Inside Anna Faris' First Live Podcast and 'Mom' Co-Star Allison Janney's Surprise Appearance
By Angelique Jackson
Anna Faris’ hit podcast, Anna Faris Is Unqualified, features a mix of A-list guests, raunchy skits and heartfelt advice about relationships. So, when ET heard Faris was going to host a live recording of the podcast, we had to be there! Mostly because we thought we’d get to go to Faris’ house where the podcast is recorded (which we didn’t – the performance was held at the NerdMelt Showroom in Hollywood). And because we thought Faris’ husband, Chris Pratt, might stop by! (Spoiler Alert: that didn’t happen either.) But what DID happen was a lot of NSFW hilarity and a surprise slap-happy appearance from Faris’ Mom co-star, Allison Janney.
Comedian Whitney Cummings was the guest of honor, but it quickly became clear that she wasn’t the only treat for the Unqualified fans. Janney snuck in a few minutes before showtime and found a seat in the dark theater a few rows away from the stage. In fact, the seven-time Emmy winner was largely unrecognized by fans until Faris thanked her for attending, to the delight of the audience.
"Allison was just going to come and support us,” Unqualified producer and co-host Sim Sarna told ET after the show. “But, you know what, after knowing Anna for 16 years, I always know that she has something up her sleeve. As soon as she said ‘Allison,' I knew she was going to bring her up on stage.”
About 20 minutes into the show, Faris warned that she was going to “embarrass somebody in the audience," calling Janney up for a bit of improvisation. The three actresses took turns practicing their “stage slaps” on each other, and after smacking Cummings, Janney admitted to the audience that she “doesn’t know how to do a stage slap. It’s the adrenaline.”
Sarna gushed about Janney’s impromptu performance, saying, “It was perfect because she’s the best. Allison and Anna have the most amazing relationship. They’re pretty much twins. They can read each other’s minds. They have an incredible working relationship and she was great on the podcast as well.”
Sarna also revealed just how nervous he and Faris were before the show.
“When we got here, we thought, ‘OK, what if they all hate us?’ We had no idea, seriously. So the moment we actually sat down, we thought that this might be a complete disaster. But then they started laughing right away and I think that completely relaxed everyone. And then we just did our show,” he admitted.
The event featured a live performance of the theme song, candid conversations about Cummings' dating life and NSFW relationship advice from the trio to a live caller and a brave audience member.
After the show ended, Faris and Sarna stuck around to take photos and talk to fans for nearly half an hour.
Sarna said that they were blown away by the support for the live show, telling ET, “It’s surreal. It really is surreal. Because when we’re doing our show on the podcast, we really feel like we’re just doing it for ourselves. We do not for a second think that there are hundreds of thousands of people listening to this. So when we put out this lottery for the podcast, it was insane that it was sold out in minutes.”
While Faris may consider herself to be “unqualified” to dish out relationship advice, Sarna disagrees, saying, “The best piece of relationship advice I got from Anna is to always protect my heart. That’s something that she says on the podcast all the time. And it’s completely true. And it makes sense for guys and girls. Just always protect your heart.”
Parts one and two of the recording are available on iTunes.
The podcast often features Pratt, who plugged his wife's show when he appeared as a guest host on Live with Kelly. ET recently caught up with Pratt, who shared his own best relationship advice. Hear his advice below.