Fran Drescher is known best for creating and starring in the TV series’ “The Nanny” and “Happily Divorced”. Fran is also a cancer survivor and currently founder of the Cancer Schmancer Movement, as well as it program Trash Cancer. Media Mikes had a chance to chat with Fran about her new season of “Happily Divorced” and about her work to fight Cancer.
Mike Gencarelli: Tell us what we can expect season three of “Happily Divorced”? Guest stars?
Fran Drescher: We premiere on November 28th. We had a cliffhanger with the last twelve episodes and this picks up where it left off with a new arc for our main character. This season we have amazing guest stars. Joan Collins has a reoccurring role playing herself. Molly Shannon is going to play Peter’s sister. Cindy Lauper will play Renee Taylor’s daughter. Ralph Macchio is back as the man who in love with me. We are introducing some new characters as well. We have a neighbor moving in next door. It is going to be a fantastic season.
MG: John Michael Higgins and you are just fantastic on the show; you guys have great comedic chemistry.
FD: He is so great. I am so thrilled and blessed to have him as my leading man.
MG: “Happily Divorced” has been going for a few seasons now, how was it been not only starring but also writing and producing?
FD: My job is very similar to what it was on “The Nanny”. I created that series as well with my partner Peter Jacobson. I wear a lot of hats but I really enjoy the whole aspect of putting together a series. I find it very exciting and stimulating. It can be exhausting. It can be challenging. But I think I would be bored if I didn’t tap into all of my strengths. I would feel a little bit stuck. This keeps me very stimulated, both creatively and intellectually.
MG: What do you enjoy most about working with TV Land?
FD: They are a good group. They are a small network, so there is not a lot of bureaucracy. It is a really a collective art form. We love all the people that we have to deal with. I feel like we are in a really good place. They have people that are really into situational comedy, in the old school sense of the word, and that is my brand of comedy. So it is a really good fit.
MG: How do you compare your experience with “Happily Divored” from your other shows like “The Nanny”?
FD: I think we have a lot of great writers that came from “The Nanny”. Due to that we have some great laugh-out-loud comedy. I think that this character deals with the woman that is closer in age to me, who finding herself single in her mid-years. It has a very significant social message, which is “Love is love, it is not conditional and everyone has a right to an authentic life.” I think at this stage in my life it is nice for me to produce things that not only make you laugh but then have some kind of resonance.
MG: Tell us about your work with your Cancer Schmancer Movement?
FD: It is the organization that I founded and have continued to be president and visionary for. It came out of my New York Times bestseller “Cancer Schmancer”, which came out of my own cancer survival – which I am twelve years well! Over the years, I began to formulate a feeling that the emphasis for trying to find a cure for cancer is really kind of like closing the barn door after the horses escape. The better way to “cure cancer” is to not get it in the first place. How is that for a cure? What the Cancer Schmancer Movement also does is educate the public on how to transpond from being a patient to a medical consumer. We urge you to learn the early warning whispers of the cancers that may affect you and also know the tests that are available.
MG: Tell us about your campaign to Trash Cancer?
FD: It is our new program through Cancer Schamancer to educate Americans on how to detox their home, which turns out to be the most toxic place that we spend the most time in. Since 90% of cancer is environmental, we should begin with what we bring into our home through purchasing power. That we have control over. We can effectively reduce our chance for cancer by making healthier choices on what we put in, on and around us.