Giuliana Rancic is a busy woman. She stays on top of entertainment news as the anchor and managing editor of E! News, is a fixture at red carpet events, and co-stars in a reality show with husband Bill Rancic, who happens to live in Chicago which means racking up lots of frequent flier miles. Now the petite dynamo has teamed up with 3 Musketeers to promote their new Truffle Crisp bar and give fans a chance to hang with her in L.A. and get all the celebrity dish. The Nice Girls caught up with her for our own dish session recently, and we got some great scoop!
We started by asking about the common misconception that Giuliana went to Hollywood to be an actress and then sort of fell into her job with E! News.
“I always knew I wanted to be a journalist, just not an entertainment journalist,” clarified Giuliana. “My professors at the American University, where I went to graduate school, said, ‘You always have too much fun with your segments, so maybe you should consider entertainment journalism.’”
After earning her Master’s in Journalism from AU, she relocated to Los Angeles where covered entertainment news online until she landed a two-week internship at E! which led to a full-time gig in 2002. She has since worked her way up to anchor and managing editor of E! News.
“When I first started there, I was the crazy one,” she chuckles. “They would always send me out on shoots, like Hulk Hogan would pick me up and spin me around, or I was getting bucked off a horse. They liked it because I’m very self-deprecating, nothing offends me, so I could poke fun at myself. It was fun!”
E! is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, and Giuliana is both cringing and experiencing nostalgia for the days of “ridiculous” extensions and hip huggers.
“We were live back then and you never knew what might happen. It was crazy, but fun. I miss those days!”
Now her live shoots are confined to red carpets, like the Oscars. How does one prepare for major events like that?
“I used to over-prepare, and the problem with that is that when the celebrity comes up and you’re so concerned with your next question, you miss other stuff. Now I realize that the best preparation is to not prepare. I cover celebrity news five days a week, so I know most of what’s going on already. When the viewer sees a celebrity on the carpet, they usually have questions popping up, like what’s that crazy thing they’re wearing or who are they with, and I want to be able to ask them the questions that the viewers are thinking. I never have cards with me any more, I kind of wing it and go for the real conversation instead of a preset list of questions, and I think those make for the best interviews.”
Among the many delicious anecdotes Giuliana has from her years as an entertainment reporter (Hulk Hogan recommended The Secret to her, which she found surprisingly good), her most memorable interview was with George Clooney. Giuliana recalls that the first time she interviewed him, back when she was auditioning for E!, she decided that since she had the chance, she ought to ask him to marry her.
“I was thinking, I’m just gonna go for it, this might be my first and last chance and you never know, he might be in love with me. He wasn’t. At all.”
That led to a very candid exchange about his views on marriage (the mere words made him sweat), and ever since then whenever he sees Giuliana on the red carpet, he asks if she’s going to propose again. That interview turned into one of E!’s favorite segments to include in various retrospectives, cementing its pop culture status.
Life for Giuliana isn’t all about red carpets, though. In addition to frequent trips to Chicago to spend time with hubby Bill, her day-to-day schedule is “pretty crazy.” Her day starts around 4:30AM when she’s off to the gym (“If I don’t do it in the morning, there’s just no time during the rest of the day.”), then she’s at work by 6:30AM for the daily production meeting where the line up of stories and interviews is discussed. E! News is shot at 11:15AM followed by post-shoot meetings, then the rest of the afternoon is full of interviews, junkets, etc. Evenings can include premieres, book launches, and charity events, stretching the day into 18 hours on the job. “It can be a really long day, but it’s fun. It’s an exciting life, creating memories I’ll be able to share with my kids.”
Does she ever wish she could skip a big event? Yes!
“My dream is one year to be home watching the Oscars with a group of friends, sipping champagne. Instead I’m in a dress that’s cutting off my circulation, wearing an earpiece with producers shouting at me. I am still sipping champagne behind the scenes though,” she laughs. “It will come one day, but it will be bittersweet. This is an incredible job, I’m so lucky, so I keep going and enjoy every moment.”
Her other indulgence? The 3 Musketeers Truffle Crisp bar.
“Oh my God, it’s so good, you HAVE to try it.”
The candy bar company is teaming up with Giuliana to offer fans the opportunity to spend the afternoon with her, having lunch at a Hollywood hotspot and getting all the celebrity scoop from someone in the know. Want to enter? Head over to the 3 Musketeers Facebook page and tell them what you’d rather share than a Truffle Crisp bar. Entries must be received by April 23, 2010. And don’t miss Giuliana on E! News and Giuliana & Bill on the Style Network.