Chelsea Joy Handler (born February 25, 1975) is an American comedian, actress, author, talk show host and producer. She hosts a late-night talk show called Chelsea Lately, on E! Entertainment Television. Handler was born in Livingston, New Jersey. The youngest of six children, she was raised in Reform Judaism by her Jewish father, Seymour, and her Mormon mother, Rita. Her mother was German and came to the United States in 1958. Handler has said that while growing up, she felt like an outsider, and told a reporter, "We lived in this nice Jewish neighborhood...Everyone had Mercedes and Jaguars, and I was going to school in a Pinto." Despite this, her family had a summer house on Martha's Vineyard. In a June 2011 episode of her show, she and author James Van Praagh discussed the death of her brother, Chet, when she was nine years old. Handler had an abortion at age 16, which she discussed during an interview in 2011. At age 19, she moved from New Jersey to Los Angeles, California to pursue an acting career, and two years later, decided to become a stand-up comedian after telling her story about a DUI to a class of other offenders, who found it funny. In July 2007, Handler began starring on her own half-hour, late-night comedy series on E! Entertainment Television titled Chelsea Lately. On the show's 100th episode, she revealed to viewers that the network had picked up Chelsea Lately for another 150 episodes. The show has proved to be a hit by averaging more than a half-million viewers since its premiere (much more than the average for a late night cable program) and having clips on YouTube with more than one million views. In a 2008 interview, Handler said, "The worse the guests are, the more pathetic they are, the funnier the show is." Handler's most recent contract extension will keep Chelsea Lately on the air through 2014. Chelsea Lately is broadcast daily on the E! Network in the UK, Australia, Germany and New Zealand. Handler has performed nationwide as a comedian and appeared as a regular on the Oxygen Network series Girls Behaving Badly, as well as on other shows like Weekends at the D.L., The Bernie Mac Show, My Wife and Kids, and The Practice. She is a regular commentator on E! and Scarborough Country, as well as a correspondent on The Tonight Show. She hosted the first episode of the reality TV show On the Lot, but quit before the second one was aired, saying later, "Because I smelled the disaster happening before it did." The show, produced by Steven Spielberg and Mark Burnett, is a competition for aspiring filmmakers who are vying for a chance at stardom. Handler was replaced by former Robin & Company entertainment anchor, Adrianna Costa. Handler also began hosting The Chelsea Handler Show in April 2006, which lasted two seasons. She was a guest on Red Eye w/ Greg Gutfeld and The View, and she co-hosted The View on August 2, 2007, and again on September 5, 2008. On January 25, 2009, Handler was on the CBS gameshow Million Dollar Password as one of the celebrity players. On August 18, 2010, it was announced that Handler would be the host of the 2010 MTV Video Music Awards. The announcement was surprising to many, including MTV representatives, who claimed that the final decision was unexpected. This makes Handler only the second woman in the history of the VMAs to be the sole host of the ceremony, behind Roseanne Barr, who hosted in 1994. The event took place at the Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles on September 12, 2010. In 2007, Handler performed with Comedy Central's Hour Stand-Up Comedy Tour across the United States. Her stand-up comedy has also been televised on VH1's Love Lounge, Comedy Central's Premium Blend, and HBO's broadcast of the Aspen Comedy Festival.
Chelsea Joy Handler