Jenny McCarthy talks 'New Year's Rockin' Eve,' Jim Carrey and 2012 kiss (Q&A)
If you're a cute guy and plan to be in New York City's Times Square this New Year's Eve, look out for Jenny McCarthy.
The 39-year-old actress is one of several celebrities who will help ring in 2012 for the 40th installment of the ABC special "New Year's Rockin' Eve." McCarthy, who famously split with actor Jim Carrey in 2010, told OnTheRedCarpet.com: "Well, I am single. Wink, wink. We'll be there five hours this year so who knows? I might pull out of the crowd and find a cute guy to kiss. I don't know. We'll see."
McCarthy will co-host the show for the second time, joining original host Dick Clark and Ryan Seacrest in New York. Fergie hosts from Los Angeles. The show is also set to feature performances from music artists such as Justin Bieber, Lady Gaga, LMFAO, Florence + The Machine, Nicki Minaj, Blink-182 and Pitbull.
McCarthy is a longtime fan of the annual program.
"When I was dating Jim, we stayed on the couch every New Year's Eve, watched ABC," she said. "I remember going, 'Those people are freezing. They're crazy. The couch is the greatest place ever.' So if you're not coming to Times Square, I highly recommend staying on that couch and watching."
In November, McCarthy said in an interview on the TV show "Access Hollywood" about what she looks for in a man, saying: "I don't care if they have a big nose. I don't care if they're bald. Just really sweet and who's a perfect reflection of who I am now. They have to have a job. I'd like them to at least be able to buy dinners and stuff like that. That is important."
She cited her Chicago upbringing and said "it's tough to find a man's man" in Los Angeles, where she lives.
McCarthy and Carrey broke up after about five years in April 2010. Earlier this year, she dated sports agent Paul Krepelka for several months. McCarthy is a single mother as well - she and ex-husband John Mallory Asher, a director and actor, have one son - Evan, 9.
McCarthy rose to fame as Playboy magazine's 1994 Playmate of the Year and appeared as a host on MTV's dating show, "Singled Out." She has appeared in her own comedy series, "The Jenny McCarthy Show," guest starred on the sitcom "Two and a Half Men," had parts in movies such as "Dirty Love" and "Scream 3," and penned several books.
Co-hosting "New Year's Rockin' Eve," McCarthy told OnTheRedCarpet.com, is "like a bucket list thing to do."
"I never thought I would want to freeze my butt down there," she said. "But that Times Square, that energy, it's electric. So to be able to host and hopefully, have people feel what I'm feeling, is going to be my job this year."
The "New Year's Rockin' Eve" special and airs on ABC on December 31 at 8 p.m. ET. It will show New Year's celebrations from around the world, as well as the annual countdown to midnight from Times Square in New York City.
Check out what else Jenny McCarthy had to say about her "New Year's Eve" appearance and about the holiday in general.
I've heard tales that it's not easy to go to the bathroom around that time. What happens? I'm sure you have your own luxury "porta-potty."
"We do. It's still called the building on the seventh floor. So it's a little bit of a trek. But this year when I looked around, there were many 'porta-potties.' But there were more police than toilets, still, which I was glad [about]. I felt very secure, going down there, and safe. But it is a little bit stinky. [laughs]
So Dick Clark certainly has left his imprint on us on New Year's Eve and we have watched for so many years .. To be part of that imprint after all of those years, you kind of add to this next generation. That has to just be more than a bucket list but a sense of real accomplishment.
"Absolutely. I mean, still being able to do it with Dick - he'll be doing the countdown again this year. Looking at Ryan - I go, 'Wow, I feel like this is such a wonderful privilege to be able to be here for the passing of the baton some day.' Ryan's done a really good job doing what Dick has done over the years and now I feel like he needs a little co-host to help him out. So, I'm honored."
"It's my second year. We have Lady Gaga performing and Nicki Minaj out of L.A., so there's a lot of great performances so I think we're going to beat everybody else."
You kind of don't let yourself be boxed in in this town and that's not an easy thing to do.
"The only thing I can't do is sing. But I gotta tell you, when I moved out to L.A., I kind of put it out there that I didn't want to pigeonhole myself and I wanted longevity. And being out in L.A. - if you're going to do one thing, you're going to be pigeonholed, so I made sure I host, act, write .. I can't sing, I will bless all of you by never putting out an album. But I really enjoy it."
"And you know what really helps is being a single mom. I'm being forced to kind of expand what I'm able to do and it keeps me working. Feeding my son will make you expand."
So is there a secret that you will have that we can't see that keeps you warm?
"Live television always works - gets that blood moving. But also, I had one four turtleneck, four long underwear pants, three socks, boots and two pairs of gloves and it worked pretty well."
So it might be repeated this year.
"Oh yeah. It didn't snow on us. So we got lucky. We'll see this year. Cross my fingers."
That's just funny that you would do four turtlenecks.
"Isn't it? You would think. But I had to protect myself. But they have me running up and down Times Square, so that helps too. Ryan gets to stand on his little platform with his little heaters. Me? No. I'm running."
UPDATE: Jenny McCarthy kissed a New York City police officer to ring in 2012. She told co-host Ryan Seacrest on the air: "I just happened to be standing near that hot cop." The man, who was not identified, said he rated her kiss a 10.
Reporting by George Pennacchio of KABC Television, which produces the entertainment show "On The Red Carpet" (check for local TV listings).