Soap Opera Digest: So, how did it feel to go from actress to talk-show host?
Nancy Lee Grahn: It is so hard to be natural. This was hard. I’ve never done anything like this. I co-hosted THE VIEW one time, and that was perfectly delightful because you have three other women who are quite chatty. The thing on THE VIEW is being able to just get a word in edgewise.
Digest: Would you be game for another go?
Grahn: I loved doing this, so I would like to do more of it because I want to get better at it. THE VIEW is more relaxed. You’re sitting on the couch and talking, but we had things we had to accomplish, which you do on THE VIEW, too, but this was more of an information-gathering thing.
Digest: Did you enjoy being on the other side of the questions for a change?
Grahn: First of all, I loved that because I ask people all kinds of inappropriate things about themselves all the time. I love to hear stories about people. This totally whet my appetite and I think I’m clearly a [talk-show] virgin. I have so much to learn. It’s like I had sex for the first time. It was great and I’m ready for more.
Digest: What did you find tough about this gig?
Grahn: You must know the format. It takes practice. Kelly [Ripa of REGIS & KELLY; ex-Hayley, AMC] is brilliant. She is so fabulous. She is such a delight. And she will tell you she wasn’t good when she started. It’s not like you’re starring in a Broadway show where you know your routine. You have to get familiar with the format. This was six hours of rehearsal yesterday and six hours [of taping] today. When I first walked in, they were freaking, like, ‘My God, is she going to be able to do this? My brain just didn’t wrap itself around it right away.Digest: You and Cameron made a good team.
Grahn: He is terrific. He’s much more natural at it. He’s so nice and sweet and complimentary and charming and gorgeous and tall. And he’s been doing his show [I WANNA BE A SOAP STAR, also on SOAPnet], but he’s also smart. He gets this. If I were producing a talk show, I would completely hire him to do it.
Digest: You seemed to have fun with guest John-Paul Lavoisier (Rex, OLTL)
Grahn: He is so funny! I never met him before. He’s hilarious. I would give John-Paul a talk show. On cable. He’s bad.
Digest: Who are some of your favorite talk-show hosts?
Grahn: Oprah and Ellen DeGeneres. I think they’re clearly the most spontaneous and the most interested in the other person. Oprah is by far. I could never do what she does. I think she’s brilliant. I think I could learn to do this in a different realm. I feel like I would certainly like to be one of the ladies on THE VIEW. That would be great fun.
Digest: Which of the ladies do you relate to most?
Grahn: I think my voice is probably more Meredith [Vieira].
Digest: So, do we see REGIS & NANCY in your future?
Grahn: Trust me, Kelly has nothing to worry about. But if they’d let me do it, I’d love to be a guest host.