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Samantha Bee accomplished a lot on Thursday. On top of scoring several key Primetime Emmy nominations, including her first for outstanding variety talk series, the Full Frontal host tells The Hollywood Reporter she reached her fundraising goal for Planned Parenthood.
“We did break $1 million,” says Bee, who’s been selling “Nasty Woman” T-shirts in support of the embattled nonprofit. “Our fans really stepped up — and people all over the world. We’re really floored.”
The T-shirt, one of several out there in an ode to the slur Hillary Clinton weathered from now-president Donald Trump during a 2016 debate, benefitted the Planned Parenthood Advocacy Project Los Angeles County. Ahead of the July 14 end of the sale, Clinton posted a picture of herself sporting the shirt on Twitter with a link to Bee’s site. Bee tells THR that she plans to discuss the initiative on-air when her show returns on July 20.
It will mark Bee’s first original episode in a month. And while she expressed her excitement to be back at work, the unceasing news coming out of the Trump administration — including the latest about Donald Trump Jr.’s Russia meeting — did not have her dying to get back to the office.
“I don’t think that anyone can understand how much I value vacation time,” says Bee. “I am all in. I did not take my computer out of my suitcase, and it felt right. I’m not saying I didn’t read things, but no work was done from the salty rocks of Maine. I’m so happy that other people are covering it. Good for them. Go for it, guys!”
Bee and her writing team scored an Emmy nomination in 2016, but the show itself was absent from the top variety talk race. Considered a slight by many, TV academy voters rectified any perceived snub this year. “I don’t discount the writing nomination at all,” adds Bee. “Our writers 100 percent deserved it, and they deserve it this year as well. But having the whole team get recognized is very gratifying.”
As for where she was when she found out the good news, she offered two versions of the story: “I was just running a half-marathon, as I do on Thursdays, and look what happened? Actually I was in a meeting with the field department, talking about stuff we’re doing on the show, and then we heard a little yelp from down the hall. It was not a productive meeting.”
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