A star in its own right, the Ryman has appeared in a number of films and television shows over the years.
By Katie Quine | Photograph courtesy of Lifetime Entertainment Services
Coal Miner’s Daughter
Her stunning portrayal of country music luminary Loretta Lynn earned Sissy Spacek the 1981 Academy Award for Best Actress. After Lynn plucked Spacek’s headshot from a pile of glossies, the actress spent a year studying the singer’s mannerisms to prepare for filming.
After the success of Coal Miner’s Daughter, producer Bernard Schwartz set his sights on another biopic, this time documenting the unmistakable talent and tumultuous life of one of Loretta Lynn’s best friends, Patsy Cline.
Patsy & Loretta
In 2019, fans were gifted a Lifetime movie that portrays the untold story of the friendship between Loretta Lynn and Patsy Cline. The closing dream-like scene of their duet on the Ryman stage in front of an empty auditorium gives us chills.
W.W. and the Dixie Dance Kings
With his own country album and a menagerie of country artists with whom he co-starred (Hello, Dolly!), Burt Reynolds had more than a few ties to Nashville. In 1975, he appeared in W.W. and the Dixie Dance Kings as a crook whose bank-robbing plans are foiled when his band performs on the Grand Ole Opry.
How each artist finds herself in Nashville is a little different, and for character Rose-Lynn Harlan in 2019’s Wild Rose, the journey is hard-fought. The Glaswegian desires a fresh start in Music City after being released from jail in her home country of Scotland.
Elvis Presley was met with lukewarm reception when he made his one and only Opry appearance at Ryman Auditorium. Even though his time on the Mother Church’s stage was brief, his performance was symbolic of the schism that existed in American music at the time and the pioneer Presley would become. The eponymous biopic starring Kurt Russell explores the complexities of the performer’s life.
Clint Eastwood directed and starred in this 1982 film about a Great Depression-era country artist and his nephew who make pilgrimage to Nashville. Elements of the story are loosely based on the life of country music stalwart Jimmie Rogers.
Ryman Auditorium is one of the most active and celebrated venues in modern music. Generations of artists, seekers, creators, rule-breakers, and rebels have made their mark on the Ryman’s famous stage.