Ready. Set. Dish! Keeping Up with the Kardashians star Kris Jenner will test-market her own talk show, Kris, starting July 15 on several Fox-owned stations, including those in Los Angeles, Dallas, Phoenix, Minneapolis and New York. The chatfest has just six weeks to prove itself and, if it's a hit, it'll return nationwide, most likely in 2014. TV Guide Magazine spoke with the ever-controversial momager to find out if she's staying cool or feeling the heat.
TV Guide Magazine: Don't you find this trial-run thing a little maddening? There's not much time for growth. You have to strike fast and hot.
Jenner: True, but that's how Wendy Williams and Bethenny Frankel got started with their shows. That's the biz nowadays. But I don't feel nervous at all. This'll be one big party all summer long — a way to forget your troubles with an hour of pop culture and cool lifestyle stuff. It's all upbeat. Health, fitness, fashion, beauty, music. Nothing snarky, nothing mean.
TV Guide Magazine: What have you learned being interviewed by other talk-show hosts over the years?
Jenner: That this is the greatest job in the world! I grew up watching Merv Griffin and Mike Douglas, and I've been doing talk shows since the early '90s when my husband Bruce and I had our exercise infomercials, and I don't think there's anything better. [Laughs] It's so me! But I won't be alone. I'm also going to have a different cohost every day. So far, we have NeNe Leakes, Diddy, Mario Lopez, Ryan Seacrest, Brooke Burke and Tom Bergeron lined up — all of them old friends I have a great connection with. And, of course, I'll have my kids coming in and out.
TV Guide Magazine: There's buzz that your new granddaughter, North West, will make her first public appearance on your show. True?
Jenner: Oh, you never know. You'll just have to tune in. [Laughs] But that would be a great idea, wouldn't it?
TV Guide Magazine: So you're holding a contest to allow one of your fans to live with the Jenner-Kardashians for the day? Are you nuts?
Jenner: I'm very excited about this! We want someone with real entrepreneurial dreams and the winner will get $5000 seed money to help make those dreams happen. I would have loved that kind of financial support when Kourtney and I started our clothing store, Smooch, back in the day before we had a show on the air. We spent our own money to make that store happen. Plus, there's a $1000 shopping spree at Dash, and the winner also gets to hang out with me for the day and be on my talk show. I love that we're doing this. It's something to inspire the viewers, even if they all can't win. It gets people thinking about how they can realize their own dreams. I believe we can do just about anything we set our minds to. My philosophy has always been: "If someone says 'No,' you're talking to the wrong person." That's why I love this contest — it's a great, big "Yes!" We could be creating a new star. [Laughs] I feel a spinoff coming on!
TV Guide Magazine: Rare is the week where you and your clan aren't subject to tabloid rumors and scandals. Will you address them on air?
Jenner: I will absolutely set the record straight — with pleasure! A lot of reporters think covering anything Kardashian-Jenner is a creative-writing assignment.
TV Guide Magazine: You have a lot of haters. How do you handle the downside of social media?
Jenner: By ignoring it. I've always told the kids, "Don't read the tabloids and don't go looking at that crap on the Internet!" But it wasn't until Keeping Up and the whole social-media explosion that I truly realized how many haters and bullies are out there. People feel entitled to sit on their couches in Iowa, saying hateful, hurtful things anonymously and with no accountability. All I can do is put out the best me possible. I'm a good person, a good mom, and I think viewers will see that. This is a tough world and I want to make it just a little bit easier, a little bit more fun for just an hour a day. When people watch my show, I want them to feel like they're sitting down with a dear old friend — one who has all the latest gossip!