Andy Cohen, left, and Anderson Cooper are bringing their no-holds-barred talk show to the Bay Area. (Courtesy photo)

Andy Cohen, left, and Anderson Cooper are bringing their no-holds-barred talk show to the Bay Area. (Courtesy photo)

Up close and personal with Andy Cohen, Anderson Cooper

When Andy Cohen and Anderson Cooper were set up on a blind date 20 years ago, it didn’t take long for the then-“CBS News” producer and “ABC News” correspondent to uncover their incompatibility.

“I thought it was interesting that he worked at ‘ABC News,’ because I worked at ‘CBS News,’” Cohen remembers. “I heard he was cute and that he’s the son of Gloria Vanderbilt, so I thought, ‘This has to be interesting.’”

“So we had a phone conversation,” Cooper interjects. “But I realized within two minutes that I wasn’t going on a date with this guy. He just seemed very enthusiastic. I imagined him gesticulating with his hands a lot.”

But their mutual friend was sort of right in that Andy and Anderson have become great friends and travel buddies. They are currently touring the country with their “AC2” show, which reaches The Masonic on Friday and Oakland’s Paramount Theatre on Sunday.

While Cohen, executive producer of “Watch What Happens: Live” and the “Real Housewives” franchise and Cooper, CNN anchor and correspondent for CBS’ “60 Minutes” seem like odd bedfellows, they have a lot in common.

They’re both Emmy-winning media professionals and Geminis born just 364 days apart. If they had monogrammed towels, they’d both read AC. Both also happen to be huge news junkies and fans of “The Real Housewives” franchise.

“I always thought he was funny and smart and a good guy,” Cooper explains. “But it was really in the last eight years that he and I have become closer. A lot of it has to do with the fact that he’s in a similar business. There’s something nice about having someone that you can speak in that shorthand with, who understands what the business is like, what pressures you’re under, and when you cancel last minute isn’t going to complain because they totally get it.”

Cohen, who knows firsthand what it’s like to be an out gay man on TV, says he encouraged Cooper to come out to viewers before the anchor finally went public in 2012. He still emails the news anchor notes on his interviews.

In return, Cooper, who’s currently in a relationship, gives blunt dating advice to the perpetual party boy, who celebrated last San Francisco Pride at the Powerhouse and The Endup, dancing the night away with his wingman John Mayer.

“I’ll tell him that somebody he’s interested in is somebody I think or don’t think he should be,” Cooper says. “There are not many barriers between us.“

Cohen and Cooper promise similarly few hurdles between them and audiences on the “AC2” tour, which they describe as a night out with them that audiences won’t regret the next morning.

“It’s really like going out drinking with Andy and me, except I don’t really drink, but Andy does,” Cooper jokes. “He makes up for both of us. We want to give people something they won’t hear from us on television.”

Audiences can expect humorous anecdotes from their joint trips and respective careers in reality TV and hard news. There’s even a question-and-answer portion.

“You can ask whatever you want,” Cohen promises. “Someone asked me how big my dick was.”
Don’t expect the CNN anchor to jump in here. While the longtime friends have shared much over the years, this is probably the one area around which Cooper remains blissfully ignorant.

“I’ve been to some great places with Anderson and on a lot of boat trips,” Cohen confides. “There’s never been an ounce of chemistry between us, physically. It’s all been friend and emotional.”


Anderson Cooper and Andy Cohen: Deep Talk And Shallow Tales
Where: Masonic, 1111 California St., S.F.
When: 8 p.m. Jan. 15
Tickets: $55 to $109.50
Note: The show also is at 3 p.m. Jan 17 at the Paramount Theatre, 2025 Broadway, Oakland.

ABC News. Real HousesivesAC2Anderson CooperAndy CohenCBS NewsCNNMovies and TVWatch What Happens

Just Posted

Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers proved to be too much for the Niners in a Week 3 loss to Green Bay. It was San Francisco’s home opener for the 2021 season. (Courtesy of the San Francisco 49ers.)
Packers break hearts in 49ers’ home opener: Week 3 NFL roundup

By Tyler Dunne New York Times Here’s the Week 3 roundup of… Continue reading

Dominion Voting Systems, a Denver-based vendor, is under contract to supply voting machines for elections in San Francisco. (Kevin N. Hume/Examiner file)
Is San Francisco’s elections director impeding voting machine progress?

Open source technology could break up existing monopoly

The 49ers take on the Packers in Week 3 of the NFL season, before heading into a tough stretch of divisional opponents. (Courtesy San Francisco 49ers)
‘Good for Ball’ or ‘Bad for Ball’ — A Niners analysis

By Mychael Urban Special to The Examiner What’s the first thing that… Continue reading

Health experts praised Salesforce for keeping its Dreamforce conference at Moscone Center outdoors and on a small scale. (Kevin N. Hume/The Examiner)
Happy birthday, Marc Benioff. Your company did the right thing

Salesforce kept Dreamforce small, which made all kinds of sense

Former San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown, pictured with Rose Pak in 2014, says the late Chinatown activist was “helping to guide the community away from the divisions, politically.”
Willie and Rose: How an alliance for the ages shaped SF

How the Mayor and Chinatown activist shaped San Francisco, then and now

Most Read