Our phone shows 10:30am (7:30am Los Angeles time) and Chelsea Handler is still in bed, but the comedian, author, host, actress, activist, producer and heavy cannabis user is wide awake. She even “sat up straight”, just to be “on her toes” for our interview. And you can hear it.
Posted yesterday at 12:00 pm
Our day may have started three hours early due to jet lag, but Chelsea Handler is so resourceful, I’d swear she just came out of a full afternoon of oratorical debate. Whether we’re talking about exile culture, America’s ills, her imminent arrival in Montreal, or the “more committed” course she’s been taking for some time, Chelsea Handler answers all of our questions with candor, intelligence, and poise. .
“The election of Donald Trump was a turning point,” says the 47-year-old American. It was a very dark time. It was terrifying. He pushed me to think more about others, instead of always thinking about myself. Since then, my speech has been much more enlightened. I no longer want to pocket a paycheck without thinking. »
His journey bears witness to the change in direction. After piloting a pop culture talk show (chelsea lately) sure ! for seven seasons and published several bestsellers in the New York Times (whose my horizontal life, in which she describes her one-night stands), Chelsea Handler began producing documentaries for Netflix. And the more the years go by, the more she becomes interested in the main problems of society. All this without ever abandoning her irreverent and caustic style.
Since 2021, it also presents Dear Chelseaa weekly podcast in which he guides, with humor and topicality, his listeners who struggle with different types of problems (love, sex, money, family).
“Like everyone else, I had ups and downs,” she says. Today, I feel like I’m in control. I am anchored. I do what I want. I say yes to the things I want to do and no to others. It’s a nice feeling. It is powerful as a feeling. I like to think that I can be a role model for young women who think there are things they can never achieve because we live in a man’s world. We may have a choice. But you have to dare and take risks. Courage is needed. »
Speaking of bravery, Chelsea Handler has never lacked in expressing her opinions without filter, even if it means suffering the wrath of the Republican electorate. In recent months, she has had no qualms about denouncing the cancellation of the parade roe v. wadethat guaranteed the right to abortion in the United States, and the inaction of politicians in the face of the epidemic of mass killings.
It’s crazy! It seems that we go backwards, that we go backwards. Is he wild West. It is awful. And that’s why I take every opportunity to get out of the country.
This week, the comedian will combine business with pleasure by temporarily leaving her adopted California (she comes from New Jersey) to pilot a gala at the Just For Laughs festival in Montreal. On stage, he will offer new material to the public, written specifically for the event. Therefore, he will not dive into his one woman showentitled Vaccinated and Horny (in French, vaccinated and horny), which currently walks throughout North America.
During her time at Théâtre Maisonneuve, she will be surrounded by eight stars of British comedy, including Vanessa Gonzales, Atsuko Okatsuka, Celeste Barber, Sam Jay and Salma Hindy. “The new generation of comedians is very funny and talented. It inspires me a lot”, she insists.
Chelsea Handler has never hidden her love for Canada. Those who follow her adventures on Instagram know that she spends a lot of time there, especially skiing. We could also cite a short video shot last winter (and viewed 6.2 million times) in which she runs around the slopes topless, a joint in one hand and a cocktail in the other.
I love Canadian women. They’re strong. They are the ones who drive the ship. It’s something I appreciate! Canada is a much more civilized alternative to the United States.
When informed that in Quebec, certain personalities like to repeat, on various platforms, that “we no longer have the right to say anything”, Chelsea Handler is not moved. As a comedian famous for her outspokenness, she never felt that she was not free to say what she wanted.
“The only thing we ask people is to stop being racist and sexist,” he sums up. That’s all we want. It is not very restrictive. If you are not smart enough to respect these limits, which are after all quite clear, you should reevaluate your career. It’s not a particularly high challenge having to maneuver within some lofty parameters. That says a lot about your true talent, if you can’t do it. »
Listening to her speak, we understand that Chelsea Handler no longer has patience with her peers who cry out for censorship.
” Their worked, it is not to discriminate, it is to make people laugh and stimulate discussion. And promote coexistence and inclusion. Everyone complains that everything is too politically correct, that this cannot be said, that this cannot be said. The idea is not to resist change by saying, “Ahhhh! I can’t do my job!” That’s the easy way. You have to know how to adapt to the times you live in. »
These days, Chelsea Handler is running out of hours to complete her many projects. Between two performances at the microphone, she finishes writing a new book. Initially, the work was to be called The Filipino in me (in French, the filipino in me), in a nod to comedian Jo Koy, whom he has been dating for a year, but since the couple has just announced their breakup (just a few hours after our interview), we don’t know what fate will hold for them. .
The star is also preparing a semi-autobiographical television series for Peacock, NBC’s streaming platform.
“It could be completely new to me. I have never played my own role on television before. It will be super exciting. it will be a bit like control your enthusiasmbut with me in therapy trying to figure out why i’ve gotten so fat bitch. »
Chelsea Handler hosts a Just For Laughs gala with guests Salma Hindy, Vanessa Gonzalez, Atsuko Okatsuka, Adam Christie, Sam Jay, Tommy Little, Jay Jurden and Celeste Barber. At the Théâtre Maisonneuve, Thursday, July 28 at 7 p.m.