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Joey King says being on stage with Taylor Swift feels like getting in ‘an ice bath’


By Marianne Garvey

(CNN) — In July, Taylor Swift had a surprise for fans at her “Eras” tour stop in Kansas City. She premiered a new music video for the song “I Can See You,” and invited Joey King and Taylor Lautner, who star in the video, out on stage with her. While King, star of “The Kissing Booth” and “Bullet Train,” is used to fans, she said this was something entirely different.

“That’s a different level,” King told CNN. “It’s a very niche experience to walk out on a stage of 70,000 plus people.”

King said she was backstage when Swift told her she was trying to decide whether she should bring her onstage before or after the video played.

“I was like, ‘Bring me on stage?’ She was like, ‘Didn’t I tell you?’ I was like ‘You did not tell me I was going on stage,’” she laughed. “Oh my God. I started sweating and freaking out and I got really nervous. But it was incredible to just have that experience and feel that energy coming at you.”

She compared looking at all those people looking back at you as shocking as “an ice bath.”

“The best way to describe it was like, when the doors opened and I walked out, it’s like that feeling when you get in an ice bath,” she said. “It just takes your breath away and you’re genuinely caught for breath. It was truly a breathtaking experience to see all those people that are sending all this energy at you directly. It was exhilarating.”

King has worked with Swift before. In 2011, she starred in the singer’s video for “Mean.” When Swift called her to work together again this year, it was an immediate yes.

“She showed me the treatment for the video that she had written and it was an immediate ‘yes’ for me. I love Taylor, who doesn’t, she’s amazing,” King said.

While discussing all things Swift, King was sitting in a break room at a local Los Angeles animal shelter, where she has been volunteering as a pet photographer as part of Hill’s Pet Nutrition for their Clear The Shelters campaign. Representatives for Hill’s told CNN that new data has found that seven in 10 consumers would consider adopting a pet specifically because of the photo. According to the Journal of Applied Animal Welfare Science, further data found a dog with a quality photo is typically adopted in two weeks, compared to 43 days for a pet with a poor photo.

King and her fiancé Steven Piet recently adopted a shelter dog together named Fable who joins their older dog Jesse James at home.

“Dogs have not been so nice to Fable in the past. But now they’re best friends. Jesse’s like ten, eleven, and Fable is a little over a year and she’s brought out the puppy in him again. It’s so sweet,” King said, adding that the Clear the Shelters program has helped house 860,000 dogs and cats, “which is just mindblowing.” The Hill’s Food, Shelter and Love Program on the whole has helped secure housing for 13 million animals.

King is also planning her wedding to Piet, a producer and director she met on set while filming Hulu’s 2019 series “The Act.” She said the ceremony will be “intimate,” with family and friends and that she has picked out a dress.

“The whole fam is coming,” she said. “I’m just so, so excited. Not necessarily just for the wedding, but just to be married to my best friend. He’s the most gentle soul ever. He’s the best. I love him so much.”

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