FILE - Drew Barrymore attends The Charlize Theron Africa Outreach Project fundraiser on Nov. 12, 2019, in New York. Barrymore’s first show on Monday, Sept. 13, 2020, distributed by the CBS television studio, features former “Charlie’s Angels” co-stars Cameron Diaz and Lucy Liu as guests, along with Adam Sandler. Her show, retrofitted for the COVID-19 era, will originate from New York, where she’s now living to raise her two daughters. (Photo by Charles Sykes/Invision/AP, file)

FILE - Drew Barrymore attends The Charlize Theron Africa Outreach Project fundraiser on Nov. 12, 2019, in New York. Barrymore’s first show on Monday, Sept. 13, 2020, distributed by the CBS television studio, features former “Charlie’s Angels” co-stars Cameron Diaz and Lucy Liu as guests, along with Adam Sandler. Her show, retrofitted for the COVID-19 era, will originate from New York, where she’s now living to raise her two daughters. (Photo by Charles Sykes/Invision/AP, file)

Barrymore sets high standard in her models as talk show host

‘The Drew Barrymore Show’ retrofitted for the coronavirus era

NEW YORK — Drew Barrymore is setting a high standard for herself as she joins the world of daytime talk show hosts on Monday. She wants to emulate David Letterman and Howard Stern as interviewers.

Both men became media stars through their comedy — ironic for Letterman, crude for Stern. Yet each man, as their careers lengthened, became particularly skilled at disarming guests to get beyond stilted “what have you been up to lately” conversations.

“We’re all human beings on this planet going through our lives and our journeys and there’s a way to connect through that,” Barrymore said. “We don’t have to poke. I’m not looking to mess someone over. But at the same time, I just like to go in beneath the layers. I can’t stand the surface. I’ve never lived in that space.”

“The Drew Barrymore Show,” retrofitted for the coronavirus era, is being distributed by CBS Television. It will air live at 9 a.m. in cities like New York, Boston, Philadelphia and Miami, and at 2 p.m. in Chicago, Dallas and San Francisco and others.

Several bold-faced names will help the 45-year-old actress through her crucial first week: Reese Witherspoon, Jane Fonda, Charlize Theron, Tyra Banks and, on the first show alone, former co-stars Cameron Diaz, Lucy Liu and Adam Sandler.

Letterman and Stern developed their skills through years of hard work. For Barrymore, the hope is that likability and the audience’s familiarity with a star they’ve watched grow up since she was a 7-year-old in “E.T.” will give her the chance to learn by doing.

Bill Carroll, a veteran television consultant and expert in the syndication market, said he’s impressed that Barrymore is shooting high.

“It’s good to look at modeling yourself after someone who is an unconventional interviewer,” he said. “Both of these men turned out to be excellent but unconventional in the way they approach things.”

Kelly Clarkson’s recent success has given hope to people trying to get into the competitive world of syndicated talk, he said.

CBS’ promotion of Barrymore’s show hearkens back to her appearance with Johnny Carson as a little girl in the 1980s, a reminder to viewers that they know her. Yes, some may regard Barrymore as slightly loopy and hippie-dippie (“we’re all human beings on this planet”), but it’s more endearing than annoying.

The daughter of actor John Barrymore went through drug rehabilitation at an age most people worried about braces, as well as three divorces and motherhood, all in the public spotlight. She starred in movies like “The Wedding Singer” and “50 First Dates,” playing big-hearted characters it’s impossible to root against.

She’s had memorable moments as a talk show guest, like in 1995 when she danced on the table and flashed Letterman, her secret crush.

“Everyone my age has grown up with her,” said Elaine Bauer Brooks, head of development for CBS Television. “She lives her life in front of all of us. She’s had her mistakes and her wins and she’s kind of owned them all along the way. There’s a warm feeling about her and a sense of wanting her to win.”

Barrymore, who most recently produced and starred in the Netflix series “Santa Clarita Diet,” said the time was right to try a talk show. She’ll have a schedule that’s a better fit for a single mom raising two girls than most entertainment jobs.

Her show will originate from New York, where she lives now. It will air live in the morning to be responsive to what is going on in the world, but that’s only to a point. She’ll concentrate on celebrity, self-help and comedy segments and leave politics to others.

“I find politics extremely alienating to one side or the other, depending on who’s watching,” she said, “and I don’t want to make people feel not welcomed here or judged or disliked.”

Makers of “The Drew Barrymore Show” had to adjust on the fly to COVID-19. There won’t be a studio audience, although they will try to link to an audience at home electronically. Through technology, Barrymore will be able to interview a guest who seems to be sitting in a comfy chair across from her, even if they’re actually across the country.

Barrymore described herself as a “naughty” talk show guest through the years for avoiding the pre-show interview, where guests discuss in advance the seemingly spontaneous stories they’ll tell later when the cameras are on.

Barrymore prized true spontaneity — “I like to go in blind and play because life is just too short not to” — but now she’ll be on the other side. And, yes, her staff will conduct pre-show interviews. It’s helpful to know how far someone will be willing to go in addressing certain topics, she said.

“I’ve had all my stuff out there, and I know how raw and vulnerable it feels,” she said. “I don’t want to make people feel that way. But I do want to talk about stuff. I’m not shy. I haven’t had the luxury of being shy in my life.”

By The Associated Press

Entertainment

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)
Alberta reports 1,731 new COVID-19 cases on Saturday

The province’s central zone has 992 active cases

Collin Orthner, manager at McBain Camera in downtown Red Deer, stands behind the store’s counter on Saturday. (Photo by Sean McIntosh/Advocate staff)
A few Red Deer businesses happy with Black Friday results

While this year’s Black Friday wasn’t as successful as it was in… Continue reading

Le Chateau Inc. is the latest Canadian firm to start producing personal protective equipment for health care workers, in a July 3, 2020 story. (Photo by THE CANADIAN PRESS)
Hundreds of millions of dollars for frontline workers yet to be released, says Alberta Federation of Labour

Information recently released by the Alberta Federation of Labour suggests more than… Continue reading

Red Deer RCMP say a 30-year-old man faces sexual charges against a teen. (File photo by Advocate staff)
Man killed in two-vehicle collision near Penhold, says Blackfalds RCMP

A 46-year-old man is dead following a two-vehicle collision on Highway 42… Continue reading

Idyllic winter scenes are part of the atmosphere of the holiday season, and are depicted in many seasonal movies. How much do you know about holiday movies? Put your knowledge to the test. (Pixabay.com)
QUIZ: Test your knowledge of holiday movies and television specials

The festive season is a time for relaxing and enjoying some seasonal favourites

Banff National Park. (The Canadian Press)
Study finds train speed a top factor in wildlife deaths in Banff, Yoho national parks

EDMONTON — A study looking at 646 wildlife deaths on railway tracks… Continue reading

Cows on pasture at the University of Vermont dairy farm eat hay Thursday, July 23, 2020, in Burlington, Vt. Canadian dairy farmers are demanding compensation from the government because of losses to their industry they say have been caused by a series of international trade deals. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Lisa Rathke
Feds unveil more funding for dairy, poultry and egg farmers hurt by free trade deals

OTTAWA — Canadian egg and poultry farmers who’ve lost domestic market share… Continue reading

Chief Public Health Officer of Canada Dr. Theresa Tam speaks during a news conference on the COVID-19 pandemic in Ottawa, on Friday, Nov. 20, 2020. Canada's top doctor says the country is still on a troubling track for new COVID-19 infections as case counts continue mounting in much of the country. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang
COVID-19 cases in Canada remain on troubling course, Tam says, amid rising numbers

Canada’s top doctor says the country is still on a troubling track… Continue reading

hay
Hay’s Daze: Giraffe knows filling wishes can sometimes be a tall order

Last weekend, I had a lovely breakfast. “So what?” you may say.… Continue reading

A person enters a building as snow falls in Ottawa, Sunday, Nov. 22, 2020. Ottawa has been successful in limiting the spread of COVID-19 during its second wave thanks to the city’s residents who have been wearing masks and staying home, said Ottawa’s medical officer of health Dr. Vera Etches. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang
People to thank for Ottawa’s success with curbing COVID-19: health officer

The city’s chief medical officer said much of the credit goes to the people who live in Ottawa

NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh asks a question during question period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill, in Ottawa, Thursday, Nov. 26, 2020. NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh says tonight's public video gaming session with Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is about reaching young people where they hang. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
NDP leader stoked over ‘epic crossover’ in video gaming sesh with AOC

Singh and AOC discussed importance of universal pharmacare, political civility, a living wage

A south view of the Ward Hunt Ice Shelf breaking apart is seen from Ward Hunt Island, Nunavut, in an Aug. 20, 2011, handout photo. The remote area in the northern reach of the Nunavut Territory, has seen ice cover shrink from over 4 metres thick in the 1950s to complete loss, according to scientists, during recent years of record warming. Scientists are urging the federal government to permanently protect a vast stretch of Canada's remotest High Arctic called the Last Ice Area. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-CEN/Laval University, *MANDATORY CREDIT*
Scientists urge permanent protection of Last Ice Area in Canada’s High Arctic

Tuvaijuittuq has the thickest and oldest ice in the Arctic

In this file photo, a lotto Max ticket is shown in Toronto on Monday Feb. 26, 2018. (By THE CANADIAN PRESS)
No winning ticket for Friday night’s $55 million Lotto Max jackpot

No winning ticket was sold for the $55 million jackpot in Friday… Continue reading

Most Read