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While he has guest hosted in the past, Chelsea Handler is entrusting Ross Mathews with her E! late night talk show next week. He will host Chelsea Lately for four nights starting Monday, Jan. 23.
“With three shows on the air right now, Chelsea’s one lady who needs a little ‘me time’ and I’m thrilled to be the man to give it to her,” Mathews says.
“She’s left me strict instructions on how to feed and water Chuy while she’s gone – he likes the crust cut off his sandwiches,” the comedian jokes. “But honestly, Chelsea has not only built an amazing show with fantastic fans, she also is the most generous friend and I am honored that she chose me to fill in.”
The Hollywood Reporter was the first to report that Mathews signed a talent and development deal last August with E! that expanded his role as a network correspondent and started the process of creating his own talk show pilot.
He told this journalist at the recent TCA press tour that development is going well and he’s making sure to get the pilot just right. This upcoming week will be a good chance for fans to see him in that element over several nights.
“I’m like the sweet to Chelsea’s salty and I promise it’ll be a fantastically fun week,” he says. “Maybe it’ll be like when they got a new Becky on Roseanne and some people won’t even notice that there’s a completely different person on the screen! Especially if they close their eyes — Chelsea and I kind of sound alike.”
Handler signed a deal to remain at the network for two more years last November. Aside from hosting and producing Chelsea Lately, she’s also an executive producer for After Lately, and the new NBC comedy based on her life in her twenties, Are You There, Chelsea?.
Chelsea Lately airs Monday-Friday at 11 p.m. on E!.
Update: A previous version of this article stated Mathews would be hosting five nights.
Email: Jethro.Nededog@thr.com; Twitter: @TheRealJethro
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