It was 1993. I was 23 and working in London as a reporter for a program called London Tonight. Each day I’d be sent off to interview big name celebrities like Calvin Klein, Emma Thompson, Sir Anthony Hopkins, Kenneth Branagh and then there was one very memorable encounter with Dawn French and her Absolutely Fabulous co writer Jennifer Saunders.
It was possibly the most humiliating interview experience of my career. They ridiculed me in front of a dozen other waiting journalists – I was like a rabbit completely trapped in the headlights of an oncoming car. When the ordeal was over I limped out, wondering what the hell just happened.
Back at the edit suite all the crappy name calling, rude remarks and moments of total disregard for me, novice reporter, were cut out. What went to air was safe and boring.
At the time I remember a part of me wanting to run the interview in it’s entirety. To show Dawn and Jennifer for real. Complete bitches.
Granted my questions were probably incredibly pedestrian, I looked about 12 years old and I had never interviewed comedians before. But still they were like two lionesses sizing up their defenceless prey and make no mistake they went in for the kill!
My big lesson – comedians often don’t like being interviewed. Don’t arrive with a list of questions just go with the flow.
But back to Dawn – Mumbrella reports that Dawn is about to start selling us Coles Flybuy points. I guess she must be popular here – just not with me.