The “Duck Dynasty” family goes from the small screen to the stage with a new musical “Duck Commander” in Las Vegas.
FOX411 was working on a behind-the-scenes look at the show when an unexpected VIP guest arrived —Willie Robertson.
Willie told FOX411 that watching the musical brought tears to his eyes because it reminded him of all the tough decisions his family had to make in their climb to the top.
“It’s emotional at times,” Willie said. “I was crying watching it because you just think about if something were to happen differently, then none of this would have happened.”
Willie said he thinks the musical might be even more revealing than the TV show because it gives fans a look into the Robertson’s private struggles.
“The media scrutiny and all this thing we went through, all that’s played out in the musical,” Willie said.
“Duck Commander” features original, foot-stomping “country pop” tunes and depicts the family’s journey from southern business owners to America’s “favorite rednecks.”
“I think that anyone who has a family and has experienced the highs and lows of family life can first of all relate to this story,” said Ginna Claire Mason, the lead actress who plays Korie Robertson.
Director Jeff Calhoun said he took on the project because the musical gives an authentic look into the eccentric family’s rag-to-riches story.
“They really are living the American dream—and yes that’s true for a lot of people but I’m not sure it’s true for entire families by sticking together,” Calhoun said.
The stars of the show go through a physical transformation with custom wigs, beards and makeup—complete with Korie and Willie’s wedding finger tattoos.
“I don’t have the long hair. I don’t have the beard. I don’t have the tattoos and it’s incredibly helpful,” said lead actor Ben Thompson, who plays Willie Robertson.
Ben said he can’t help but become Willie once his costume his complete.
“The dialect starts coming out and then that red, white and blue bandanna goes on and all of a sudden I’m walking like Willie, I’m standing like him a little more often,” Ben said.
Some of the cast got to hang out with the Robertson family in private and behind the scenes in Vegas to get to know them a little better.
“We’ve spent time with these people and I think the music brings these characters to life in a whole new way,” Ginna Marie said. “We do the characters justice.”
Of course, it doesn’t hurt that Willie Robertson personally stops by the show unannounced to observe and give his blessing.
“Some of the characters, man, they’ve got us down,” Willie said. “Not just the way they talk but all their mannerisms, they’ve really done their job on getting us as lifelike as possible.”
It seems the Robertson family and the cast and crew of the musical agree that this latest chapter of the “Duck Dynasty” is one to be proud of.
“It’s a special thing to see the family portrayed this way,” Ben said.
The “Duck Commander” musical is now playing at the Rio Casino Hotel in Vegas.
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