Former View cohost Star Jones dishes to TV Guide about her gastric bypass, staying fit and her brand-new Court TV show (premiering Monday at 3 pm/ET).
TV Guide: Your new show, Star Jones, kicks off this week on Court TV, where you started your TV career. What's the format?
Star Jones: It's a live daily talk show where law, news and pop culture will converge. If we were on today, we might do stories about whether Nicole Richie is maturing, why we are concerned with Hillary Clinton's cleavage, or the stories of heroism in the recent [Minneapolis] bridge collapse.
TV Guide: So it's not all about legal issues?
Jones: Because I'm a lawyer, it will always have a legal spin, but my job is to take a story that's making news and make it relate to you at home. I'll have celebrity guests, newsmakers, experts and people who have good stories to tell.
TV Guide: You recently told your own good story when you admitted you'd had gastric bypass surgery. Why did you finally fess up?
Jones: I was angry with myself and embarrassed. Emotionally, it was a long road to forgive myself for not being perfect. And I was worried it wouldn't be successful.
TV Guide: Did your husband, Al Reynolds, want you to come out with the truth?
Jones: He encouraged me to go to therapy, and then I was ready to talk about it. I want everyone to know that I never lied. I'm a lawyer — I know how to use words. But it was evasive — and pathetic that that's how I chose to deal with something that saved my life.
TV Guide: Why did you go under the knife?
Jones: I didn't lose weight for the public eye. I did it because I didn't want to die. I couldn't walk a block without using an inhaler. I weighed almost as much as my friend Shaquille O'Neal!
TV Guide: You look really fit now. Is it hard to keep off the 160 pounds you lost?
Jones: Well, I exercise five days a week and I've trained myself to eat portions that Americans should eat. I finally don't fear gaining weight.
TV Guide: Do you hear from any of the View ladies?
Jones: Elisabeth [Hasselbeck] and I are friends. I'm happy for them and I hope they're happy for me, because I got exactly what I wanted [with my new show].
TV Guide: Why did you send Whoopi Goldberg flowers when she joined The View, considering the show caused you public pain?
Jones: I was encouraging her to do what's good for Whoopi — she's my friend. The View was my home for nine years. Why would I do anything to try and destroy it? I've not made a nasty comment since I left over a year ago.
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