Access Hollywood correspondent Maria Menounos spends most of her time reporting on entertainment news and chatting with celebrities. So she bear-hugged the opportunity to wrestle in a six diva match in October as part of a past WWE guest-hosting gig. (You can see it here.) The 31-year-old says the experience inspired her to take on more immersive, adventurous experiences. And so Maria's Madcap Adventure Series was born. Airing this week during Access, her Adventure segments include dancing with New Kids on the Block, singing with Justin Bieber, and impersonating Dolly Parton in Las Vegas. She even got to do play-by-play for her beloved Boston Celtics. Menounos spoke to TVGuide.com about a few of her adventures.
Recording with Justin Bieber: He's a good little guy, very helpful and a good coach. I had a lot of fun with him. He has this cool swagger about him and he's super cute — he's a good one.
Performing as Dolly Parton: That was terrifying. I have a very large fear of being on stage. It makes no sense because I'm not shy, I'm on TV all the time, but when I'm on a stage I just shut down. The first time I actually talked myself out of it was when I was doing Dolly. I remember being backstage and I was starting to get scared. I said, "Maria, you're not going to get any better or any worse in 30 seconds." I was alone on stage and let it go and had fun. I practiced as much as I could and did my best and it ended up working out in the end. It was really hard, the hardest of anything I've ever done.
Dancing with NKOTB: They were trying to teach me the "Right Stuff" dance. I know I can nail it in my living room, but in front of them I was embarrassing. Funny story: my parents and I used to clean clubs all over Boston. There was this main club we cleaned called the channel, and obviously it's not a real glamorous job but it all paid off when the New Kids on the Block came through to perform. I got to meet them and take pictures with them. Fast forward to two years ago. When they made their comeback I was interviewing them and I broke out all my pictures, all the memorabilia, the poems I had written, how I was going to marry Jonathan.
Doing color commentary on the Celtics: I'm a diehard Celtics fan and Boston has had wonderful announcers. I'm so used to their voices and to do it with them, who are so amazing, and to do it in my home town, with my favorite team ever, was very intimidating. I knew if I stunk, they were going to let me know. It was nerve-wracking but the thing is, I knew the players inside and out. I had no problem on the Boston side, but when you're commentating you have to do the other side too. So the day before, my friend was doing flash cards with me for the Nets. All my Twitter followers really look forward to watching with me because I live tweet during the game and I've been a crazy fan for years.