Leah Remini’s happy with the progress of “The Talk” — what with CBS already renewing the fledgling chat show on which Leah is featured along with Julie Chen, Holly Robinson Peete, Sharon Osbourne and Sara Gilbert. However, the admittedly self-critical funny lady is quick to say, “It’s still a work in progress. We stay after the show and talk about where we can improve. We’ve only been on since October,” she reminds.
Asked how it is to do the show compared to how she thought it would be, Remini admits in her charmingly convoluted style, “What I thought at first about what it was, it was going to be not as hard. It is hard to do a live show every day. I thought I’d be able
to just walk in and go, ‘Hi, what are we talking about?’ ‘Let’s go home now.’ There is much more mental work in preparing than I expected.”
Yes, she’s felt burnout. “Holly and I sit in her room and go, ‘Wow, man.’ You’re just drained. But the next day, we’re good again,” she adds. “We’re talking about something fun, or something in the news we have a take on, or something we really want to share with people — and we’re re-energized by that.”
She’s enjoying the company of her “Talk” show mates and their fun chemistry — a big plus. She feels their celebrity interviews “are still missing something” — a small minus.
“I can’t put my finger on it. I’m glad that we always get something more, something different, from them besides whatever the thing is they’re there to promote,” she says.
Leah acknowledges it’s not easy juggling the show’s demands and her family life with six-year-old daughter Sofia and husband Angelo Pagan. Sofia has come to the set, and will come when Justin Bieber guests. “I think I’m just going to call the school and tell the truth. I can’t make her stay away when she has a chance to meet him.”
Leah’s “The Talk” deal called for a new sitcom to be developed for her at the network, but there’ve been hitches. Obviously, working eight hours a day on “The Talk” doesn’t leave much time for other professional pursuits. “I’m up at 5:30 to be at work by 7:30. It’s not an easy day, but when I’m finished, the sun is still out. There is time for another show,” she says. “But maybe I don’t want to be a series regular. Maybe I want to be a recurring character on another show. I need to have some time with my daughter.”
The actress lets us know her maternal duties now include being “a chauffeur and a chef. When my daughter’s home from school, it’s like, ‘Where is my play date?’ It’s only going to get worse from here on. She’ll get to be a teenager and say, ‘Mom, I don’t want to hang out with you,'” Leah predicts.
Also, “I feel a real loyalty to ‘King of Queens,’ to Doug and Carrie. When I read the scripts they send, I go, ‘I can’t be married to this guy.’ It’s weird, right? I feel like I’m actually married to Doug,” she says, referring to Kevin James’s character. She ends up, she says, “saying, ‘Oh, I know who’d be good for that,’ and I pitch them ideas for other girls.”