Bethenny Frankel jumps from reality TV to daytime talk
Bethenny Frankel arrives at the 40th Annual Daytime Emmy Awards in Beverly Hills, Calif., on Sunday, June 16, 2013. (Richard Shotwell/Invision)
Published Thursday, September 5, 2013 7:47AM EDT
TORONTO -- Bethenny Frankel is used to putting her life on display.
She's practically spent the last five years of her life in front of the camera thanks to back-to-back-to-back reality shows "Bethenny Ever After," "Bethenny Getting Married" and "Real Housewives of New York City," not to mention "The Apprentice: Martha Stewart" several years before that.
Her next TV venture is simply titled "Bethenny," and although the daytime talk show puts the outspoken entrepreneur back in the spotlight, Frankel says she's intent on making sure the series is not about her.
"This talk show is an evolution of a relationship between me and women that has started from the 'Apprentice' to going through the struggles I had as a single woman on the 'Housewives' and then doing my own show," Frankel said during a promotional stop in Toronto in June.
"It's not that I do it for the sake of doing it and this show isn't really about me. It's about women and if there's something that I'm going through that women are going through then we will all talk about it together.
"This will be a different experience because it's not just me living my life for everyone to see without them being able to talk about how it affects them and what they're going through."
And there's been plenty of talk over the way Frankel has lived her life in recent months.
The tabloid magnet has kept the headlines coming with supposed behind-the-scenes drama on her new show, her divorce and custody battle with estranged husband Jason Hoppy and non-stop speculation over the nature of her relationship with billionaire Warren Lichtenstein.
Rather than turn people off, the constant media scrutiny has cemented her fanbase, suggests Frankel, arguing that people feel like they know who she is, and consider her a pal.
"I'm fortunate that I've had a reality show where people have seen my life and have been in my home, so hopefully they trust me and they know that this is who I am on camera, off camera, this is just who I am."
Frankel previewed her chat show last year with a test run on Fox in the United States and E! in Canada.
Backed by Ellen DeGeneres, the series offered a light-hearted mix of celebrity interviews, fashion advice and frank girl talk.
Frankel says she expects upcoming episodes to be guided simply by whatever women are talking about.
"It's kind of a deconstructed talk show. The structure probably won't be the same every day and it probably won't be exactly the same as last summer," said the 42-year-old, adding that a lot of details had yet to be worked out.
"A lot of people already started adopting a lot of the format that I did last summer on other shows and I'm a person that just kind of wants to keep it moving forward and have it be innovative so we'll be whatever is uniquely true to me on that day."
She expected to feature regular segments on business, motherhood, relationships and the male perspective.
"My ability to be open and honest I think is obviously a plus in being a talk show host -- you're going to be in women's lives every day and you want them to feel that it's an hour well spent," she says.
"There's nothing contrived about it. There's no big grand plan about why it's going to be different than any other talk show.... it's not like I know more than anyone in the audience, I just think it's a good place for us all to get into it."
"Bethenny" debuts Monday on CTV.