Dr. Drew has a voice and he plans to use it to tackle issues concerning like Lindsay Lohan and Miley Cyrus from a different sort of standpoint when his primetime talk show premieres on HLN in March.
“I want to apply my head to that material, but I would like to really approach it in a different way,” Dr. Drew told reporters at the Television Critics Association Winter 2011 Session in Pasadena, Calif. on Thursday, when asked about how his new show would handle a subject like Lindsay’s latest release from rehab.
The soon-to-be primetime host said he’d be interested in interviewing Lindsay if she’d come on his show. If not, he said, he’d likely bring in people like Tom Sizemore as a guest, to talk about headlines prompted by the ones the recently-rehabbed actress has generated.
“I want to talk about what’s really going on with a woman who’s suffering like that. I think a better example is Miley [Cyrus],” Drew continued, bringing up the pop singer’s recent bong video where she was allegedly smoking the herb salvia, which is legal in Calif.
The Miley situation Dr. Drew said, seems to be more about a child whose parents are divorcing and is, as a result, “deeply in pain,” he said, giving an example of how he’d tackle issues on his HLN show.
“Jersey Shore’s” Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi is another celebrity who may find herself examined when “Dr. Drew Pinsky” premieres at 9 PM, March 28 on HLN. Asked about Snooki’s recent comments to the media that she’s not a role model and has no problems getting drunk and being filmed inebriated on TV, Dr. Drew suggested the “Jersey Shore” star may think differently later in life.
“That kind of thinking is no different than what I hear from all my patients… it will come to bear and she’ll be regretting what [she did] whether it’s in front of a camera or not,” he said.
Later, when asked about the audience for Snooki’s new book, “A Shore Thing,” which the MTV reality star was signing in nearby Los Angeles, Dr. Drew said it’s the fascination with people who take their behavior to the extreme that he thinks will be fodder for examination on his show.
“P.T. Barnum would be proud, you know what I mean? We’ve gone from a fascination with the physical freak to the behavioral freak, the emotional freak, the extreme behavior, we’re fascinated,” he said.
“Let’s go talk about that fascination,” he continued. “What’s interesting about that? Let’s examine that, and then when we really talk realistically … about an alcoholic talking about blacking out and nobody pulling her chain and saying you need treatment. Come on… that’s interesting.”
Through tackling a host of topics, Dr. Drew hopes to carve out his own niche in the primetime talk show circuit thanks to his background in internal medicine and decades of dealing with addicts.
“I’ve been doing radio for 30 years. I love the talk show format,” he said. “I love hearing all aspects of the story, but I have a point of view and I’m going to take the story to a different place because of that.”
Dr. Drew said it is unlikely his duties on VH1’s “Celebrity Rehab,” now in its fourth season, will conflict with his new primetime hosting duties.
“’Celebrity Rehab, through the magic of television, that’s three intensive weeks of my life and then that’s it,” he said. “I don’t think there’s gonna be a lot of overlap.
“Dr. Drew Pinsky” will premiere on HLN on March 28 at 9 PM ET.