A revealing interview with Arsenio Hall, by The Hollywood Reporter, posted on their website this morning that I think you’ll find interesting to read.
As we already know, Arsenio is returning to primetime, with a new talkshow on CBS, scheduled to debut this fall. Answers to questions like why his first talkshow really went off the air, to what he’s been doing since then, to why he’s returning to late night now, to what audiences can expect from the show, and more (including a Bad Boys that could’ve been), can all be found in the interview.
So, without further ado, here are the highlights:
– First, THR asks him why the first Arsenio Hall show was canceled. His reply:
It wasn’t canceled. I resigned. Sure there was an erosion of the numbers (audience ratings) as shows tend to do in year five or six. You are a little lower this year than last year. But the show never stopped making money, never stopped being profitable for Paramount.
– THR follows that up with why he resigned:
I actually thought I needed changes in my life and I need to try other things. I wanted to do things professionally like stand-up, and try some acting. I felt my whole life needed broadening. I didn’t have a family. Everything I had done was a gamble because I felt if I missed it as some point, I could get back in. I could still walk into a comedy club and make people laugh every night. That’s what I do. And I could be home in the morning to make breakfast and take my kid to school. What I was confused about was that when you go from being on every night to just being a stand-up, your visibility is on a whole different level.
– On what his plans were for after he walked away from his talkshow, Arsenio said that he actually wanted to act:
It was one of those things I tried to purse after I left late night. I wanted to study and take it seriously and not just be the talk show host who is popular so he gets a role. But I wasn’t able to crack that nut the way I wanted. It’s a tough racket. Sometimes I made bad choices. I remember there was a time I decided not to do more stand up or go on the road. I turned down a movie called Bad Boys where it would have been me and Martin (Lawrence) instead of Will (Smith) and Martin. You look back and say it wasn’t a bad decision because I’m happy with my life. I’m a daddy or whatever. But then you realize, that’s not where I’m supposed to be. One day you really miss it.
Maybe it’s not news to everyone, but it’s definitely news to me. I had no idea that he was offered Bad Boys, to star in opposite Martin Lawrence. I’m trying hard to visualize it, but I just can’t. I guess I’ve never really thought ot Arsenio Hall as that guy. Although I’m sure his take on the role would’ve been different from what Will Smith did with it. He would’ve brought something else to it.
– On what to expect from his new show, and who its target audience is:
There’s probably some marketing person saying it’s a party. It’s a spirited show. It is targeted for a younger demographic. The bottom line is yes it’s a party, just as the powers that be will say it is. But I’m not really sure it’s a party. If I go to a party and there is an applause sign and they shut down for commercials every now and then, then it’s a party I’m never coming back to. But for TV, that’s good marketing. The audience we had the first time around is about 40 now. From the (research) we have crunched, I think the audience that will embrace the show is an interesting cross demographic . That guy has kids now. I think they will both watch.
There’s more to chew on in the interview, so feel free to read the entire thing HERE.
The all-new Arsenio Hall Show returns for September 9, 2013, at 10pm.