TV Guide included Portia and Ellen in their Power A-List couples in 2007.
In 2007, Forbes ranked DeGeneres' net worth to be $65 million.
Ellen announced on a May 2008 show that she and de Rossi were engaged, and gave de Rossi a three-carat pink diamond ring. They were married on August 16, 2008 at their home, with 19 guests including their respective mothers. They live in Beverly Hills, with three dogs and four cats.
In the Top 10 Gay wedding list published in 2008, the Telegraph (a British newspaper) ranked the union between Ellen DeGeneres and her civil partner Portia de Rossi at no 6.
Ellen revealed she would like to travel to Australia for Christmas 2008 in order to spend time with partner Portia's family.
Ellen worked both as a bartender and a paralegal.
Ellen was ranked #16 of Comedy Central's "100 greatest stand-ups".
Ellen held her very own variety show called Ellen's Really Big Show. It aired on TBS on Monday November 19th 07.
Ellen won a 2007 Daytime Emmy award in the category of "Outstanding Talk Show Host" for The Ellen DeGeneres Show.
Ellen was chosen as one of People Magazine's annual 100 Most Beautiful People in the World, in May 2007.
Ellen's religion is Christian Science.
Ellen is anemic.
Ellen likes to work out on an elliptical machine while watching Animal Planet.
Ellen quit smoking as of late 2005.
Ellen has cats named Charlie, George Jackson and Chairman Mao Tse-Tung. She also has dogs named Pig and Wolf.
May 06. In Time magazine the issue of the 100 people who shaped our world. Ellen was named the bravest comedian in show business.
Ellen's Lift List as of Sept. 2006--
*Be more patient
*Take tennis lessons
*Learn another language
*Do more to help New Orleans
*Learn how to use a computer
*Go to Africa
Some awards that she has won... Daytime Emmy Awards 2008 Outstanding Talk Show Host, The Ellen DeGeneres Show 2007 Outstanding Talk Show Host, The Ellen DeGeneres Show 2007 Outstanding Special Class Writing, The Ellen DeGeneres Show 2007 Outstanding Talk Show, The Ellen DeGeneres Show 2006 Outstanding Talk Show, The Ellen DeGeneres Show 2006 Outstanding Talk Show Host, The Ellen DeGeneres Show 2006 Outstanding Special Class Writing, The Ellen DeGeneres Show 2005 Outstanding Talk Show, The Ellen DeGeneres Show 2005 Outstanding Talk Show Host, The Ellen DeGeneres Show 2005 Outstanding Special Class Writing, The Ellen DeGeneres Show 2004 Outstanding Talk Show, The Ellen DeGeneres Show Emmy Awards 1997 Outstanding Writing in a Comedy Series, Ellen: The Puppy Episode People's Choice Awards 2008 Favorite Talk Show Host 2008 Favorite Funny Female Star 2008 Favorite Yes I Chose This Star 2007 Favorite Talk Show Host 2007 Favorite Funny Female Star 2006 Favorite Talk Show Host 2006 Favorite Funny Female Star 2005 Favorite Talk Show Host 2005 Favorite Funny Female Star Kids Choice Awards 2004 Favorite Voice from an animated movie, Finding Nemo American Comedy Awards: 1991 Funniest Female Stand-Up Comic Funniest Female Performer in a TV Special -1994 46th Primetime Emmy Awards -2000 Ellen DeGeneres: The Beginning Peabody Award "The Puppy Episode" on Ellen.
Ellen loves tennis.
Ellen loves to play poker.
Ellen says she's very impatient.
Ellen has hosted...
The 33rd (1991) and 34th (1992) annual Grammy's.
The 53rd (2001) and 57th (2005) annual Primetime Emmy Awards.
The 79th (2007) annual Academy Awards.
On August 26th, 06 Ellen took part in Arthur Ashe Kids Day. This happens annually and usually happens a couple days before the US Open.
(Sept 1st, 06)
Ellen driving her '06 Porshce Carrera and stopped at a traffic light on Sunset Blvd at just around 4pm. A Buick Le Sabre was stopped behind her at a traffic light. An older Carrera slammed into the Buick behind DeGeneres. Ellen and Portia both complained of minor neck and back pains but seemed otherwise uninjured. Ellen's car sustained moderate damage.
The Ellen DeGeneres Show received the Producers Guild Award for Outstanding Variety Television Show in January of 2005, up against such competition as The Late Show with David Letterman, Chapelle's Show and Saturday Night Live.
Ellen collects antique mirrors.
One of her favorite games to play is Charades.
Ellen is good friends with Melissa Ethridge and K.D Lang.
Ellen received wide exposure on November 4, 2001, when she served as hostess of the Emmy Awards-TV show. Presented following two cancellations due to fears that a showy ceremony would appear insensitive following the September 11, 2001 attacks, the show required a newer, more somber tone that at the same time allowed viewers to temporarily forget the tragedy. DeGeneres delivered this, receiving several standing ovations for her performance that evening. She memorably delivered the following line: "We're told to go on living our lives as usual, because to do otherwise is to let the terrorists win, and really, what would upset the Taliban more than a gay woman wearing a suit in front of a room full of Jews?"
Ellen was selected once again as host of the 2005 Primetime Emmy Awards ceremony, which was held on September 18, 2005. (The awards show came three weeks after Hurricane Katrina devastated the Gulf Coast, making it the second time Ellen hosted the Emmys following a national tragedy. Because Ellen is from New Orleans, the tragedy literally hit close to home) When she announced that she'd be again hosting the Emmys, she joked, "You know me, any excuse to put on a dress."
When Ellen came out as a lesbian on her show in April 1997, ABC's affiliate in Birmingham, Alabama refused to air the landmark episode. Some of the show's sponsors withdrew their advertisements, one of which was Chrysler.
Ellen's first interview with the gay press was on March 14, 2000, it was with The Advocate.
Her first leading role in a film was with Bill Pullman in Mr. Wrong. (1996)
Her show, Ellen was praised by vice president Al Gore for forcing Americans "to look at sexual orientation in a more open light."
GLAAD awarded Ellen the Stephen F. Kolzak Award for being an openly gay celebrity who has battled homophobia in 1998.
In 1994 she was starring in a series called These Friends of Mine on ABC. The first season was aided by a prime slot, following Tim Allen's Home Improvement. The network had such confidence in her that they announced that she would be the ABC spokesperson for radio ads and on-air promos, allowing her to introduce the debut of every show in the fall lineup.
Ellen's feature acting debut was in the 1993 movie Coneheads.
One of her better-known stand-up routines, "A Phone Call to God," came from one of her own darkest moments of despair, when a close friend and roommate had been killed in a car accident while out on a date. The girl was only 23, and it seemed very unfair to DeGeneres. She wanted to question God about a lot of things that seemed unnecessary, and again she turned to humor. She sat down one night and considered what it would be like if she could call God on the phone and ask him about some of the things that troubled her. As if it was meant to be, the monologue poured from her pen to paper, and it was funny, focusing on topics such as fleas and what their purpose might be.
Ellen's sometimes difficult life inspired her to use humor as a coping device.
After her parents divorced Ellen and her mom moved to Texas.
Ellen played the first gay lead character on TV ever. Appearing on her show, Ellen as gay secured her that place in TV history.
Ellen and Portia are raising money to help the health crisis in Africa. (2006)
Ellen used to get booked at the same comedy gigs as David Spade.
The Ellen DeGeneres Show won Best Talk Show at the Daytime Emmy's (2004) in it's freshman year. It's the only talk show to do so.
For a few days after Hurricane Katrina she didn't know if her aunt and cousin were alive.
She celebrated her 25 years of comedy on her show in 2006.
She won a Peabody Award and an Emmy award for her writing "The Puppy Episode" on Ellen. That was the episode in which she came out as gay in.
Ellen received an Emmy nomination each season on Ellen in the best actress category.
Ellen hosted the Primetime Emmy Awards after two national tragedies, Hurricane Katrina (05) and 9/11 (01).
Ellen appears in American Express commercials and XM Satellite Radio commercials as of 2006.
After Here and Now Ellen says she's done doing stand-up comedy.
She was reluctant to do a love scene in If These Walls Could Talk 2 with Sharon Stone but her then partner Anne Heche, who was directing that scene, convinced her to do it.
Betty, (her mom) was initially shocked when Ellen came out to her. But now is in fact one of her biggest supporters. Betty is an active member of PFLAG and spokesperson for the HRC Coming Out Project.
Her mom, Betty is regularly sitting in the audience on The Ellen DeGeneres Show.
Ellen's father, Elliot is/was an insurance salesman. Her mother, Betty is/was a real-estate agent.
Ellen wrote a blog about horses for the Huffington Post in 2005.
She came out to her mom, Betty when she was 19-20.
Ellen says the reason her and Anne Heche broke up was that their relationship was too public.
Ellen is an active PETA member.
Ellen came out as being gay on her show Ellen in 1997. That episode, named "The Puppy Episode", recorded a record high, 45 million viewers.
She met her current girlfriend Portia de Rossi, six years ago. They met up again at the VH1 Big in 04 awards and sparks flew between them.
Ellen lives with her girlfriend of almost two years, Portia de Rossi. They recently just bought a 120 acre ranch together. (2006)
Ellen won an award from Nickelodeon in 2004 for Favorite voice from an animated movie for her role as 'Dory' in Finding Nemo.
Ellen's favorite music groups are REM and The Indigo Girls.
Ellen sent a representative from her talk show to Fuel Depot Garage in Houston, Texas after 'Hurricane Rita' to give away free fuel. All locals that showed up between 5pm and 7pm enjoyed a free full tank, on Ellen's tab.
Ellen revealed that she was the victim of child molestation, at the hands of her late step father. In an interview with Allure magazine she told of the time that her mother was in the hospital, dealing with her Cancer, and Ellen was alone in the house with him. After she refused his advances, he became violent, and she broke a window to escape.
Ellen set up a 'Hurricane Katrina' relief fund, that raised seven million dollars.
Ellen is known for dancing through her audience at the beginning of every show, creating a festive, party-type atmosphere for her Talk show.
Ellen began supporting and donating to Cancer studies and research funds, when her mother Betty was diagnosed with breast cancer.
Ellen had the honor of being the first female ever asked back to the interview couch on Johnny Carson, in 1986, her first visit.
Ellen's first comedy job was in 1981, she emceed at Clyde's Comedy Club, where she started to record her stand-up performances.
Ellen worked the following jobs before she started comedy: vacuum sales, bartender, waitress, retail clerk, house painter, and oyster shucker.
Ellen left the University of New Orleans after one semester, to do clerical work at a law firm.
Ellen attended the University of New Orleans to major in communications.
Ellen has always been especially close to her brother Vance, and considers him the best friend in her life.
Ellen was spoofed on MadTV by comedian Nicole Parker.
Ellen ended her four-year relationship with photographer-director Alexandra Hedison. [December 2004]
Her last name is pronounced "duh-generous".
Ellen was named "Entertainer of the Year" by Entertainment Weekly 26 December 1997/2 January 1998, issues 411/412.
Ellen is the sister of Vance DeGeneres (guest appearance on "Ellen" (1994) as host of bookchat show). Vance also played bass in 80s rock group "House of Schock" and was "Mr. Hands" in "Saturday Night Live" (1975)'s "Mr. Bill" short films.
DeGeneres is friends with singer/songwriter Melissa Etheridge, Kathy Najimy of the movie Sister Act, and actress Jamie Lee Curtis.
In 1995 she won People's Choice Award-Favorite Female in a New Television Series.
When some of Ellen's friends put together a show/party kind-of-thing, she was asked to do a comedy routine. She did an act and was soon asked to perform at coffeehouses and eventually became the emcee at Clyde's Comedy Club (the only comedy place in New Orleans at the time).
She and her brother were raised as Christian Scientists until her parents divorced when she was thirteen.
She is of French, Irish, English and German descent.
She was originally offered Sandra Bullock's role in the movie Speed (1994).
She has written two books, My Point... And I Do Have One and The Funny Thing Is..., both New York Times bestsellers.
In 1999, Ellen was planning to marry Anne Heche if Vermont's plans to legalize gay marriages went through but by August 2000, she had split with Heche after being with her for 3 1/2 years.
She was named "Entertainer of the Year" by Entertainment Weekly in December 1997.
She was voted "Funniest Person in America" in 1982 and "Best Female Club Standup" at the Comedy Awards in 1991.
Her trade mark is blue sneakers.
Her birthday is January 26, 1958.
Ellen and Portia De Rossi have been together since 2004. They married in August 2008.
She is 5' 7" (1.70 meters) tall.
Ellen: I see those adverts that have the babies in them for GAP and maybe it's cute that they have a little GAP knit sweater on their head, a little GAP outfit. But they advertise kids very well, those GAP ads. I don't even look at the clothes - I just go, 'That's a cute baby, I'll take that one.'
Ellen: (on the possibility of her and Portia de Rossi having children) It's something we would never take lightly and just say, 'That would be fun.' It's a lot of work and we recognize that. In a way, we want to be selfish because we love our life, but we know how much that adds to it.
Ellen: (on plans to visit Australia to see Portia's family for Christmas 2008) I've met Portia's mother and her cousins, and I mentioned last night that we should go for Christmas. I can't wait to get there. I'd like to get the show there, I'm going to push hard to make that happen.
Ellen (on the 2nd Idol Gives Back): Everyone knows it's better to give than to receive, that's why I want to give you some advice. You get the advice and I get the joy of giving -- it's a win-win. Here it is: Give yourself a treat and watch Idol Gives Back. Again, you get the joy of giving and an amazing line-up of artists get to give us an incredible show. Last year, we were able to give away over $76 million. You give, you get. Get it?
Ellen: (after winning a 2007 Daytime Emmy award for Outstanding Talk Show Host) I was surprised. You can't take it for granted that they like you. They can like a lot of people. There are lots of shows and The View has a lot of people talking. Whether people love her or not, Rosie brought something to the show this year. I liked what she did. I thought that was interesting.
Ellen (from 'My Point and I Do Have One'): Sometimes when I am driving I get so angry at inconsiderate drivers that I want to scream at them. But then I remember how insignificant that is, and I thank God that I have a car and my health and gas. That was phrased wrong - normally you wouldn't say, thank God I have gas.
Ellen (from 'My Point and I Do Have One'): I don't need a baby growing inside me for nine months. For one thing, there's morning sickness. If I'm going to feel nauseous and achy when I wake up, I want to acheive that state the old fashioned way: getting good and drunk the night before.
Ellen: In the beginning there was nothing. God said, 'Let there be light!' And there was light. There was still nothing, but you could see it a whole lot better.
Ellen: The only thing that scares me more than space aliens is the idea that there aren't any space aliens. We can't be the best that creation has to offer. I pray we're not all there is. If so, we're in big trouble.
Ellen: Stuffed deer heads on walls are bad enough, but it's worse when they are wearing dark glasses and have streamers in their antlers because then you know they were enjoying themselves at a party when they were shot.
Ellen: Sometimes you can't see yourself clearly until you see yourself through the eyes of others.
Ellen: I was in yoga the other day. I was in full lotus position. My chakras were all aligned. My mind is cleared of all clatter and I'm looking out of my third eye and everything that I'm supposed to be doing. It's amazing what comes up, when you sit in that silence. 'Mama keeps whites bright like the sunlight, Mama's got the magic of Clorox 2.
Ellen: I gotta work out. I keep saying it all the time. I keep saying I gotta start working out. It's been about two months since I've worked out. And I just don't have the time. Which uh..is odd. Because I have the time to go out to dinner. And uh..and watch tv. And get a bone density test. And uh.. try to figure out what my phone number spells in words.
Ellen: For me, it's that I contributed, ... That I'm on this planet doing some good and making people happy. That's to me the most important thing, that my hour of television is positive and upbeat and an antidote for all the negative stuff going on in life.
Ellen (on injuring her back): This is not a sweeps stunt or anything like that. This is not like what Regis did - that whole bypass surgery.
(Interview with W Magazine, Feb 07)
W Magazine: Samuel Beckett wrote that "nothing is funnier than unhappiness," and there's a cliché to the effect that comedians are unhappy people. Is it possible to be happy and funny?
Ellen: I'm really happy. And I'm pretty funny.
(Interview with W Magazine, Feb 07)
W Magazine: Talk about that first monologue, how it came out of a tragedy.
Ellen: My girlfriend was killed in a car accident when I was 21.
W Magazine: What happened?
Ellen: We had a fight. I left to go stay with friends to try to teach her a lesson…. My brother's band was performing. She went looking for me. It was really, really loud, and she was there and she kept saying, "When are you coming back home?" And I kept going, "I can't…I can't hear you. What?" I was being really aloof. She kept saying, "Come back home," and then she left. I left a few minutes later, and we passed an accident. The car was split in two.
W Magazine: Did you recognize the car immediately?
Ellen: I had no idea…. The next morning her sister came and said, "Kat died last night." And I realized that I had passed it. So I was devastated but just trying to make sense of it. They said she was alive for three hours. Could I have saved her? And why didn't I stop? She was this beautiful girl…. At that age I thought, Wow, she's just gone, in an instant. I was just talking to her, and if I had said, "Yes, I'll go home with you," she wouldn't have been in that car.
W Magazine: Did you feel responsible?
Ellen: I felt all kinds of things. I felt responsible. I felt how fragile life is, all that stuff.
W Magazine: Do you consider yourself a spiritual person?
Ellen: I think that's all we are, if we tap into it…. The praying starts when you're faced with something, obviously. I just make a point of being aware of it every single day, all day if I can.
W Magazine: Do you believe in God?
Ellen: I believe that's a label for something.
W Magazine: The accident moved you to write your first piece.
Ellen: That's why I wrote "A Phone Call to God." I couldn't afford to live where we were living together, so I moved into this tiny apartment. It was infested with fleas, and I was laying on this mattress on the floor and she was gone, and I didn't have any money…. And I just thought, Wouldn't it be great if you literally had a phone number for God? You could just call God and ask God questions that you wanted answers to…. I just wrote exactly what it would be like to try to call God…. It would ring forever 'cause it's such a big place…Him not knowing who I am at first, and then making fun of my name…God sneezing and me saying, "God bless you"…. It just poured out. And then I decided that I'm going to go on Johnny Carson and do this, so I just started finding a place to do comedy. And out of nowhere a comedy club opened in New Orleans. I got a job as an MC, and I started writing more and more and more.
W Magazine: Did it freak you out that it all started with the death of someone close?
Ellen: It's hard to say what I felt like at the time. I mean, yes, I was very aware that basically her death kind of put me on a better path…. I just think that things happen the way they're supposed to happen. I don't think that there are accidents. That made me very introspective; it made me start thinking about a lot. I could have just gone out and gotten drunk every night, and spiraled out and just felt sorry for myself, and become a rebel. I went the other way. I decided I wanted to figure things out. I wanted to find out what all this is about.
W Magazine: How did you reconcile that introspection with your orderly, goal-oriented side—I want to be famous; I want to have money?
Ellen: The first step is the desire and saying it out loud. I don't think I knew that at the time…. It's too weird that I would just write something that fast and then my first response is thinking and saying, I'm going to be on Johnny Carson and be the first woman to be invited over to the couch.
W Magazine: And seven years later you were.
Ellen: I remember watching Roseanne [Barr] on Johnny Carson and she was killing. It was her first appearance, and I just watched, and I thought, He's going to call her over for sure. And he didn't. I couldn't believe it. I couldn't believe that he didn't call her over, and for whatever reason, it happened [to me].
W Magazine: The call to the desk was a huge deal.
Ellen: The fact that he wanted me to sit down and talk to him, it catapulted my career. [But] that's not why I wanted to do it. I wanted to do it because I knew he would appreciate it, I knew it was smart, I knew it was different, and I knew that nobody was doing what I was doing…. That's all I wanted. I wanted people to get me.
(Interview with W Magazine, Feb 07)
W Magazine: How do you conduct your public life with Portia?
Ellen: We just don't put out there as much as I would have in the past. But it's silly to try to hide it. I'm not ashamed of it…. We're not joined at the hip, and we're not just a lesbian couple. We have careers.
(Interview with W Magazine, Feb 07)
W Magazine: You've often said you don't consider yourself a political person.
Ellen: I don't make any kind of political statements. The only statement I make is that I'm openly gay and that I'm not ashamed of it, I'm proud of it, and that everybody deserves to be represented on television. I think secrets are what make you sick.
W Magazine: You had a very public relationship and breakup, yet since then, you haven't tried to hide your relationships.
Ellen: I have more confidence in making decisions now, instead of letting someone else make decisions on how I should act in public. I don't think I'll ever make—I don't want to call it mistakes—but it was a lot for people all of a sudden. They hadn't seen that before; they hadn't seen two women holding hands, or with their arms around each other on a red carpet. Now, I think in some ways I'm a little more private with my relationship. But we certainly don't hide it. It was harder for [Portia] because before we got together she wasn't out. She wasn't public. It was actually a big step for her to take.
W Magazine: Do you have a paparazzi problem?
Ellen: If they find us shopping or something, they follow us, from store to store, the same shot—we're getting out of the car, we walk into a place, they wait for us, we come out, we get in the car, they follow us to another place, we get out of the car. It's like, Really? This is what you're going to do with your day?
W Magazine: How do you deal with that?
Ellen: I'm not overly friendly, but I just smile or sometimes I ignore them. But I don't care one way or another. They're just trying to make money.
W Magazine: That's gracious.
Ellen: We were in an accident a while back, and they were following us. A car hit them first and then they hit us, and then we hit the car in front of us. One ended up on a stretcher. The girlfriend showed up 15 minutes later and is like, "Did you call your mom?" All of a sudden I saw this little…he was young, and he's talking to his girlfriend and they're talking about his mom. It was so interesting to me in a situation like that, to see who they were.
(Interview with W Magazine, Feb 07)
W Magazine: Are you at all surprised by where you are now?
Ellen: If I had ever thought that my career would have reached what it did before it dropped, much less then come back…I'm truly in an amazing, amazing place in my life. But I don't want to say I'm surprised, because at the same time, I created it, I thought it, I wanted this. So when I look back on it, every single thing I'm doing is what I've wanted, and I believe that you get what you want.
W Magazine: Do you worry about another reversal of fortune?
Ellen: I don't anymore, but I used to. But then I thought, I came back once, I'll come back again. I know that I'm strong enough to come back…especially as a woman. Not too many women have a tremendous amount of opportunities to work. Even if you're a beautiful woman, this whole business is youth-oriented. Everything is about No. 1, youth, and No. 2, beauty.
W Magazine: This year three grandes dames of acting—Meryl Streep, Helen Mirren, Judi Dench—are nominated for best actress. A watershed?
Ellen: I hope it's a turning point. It's insane that we celebrate youth and lack of experience. I mean there's nothing wrong with celebrating youth that's just brilliant, like Dakota Fanning, like a freak of nature kind of thing…. [But] there are people, some not talented at all, who we celebrate. And then you have these brilliant actresses who can't get work.
Ellen (while hosting the 07 Oscars): What a wonderful night, such diversity in the room, in a year when there's been so many negative things said about people's race, religion and sexual orientation. And I want to put this out there: if there weren't Blacks, Jews and gays, there would be no Oscars, or anyone named Oscar, when you think about that.
(Interview with W Magazine, Feb 07)
W Magazine: You have said you were fearful growing up. Of what?
Ellen: Afraid of anything; my experience was denial about real feelings, denial about pure joy and crazy, screaming happiness. There was no anger and screaming lows. But I'm really grateful for everything that I went through because [I decided] this is what I had to overcome; I was going to take chances. I was going to be different, I was going to be successful, I was going to have money.
W Magazine: Even as a child in New Orleans, you made a conscious decision to have money?
Ellen: I wanted to have money, I wanted to be special, I wanted people to like me, I wanted to be famous…. When you're growing up and you see your brother [Vance DeGeneres, now a writer-producer in Hollywood] who's talented and gorgeous and all these things, you want to be all those things. I thought if I could find a way to be famous, people would love me. And then you get all that stuff—and I worked really hard to earn all that—and it sounds crazy, but I got the biggest, [most] wonderful blessing I could get, which was I lost my show, and I lost my entire career, and I lost everything for three years.
W Magazine: Why was that a blessing?
Ellen: Because I got to learn that I was strong enough to start over again. Because I was so angry. I thought, I earned this. I didn't get this because I was beautiful; I didn't get this because I had connections in the business. I really worked my way up to a show, a sitcom that was mine that was successful, that was on for five years. I did what was right: I came out, which was good for me, and ultimately it was the only thing I could do. And then I got punished for it. I was so angry, I was just so angry.
W Magazine: At the world?
Ellen: At the business. I thought, like, magazines were tearing me apart; I was the punch line. I guess that's why I'm so sensitive about negative comedy, because I was the butt of every joke. I was the punch line, and it hurt. And my relationship was very, very public. Then I lost everything, and ultimately I lost that relationship. But I had to look at my part in it, and I had to look at and understand other people's side of it.
W Magazine: How do you look at being on the receiving end of cruelty?
Ellen: I expected everybody to understand right away. I still think I was right. But I got to learn how to sit back and watch other people and learn what judgment was and have compassion. And learn that not only was I strong enough to make it in the first place, but I was strong enough to come back and make it again. How lucky am I to have learned that? That took a lot. I wanted to crawl up in a ball and climb in a hole and hide forever; I was embarrassed. That's why I look at it as a blessing.
(Interview with W Magazine, Feb 07)
W Magazine: Time once quoted you as saying there's too much sex out there.
Ellen: I do think there's too much, and I don't have a kid. The lyrics of songs, everything; I just feel like every kid is growing up too fast and they're seeing too much. Everything is about sex, and that's fine for me. I'm not saying I don't like it. But I don't think it should be everywhere, where kids are exposed to everything sexual. Because they have to have some innocence; there's just no innocence left.
(Interview with W Magazine, Feb 07)
W Magazine: Let's talk about the show. Did you expect daytime television to be so grueling?
Ellen: Every single day, it is my stamp on everything—it's my name—so I have to answer every question. I have to make every decision. I have an amazing team, I have amazing producers, I have amazing writers, but at the end of it, it's me making the decisions on the writing, the tone, the editing…. I want the show to reach people and to be something positive. Because the world is full of a lot of fear and a lot of negativity, and a lot of judgment. I just think people need to start shifting into joy and happiness. As corny as it sounds, we need to make a shift.
W Magazine: It has been suggested that it was just that attitude that got you the Oscars, because the show had gotten too nasty and satirical.
Ellen: For whatever reason it's just the right timing for me.... It is a difficult thing because no matter how popular you are as a stand-up—you can go out and fill a 10,000-seat arena and be smart and funny—it's delicate to host an awards show and know where your place is and know that it's not about you, that it's about the people who are nominated, and respect that, but at the same time have your moment to show them who you are.
W Magazine: Why do you think that so much comedy is so mean-spirited?
Ellen: It's easy. I mean, it's not like I don't do that sometimes, around my friends; it's not like I'm being duplicitous. It's just that I think that there's a time and place for something to be funny at an expense. But I don't think you do it publicly. When there's somebody at the other end of that joke, it's not fair.
W Magazine: What do you think of Kathy Griffin?
Ellen: Very mean... I know she had a big thing about wanting to be on the show, and we didn't book her. She did a whole thing that I banned her from the show. I didn't ban her from the show, because first you have to be on the show to be banned.
W Magazine: What about Sarah Silverman?
Ellen: I think she's hilarious. I think she's raunchy as can be, not my kind of comedy, but I think she's brilliant. Smart counts for a whole lot to me.
W Magazine: Borat?
Ellen: Sacha? I think Sacha [Baron Cohen], again, is brilliant. He's a friend of mine. I think he's hilarious. I haven't seen Borat, so I can't really speak [about it] yet. I don't like bathroom humor and I know that there's some pretty gross stuff in there. But some of the stuff he does is hilarious—as long as everybody is clear on the fact that he's pointing out how scary a lot of people are.
(Interview with W magazine, Feb 07)
W Magazine: What will you wear to the Oscars?
Ellen: Everybody's sending me stuff. Gucci sent me this amazing package with all kinds of different designs and different fabrics, in a beautiful box with my name engraved in gold plate. I picked some fabrics, and they're making me something. Zac Posen made me a gorgeous tuxedo. Viktor & Rolf is making me something…. I wasn't planning on changing because it's just different suits, but I may do it, because I'd like to thank them all for making me stuff, for wanting to do that.
(Interview with W magazine Feb 07)
W Magazine: We initially asked you to wear a dress. You considered it, but in the end you were passionate about not doing it.
Ellen: I know what this magazine is. It's a beauty magazine; it's a fashion magazine. For me to even be considered and asked to be on the cover—it's huge…. When I [first] thought about doing it, I thought, Okay, I'll be open to this. I'll play dress-up. Then I thought, I just don't feel comfortable in it. I don't want to apologize for who I am.
W Magazine: Do you enjoy fashion?
Ellen: I usually wear Jil Sander, or I wear Marc Jacobs, or I wear Viktor & Rolf…. I love Raf Simons, but I didn't know he was even doing the [Jil Sander] collection. I like Neil Barrett. I love clothes, so when I wear clothes, they're usually somebody's. You know, I'm not wearing Kmart.
W Magazine: Do you think that's the perception?
Ellen: Whenever Portia and I are on the red carpet, they're yelling out for her to tell them what she's wearing. But nobody cares [about what I'm wearing] because I have a suit on, even if it's a Gucci suit. That to me is frustrating, because I put effort into getting ready too. But I guess it's not as important, and I'm not as dressed up somehow. I also feel myself more of a person than a gender. When people show me clothing that seems very, very feminine, it's hard for me to embrace that, because it just doesn't feel like me…. It was fun [for the shoot] having somebody do that to my hair, and do that makeup. But would I want to do that every single day? No.
Ellen: (after hosting the 2007 Oscars) (The experience) made me want to cry. I don't know, it's tough. You're scrutinised on a show like this and I don't know. I was kind of floating ... I'll have to think about it later, because I don't really know how I did. It felt good. It was a dream of mine, so, to have done it, I feel very emotional right now.
Ellen: (about her work in the entertainment industry) I get paid very well for an amazing, amazing life. I'm blessed.
Ellen: (on partner, Portia de Rossi) When we're together and she's in her heels, I always feel like Tom Cruise next to Nicole Kidman. I could say the same thing I've said in every relationship, 'I'm happy.' But there's happiness and there's love, and then there's completion. It doesn't take away from any of the relationships that I've had, because I've had amazing relationships. But I feel like I found my perfect fit. She's taught me lessons about myself, and I feel like I've taught her. We've both changed and grown, and we just feel like, 'Oh, OK, this is completion'.
Ellen: My grandmother started walking five miles a day when she was sixty. She's ninety-seven now, and we don't know where the hell she is.
Ellen: You say you're sick and tired of hearing about me? I've got news for you: I'm sick and tired of hearing about me.
Ellen: (while hosting the Emmys, November 4, 2001) We're told to go on living our lives as usual, because to do otherwise is to let the terrorists win, and really, what would upset the Taliban more than a gay woman wearing a suit in front of a room full of Jews?
Ellen: I just like observing people - it's something I've done ever since I was a kid, and I got really good at it. That's a big part of why I became a comedian. My audience is filled with every kind of person you can imagine, and I love that.
Ellen: I don't understand the sizes anymore. There's a size zero, which I didn't even know that they had. It must stand for Ohhh my God, you're thin.
Ellen: The only thing that scares me more than space aliens is the idea that there aren't any space aliens. We can't be the best that creation has to offer. I pray we're not all there is. If so, we're in big trouble.
Ellen: I'm a Godmother, that's a great thing to be, a Godmother. She calls me God for short, that's cute. I taught her that.
Ellen: I was coming home from kindergarten--well they told me it was kindergarten. I found out later I had been working in a factory for ten years. It's good for a kid to know how to make gloves.
Ellen: (on Oprah, in 1995) I have the worst memory ever so no matter who comes up to me - they're just, like, 'I can't believe you don't remember me!" I'm like, 'Oh Dad I'm sorry!'
Ellen: (about The Ellen Degeneres Show) Literally from the moment I get here, there are probably 30 things I talk to Craig, my assistant, about--making decisions. I had radio interviews this morning when I first came in, then the writers come in, and then the segment producers come in and we go over the questions for the guests of the day, and I rewrite things that I don't think I want to talk about and change things. Then I usually have an interview--something like this--and then I go down and rehearse, then we rewrite things, then I get hair and makeup. I've never had so much power over a show. I mean, I guess I did with my sitcoms, but I didn't care about it. I was like, "I don't care about the set; I don't care about the color of the walls." But I make every single decision on this show. I have executive producers, but it comes down to coming up to me and saying, "Here's the option: We do this or we do this." It's probably 70 to 100 decisions a day. Every day.
Ellen: I'm doing a talk show that starts airing in the fall, and I had a year to prepare. I had nothing to do, and I thought, I'll write a book. And then I thought, I can't just sit at home and write a book. I'll get rusty. I've got to talk to people, so I'll go on tour. And then I thought, If I go on tour, I might as well shoot an HBO special. It'd be good to have that come out before the talk show.
Ellen: (on choosing a name for her talk show) Probably The Ellen DeGeneres Show. I'm running out of ways to say my name, so this is the last show, I think. My first show was Ellen. The second show was The Ellen Show. And now, it's The Ellen DeGeneres Show. And then I'm out, because I'm out of names.
Ellen: (on The View, 2005) When we go to awards shows, everyone's like "Portia what're you wearing!" And I feel like I'm standing there in a Sears suit.
Ellen: (on what the most generous thing a fan can do for her) When I see people bending over, their bodies physically moving because they're laughing so hard--that, to me, is the biggest compliment. I love having people who've seen me tell me their mouths hurt from laughing. It's my words, my head, my vision that are making them physically react. I just love that.
Ellen: (on the View, 2005) My father didn't want a second child because he felt like he couldn't love another child. I think a lotta parents feel that way, that they can't love another child. But my mother really wanted a second child. We begged--"we" I had nothin' to do with it. She really really begged for a second child. And here I am.
Ellen: In the 80's we had high, high, waisted pants, that if they came up any higher they'd have to go up another size, if you know what I mean.
(Repeated line from The Ellen Degeneres Show)
Ellen: (during a monologue on her show) You know how you always expect someone to think the same as you and then your like, really shocked when they don't? Like when it's a cold day and you turn to the person next to you and say, 'Its so cold, aren't you cold?' and then they say 'no.' It's kinda like, 'what, are you a communist?'
Ellen: You know that song that asks, "Why do fools fall in love?"? I think the obvious answer is because they're fools.
Ellen (during a monologue on her show): I'm really glad that high jeans are coming back in fashion, cause you know how all the jeans are low now? And cause, you know, sometimes I have to bend down (audience laughs) No, but it's really good higher jeans are coming back in fashion. Remember the jeans back in the 80's? That kinda high was good. But any higher and they'd be strapless jeans.
Ellen: I pray that Portia and I are together the rest of our lives. I never thought my life would have turned out this way. To have money. Or to have a gorgeous girlfriend. I just feel so lucky with everything in my life right now.
Ellen: (after her parents got divorced, how she'd cheer up her mom) My mother was going through some really hard times and I could see when she was really getting down, and I would start to make fun of her dancing. Then she'd start to laugh and I'd make fun of her laughing. And she'd laugh so hard she'd start to cry, and then I'd make fun of that. So I would totally bring her from where I'd seen her start going into depression to all the way out of it.
Ellen: (to Time magazine about why she came out, 1997) I never wanted to be the lesbian actress. I never wanted to be the spokesperson for the gay community. Ever. I did it for my own truth.
Ellen: What was projected onto me when I came out was that, all of a sudden, I was a gay icon. I was supposed to represent the entire community. Then I was slammed by some people saying, "You're not gay enough." Look, I'm not going to lead any parades.
Ellen (on if she'd ever wear a miniskirt and heels and do the whole stereotypical female thing): I never, even before I knew I was gay, dressed like that. When I see pictures of myself when I was five with these dresses on... no wonder I hate dresses.
Ellen: (to The Advocate, 2000) People kept saying how sick of all the media about me they were, but what people got so 'sick' of was all the press on press on press. It was never me talking. It was everyone else going at it.
Ellen: (to The Advocate, 2000) I experienced both sides of it because when I came out, everything was great. I was "entertainer of the year," and I was one of the "ten most fascinating people." And it was a whole year of celebrating Ellen. And then it went to the complete opposite end. Suddenly! had become this person that everybody was saying, "Oh, I hate her. Oh, I love her." And I heard about all of it. It just got to be where I couldn't watch TV without somebody saying something mean. I was the punch line of every joke, like Monica Lewinsky.
Ellen: Yes, I got to experience "Who am I when no one likes me? Who am I when I don't have a show? Who am I when nobody's laughing at me?" And I found out that I'm still OK. So that's a blessing.
The Advocate: But you decided to retreat?
Ellen: Yeah. My first idea was, OK, Hollywood doesn't like me, so I'll leave. The one thing that I didn't want to do was get hard. I think for a while, instead, I got depressed. Then it turned into anger. I was so angry. And I just wanted to say, "Don't you all understand me? What did I do wrong?"
The Advocate: Did you do anything wrong?
Ellen: Maybe I did a lot of things wrong, but I didn't know how to do it. I didn't have a booklet. I didn't open it to page 1 of Coming Out: Here's How to Do It. I just did what I thought I should do.
The Advocate: So you were human.
Ellen: Yeah. I went ahead and showed you exactly who I am. And that's what hurt. It was like, "Oh, God. They're seeing who I am, and they don't like who I am!"
Ellen: (About if she considers herself a southerner) I do, and people make fun of me when I say "y'all."
Ellen: I'm proud to be from New Orleans. I love that city. And I don't know how it influenced me other than learning a lot about drinking at an early age. You must know about alcohol there. There's to-go cups, and there's drive-through margarita places. It's, like, the most dangerous city in the world. It's crazy that everybody drinks so much there.
Ellen: No, I didn't know I was gay. I realized it when I moved out of New Orleans and was in a very small town. I can't really talk about this because it was such a small town; they'll know who my gay experience was with. Then I went back to New Orleans, thinking, oh, it was just that experience. Thinking, It was just her. And then I met a group of girls. One girl was bisexual, and I had an experience with her. I was still dating guys, and I remember thinking OK, this was just her again. And then I got into a relationship with this girl, and we went into a gay bar. It was my first experience. I was 18 years old, and it was the weirdest thing in the world to walk in and see a whole bunch of girls all dancing together. And I was uncomfortable. But it didn't take long for that to wear off. Then I lived in gay bars. Not the healthiest experience, which is what's really sad. It's the only place where we could go then. Of course, now there's lots more places. But when you're a young girl in a small town...
The Advocate: Were you telling yourself that you were bisexual?
Ellen: I was still trying to date guys, and then I just gave up on guys. I wasn't really labeling myself at all at first, and then I think I'd decided I was gay. I realized I was definitely gay. I kept having bad experiences with girls, so I tried dating guys again. Then I thought, I'm running out of genders. Where am I going to go next? I was with a really sweet guy. I had sex with only two guys. I tried to have sex with him and just didn't enjoy it. I mean, just kissing a girl was so exciting to me, and kissing a guy was just so blah. Now all the guys are going to hate me. Guys reading this, I love you.
Ellen: (about if she wants kids) Having a child is a responsibility for the rest of my life. It's not just a cute little baby that I could put in Gap clothes. It's also going to be a teenager that's going to want to pierce its nose. And as much as I think I'm liberal, I think I'd be very conservative as a parent. And the whole potty training thing scares me! I like the fact that with a cat you have a litter box. And I don't know if that's appropriate for a child to just have a litter box.
Ellen: (to The Advocate, 2000) My coming-out was an important thing for me to do in my life. It's more important than any ratings I'll ever have on television or any good review.
Ellen: (about sharing the same interests as Portia) I like to do nothing at all, and I'm with someone who likes to do nothing at all. I don't like going to the movies, taking long walks on the beach, I see nothing in that.
Ellen: (on what she does with the awards she wins) I just line them all up on the lawn.
(On her show, 2006)
Evangeline Lilly: (describing what her job was to do on big oil rigs) I had to climb under the truck and grease the nipples. (starts laughing)
Ellen: This is a daytime show. (audience laughs)
Evangeline Lilly (laughs): It's a professional term.
Ellen: Yeah, yeah. No I hear it all the time. (everyone laughs, Ellen tries to keep from laughing) Hey, look! Here's People magazine. (everyone laughs)
Ellen: We had the actress Brittney Murphey on a few months ago and said she was talking at 6 months old and full paragraphs at nine months...yeah she's a liar.
Ellen: I look at anything in nature and how things work-the stars, the pyramids-and I can't imagine that there's not some kind of design to it all. There's got to be something big that we don't understand. I do believe in Jesus. I believe in being good to one another. Life is about spending our time here contributing and not taking away. That's my faith.
Ellen: Human beings only use ten percent of their brains. Ten percent! Can you imagine how much we could accomplish if we used the other sixty percent?
Ellen: (about call waiting) It's turned into a mini people's choice awards. Hasn't it? And you find out right away who wins or loses.: You're having a pleasant conversation with what you think is a good friend. You hear the click. They tell you to hold on. You're confident they're going to come back to you. And then they come back and they say, "I've got to take this other call." And you know what that means what they just said to the other person? "Let me get rid of this other call."
Ellen: (referring to headset phones) Chances are if you need both of your hands to do something, your brain should be in on it, too.
Ellen: What's with this sudden choice of disorders we get right now? When I was a kid, we just had crazy people, that's it, just crazy people.
Ellen: All the commercials on TV today are for antidepressants, for Prozac or Paxil. And they get you right away. "Are you sad? Do you get stressed, do you have anxiety?" "Yes, I have all those things! I'm alive!"
Ellen: (during her monologue on presidents, 2006) You know when you've really made it as a president is when you get your face on money. We show them all kinds of respect. We crumple them up, shove them down in our pockets, trade them for Colt 45's.
(With the cast of the West Wing, on her show, 2006)
Richard Schiff: Your producers told me that every time John Spencer came on the show he brought you flowers. So I thought it was appropriate that we continue that traditon. (hands her the roses)
Ellen: Thank you, that's so sweet.
Richard Schiff: Plus I want a date. (everyone laughs)
Ellen: Ut oh. Thank you so much, yeah, he used to grow roses in his garden and he brought them.
Richard Schiff: Well, they're not from my garden but they're the best I could do.
Ellen: Thank you, they're beautiful, gigantic, I've never seen such large roses. You are special. (audience laughs) Let me ask you a question, since the cast is so large, we had to split up the cast---
Martin Sheen: We didn't like them anyway. (audience laughs)
Ellen: Yeah, well, they're here and they're backstage listenin' to this. (audience laughs)
(With the cast of the West Wing on her show, 2006)
(On what everyone's keeping from the West Wing set)
Ellen: And what's everyone else keeping?
Allison Janney: Well, I'm keeping-- I love the president's balls. (audience, her castmates, and Ellen laugh)
Alan Alda: I knew it! I knew it!
Allison Janney: Let me finish. (audience is still laughing) I'm sorry, I'm so sorry to all of you, really. They're glass balls, what do you call them…(audience laughs)
Allison Janney: …paperweights. (audience continues to laugh) They're glass paperweights on the presidents desk, they're beautiful.
Ellen: They use them as paperweights? (Ellen tries to keep a straight face, Alan Alda laughs, audience laughs) Alright, so you're keeping those.
Allison Janney: Yes, let's move on. (audience laughs)
Martin Sheen: I've seen 'em.
Jimmy Smits: Beautiful set or what?
Martin Sheen: No, no, I don't have a clue. I haven't thought about taking anything.
Ellen: Well, think about it 'cause people are grabbin' stuff now. (everyone laughs, Ellen tries to keep a straight face) Mary McCormack, Joshua Malina, Kristin Chenoweth , will be out here after this. The balls are gone already so…
Ellen: (explaining a picture of her when she was 5) I was 5, and look, I had my bonkey with me. That used to be a whole bed cover, but that was too big to carry around. I left that on the train home to New Orleans. (looks towards her mom in the audience) Isn't it a parent's responsibility to pick up a child's things? I mean, come I was five, how am I supposed to remember? I still miss my bonkey today.
(On her show, Jan 26th, 06)
Ellen (on what's she's doing on her birthday): I'm gonna drink vodka, throw on a poncho and act like an ass.
(On her show, 2005)
Ellen (about cooking in a crock pot): That's easy, and I wouldn't call that cooking (audience laughs), and I'm not slamming you but, if you put something in a pot and just leave it all day long, it's more of a magic trick. So do you cook other things?
Reese Witherspoon: Y'know, usually anything in a box is good. Bisquick, or Stovetop Stuffing.
Ellen: Again, not really cooking. (audience laughs)
(On her show, 2005. After Ellen gets herself a bowl of soup out of the crock pot that Reese brought, and she sits back down)
Reese Witherspoon: Well, I'm gonna have some too.
Ellen (laughs): How rude of me. I thought---I thought---(takes bowl from Reese) Here, let me get that. (audience laughs)
Reese Witherspoon (laughs): Clearly you aren't southern.
Ellen: No, not at all. (everyone is laughing)
Reese Witherspoon: You're not southern at all.
Ellen (laughs): I'm southern. I am completely southern.
Reese Witherspoon: You didn't offer me a drink, a cocktail, nothing.
Reese Witherspoon: Do you have a crock pot?
Reese Witherspoon: Well, then clearly you're not southern.
Ellen: (during her monologue) Man I like pie, and I like pizza and I like, uh, anything that starts with a "P", really. (audience laughs, Ellen tries to talk but they keep laughing) Right now, I'm searching in my head what the joke was that you made, (audience laughs) I'm going through the files and I have no idea. But as long as you're enjoying yourselves.
Ellen: (On her show, 2005) Our next guest is nothing short of a show baz leg--"show baz", (audience laughs) show biz legend. (looks over towards director) Do you wanna start again or do you care that I made a mistake? (audience laughs) Yeah, I'll keep goin' I don't care. That's right, I'm flawed. (audience laughs)
Ellen (One Night Stand, comedy routine, 1989): Don't you hate it when people say they'll call you at about 7 o'clock. Alright, so it's 7 o'clock and they haven't called you, so then you say "Okay, I'll fix a drink." So you have a drink, then you have another, then you have another, then you have another, then--now you're drunk and it's 5 after 7 (audience laughs) and they still haven't called. That's what I'm saying, you really can't trust people. I'm just kidding, I don't drink that much unless I'm doing crack or something, then…y'know that dries you up. (audience laughs) No, I kid about crack and drinkin' but I do it. (audience laughs)
Ellen (while teaching kids how to drive on her show, 2006): In LA it's always important to look to your left and to your right because you never know when you'll see celebrity.
Ellen (while teaching kids how to drive on her show, 2006): First rule of driving, always look good because you don't know when an officer is gonna stop you.
Ellen: (while hosting the 2005 Emmy's) I keep hearing myself say words like "winning and losing" as if that's what tonight is about. As if winning an award would validate you. Come on, if you don't win tonight, it doesn't mean that you're not a good person, it just means that you're not a good actor. (everyone laughs) I'm kidding. It just means that you're not as good as the other people in that category. (everyone laughs) Kidding again. Winning is not important. How you feel about yourself is important and of course, you're gonna feel a whole lot better about yourself if you win. (everyone laughs) But let's be realistic, most of you tonight will not win. (everyone laughs) Let's look at the bright side of not winning…(pause, everyone laughs) Gimme a minute, there's gotta be something. Well, you don't have to get up, you can stay comfortably seated and you don't have to make an acceptance speech. That's---that's not easy because no matter how hard you try to thank every body somebody's gonna feel left out. Somebody's gonna have their feelings hurt. (mockingly) "Well, I guess those eyebrows just waxed themselves." (everyone laughs) Here's a tip the best acceptance speech is "I'd like to thank everyone who helped me get this far" followed by a (makes a "click, click" noise with her mouth and everyone laughs) It's the best thing. But just please don't say you didn't expect it. You were nominated, you had a one in five chance. (everyone laughs)
Ellen (while hosting the 2005 Emmy's): Y'know they say HBO always wins because they can show cursing and naked people. But let's be honest, we like to watch naked people cursing. (everyone laughs) In real life…in real life it's not that pleasant. It's like "Grandma put your clothes on it's Thanksgiving, we're trying to watch the parade." (everyone laughs)
Ellen (while hosting the 2005 Emmy's): I just wanna point out that this is the second time I've hosted the Emmy's after a national tragedy and I just wanna say that I'm honored because it's times like this that we really, really need laughter. (everyone applauds) And be sure to look for me next month when I host the North Korean People's Choice Awards. (everyone laughs) But tonight we're here honoring television. Some people call it the idiot box. Really, well then how can we be watching a show honoring people who make television, on television if there was no television? (everyone laughs) Idiots. (everyone laughs)
Ellen (while hosting the 2005 Emmys): Tonight, let's try something. Let's just try to put anyway our ego, our envy, our jealously, our judgment --- what am I saying? That's what got us here. (everyone laughs) But, seriously, in the scheme of things winning an Emmy isn't that important, let's get our priorities straight I think we all know what really is important in life….winning an Oscar. (everyone laughs) They're for movies, man I'd love to host that show. (everyone laughs)
Ellen (during her acceptance speech after she won for Best Talk Show Host at the Emmy's, 06): I have an amazing staff and crew and thank you for never looking at me directly in the eye, all of you. (everyone laughs) I have a great team and a great crew and this just means a whole lot to me, thank you and uh, (looks at Portia) Portia, I love ya. (everyone applauds)
Kate Walsh: Here's the thing, when I was walking down the cell block, and I was like the last cell it was a horror movie, it was freezing cold, they keep it chilly in there. Even in August it was chilly.
Ellen: How rude! (audience laughs)
Kate Walsh: Yeah, so I turned the corner, and I saw my cellmates, who were spooning, they were spooning. A couple of girls just tryin' to keep warm. (everyone laughs) And I went in…and…
Ellen (laughs): "Hi!"
Kate Walsh (laughs): Yeah, I'm like "Hi. I'm Kate." (everyone is laughing)
Ellen: So did they stop spooning and introduce themselves?
Kate Walsh: I didn't wanna wake them, and y'know, I was like let them sleep. And the crying, the hysterical crying and keening...
Ellen: Woke them up?
Kate Walsh: Yeah, and they told me to shut up. (everyone laughs) And then they asked me what I was in for. And I was like I threw a cue ball and they're like what?
Ellen: What were they in for?
Kate Walsh: Some shop lifting, some grand theft larsney. (audience laughs)
Ellen: But they didn't steal warm enough clothes that they had to spoon.
Kate Walsh: It was August in Chicago, like 800% humidity and 400 degrees…
Ellen: And yet they keep it cold in the slammer---good to know. (audience laughs) Yeah, if you're planning on getting arrested, bring a warm jacket--
Kate Walsh: Yeah if you're planning on getting arrested bring a sweater. (audience laughs)
Ellen: Yeah, a nice sweater set.
Kate Walsh: Maybe a little thermos for hot coffee.
Ellen: We found out that you were in jail one night.
Kate Walsh: Yeah, it was great. (audience laughs)
Kate Walsh: It was wonderful, everybody should do it. (Ellen laughs) Jail, yeah Mom, jail. I just realized my mother never knew. Yeah, mom, I was in the big house, it was cool.
Ellen: Really? Your mother's never heard this until now?
Kate Walsh: No. I realized when I was back there my mom emailed everyone. "Katie's on Ellen." (Ellen, Kate and the audience laugh) "Tune in." She's gonna love this. (audience laughs)
Ellen: So tell us, Kate, about your time in the slammer.
Ellen: I'm spending Thanksgiving at home in LA with my family.
Hilary Clinton: Are you cooking?
Ellen: Oh, no, we want to enjoy the meal.
(On her show, 2005, in NYC, playing poker with firemen in the Bronx)
Fireman: Are you a sore loser?
Ellen: I am.
Fireman: Really, well, watch out 'cause you're gonna lose.
Ellen: Then you'll be sore.
Ellen (after winning best talk show at the Emmy's 06. Everyone is coming up on stage): Wow, I haven't met a lot of these people. (everyone laughs)
Interviewer (2004): Your humor has always been good-natured and clean. Have you been tempted to work blue?
Ellen: I'll fucking say it again. It's not like, I mean, the thing is, it's not like I don't, you know, if something drops on my hand, you know, I slam my finger in a car door, I'm not going to say 'oh, goodness, that hurts.' I'm going to curse. The reason I do what I do is because I was influenced by Steve Martin by Woody Allen, by Bob Newhart, by Carol Burnett, by Lucille Ball. I mean, if you put "fuck" in front of anything an audience is going to laugh. You know? It's just---it's easy. And I like a challenge.
Interviewer (2004): Are you surprised by the ual orientation, gay marriage, that these are such hot buttons issues in America in 2004?
Ellen: Am I surprised? No. No. You know, I wish that I wasn't seen differently. I wish that people looked at me and just saw that I was a good person with a good heart. And that wants to make people laugh. And that's who I am. I also happen to be gay And I would love to have the same rights as everybody else. I would love, I don't care if it's called marriage. I don't care if it's called, you know, domestic partnership. I don't care what it's called. I mean, there are couples that have been together, 30 years, 40 years. And all of a sudden, they lose their house, you know, the taxes kill them, because it's different because they're not married. Everything is taken away just because. You know, with Sept. 11, there are a lot of people that lost their partner and didn't get the same benefits. It's not fair. And at the same time I know there are people watching right now saying, you know, it's sick it's wrong, it's this. And it's like, I can't convince them that I'm not sick or wrong, that there's nothing wrong with me. You know, I can live my life and hope that things change, and hope that we're protected as any other couples.
Interviewer: And we are all homo sapiens.
Ellen: We are all homo sapiens as my mother will tell you.
Interviewer: Do you want to be a mom?
Ellen: Do I want to be a mom? That is a question, isn't it? You know, we have a lot of friends who are having children right now. And I see all of the different sides of it now.
Interviewer: Sounds like you're trying to talk yourself out of it?
Ellen: Well, no, it's that I'm--it's just not that easy. I mean, even before I knew I was gay I knew I didn't want to have a child. I knew I didn't want to have one. I never want to have to release it from me. Listen, I love babies. I love children. And I melt when I'm around them. I also love my freedom and I love that I can sleep at night.
Ellen (2004): When I made the decision to come out, everything was great. And I really naively thought nobody's going to care, you know. It's like, I'm going to just now say, by the way, I'm gay I mean, all of my business people, all my people, were saying, don't do it, you know.
Interviewer: Is that right?
Ellen: Oh, yeah.
Interviewer: They were telling you, bad move?
Ellen: Oh, yeah. 'Don't do it. Don't do it.'
Interviewer: But you just weren't going to listen to them?
Ellen: I couldn't listen to them. I had to listen to me. You know? It's my life. It's my heart. It's my soul. It's my journey. And it's who I am.
Interviewer: Going further back, Ellen, earlier in your life. What was the process life for you where you realized and accepted being gay Was there a time where that unfolded for you?
Ellen: Yeah, you know. And I think it was shocking to me. It was shocking to my mom. It was shocking to everybody. Because, you know, I had boyfriends. And I was boy-crazy. And almost got married in high school.
Interviewer: You went through all that?
Ellen: Oh, yeah. It's--I mean, there are certain people who know early on. And that's who they are. And I, you know, I didn't know at all.
Interviewer: So how old were you when it became clear in your mind that you were?
Ellen: Like, 19, 20.
Interviewer: Pretty soon after that, you shared it with your mother?
Ellen: Mm-hm. First of all, she didn't understand it, and then she went to the library and read about homosexuality, which I can only imagine what those books were. You know? She probably first got Homo sapiens and read that. That's probably the only book they had. Well, what's wrong with that? So what, she's a Homo sapiens? Aren't we all? But, see, she was great. All this-- thought it was a phase. And she thought I'd, you know, go through it and-- like the tube top. Oh, she won't wear that after a certain amount of time. And I don't.
Interviewer: So, she was right about that.
Ellen: Yeah. She aw right about the tube top. That was a phase…So, you know, she was very accepting. You know, I don't know, it wasn't a big thing for me to accept.
Interviewer (During an interview. Talking about her talk show, 2004) : You exude so much positive energy on the show. Where does that come from?
Ellen: The liquor. (laughs) I'm sure of it.
Interviewer: Snuggling up with John Travolta, riding the roller-coaster with Jude Law, getting down on the floor with Britney Spears doing crunches.
Ellen: I'll do anything for a laugh. I love the show. I love doing it. I get so much from it. It's an amazing thing that I lost everything from being me and then I'm now just being me and it feels good on many, many levels.
Interviewer: You know, they say in life and especially in entertainment, there are no second acts. So, how did you do it? What do you think enabled you to make maybe one of the biggest comebacks in recent memory?
Ellen: I don't know. And I just kept coming back. I wouldn't stay down, you know. I could've. My feelings were really hurt. I was really sensitive. So part of it is luck and part of it is talent. And part of it is perseverance.
Interviewer: Was there a time when you wondered if your career in Hollywood was over?
Ellen: Oh, I didn't just wonder. I was sure.
Ellen (at a PETA event, '00): Hi, my name is Ellen and I'm a vegetarian. Just to add another label to me. (everyone laughs) I'm a lesbian, Aquarian, vegetarian. (everyone laughs) There, I said it. I love animals, not in that way-- (everyone laughs) but I watch Discovery Channel, I watch Animal Planet. That crocodile guy is insane, isn't he? (everyone laughs) (in Australian accent) "Ooh, that one almost caught me." (normal voice) He gets bit every single time. He holds it in front of his face like that, what is he expecting? (everyone laughs) You learn fascinating things watching that----like penguins, I like the animals that are monogamous. To me that's an amazing thing. Penguins are monogamous. They mate for life, which doesn't surprise me that much because they all look exactly alike. (everyone laughs) It's not like they're gonna meet a better looking penguin someday, you know? (everyone laughs)
(On her show, Sept 11th 06)
Jessica Simpson: It was the second house I looked at. And I walked in and it hugged me and it was like "I want you."
Ellen: Yeah. I walked in and the real estate agent hugged me and said that to me. (everyone laughs)
(On her show, Sept 11th 06)
Ellen: You're living in m old house.
Jessica Simpson: I love your old house.
Ellen: I know and I left some stuff I want. (everyone laughs) I love that house too.
Jessica Simpson: Your armour?
Ellen: Did I leave that?
Jessica Simpson: Was that yours? (everyone laughs)
Ellen: Yeah. I want my stuff back. (everyone laughs)
Interviewer (talking about her break up with Anne Heche): That didn't make you an angry
person, even for a little while?
Ellen: Look, I was in a relationship that was extremely public. Everybody has been in relationships that they look back and go, "That wasn't good." And there were some things that were extremely, you know, tough to deal with. I was really happy, and it turned out to be something different. It was the first time that I've ever had my heart broken. Broken in the largest way. In smithereens. I'd always be the one to leave. I never thought I'd be to this point where I could sit here, four years later, and be so grateful, but I feel like I'm a different person now.
Interviewer: Even by celebrity standards, that was a pretty scandal-ridden period in your life.
Ellen: It was really positive at first. But then -- right after I came out, I think -- I found a lump in my breast that we thought was cancer, and I had to get a lumpectomy. Then I was coming home from a premiere one night and the limo driver hit a dog. It died in my arms on the way to the hospital. We're coming home from this beautiful night, and all of a sudden this horrible, horrible thing happens. And all these things were happening in my life. The worst-case scenario: Well, it would be really bad if I had breast cancer. Then what would be bad? If I hit an animal. If I lost my career. You know, it would be bad to have my heart broken. It would be bad if she ended up with somebody I knew. Everything in a concentrated period of a year happened. And you know, most people's love lives are what they are, and they also have their careers. Even if you're suffering through a breakup, you still go to work every day. But my breakup was part of the reason I couldn't go to work every day! Everything disappeared at once.
Interviewer: Are you surprised by the success of your show?
Ellen: Everybody's shocked about this show. Telepictures had a really hard time selling it at first because people didn't think that housewives, which is the supposed audience that I'm reaching, would want to see a gay woman on daytime TV. People thought maybe nighttime, but not daytime. But what they found is not only a huge audience for me, but people are Tivoing who can't watch during the day. We have men who watch all the time. That's what everybody's more freaked out about. How can this gay woman be reaching men and stockbrokers and car mechanics? Why are men watching her?
Interviewer: How does doing a talk show compare with doing standup?
Ellen: Standup is more me talking the entire time. There's definitely an exchange of energy because that room, that audience, is giving back. I say something and they respond in laughter. But it's so much better for me to do a talk show. You still have that energy of the audience, and the audience is just as important as that guest that's sitting next to me. It's not about me and that guest exchanging energy and talking. It's about everything that's going on in that room, and they're as much a part of the show as anything. I like this better than anything I've ever done.
Interviewer: What's the hardest part of the job?
Ellen: Everything. It's just the hardest thing I've ever done and it's the best thing that I've ever done. I love this job. I love coming here every day. The whole show is me so I make every decision. It's just constant decisions, constant writing the monologue every day and working on what's going to make it special every single day.
Ellen (talking about her and Portia's 15 year age difference and having children with Portia): I forget how old I am, that's the only time I think about age; I think we should do it soon. Poor kid, "Mama's going to break her hip again if you don't move those toys!" When I'm around babies, I just melt. (But) it's a big responsibility.
Ellen (about Portia): If it were legal, we would be married, but it's not legal, I hate politics, but I think everyone should be treated equally. If I die tomorrow, everything's taken away. We've taken precautions for that and she's taken care of, but because we're not married, the taxes would take everything.
Ellen: I think people really know who I am. Most comedians, you just see them being funny. I love Jerry Seinfeld. But I don't know who he is. I love Jim Carrey. But I don't know who he is. I love Chris Rock. You know what I'm saying? And maybe that's why they're hugely successful, and their careers have not been rocked, and it's all been steady. Most people are scared to reveal who they are. Because every time you reveal something you eliminate a certain part of your audience. I haven't tried to hide. People have seen me cry. I don't care. I don't care that they see that I'm a person. You know, there have been times in my life...I was so low. I thought, I don't know how I can go on. I wouldn't have taken a step to do anything, but it would have been fine with me if I would have disappeared.
Ellen (about Portia, 05): It's the first time that I've known in every cell of my being that I'm with somebody for the rest of my life.
Ellen: And last time you were here also, we gave you the baby carriage--the pram. Did you like it?
Gwyneth: Oh, yeah it's so cool. Do I like it? I love it.
Gwyneth: It's gorgeous. It's like a Rolls-Royce.
Ellen: That's what I heard.
Gwyneth: I love it so much.
Ellen: So do you use it a lot? Is it something that you use often?
Gwyneth: Yeah. It's gorgeous.
Ellen: What's interesting about that Gwyneth is we've never seen a picture taken of you with it. Here's one picture, that was taken , by the paparazzi. (shows picture, and Gwyneth has a different baby carriage than the one Ellen gave her) Here's another one. (shows a different picture, still Gwyneth doesn't have Ellen's carriage) No, no, that's a different picture, different outfit, same---not ours. (shows another picture without Gwyneth using the baby carriage) Here's another one.
Gwyneth: Well, that's in New York.
Ellen: I'm just sayin' where is it?! (audience laughs)
Gwyneth (laughs): Okay, this is what happened, okay? It got delivered to London…
Gwyneth: …it wasn't put together in the box, obviously 'cause it's huge. So my assistant was putting it together, and as she was pushing it though the park, the screw---she didn't screw it in right, and the screw fell out of the thing--
Ellen: With the baby in it?
Gwyneth: No, the baby was not in it.
Ellen: Well, why are you pushing it without a baby. (audience and Gwyneth laugh)
Ellen: This is a---liar! (Gwyneth and the audience laugh) Your whole stories a lie.
Gwyneth (laughing): No, I swear. She was pushing it from her office to my house which is a 10 minute walk because she assembled it at her house. I mean in her office---
Ellen (sarcastic): Oh! (Ellen and audience laugh)
Gwyneth: Anyway, it now works and it's perfect. And you are gonna see many photos of me walking that thing.
Ellen: Gimme my pram back! (everyone laughs)
(Joking about the car accident she was in on Sept 1st 06)
Ellen: It's good to have paparazzi around when you're in a car accident.
Ellen: When I first announced I was doing a talk show, everybody was like, "Why would you do that? Everybody fails," You have to do things that it doesn't matter how many people failed. You have to take chances.
(During her monologue on sunburns, on her show 06)
Ellen: I am not blushing, this is a burn. I feel like I'm standing in a frying pan right now. (audience laughs) Not even in a frying pan. I feel like I'm sitting in fire I can't imagine--I feel like I am fire. I don't know how fire can do it all the time because it must be---hot to be fire. (audience laughs) Um…oh man, which is why I'm wearing the Capri pants and slippers, I don't normally dress like this (audience laughs) but these pants are the only pants that I could put on--they're Denang, whatever Denang, thank you very much. Denang is like made out of, like whatever a baby's butt is made out of. These pants are like a baby's butt. (everyone laughs) Oh, they're so soft. This is all I can wear. I--I can't put shoes on. Here's what I---(rolls up her pant leg to show her sunburn) Ow. Ow. I don't know if you can really see how---(turns her leg, to show the back of her leg, which not sunburned at all) Just not the back though. (audience laughs) No. No, just the front. Back fine. (puts her pant leg back down) Some how I burnt my back and my shoulders and my face but it doesn't hurt. The legs got it the worst. Probably because my legs haven't seen the sun since the late 80's. (everyone laughs) I'm not really out in the sun that much---but do you know that Frank Sinatra song? "Regrets I've Had a Few?" (everyone laughs) That's my theme song for today. And then he goes on to say "too few to mention"--well, I'm gonna mention this for a long time. (everyone laughs) I'll tell ya that. I wasn't even out for that long--I was outside for I don't know---it was overcast too but there's no ozone layer any more so I'm just--it's as if I coated myself in Wesson oil and laid on a rock---which is what I did and that was a mistake. (everyone laughs) But actually I was using 45, but that was a Colt 45 and I was drinking it. (everyone laughs) So…ugh, I'm cold and I'm hot, I'm all those things and my back is really, really burned and y'know, doesn't it seem that as soon as you're sunburned that that seems to be the day that everyone wants to pat ya on the back? (everyone laughs) Oh, I'm just so scared of that happening. You know how you choke on food and people come up and start hitting you on your back---my biggest fear today is that I'm gonna choke on something and someone's gonna hafta---"Let me choke. Let me." (everyone laughs) Everyone has a different remedy but everyone kept saying to me "Aloe Vera. Aloe Vera. Aloe Vera." And I thought okay, I'll go to Alvera Street downtown. (everyone laughs) And it didn't help---I drank a lot of margaritas and uh…(everyone laughs) didn't notice the burn anymore. And of course this is the week---I never show my legs, you know that, I always wear long pants and of course today I have to wear this was gonna be the week I was gonna shave my legs. (everyone laughs) Which I didn't and now I can't shave for quite a while. It really feels like second degree burn, I don't know what that is--but it means no Indian leg-wrestling. (everyone laughs)
Ellen (talking about her life list): Patience, I'm having a hard time with patience. Compassion I have and kindness, just hurry up about it, you know what I'm sayin'? (everyone laughs)
(Her very first monologue on The Ellen Degeneres Show. Sept. 8th, 03)
Ellen: And this is the first time I'm walking out here. This is something I'm gonna do every single day. I'll walk out-- Uh, just to get you used to this, this is uh---I'll walk out like that and then I'll--I'll land right here. (audience laughs) This is where I stop. This is uh, my floor and I'm supposed to land on this little mark. (points down at the floor and picks up the mark) This is a mark here, that's what they call it in the business, and it's a piece of tape. (audience laughs) It's very important the director says to walk out and hit this mark. Gotta stand right there so, um…(looks around at the floor, audience laughs, then places the mark down, and stands by it, but now she's half on and half off of the camera. Audience laughs)
(At a Baskin Robbins drive-thru, on her show '06)
Ellen: Do you have rum-raisen?
Guy: No, we don't.
Ellen: Do you just have some rum?
(While playing golf, Ellen is his caddy)
Ray Romano: Just stop talking.
Ellen: Okay. Stop talking? Listen, if anyone can stop talking it's me all I do is talk for a living so why would I wanna keep talking if that's all I do for a living. When you come out here it's peace and quiet, a silence, it's a zen kinda of a game, it's relaxing you get away from it all. That's why I come anyway. (Ray hit's the ball, Ellen looks to see where it went) That's a shame.
(Walking door to door promoting Gwyneth Paltrow's movie, "Proof")
Gwyneth: You're screaming on a bull horn in the middle of the street.
Ellen: What's your point?
(Walking door to door promoting Gwyneth Paltrow's movie, "Proof")
Ellen: Just walk across their garden, they don't care. (she walks right across it)
(A little later Gwyneth walks across the grass)
Ellen: Not on the lawn, Gwyneth.
Gwyneth: You went on the flowers.
(Walking door to door promoting Gwyneth Paltrow's movie, "Proof")
Gwyneth: They think that we're psychotic.
Ellen: I don't see your point.
(Brittney Spears is showing her the sit-ups she does)
Ellen: I would have shaved my legs if I knew we were doing this one.
Ellen (about hosting the 79th Annual Acdemy Awards): When Laura Ziskin called, I was thrilled. There's two things I've always wanted to do in my life. One is to host the Oscars. The second is to get a call from Laura Ziskin. You can imagine that day's diary entry.
Ellen: I think that you can be in relationships and think that you have it all figured out until, y'know, you meet somebody and it opens and, y'know, areas in your life and you go "oh, this is really what it is." Y'know? And it's not disrespectful to other people that you've been with but--kiss me. (everyone laughs) No…uh, but it really is all of a sudden you find that person and it's like "oh, I see how it goes now."
Jeff Probst: You look very happy.
Ellen: I am very happy.
Jeff Probst: Good Valentine's Day for you?
Ellen: Yes, it's going to be a good one. I got those little candies to give out "Be Mine", so I'm set. (everyone laughs)
(At Arthur Ashe Kid's Day, watching Andy Roddick and Andre Agassi play a tennis match, she is the judge)
Ellen: Andre your serve. What I love also about the game is that it's quiet. I like that people really respect the players and there's no talking or screaming. (Andre raises his racket at her) Especially when Wimbledon is going on you can here them say "quiet, please." (everyone laughs) And I like that, I think that it's respectful (Andre serves, and him and Andy hit it back and forth) to not talk while the player is hitting the ball because that's when you need to concentrate the most. You need to actually concentrate on the game, where's the ball going, what is my mind thinking right now, keep it quiet and let's let the players…(She stops as they stop rallying, and makes a judgment call) Out.
Andre: His was out.
Ellen: I'm sorry, Andre. I'm talking. (everyone laughs)
Andre: His went out. This went out.
Ellen: Alright, that went out over there, Andy, so it's Andre's point. I'm sorry, I have to take his word for it. Why would he lie? (everyone laughs, it's now Andy's turn to serve) What I was saying before is how important it is to be quiet. I'll tell you what's not a quiet game…is football. (Andy goes to serve but stops) but golf and tennis…quiet. And that's what I like about it.
Andy: That's good. You done? (everyone laughs)
Ellen: I'm not sure. (Andy laughs, Ellen stays quiet, and he goes to serve it) No, I'm not, I started thinking…(Ellen, Andy and everyone else laughs)
(On her show, 2003)
Ellen: Now, Pink, that's obviously not your name. Where'd you get that from?
Ellen: You don't have to answer, I don't care. (audience and Pink laugh)
Pink: Reservoir Dogs was our favorite movie. And I always liked Mr. Pink because he was a smart-ass, kinda sarcastic.
Ellen: That's how I got 'magenta.' (audience and Pink laugh) That's such a lie that story you just told. That's not true at all. (Pink keeps laughing) But we accept it. Now, I know your mom---how old were you when she made you smoke so many cigarettes?
Pink: Oh, I was in 7th grade.
Ellen: You were in 7th grade and your mom made you do what?
Pink: She caught me smoking and made me smoke the entire pack in front of her because she thought that would make me wanna quit, but then I was just outta cigarettes. (everyone laughs)
Ellen (picking up the donkey from the table): Well, we certainly don't advocate smoking here but we do have the smoking ass donkey. (takes a cigarette out of it's ass with her mouth, everyone laughs) And we got you one. (hands it to her)
Pink (gasps): I love it, thank you. I got you something too.
Ellen: What'd you get me?
Pink (pulls out a make up brush, and make up): Well, it's obliques in a bottle.
Ellen: You just paint 'em on? (Pink nods) Have the shadow. (everyone laughs) You can do anything, you can get all kindas definition that way. Thank you very much. That's so sweet of you. I can have pizza tonight after all. I wasn't gonna eat pizza, now I will. Well, I got you another gift.
Pink: Yes! (picks up the smoking ass donkey) Nothin' can top this though.
Ellen: No, I know. It's really nice.
Pink: I can't wait to show my mom.
(On her show, 2003)
Ellen: We'd love to see you skate.
Pink: Are you gonna skate with me? C'mon you got the shoes.
Ellen (unenthused): Yeah, in a minute. (everyone laughs)
Pink (stands up with skateboard): Alright. I think I might lose this though. (picks up her microphone)
Ellen: Well, hold onto it. Tuck it into your obliques. (everyone laughs)
Pink: I didn't dress for this. Okay, I'm ready.
Ellen: I wish we had a ramp.
Pink: I have a ramp.
Ellen: Do you?
Pink: Yeah. In my backyard. (Pink skates to the other side of the set)
Ellen: Alright, roll on back over this way. I'm not gonna try it 'cause everyone here would be outta work then. (everyone laughs)
Ellen: Sometimes the greatest things are the most embarrassing.
Ellen: My parents divorced when I was thirteen. My mother was going through a hard time, and I would try to make her feel better. Then, moving around to different schools, I used it as a way to meet people. Instead of being the pretty girl people flocked to, I was the one who said something to make them pay attention.
Ellen: I hated school. I majored in communications, I think.
Ellen: I'd like to be more patient! I just want everything now. I've tried to meditate, but it's really hard for me to stay still. I'd like to try to force myself to do it, because everybody says how wonderful meditation is for you, but I can't shut my mind up. So patience and learning is the key.
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