TCM's Robert Osborne: Modern day Drew Barrymore embraces the classic movies

robert-osborne-drew-barrymore-tcm.jpgZap2it: What do you think of Drew Barrymore becoming your new co-host on "The Essentials"?

Robert Osborne: She's really of today, so I didn't think she'd care that much about old films. Wrong! When I met her, she seemed so pleased about it, and she also was so enthusiastic about the channel. She said, "I want you to meet my boyfriend. The reason we're together is because of TCM." They were going out on a date or something, and he said, "I really want to stay home and watch TCM." It was a bonding thing between them. I was talking to her about her family, and she knew everything about (fellow actors) Ethel and John and Lionel.

Zap2it: How did her hiring for "The Essentials" come about?

Robert Osborne: At the end of the conversation (at last year's TCM Classic Film Festival), she said, "If I had one wish, I'd really love to be a guest programmer on TCM." I said, "That'd be great!" Then she said, "If I really got my wish, (previous co-host) Alec Baldwin can't do 'The Essentials' forever. I'd love to do that." And I said, "Stay right there. Don't move. I've got to make a call."

Zap2it: Weren't she and "The Essentials" the reasons you first went back in the studio after your time off from TCM duty last year?

Robert Osborne:
We had to do 30 of the introductions, because if we didn't do it then, we couldn't get her. She had commitments to do movies, so I was back at work long before I was back on the air.

"The Essentials" airs on Saturdays at 8 p.m. ET.
Photo/Video credit: Turner Classic Movies