wants to reach a few personal goals during the fourth
season of her Emmy-winning syndicated daytime talk show.
On the list?
Learning Spanish, acquiring basic computer skills, and
ditching her daily shampoo duties.
"life list" is just one new element DeGeneres is
adding to her hour-long daily talk show. She's also
introducing a new set, a new DJ to inspire her
trademark dance moves, and a new focus on regular
folks rather than celebrities.
Back in her Los
Angeles studio after taping a pair of episodes in New
York City, the 48-year-old comedian talked with the
Associated Press about her plans for the new season
and why hosting a talk show is the best job she's ever
AP: Any big
changes for the new season?
changing up the format a little bit, nothing drastic,
but just trying to make it more kind of freestyle,
free-form. It's not always going to be the same every
single day. And not so many celebrities. More human
interest and real people and things like that. The
life list thing is new, so we're going to try to accomplish
a lot of things on my life list and help the audience
accomplish their things on their life lists.
AP: What is a
basically just things you want to accomplish in your
life. I talked to Beyonce the other day, and she wants
to learn how to speak Arabic, and she wants to jump
out of an airplane. I don't want to do that. I just
don't want to wash my hair every day.
AP: What is the
scariest thing on your list?
don't think anything is scary; that's what's great about the
life list. The scariest thing, honestly, is I don't want to
wash my hair every day. Everybody thinks it's
ridiculous that I would put that on my life list. It
should be on my to-do list. But everybody says your hair is
better if you don't wash it every day.
AP: What are you
hoping to help audience members with?
Whatever they want to do. This all came from a viewer last
season who had a life list because she had cystic fibrosis.
She started a life list to accomplish things by the
time she was 40, and we helped her accomplish a bunch
of those. We thought it was a really great idea.
AP: Is there a
dream guest you'd like to interview?
dream guests are really not so much celebrities. They're
people who are actually interesting and they're doing
something interesting with their lives or had an
interesting experience in some way. I really enjoy
talking to regular, everyday people.
AP: Are you
through with celebrities?
course we will have celebrities, but it's more about just
real people talking about life, because that is a constant
interest for anybody. Like how do you get through
life, how do you deal with stress, how do you
contribute with your time here? Some celebrities, it's
interesting, because they're fantastic playing a character
when somebody is writing the lines for them, and
they're amazing actors, but they're not as comfortable
on television in front of a live audience and just
having a conversation and being themselves.
AP: How does
doing a talk show compare with doing stand-up?
Stand-up is more me talking the entire time. There's
definitely an exchange of energy, because that room, that
audience, is giving back. I say something, and they
respond in laughter. But it's so much better for me to
do a talk show. You still have that energy of the
audience, and the audience is just as important as that
guest that's sitting next to me. It's not about me and
that guest exchanging energy and talking. It's about
everything that's going on in that room, and they're
as much a part of the show as anything. I like this better
than anything I've ever done.
AP: What's the
hardest part of the job?
Everything. It's just the hardest thing I've ever done, and
it's the best thing that I've ever done. I love this job. I
love coming here every day. The whole show is me, so I
make every decision. It's just constant decisions,
constant writing the monologue every day, and working
on what's going to make it special every single day. Then
it's time to do the show itself, and I have to be
completely present and completely on my toes to be
impulsive and spontaneous. It's just a lot of energy. I get
home at the end of the day and I don't want to talk. All I
want to do is lie on the floor and pet my dogs and my
AP: What did you
do on your summer vacation?
DeGeneres: I did
a couple of American Express commercials, and I had a
couple photo shoots, so it wasn't as much time [off] as I'd
like. We have a ranch, and we just went to our ranch
and rode horses and gardened and did, you know,