For hosting the 38th annual Grammys, Ellen DeGeneres was nominated for an Emmy; for hosting the 46th annual Emmys, she nabbed an American Comedy Award. "Emmy, Grammy... it's all about me," cracks the daytime talk-show queen, who's back hosting TV's biggest night (Sept. 18 at 8 pm/ET, on CBS). "Sure, they're all dressed up and winning awards. But who's on stage?" When pressed for scoop about the show, she only promises "a big opening number that could be really good or bad — but isn't that why we watch television?" Indeed, it is.
TV Guide: What will Emmy day be like for you?
Ellen DeGeneres: Long. I'll be there all day rehearsing, then shoot the show and go to the parties. Then I'll lie down and think about everything that was or was not funny, wake up at 5 for hair and makeup, and do my talk show live at 7.
TV Guide: Who would be your dream cohost?
DeGeneres: Martha Stewart. She would know how to protect me if something went wrong. We'd have our own little gang.
TV Guide: What's the difference between hosting the Emmys and the Grammys?
DeGeneres: There's more rock hair for the Grammys. Not for me — my hair is always the same, no matter what I try. I might as well have an "Ellen Wig."
TV Guide: There's an Outstanding Hairstyling Emmy; if they had Outstanding Hair, who'd win?
DeGeneres: Well, Golden Girls isn't on anymore...
TV Guide: You have two Daytime Emmys and one Primetime. Which is better?
DeGeneres: They're exactly the same. Except Daytime Emmy wears sunglasses.
TV Guide: What award that does not exist would you like to present?
DeGeneres: Best Actress for Pretending That You Don't Care That You Lost. When the Ellen show was on, I lost every year to Helen Hunt, who has a first name that sounds very much like Ellen. So it's not a good idea to get up until you hear the last name.
TV Guide: Why do the Oscars reward "best" performances and the Emmys reward "outstanding" performances?
DeGeneres: I'll be pointing that out to winners: "You're not the best, you're just outstanding." But some are not "out" at all.
TV Guide: As part of the out crowd, can you comment on whether SpongeBob SquarePants is a little, er, light in his lace-ups?
DeGeneres: I haven't really met SpongeBob, and I've never even seen him at a party, so as far as I'm concerned, it's all hearsay.
Check out our complete coverage of the Emmys for exclusive interviews with nominees, awards analysis, winner predictions, polls and Joan & Melissa's fun fashion gallery.