A talk show with Kris Jenner…because we’re not seeing enough of her? Yes, come sarcasm or high water, Hollywood’s premiere momager, matriarch of the Kardashian media and product empire, momma to Kim, Khloe, Kourtney, Kendall, Kylie and Rob – and grandma of three including 2/12 week-old North West — is about to launch her own chatfest. It’s “Kris,” which gets its six-week trial run beginning July 15 on selected Fox-owned stations including Fox 5 in New York City (11:00 a.m.), Fox 11 in L.A. (3:00 p.m.), Fox 9 in Minneapolis (noon), Fox 10 Phoenix (11:00 a.m.) and Fox 4 Dallas (3:00).
Perhaps Jenner’s greatest genius is an ability to come off easy-going and down-to-earth as your everyday terrific gal from the beauty salon, or grocery store – though her net worth has been estimated at some $20 million and she has been featured on every magazine cover from People to In Style, Us to Entertainment Weekly to TV Guide to, heck, probably Popular Mechanics next. Jenner watchers roll their eyes and groan over some of her antics – such as the way she sucked the media spotlight away from fellow talk show host Bethenny Frankel on the recent Daytime Emmys (because she had the new Kanye ‘n’ Kim grandbaby to talk about and nothing trumps that!!). But Jenner admirers point out that in spite of the larger-than-lifeness of The Kardashian clan, they do pull together and live up to their own sort of code. And yes, the sound of Kris’ sincerity is impeccable when she tells us things like “I teach my kids ‘God first, family second, everything else third.’”
Q: Kim has said that your talk show will reveal a side of you the public hasn’t really seen yet. Is that possible?
A: I think that our show that we do, ‘Keeping up with the Kardashians,’ is an hour-long show, and without commercials, it’s you know, 44 minutes. I think that now with all the kids and the babies and the baby daddies, there’s so much going on that nobody gets to know any one person as well as they could. So I think that you see these snippets of me and my personality but you don’t really know that I love to cook, or I love to garden, or I love to clean my drawers. (Laughs.)
Q: Kim mentioned a nurturing side.
A: Well, I love my home and I love making a wonderful home for my family and I always have. It’s always been about the kids, and making sure everybody’s comfortable and well fed and also that they have a real joie de vivre about life, and just, you know really embrace all the stuff that’s going on.
Q: Letterman and Leno and the other late-night hosts do a lot with stupid headlines segments. You could practically make a regular feature out of stupid headlines about your own family.
A: That’s definitely a topic we might do. We’ll talk about pop culture, and celebrity pop culture will definitely be a part of it, and we are part of that so it will be interesting.
Q: Will your family appear on the show?
A: From time to time. We’ll see how it evolves.
Q: How do you deal with the forces of negativity that continue to come at you, like your late ex-husband’s widow? (In January, Ellen Pearson sold what she claimed were Robert Kardashian’s personal diaries that painted a picture of Kris as a monstrous mother, to the tabloids. Subsequently, Pearson’s less-than-impeccable past was revealed by detectives hired by Kim and Khloe.)
A: I focus on what’s really important in life, you know? I just really try and be a good person with a good heart, and I think when people are nasty and judgmental — there are a lot of bullies out there — I just focus on myself and my family and my situation at home, and give a lot of love to my kids and my husband. That’s what keeps me going, knowing I have a great support system at home. I think when you start focusing on the negative it just sucks the energy right out of the room. I think that people who are continuously nasty – especially someone who tells lies to the media to sell magazines – then you can’t worry about all of that. I just try to put it all out of my head and hopefully the cream will rise to the top.
Q: Do you really get up at 3:30 a.m. very often?
A: Oh yeah. Oh, God, yeah. Today I got up at 4:00, left for the gym at 5:00 and worked out and then got to the office. I just like to get a leg up on my day, and if I wait too long I don’t get my workout in.
Q: It seems like you’re on track to break Regis Philbin’s record for most on-camera time. How do you tolerate a crew following you around sometimes 18 hours a day? Did it just come naturally to you?
A: I think it just kind of happened; it evolved into what we’re doing now and I love it. You know, yesterday I walked into my house and my entire camera crew was in my foyer, and I said, ‘Hi, family,’ you know? And I meant it. It was really cute, they were all there. (Laughs.)
Q: Will they be following you around behind the scenes of your talk show as well?
A: It depends on the time of year, but yeah, if they’re with me, they will be there.
Q: Having often been a guest on talk shows, did you have a mental list of things other hosts do wrong or do right, that you wanted to do or wanted to avoid doing?
A: I try not to judge anyone else, because everyone does things a little bit differently, and there’s room for everybody, but I do get inspiration in just the desire to do a talk show because I enjoy the process. I did ‘the Talk’ for a couple weeks, and I’ve cohosted on ‘The View’ and different shows like that, and really enjoyed it. That’s when I knew it was something that was right for me, and when Fox approached me about my own show, I said, ‘Absolutely, this is a yes.’
Q: What about content you’d like to do?
A: I have a great interest in health and fashion and beauty and all the different things that people are interested in. You know our show (“Keeping Up With the Kardashians”) airs in over 150 countries, and because of that we have a big audience and a large fan base. And because of that, our fan base writes to us every single week — thousands upon thousands of letters asking us for tips and advice, and asking us questions — so that will be fun to address on a lifestyle show. We’ll talk about things a lot of these things people are really interested in.
Q: You have your new grandchild – any other big events coming up in the family in the immediate future? Weddings? More babies?
A: We’re very excited, with the baby and the show, and we’re filming ‘Keeping Up,’ so I think my plate is pretty full.
Q: How do you find the energy for all this?
A: I think it’s just what makes me tick. This is where I shine, when I’m under a lot of pressure and there’s a lot going on. I think I just thrive on that.