gets such a funny rep as being a ‘ladies man’ because of the persona that he puts out there, but he is such a kind and lovely person. He’s like your best girlfriend; he’s the most loyal human being and such a pro! The guy never drops the ball, he’s never late and he’s so not a diva — he’s the anti-diva [laughs]. I still keep in contact with my co-stars from the show.”
CBS: Could you tell us about your daughter, Grace? How old is she and what does she like doing for fun?
MP: “Grace is six years old, and what doesn’t she like to do for fun? [laughs] She’s an entrepreneur, which is the most incredible thing about her. She always comes up with these business ideas that I find hilarious. For example, she came up with a lemonade stand that was a combo lemonade and Otter Pop stand for the Fourth of July. Of course, she forced me to be her henchman and we carried coolers and a giant lemonade dispenser to a Fourth of July parade in California, where it was like 110 degrees during the day. She made 97 dollars! How crazy is that? She’s only six years old! I had to immediately open a bank account for her [laughs].
This week, she designed homemade dog food, which she plans on selling. We are doing taste tests this weekend with all of our neighbors’ dogs. She has a lot of great business plans, so I’ll try to keep up with her.”
CBS: Is Grace like you personality-wise?
MP: “She is way funnier than I am. She’s like the Energizer Bunny, because she does not stop. She’s the funniest human being I have ever known in my life.”
CBS: What is your proudest motherhood moment?
MP: “I started keeping a journal with her at night, because she is a really bright kid with these huge thoughts and feelings that could be hard for her to talk about. She tells me what she wants me to write in the journal and I write it for her, because she can’t write as fast as she thinks. I can’t even write as fast as she thinks, but I do my best.
My most favorite time during any day is just laying with her in her bed and talking about the different things that went on during the day at school, at piano lessons, or wherever. I encourage her to talk about how she felt about certain situations rather than how she thinks about certain situations. I think it’s been really helpful for her to work through the emotions and understand that they are temporary. At the same time, I get a little therapy as well, because it teaches me that my feelings are temporary.
That is the current thing we’re doing. I don’t know if ‘proud’ is the right word for it, but it is something that I love that we do together. I think it is really hard for little kids to connect that their feelings are coming and going all of the time, they are not forever.”
CBS: If we asked your daughter what kind of mom you are, what would she tell us? What is your parenting style like?
MP: “That is so funny, because I read all of those books; I read Happiest Kid on The Block and all that stuff. I feel like I have a kid who is so unique, that my parenting style is spontaneous, to say the least. It really changes every day. Right now, she would tell you that I make too many rules [laughs].
I realized that school is difficult for her because she is an only child. If she wants to have pasta at night, I kind of just say, ‘Okay that sounds good!’ and we make pasta. She doesn’t have the natural rule-following structure that I had when I was growing up, because I had seven brothers and sisters. I did not get to choose what we had for dinner. Right now, she complains that I make too many rules [laughs].
I think that she would also tell you that I am silly. We make up a lot of songs and games and things to get stuff done. It’s not so much me; it’s what she responds to, so she may call me silly.”
CBS: What are your upcoming projects?
MP: “I am actually writing a lot right now. I’ve been taking a break from television until I find the exact right thing. I am super picky, because I’ve loved all of the people I’ve worked with and I’ve loved all of the shows I’ve done. Both of the major shows I did went on for seven years, so I have a really picky opinion when it comes to television. I like to really marry what I do.
For now, there is a movie coming out at the end of this year and I have two television projects that I am writing. I am also writing a feature project, so we’ll see. I also directed Rules of Engagement at the end of it as well, which is something that lit my fire in a way that I can’t really describe. I loved it and would love to do a little more of that as well.”