Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Hollywood Hump Day!

I've never been one to boast about my job (Liza has always done my bragging for me. "C'mon, tell them who you met yesterday...), but today I thought it would be fun to look back on some of the celebrities I've interviewed over the last five years. 

Regina King: She was the last formal interview I have done. We talked over the phone about her new TV show Southland for about 30 minutes (probably 20 more minutes than she would have liked), and she couldn't have been cooler. She was all like, "Ellen, girl, I'll tell you what..." I'm pretty sure that if we ever met in person, we'd be instant friends for life. She's funny, smart and just so cool. Sound like someone else you know? 

Jamie Kennedy and Jennifer Love Hewitt: I interviewed them on the red carpet for Jamie's movie, Finding Bliss. His character was a porn star. They had just started dating, so of course, the only thing the reporters wanted to ask about was their relationship. It was kind of crazy. We were all shouting out questions over each other: "When are you moving in together?!" "Jennifer, do you want to have Jamie's babies?!" In an attempt to be clever, I decided to ask a question that semi-related to the movie and their relationship. I blurted out: "Jamie, watching porn with your girlfriend—is that a do or a don't?" His response: "Um, I plead the fifth!" Fail. Btw, JLove was sooo nice and answered every annoying question we asked with a smile on her face. Next time someone jokes about how big her ass has gotten, I will not be participating.

OMJ! I love The Jonas Brothers. I met them for the first time four years ago for a photo shoot, before they totally blew up. This pic is from last summer. I got to spend the entire day in Philadelphia with the guys. I must admit, I have a teensy crush on Nick (sorry, Luke!). The shy ones get me every time. That day, when he gave me a hug and told me he was happy to see me, I got all giddy and acted like a total idiot. I don't remember what I said, but I know a lot of babbling was involved. Geeze, I'm a professional—get it together, Ellen! (Nick, you know you felt it too ;))

Chris Brown: OK, so I know he's not everyone's favorite person these days, but I have to admit that I am still a fan. A fan of his music and of him as a performer. The first time I met Chris, it took a while for him to open up. And understandably so. I had to ask him a million generic questions about girls: "What do you look for in a girl?" "Are you dating anyone right now?" Blah blah. I finally got him to open up though, and he was very pleasant to talk to. The second time I met Chris was at a party hosted by BET. I felt cool because he remembered me from the last time; he was very friendly. At the end of the interview I went to take his pic, and tripped over a step. I was totally embarrassed, but he laughed it off and made a joke, asking what the bartenders were putting in the drinks. (We all know what too much champagne does to me!)

Miley Cyrus: Miley gets a bad wrap. I really like her and her music a lot. She's seriously the most REAL celebrity I have ever met. She's every reporter's dream, really, because she's so candid and doesn't turn her nose up at the silly or personal questions. She handles it all like a total pro. My editor wanted me to ask her about her first bra-buying experience, which I was totally dreading, but Miley went on and on about it. (She bought one with a flower print, fyi). I will admit (and so will she) that she is a bit boy crazy. She's a wonderful person, but if she were my daughter, I'd be a bit worried in that regard!

Kanye West: I was reporting at my first event ever, waiting in the press room to ask Kanye West a question or two. (I knew I'd be lucky to get that). When he came into the room, all of the reporters jumped out of their seats. After two questions were asked, his publicist started leading him out of the room. Noooo!!! I do not remember what exactly it was that I did or said, but Kanye turned around and said, "Hey, wait a minute, she looks like she really wants to ask me something." Everyone whipped their heads around in my direction and I just started talking. I had planned my question so perfectly in my mind, but of course it didn't translate that way. I asked him like three questions in one—something about his new album; whether he was cocky or just confident (and if he cared that everyone was calling him cocky) and something else that I can't recall. He was really cool and took his time answering my question(s). I was on Cloud 9 that night!

(Lil') Romeo: OK, so I know this is kind of random, but I will always have a small place in my heart for Romeo (Master P's son for anyone who is from Mars and may not know). He was my first interview ever and I was SO excited about it. He was only 13 at the time, but he acted a lot older. When we walked into the interview room, his bodyguard and entourage followed behind us. He shooed them away and said, "I got this." (hehe) At the end of the interview, I started rambling on and on about how much I loved him and his dad. I also proceeded to tell him that my Senior Class Secretary campaign in high school had a "No Limit" theme ("Vote for Ellen, she's 'Bout it, 'Bout it!"). He must not have thought I was too much of a freak because he then mentioned something about being in his next music video. Um, yes, please! Being in a rap video is definitely on my bucket list—I'm not getting any younger, people! Romeo, if you're reading this, give me a call, son. Oh wait, I have your number. I suppose I could give YOU a call. (That story is for another time!)

Last but not least is oh-so-hot Channing Tatum. The crush I had on him when he first came out in the movie She's The Man was like no other crush I have ever had on a celebrity. I seriously thought if we ever met, he would like me. And then want to date me. And then...oh, sorry again, Luke! You cannot believe my excitement when his publicist said he agreed to talk to me over the phone. He called me 15 minutes late (which is actually 15 minutes early on Hollywood time), and apologized profusely. His meeting ran late, and he called me as soon as he had hopped into a cab on the way his next one. What a nice guy. There's not too much to say about his interview other than the fact that I was flirting shamelessly. (Robin, Thea—do you remember this??) Co-workers have always accused me of "flirting" with all of the male celebs I interview (whether it be a 12-year-old or 26-year-old), but this is the one and only time I will 'fess up to it. Have you seen this month's GQ with Channing on the cover? Please, you'd be flirting too!

Phew, that was quite long! I hope you had as much fun reading this as I did writing it!

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