Ashley Judd might come across as a kind-hearted do-gooder, but the actress said she got riled up reading the script for her new film "Dolphin Tale" and was angry with the screenwriters.
"I don't know if the other actors knew that Winter was a real dolphin and that the script was based on a true story -- I did not," Judd said in an interview provided by Warner Bros. Pictures. "So it made for a very unique process of discovery where I went from crying and being incredibly moved to being slightly indignant because the screenplay writers had such audacity to create such profoundly sentimental themes and to manipulate my emotions and that they should just be shot for having no respect to all of a sudden it dawning on me that it was actually a true story and I was pretty blown away."
In the film, which is based on a true story, a young boy named Sawyer bonds with a bottlenose dolphin that has lost its tail in a crap trap. When faced with the realization that the dolphin might not make it, in spite of the care he received at a marine hospital (run by Harry Connick Jr.), he tracks down Dr. McCarthy (Morgan Freeman) who specializes in prosthetic limbs for veterans and finds a life-saving solution. Judd stars as Sawyer's single mother, who works as a nurse.
"Where Sawyer, my son and I are at the beginning of the movie is a pretty precarious place," Judd explained. "We're living on our own and the dad, my husband, has left the family and we don't hear from him and I'm supporting us on my nursing paycheck, which as nurses know, in spite of the work they do, is not terribly adequate. And Sawyer's struggling because in addition to the blow of not having his dad around, now his older cousin who is a surrogate big brother and hero, is leaving to go to war. And so this little boy, who is very shy and introverted and struggling with his studies, is bereft."
Judd, who is known for roles in films like "Kiss the Girls" and "Double Jeopardy," is the daughter of country music singer Naomi Judd and half-sister of Wynonna Judd.
In March, it was announced that Judd would star in the ABC series "Missing," the network has confirmed to OnTheRedCarpet.com. The series has been given a 10 episode order and, according to The Hollywood Reporter, it will premiere midseason 2012.
Judd will play former CIA agent and single mom Becca Winstone, who travels around Europe searching for her missing teenage son who disappeared in Italy.
The 43-year-old actress has been on television before. Judd was a regular on the NBC drama "Sisters" with Sela Ward. The actress also earned an Emmy nomination for her role on the HBO film "Norma Jean & Marilyn" in 1996.
"Dolphin Tale" opened in theaters on September 23. Watch a trailer below.