Zap2it: With the changes happening at other syndicated entertainment magazine programs — “The Insider” morphing into “omg! Insider,” Rob Marciano joining “Entertainment Tonight” as co-anchor — how do you see those impacting “Extra”?
Maria Menounos: I haven’t really focused much on them. For us, I feel like we have such a great opportunity because Mario (Lopez, Menounos’ co-host) and I are a really good team. And I think our show is the best on the air right now. We’re at every event, covering Hollywood from every angle. There’s such an energy at The Grove (the Los Angeles site where “Extra” is taped), people from all over the world come and look for our show.
We’re able to cover things like Hurricane Sandy in a real way, because of my journalism background, and no other show [like ours] has that or does that. I think we have something really unique and special, and I always say, “Don’t look at everybody else. Be focused on yourself.” Be aware on what’s going on out there, of course … but to me, we’re the ones to beat.
Zap2it: You were a fierce competitor on “Dancing With the Stars.” Were you in touch with your former partner, Derek Hough, when he was injured during the recent “All-Stars” season?
Maria Menounos: Oh, yeah. He was texting me, “Babe, I need this treatment … I need that treatment … I need this doctor.” And I was like, “OK. No problem. I got it.”