This afternoon, the cast and producers of NBC’s new comedy “Are You There, Chelsea?” discussed their show in front of a room full of the nation’s TV critics at the TCA press tour. And, as you would expect, Chelsea Handler, who not only produces the show — based on her series of books about being young and drunk in her 20s — but stars as TV Chelsea’s older sister, was in a feisty mood.
One of the reasons, for instance, that she’s not playing herself in the show is because she’s busy. “I would love to be in as much as I can, but I have some other jobs,” she mentioned. When asked why she’s staying with her two shows on E! despite having this new network show, she glibly replied: “I like my E! show. I like being under the radar.”
Handler will only be in seven of the thirteen episodes, opposite Laura Prepon, who’s playing young Chelsea. She initially intended to do less, but had so much fun doing the ones she was in that her commitment grew.
The producers wanted to make sure that people realized that it was more “Laura’s show” than Chelsea’s, but the advertisements for them didn’t bear that out at first, as most of them featured as much of Handler as it did of Prepon.
“I think people were just kind of confused at first,’” said Prepon. “We did a bunch of things to try explain, like, no, no, like, I play Chelsea; she plays my sister. And they were confused about why she had brown hair and this and that, and but I think we’ve done a good job explaining it.”
Watch Laure Prepon on “Chelsea Lately”: