Andy Cohen plans to avoid watching the festivities when Donald Trump is inaugurated on Friday. This is a shame, given that Cohen is perhaps best suited — as a former NBCUniversal programming exec, a reality TV series creator and executive producer and a nonscripted series star — to explain the made-for-TV coronation of the billionaire NBC reality star-turned-alt-right darling-turned 45th president of the United States. Asked how he planned to spend the day, Cohen listed yoga and deep breathing.
Cohen instead came to TCA today to plug his Bravo late-night show, Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen. Earlier this month the show took on its more stately name, as well as a larger studio. But it continues to be the only nightly late-night talk series that’s Genuinely Live. (WWHLwAC airs Sunday-Thursday, hence Friday’s day off.)
Cohen credits Meryl Streep with catapulting WWHL from that Real Wives of Fill-in-the-Blank chat show into a late-night show that swims with the big fish. Before Streep, he said, he relied on his friends to appear on the show on nights that did not feature the housewives. “It was a huge booking for us,” he said of Streep. “She knew a lot of women watch, and she had a movie she wanted women to know about.”
The most anxious he’s ever been on the show was the night Oprah Winfrey was his guest and he asked “if she’d ever swum in the lady pond.”
Silence hung in the air for a minute, he recalled, after which, he says, she responded, “No.” To which, he says, he responded, “OK.”
“There was a moment when I was a little scared,” he confided.
Last week, Fox announced it had ordered 15 episodes of Love Connection, an hourlong revival of the iconic relationship show with Cohen set to host. The reboot, from The Bachelor producers, Warner Horizon Television and Telepictures Productions, is slated for premiere in the summer. Each hour of the series will feature single men and/or women in search of romance. After the singles are sent on three blind dates, they will dish the dirt in front of a live studio audience, with Cohen as host.