The first time I saw Jessi Cruickshank was on the MTV Hill's aftershow. She quickly became my favourite host with her sarcastic sense of humour, insanely magnetic personality and the fact that we shared a mutual love for Justin Bobby. In the past couple of years, she has been making serious waves in the entertainment industry on etalk and most recently a new daytime talk show, The Goods.
I got the opportunity to ask Jessi a few questions about her most memorable celeb encounters, her favourite parts of Toronto and how she has managed to accomplish so much at such a young age!
1. Can you sum up your occupation 3 sentences or less?
I’m a TV host which is kind of the best ‘occupation’ in the world! I’ve had the opportunity to host a late night talk show, a daily entertainment show, a comedy show, a competition show, a few big awards shows and now CBC’s new daytime talk show The Goods! I pretty much get to be ME for a living - but with professional hair and makeup…
2. What did you want to be when you grew up? Did you always want to be in the entertainment industry?
Ironically, growing up my mom had a weekly show on the CBC and yet I never thought I would end up working in television. I was a huge tomboy as a kid and I wanted to be a sports medicine doctor for a pro-hockey team. I don’t know how I went from wanting to be a doctor to talking about The Hills for a living …obviously something went terribly wrong!
3. What’s one piece of advice you would give to people who are looking to succeed in the entertainment industry?
Work your ASS off. Can I say that? It’s TRUE- there are so many people who want to work in this industry and in Canada, there are so few opportunities to do it. So always make sure you are working twice as hard as the person next to you.
4. What is the biggest challenge you have faced career wise thus far? And how did you overcome that?
I started working in TV when I was young, so I have a really strong sense of who I am as a TV personality and as a person. There is sometimes pressure to be someone I’m not on certain shows, or to just show up and look pretty and read a teleprompter- that is just not who I am or what I do. I am not that “flawless TV host" and I often have to fight to be funny and opinionated and edgy and ME. I always write for myself and produce the content that I do so that it always feels original, irreverent and fearless.
5. Up to this point, what has been your biggest accomplishment in your career?
I never expected that I would have the opportunity to host a daytime talk show at this stage in my career, so The Goods is pretty huge. It’s a huge privilege to be in people’s homes every single afternoon and one that I will definitely not take for granted
6. What can we expect from you in the next couple of years?
The Goods premieres Oct. 3rd on CBC and I am back hosting Season 3 of Canada’s Smartest Person in November so safe to say, you will all be sick of me!
7. Who’s your dream guest for The Goods?
Sam Hunt- I just hosted the CCMA Awards and he was even hunkier in person than I was emotionally prepared for. I want him to serenade me live on The Goods. Or just privately in my dressing room, whatever works.
8. You’ve attended numerous red carpets, which celeb has been the most fun to interview?
Personally, I don’t like to think of what I do on red carpets as ‘interviews,’ I just like to create memorable moments with people. There have been SO many good ones.
I think John Travolta straight-up kissing me, or Emma Thompson drinking vodka out of a bottle with me were both pretty epic and very unexpected red carpet moments for all parties involved.
9. What is your favourite place to go to in Toronto to unwind?
I love wandering Kensington Market, grabbing a good coffee, a delicious snack and likely picking up a little vintage treasure - that is my perfect day in Toronto.
10. Your career has allowed you to travel a lot, what is one thing you think Toronto does better?
There is a spirit and a unity in Toronto that is unrivaled- I can’t give Drake ALL the credit for that, but he certainly has had the impact of making this city and all of its residents feel proud to be from The Six! Plus, the Jays, the Raptors, all of the amazing cultural events that happen here- they really make you feel like you are a part of something special. Let’s just say Sam Hunt has nothing on my deep and passionate love for Toronto.