Female entertainers who make upwards of $20 million a year normally get a little more media respect than Chelsea Handler. According to an entertaining profile in Newsweek, that’s how much the host of E!’s Chelsea Lately earned in 2010 thanks to an ever-expanding empire that encompasses books, large venue stand-up comedy performances and various in-progress TV spinoffs.
Unlike Tina Fey or Jon Stewart, Handler is not a darling of the media elite. She rarely appears on magazine covers. She’s never hosted Saturday Night Live (though a Facebook group is lobbying for this to happen). Her books aren’t reviewed by The New York Times. And when they do notice her, critics are unkind.
After Handler hosted the Video Music Awards, the Times called her performance “among the worst in the show’s history.” The New Yorker described Chelsea Lately as “too sloppy by half.”
One exception to the NYC media bias is friend Katie Couric, who is favorably quoted several times in the Newsweek piece. The 35-year-old Handler insists in the article that she wants to be done with the on-camera portion of her career by the time she hits 40.