Ross the Intern will need his own interns soon.
Ross Mathews, the Tonight Show correspondent and Chelsea Lately regular, has signed a talk-show pilot development deal at E!, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
"It really is the time and I feel like I'm ready now," Mathews tells the trade. "I know how to speak to the audience. I know how to speak to celebrities. And I know my point of view."
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Per the deal, Mathews, 31, will develop a talk show with Chelsea Handler's production company, Borderline Amazing Productions, and will continue to be one of E!'s featured on-air talents. Besides Chelsea Lately, he's appeared on After Lately, E! News and the network's red carpet specials over the years.
"We've been doing stuff together for a couple years now, but this really makes it official," Mathews says. "And so what this is going to do is sort of firm up our relationship and say I'm going to be one of E!'s people now. When people see my face, I want them to say, 'Oh my gosh, that's Ross from E!' and 'I know where to tune in to see him.'"
Mathews began as an intern on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno and, on his last day in December 2001, was dispatched to cover the Ocean's Eleven premiere. The segment was such a hit that Mathews — known as "Ross the Intern" — started covering more events, including the Oscars and the Winter Olympics, for The Tonight Show. He continues to file pieces for the show.
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He's since appeared on Celebrity Fit Club, guest-hosted on The View and recurred on Days of Our Lives.
"I've been earning my stripes for the past decade and really honing my craft as far as surrounding myself with people that inspire me, like Jay Leno and Chelsea Handler," Mathews says. "I've been so lucky that they provided my opportunity to develop a clear voice that the audience has responded to."
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