Say what you will about So You Think You Can Dance's unwieldy title. Fact is, the Fox reality competition was a ratings success during its premiere incarnation, and as such is back for an encore starting tonight at 8 pm/ET. (The contest then continues Wednesdays and Thursdays at 9.) What's new and exciting for Season 2? For one, the dance-off is now hosted by British TV personality Cat Deeley, whom TVGuide.com recently gave a ring.
TVGuide.com: Is it now an official requirement that every American reality program feature at least one British accent?
Cat Deeley: [Laughs] Somebody has to give it all a bit of authority, Matt! No, I don't think its absolutely required, but I knew [executive producer] Nigel [Lythgoe] from England, and [Season 1 host] Lauren [Sanchez] was pregnant, so he said, "Listen, there's this job I think you'd be great for. Come and meet everybody." I must have won them over, because here I am!
TVGuide.com: What is it that you are best known for across the pond?
Deeley: Ooh, different things. Literally this weekend I hosted a big gala concert for the Prince's Trust. Princes William and Harry, and Charles and Camilla were there. Then at 6:45 the next morning I flew straight here [to the States]. I host big major events like the BRITs [an awards show], but I also do Saturday-night entertainment shows, I've done a music show... all different things, really.
TVGuide.com: What's this Internet rumor that you typically host events barefoot?
Deeley: [Laughs] That's a rumor. Only if my shoes are hurting, if I've got really stupid girly shoes on, do I do that!
TVGuide.com: A U.K. poll once named you the lady most male fans would like to be seated next to at a football game. Why do you think that is?
Deeley: Just because I don't really take myself too seriously. And they know that I'd probably share my pie with them.
TVGuide.com: I'm sorry, your what?
Deeley: At an English football game you always have a steak and kidney pie or something like that, and a cup of tea!
TVGuide.com: Other than yourself, what changes can we expect for Season 2 of So You Think...?
Deeley: Because it was such a success last year, the idea is to take that and build on it. There aren't really changes but there are new facets to it. There will be new styles of dance to really test our dancers out. We've also got some great characters this time. Remember, this is not about the best dancers, it's about America's favorite dancers, people who bring that special something that you can't define.
TVGuide.com: What is your own dance specialty? The pop and lock? Mambo? Electric slide?
Deeley: I'm terrible. Completely terrible. My specialty only happens in a club after a couple of beers. And it's got to be very dark. I normally need to stand on the edge just so I don't take too many people out with my weird and wonderful moves.
TVGuide.com: You sound like my perfect dance partner!
Deeley: Really? Because I'm really, really terrible.
TVGuide.com: Dancing is why I dread weddings.
Deeley: There's so much embarrassing, uncool dancing at weddings. Mine's not much better!
TVGuide.com: You've interviewed such music biggies as Madonna, Prince, U2, Mariah Carey.... Which sit-down was most surprising or memorable?
Deeley: When I had to do an interview with Marilyn Manson, I was slightly apprehensive about it, but he was great. Really, really interesting. I found out that he collects lunchboxes, and his favorite one has Snoopy on it. Also, Debbie Harry was amazing. I wanted her to be great, because she's such a heroine of mine, and she was brilliant. And Prince, he had just changed his name to that symbol, so I had to ask that question, "What do I call you?" He said, "A new friend." That was very good.
TVGuide.com: Who would you love to talk to but have not had the opportunity yet?
Deeley: Steven Tyler, just because he's been there and done everything and come out the other side. I think he'd have some great stories to tell.
TVGuide.com: Lastly, as a Brit, what do you make of this whole Paul McCartney-divorce nastiness?
Deeley: Oh, gosh, I have no idea. I've interviewed him a couple of times, and he seems like a really, really lovely man. The U.K. press are coming down very, very heavily on Heather Mills. After all, Paul McCartney is almost untouchable in the U.K. He's almost divine. But it's one of those things where unless you're in the inner circle, you never know what's going on in a relationship. I do hope they can sort it out!