TODAY   |  April 18, 2014

Margo Martindale: I now believe boy saw heaven

Veteran actress Margo Martindale plays a skeptical church council leader in the new film “Heaven Is for Real,” and tells Kathie Lee and Hoda that after meeting the family behind the story, she believes young Colton Burpo actually experienced heaven.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> margo martindale is enjoying the kind of career most actors only dream about.

>> from her emmy award winning stint as mags bennett in the fx drama "justified" based on elmore leonard 's books to her role in "august osage county " and her comedic turn as the meddlesome mother on the hit tv sitcom "the millers".

>> and margo isn't slowing down one bit. i can't believe you had time to say hello to us. she's back on the big screen in a big hit called "heaven is for real" as a mother struggling with her faith after the loss of her son. take a look at this.

>> i have nothing for you but comfort, no hope, no peace.

>> you didn't let me down. you couldn't take my pain away. you don't have to say a word, todd. i believe that's already been done.

>> whoa.

>> when a writer gives you those kinds of words to say --

>> so great for you to be here.

>> i love what i do.

>> this movie seems to be off to a great start. you play a little bit of a cynic.

>> i play a cynic and i'm -- i think a woman who is struggling with her faith and angry at god and the great thing for me is that being a person of faith, it has been great to be reminded that it is okay to have doubts and struggles, that that's all okay.

>> god's heard it all before .

>> exactly right.

>> were you surprised at the popularity of the book and what is potentially going to be a very, very popular movie?

>> no. not surprised. i'm not surprised.

>> you hadn't read the book.

>> i read half the book and put it down so i can concentrate on the screenplay, which my character is really not in the book. a combination of people. so i wanted to be as honest and truthful in -- not that i don't always want to be, but this meant something to me to really try to go to my -- so silly to say -- i felt a responsibility.

>> sure,ia he.

>> what would you say to people who are cynical to people watch watching?

>> it is okay to be skeptical. i was skeptical of the story. i don't need to have proof. but i -- but meeting the burpos, and getting to know them, i -- i changed my tune and i completely believe that that young man went to heaven and --

>> it is great. you play so many dicfferent characters. what smoeis most fun type of character for you to play?

>> somebody completely out of her mind.

>> you want to be a boozy english woman, we hear. what actress do you just epitomize, the height of the craft.

>> who? meryl streep .

>> you got to work with her in osage.

>> she can do anything. she can hostess, she can paint, do it all and act.

>> by the way, we're sitting with someone who sings kathie lee 's cds.

>> sings the music. sail away on a dream ship

>> she knows the words.

>> puts her babies to sleep too.

>> great to see you.

>> thank you. thank you.

>> come back next week when you're in another tv show and another movie, okay?