On Monday's anticipated debut of the syndicated "The Queen Latifah Show", Queen Latifah intends to make waves in the competitive realm of daytime TV.
The Star Tribune reports that Latifah feels "I'm naturally a bit edgier than typical daytime, but I kind of want to push things a little bit further, as far as I can respectfully, within the daytime space," said Latifah. "I want more out of daytime TV. I want more choices, I want more heart, more humor."
She also wants more music, befitting someone who broke ground as a female rapper before expanding into other genres. Her wish list is varied and includes Coldplay and Kings of Leon, and she's already got Alicia Keys and Plain White T's lead singer Tom Higgenson booked for her first week.
Other inaugural guests reportedly include John Travolta, Sharon Stone, Jamie Foxx, Jake Gyllenhaal and Lisa Kudrow. Also invited are "regular people who do amazing things" that are inspirational and who deserve to share the stage with celebrities, Latifah said.
"As much bad news as we see every day, it's good to see people out there doing positive things that give you hope. I'm an optimist," she said.
Monday's anticipated debut will feature a performance by preteen actress-singer Willow Smith, with dad Will Smith on Tuesday. If the schedule seems a tad Smith family heavy, it's with good reason: Latifah and Smith go way back, and he and wife Jada Pinkett Smith are among the producers of Latifah's new venture.
"She's just fantastic," Pinkett Smith told reporters in August. "I just feel like every (day), you have the opportunity to kick it with your girlfriend, Queen Latifah."
While Latifah is eager to connect with viewers, the private star doesn't think that necessarily includes putting her personal life on display, which is unusual since it's common for daytime talk-show hosts to use their off-camera world for fodder.
"I'm not trying to throw myself out there to get ratings. I'm really more interested in building something that's entertaining to people," she said. "I've never had to just share everything about my personal life to entertain people."
Whatever she might discuss on-air "will be a natural thing and depends on how I build the rapport with my audience," Latifah added.
The Queen Latifah show will air Monday (check local listings for station and time)
Image via wikipedia