"Drew likes people. I’m a cranky loner. It’s not so good for me. I will be in a bath of Purell for two days now," Ferguson tells THR from the set of "The Price Is Right."
Longtime friends Drew Carey and Craig Ferguson fooled their audiences on April 1 by swapping gigs -- and The Hollywood Reporter was there to witness all the insanity.
Ferguson first surprised the eager audience when he took Carey's place on stage during a Feb. 10 taping of The Price Is Right, later followed by Carey taking over Ferguson's desk during a March 21 taping of The Late Late Show.
The switch made for an even higher energy day on The Price Is Right than usual with a slew of lively contestants, a winning streak that included more than one new car giveaway and lots of hugs -- for which Ferguson was not prepared.
The contestants may have known more about how to play the games than Ferguson did, and a few had to participate in multiple takes until the rookie host got the rules down, but that didn't dampen the room's enthusiasm.
The Scottish-born Ferguson's dry quips throughout the hourlong program made up for any hosting mishaps he had. "I'm sorry, I'm not originally from this country," he joked to the audience between takes. He even brought his late-night sidekicks, the skeleton Geoff Peterson and pantomime horse Secretariat, as models.
The switch-up provided Ferguson with a timely opportunity to stretch his game show hosting muscles as he prepares to emcee The Celebrity Name Game in the fall. "I’m going to have to start [to get in shape] again -- like Drew," he told THR of the energy level required to keep up with the excited contestants. "Maybe it’s because it’s new, but it feels quite taxing, more taxing than I thought it was going to be and more than running my own show."
Admitting that it's hard to prepare for the hosting experience, Carey only had one piece of advice for his friend before he took the stage: "You've just got to show up in a good mood."
"That was the hardest part for me," Ferguson joked after the taping. "See, Drew likes people. I’m a cranky loner. It’s not so good for me. I will be in a bath of Purell for two days now."
The Price Is Right and The Late Late Show air April 1 at 10 a.m. and 12:37 a.m., respectively.