If you are addicted to scandalous,
in-your-face reality television, then you must absolutely love
this man. Bravo’s Andy Cohen, host of Watch What Happens,
will lead this year’s
Miami Beach Gay Pride Parade beginning at on Saturday, April 16th
at 5th Street
and Ocean Drive.
With a slew of hit shows such as the Real Housewives
franchise, Top Chef and Project Runway under his
belt, Cohen and his network have amassed an extremely broad,
loyal fan base. He recently spoke with Mark’s List about his
role in Miami Beach Gay Pride, his job at Bravo and what he
thinks keeps viewers tuning in every week.
You will be in Miami Beach very soon. What
kind of message do you want to send as the Grand Marshal of Miami Beach Gay Pride and what
does pride mean to you?
I love Miami
and I love SouthBeach, and April is always a fun
time to be in Miami.
I think Miami was
built for pride, and I’m very excited to be a part of the event.
To me pride means being exactly who you are and walking tall in
your shoes and not compromising who you are in order make
someone else happy. I want to show everyone how far we have come
as a community.
You get to work with many aggressive and
interesting personalities on the shows on Bravo. What is your
favorite part about your job?
Wow—too many to count. Mainly it’s talking
to people and getting to them and having fun with them.Being on Watch What Happens, I don’t even think of
that as a job. My Mom came to the show with me recently and when
we left I said, “Can you believe this is even considered work?”
It’s just fun.
And at the same time, what is your least
I hate negotiating contracts.It gets very personal and sensitive sometimes.
Why do you think the shows on Bravo have
become so popular?Do you think that there is
a right or wrong formula for making good television?
I think they are popular because of the
characters. We have amazing people doing amazing things.The shows are really fun and addictive.I think Bravo has a very specific vibe and way that we
present humor. We also have a very sophisticated, smart
audience, and I think they connect with our characters. The
lifestyles that are being portrayed are very interesting and
something to aspire to be.
Were there any shows that were surprise
hits on Bravo?
The Real Housewives! It was something
we all thought could be interesting, but not really sure if
people would catch on. You never know what’s going to resonate.Also, Top Chef.I didn’t expect
either of the shows to become as big as they did, and we are
very proud of them.
What do you think about the use of pop
culture to fight prejudice and homophobia?
I think it’s great.There
were not a lot of gay role models on television when I was
growing up. I’m really proud that there are kids around the
country who see gay people on Bravo as talented, creative people
with strength, courage and pride in themselves. We show a world
where gay people are thriving alongside straight people.The kids across the world who see this will feel
differently in their communities. I think it’s very positive.
What other shows or networks out there
have done a good job at making the same statement?
I think The Real World on MTV was
very revolutionary for its time.I remember
watching Season One and there was a gay character in that cast,
and they have had one in almost every season. I can’t understate
what that show did as a groundbreaking show. It really was at
the forefront of representing gay people at a time when it
wasn’t really happening anywhere else on TV.
About Andy Cohen
started at Bravo in 2005 as Senior Vice President of Original
Programming & Development and since then he has overseen an
aggressive slate of unscripted series and specials including
past hits "Project Runway," "Queer Eye," "Work Out," “Being
Bobby Brown,” “Top Design,” “Make Me a Supermodel,” “Blow Out”
and “The A
received an Emmy Award when season six of “Top Chef” won the
Outstanding Reality Competition Program at the 2010 primetime
awards and has been nominated for nine additional Emmy Awards
as Executive Producer of "Project Greenlight," "Project Runway,"
"Top Chef" and "Queer Eye." In
2005, Cohen was awarded a Peabody Award for his role as
Executive Producer of the TRIO documentary "The N Word" and
another Peabody in 2008 as an Executive Producer of "Project
Runway." In 2010, TV Guide Magazine named Cohen one of
the "25 Most Powerful People in Television" (along with Oprah
Winfrey, Simon Cowell, Tina Fey, and Jon Stewart).
Cohen is a graduate of BostonUniversity
where he received a B.A. degree in broadcast journalism.