Not too long ago, the iconic Dove Cameron squeezed us into her booked-and-busy schedule to talk about her new single, "LazyBaby," her upcoming single with Rezz, and her role as Bubbles in The CW's Powerpuff. Dove, who I met in this interview but already feels like a lifelong friend, spoke to us about her obsession with almond croissants, Diablo Cody, and copious amounts of caffeine. Here's everything we learned:
1. What is the first thing you do in the morning?
Oooh, probably roll over and check my texts, actually. I have a LOT of really close friends and we send each other novels and voice notes — especially since we're all in different time zones — so I settle into bed and check all of my messages.
2. What are you currently binge-watching?
I'm currently binge-watching Veep for like the third time. It's one of my all-time favorite shows. Julia Louis-Dreyfus is a freak, like she's so fucking funny, it's sick. I was having a conversation with somebody who didn't think Veep was funny, and I was like, "I can't even say that I disagree with you, all I can say is that you're wrong. Like, dead wrong."
My problem is that everyone sees me in a completely fucking different way than I actually am.
3. If you could collaborate with any musician — living or dead — who would you pick?
Dove: Oh fuck, that's hard. Who would I pick? I mean, I have a big, hard-on obsession with producers — like I love Diplo, and I love Labrinth...I would actually die to work with Labrinth. I feel like if I was in a room with Labrinth for a week, that would change my life.
Ehis: MANIFEST THAT!
Dove: Oh, honey, I am on it.
4. Describe your style in three words.
Baby fitness goth.
5. If anyone could play you in a TV show, who would you pick?
OK, Ehis, I'mma talk to you like my best friend, because that's where we're at. [Writer's note: I played it cool, but internally, I was fangirling so hard.] My problem is that everyone sees me in a completely fucking different way than I actually am — which I talk about all the time. I think it's because my energy is incredibly, what other people would call "bubbly," but that's not at all what it is. But I read like that. It always makes me laugh, because I got my first tattoo illegally when I was 14, I've been pansexual my whole life, I swear like a sailor, my love language is roasting people, I used to box-dye my hair with henna when I was 11, but people are like, "Aw, she's a little princess, I can't wait for her to grow out of her Disney days." And I'm like, "WHAT THE FUCK ARE PEOPLE SEEING?" [Laughs]. I've always been confused about it, but I just let it happen because public perception is so far from who you are, so I'm just like, "Fuck it." People are gonna say, like, Kristin Chenoweth, but it's gotta be someone fuckin' weird...like I'd pick Aubrey Plaza — we have the exact same energy. Aubrey doesn't know it yet, but we are demonically linked.
6. What was your favorite part of the "LazyBaby" music video?
It's hard to say, because the entire day, I was just fucking around and playing and we were just capturing that. But my overall favorite part isn't a part, necessarily, but just the fact that I really see myself in that video. Like, for my entire career, I was trying so hard not to show myself because I really hated myself and assumed everyone was going to hate me, so if I'm going to be in the public eye, I can't shine light on my true essence because I would ruin everything that I built. But then, the second that I started to let myself be my full, unabashed self, the more I loved my job, the more I loved myself, and the more I felt connected to my life. So, seeing myself in the "LazyBaby" video, I thought to myself, "Wow, what an arrival." Also, the boy I kissed at the end was really cute.
7. Wait, can we talk more about the boy?
Hahaha, I'm going to say this really carefully. I didn't know him — that was the first day that I met him. It was a weird social experiment to say, "Hey, nice to meet you!" and then make out with him 10 times in a row. We really like him. I'm a big, big fan of his music. Everyone go check out Alexander23!
8. What was the writing process like for "LazyBaby"?
I was actually in Canada at the time and I was on death's door emotionally — I was barely functioning. I was listening to all these up-tempo songs — like I have to listen to "Renegade" by Styx and songs that are so opposite of what I'm feeling to feel better, or else I'd just lock myself in a closet and never come out. So I was waking up every day like, "Bitch, listen. You're gonna go do a fuckin' pole dance class today and you're gonna drink your fuckin' coffee and you're gonna listen to 'Ballroom Blitz' by Sweet," all to bypass all of my heavy emotions. So, I wanted to write a song that encapsulated what I was feeling and what I wanted to feel. A lot of the lyrics are not specific about my breakup — I want to be very candid about that because I'm not about bashing your ex — but it's more so that the spirit of the song is what I needed. Like, a medicine. And it fucking worked.
9. Who was your childhood celebrity crush?
10. What's a typical day like for you at the moment?
Well, I'm filming Powerpuff right now, so the days are actually mental — because it's a pilot — so we're basically shooting a full movie in the time allotted for a pilot — which is not a lot. It's not normal for me, but a typical day starts with waking up at 5 in the morning — which is unnatural for me, because that's usually when I go to bed — and I shower and do my skincare routine, get to set and start off in hair and makeup, which is where I have insane amounts of coffee. Then, I make my list for the day, memorize my lines, make sure I'm keeping track of everything in LA — like texting my A&R guys and giving music video notes [Writer's note: the Powepuff pilot is currently filming in Georgia]. Then I shoot and we wrap and I go to bed and then I do it all over again the next day.
11. Have you picked up any new quarantine hobbies?
Yes, actually! I've always wanted to be really flexible, so I've been working on that in quarantine. I post about it a lot for some reason [laughs].
12. What is the last thing you looked up on Google?
Let's see — HAHAHAHA, "Eastern Standard Time." Girl, I will die and still not understand how time zones work. I was hoping it was going to be more juicy than that.
13. What is the most used emoji on your phone?
🥰 [Writers's note: Dove and I then spend several minutes talking about the art of the emoji and its impact on 21st century courtships.]
14. What was your initial reaction when you found out you got cast as Bubbles in Powerpuff?
Oh, dude, I freaked out. Here's the thing: the IP for Powerpuff Girls is stupid cool. When I heard this was happening, I sent a screenshot to my managers and agents and said, "If we don't get on that, we're fucking crazy." I fucking love The Powerpuff Girls, Diablo Cody is writing it, if it goes to series, this is gonna be the time of our lives, and it's going to be stupid fucking crazy cool — it's meant to be! When I read the pilot, I wanted to vomit at how funny it was — and what we're allowed to get away with! I've been on a network, so I know what I can't say, but what I can say is that we're getting away with WAY too much. As a fan of the original show, I love it, and I think viewers will love it, too.
15. What was your favorite memory from the set of Descendants?
Before we get into this, I just have to say that Donald Faison knows every. single. word. AND ADLIB! to every Descendants song EVER. I cannot emphasize this enough. He loves Descendants and he legit did a dance for me the other day.
But my most favorite memory was in the third film. Our cast was so in love — we were so close and bonded and pure and honest. Between pre-production and filming and press — both stateside and international — we spent so much time together. I'm closer with them than I am some of my blood relatives. So, there's this line in the movies that we say, it's "We're rotten to the core" — it's stupid and dumb, but it became our thing that we'd always say to each other — and in the third film, the line wasn't there. So, after the credits, we were all set up and it was just the four of us (Dove, Sofia Carson, Booboo Stewart, and the late Cameron Boyce), and we all just thought, "What if we could go back?" Like, both as our characters, who are now royals but long for the Isle, but also as ourselves, you know? Back to when Cameron was 14 and the rest of us were so young, so we wrote that last scene on that day and it's of the four of us saying that we're still rotten to the core and then running across the bridge...I will be on my deathbed thinking about that scene, because it encapsulates that feeling of wanting to go back to a simpler and easier time.
16. How do you think Mal would have adjusted to quarantine life?
She wouldn't — she has magical powers! So she would have made everyone immune.
17. If you had to choose between theater, film/TV, and recording music, which would you choose?
OK, I actually can't answer this question because I am so, so blessed enough to not have to choose in my actual life.
18. Who are you most similar to: Cher from Clueless, Mal from Descendants, or Bubbles from Powerpuff?
I'm the most like Bubbles in the way that I'm portraying her in this reboot.
19. Desert island: name three albums you can't live without.
Back to Black by Amy Winehouse, Tron: Legacy soundtrack by Daft Punk, and The Suicide Squad soundtrack — hated the movie, but loved the music. Honorable mention goes to ForAbby by JAWNY.
20. What is your most starstruck moment?
I mean, when I met Diablo Cody, I freaked out. But I have this thing for talent. I have no appreciation for fame and sheer numbers — I don't get starstruck, but I get "I'm gonna melt into a pile of dust because I am unworthy to be in the presence of your talent." So yeah, definitely Diablo Cody. Also Adam Guettel, who is a GENIUS when it comes to composing. [Writer's note: Because I had to look it up, I thought I'd share. Adam Guettel is a Tony Award–winning Broadway composer and grandson of Richard Rodgers of Rodgers and Hammerstein.] Also, when I started to get to know Alexander23, I was overwhelmed because he's a genius! Watching the inside of someone else's brain do something that you cannot do, and watching them do it so well and so seamlessly...that to me is the best part about being alive.
I don't get starstruck, but I get "I'm gonna melt into a pile of dust because I am unworthy to be in the presence of your talent."
21. What is one thing you cannot leave your house without?
22. Do you have any guilty pleasures?
Yeah, dude. Where do I fuckin' start [laughs]? I love a good baked good? But that's basic, I'm sure there's some freak shit. I'd actually stay up until the birds sing watching RuPaul's Drag Race way too often. [Writer's note: We then talked about how problematic ANTM was, the boba shortage, and Dunkin' Donuts, which is delicious, but also glorified coffee water.]
23. What is your go-to comfort food?
I have a weird hard-on for croissants. Like a ham-and-cheese croissant or a pain au chocolat. The other day, I tried an Earl Grey croissant — OH, an almond croissant! I want you to put that out there in the world — it's my favorite and I feel like I don't get enough free almond croissants. I want the people to know.
24. What is a role that people would be surprised to find out you auditioned for?
Mattie Ross in True Grit! I actually got super close — like that's the reason why I moved to LA. [Writer's note: The role ended up going to Hailee Steinfeld, who Dove later starred alongside in Barely Lethal.]
25. What is the last book you read?
Untamed by Glennon Doyle. But I also read a lot of poetry because I'm really emotional, but I also move a million miles a minute, and books can sometimes make me feel like I'm moving at an unbearably slow pace. I recommend The Great Fires by Jack Gilbert.
26. What is the best piece of advice you've ever received?
I'm more of a lessons person, you know? Like, "Trauma lives in the body — and you have to tap into the body to heal the mind."
27. When is the next single dropping?
Super fucking soon. Be on the lookout for my new single with Rezz because it's super nutso bananas bonkers. Def my fave song that I've ever done.
Thanks so much for chatting with us/letting me fangirl over you for 90 minutes, Dove! Be sure to check out the music video for "LazyBaby," available now, and be on the lookout for her latest single with Rezz, dropping sooner than you think!