Thursday, April 9, 2020

Kara Mayer Robinson of the REALLY FAMOUS Podcast Interviews Uma Thurman, Patrick Fabian, The Fonz and Mrs. C, Elisabeth Moss, Keri Russell, Jessie Eisenberg, and More: How She Gets them to Really Open Up

By Suzanne Ordas Curry

I had the pleasure of meeting Kara Mayer Robinson at the New York City premiere screening of Patrick Fabians' movie DriverX. Kara spent many years as a journalist at some of the top media in NYC and nationally, and as the world morphed so did Kara. A trained therapist, she now runs the podcast REALLY FAMOUS, in which she interviews, well, really famous people! Her podcasts are not the usual interviews, they delve deep into the subject, revealing apsects of the celebrity you've never heard before. Kara's is a female making a name for herself in this business, while at the same time raising a family.

Turning the tables now on Kara, here's a quick interview with this "really famous" interviewer 

First question - of course - when did you start interviewing people?

Kara Mayer Robinson: I guess you can say I actually started interviewing people when I was a therapist! Yes, I’m a licensed therapist. I had a private practice before I became a writer. I started writing articles on the side, mostly about health and wellness, but when my editors asked me to write profiles and Q&As, I was hooked. I was drawn toward profiling people in entertainment — I have a lifelong passion for TV and film — and before I knew it, I was a full-on celebrity interviewer. 

When you were a print journalist, what were some of your most memorable moments?

Kara Mayer RobinsonI’ve had so many! The afternoon I spent at Project Runway host and mentor Tim Gunn’s house got me positively hooked on long-form interviews. We dished for three hours, over coffee and brownie bites, about everything from his family rifts to his honest (and shocking!) opinions of the Project Runway judges. 

One of your favorite movies is Pulp Fiction, and you spent time with Uma Thurman?

Equally memorable was the hour or two I spent at Uma Thurman’s place, but for different reasons. She doesn’t normally do in-depth interviews and I don’t think she was expecting my therapist-style approach. But she really went with the flow — and I discovered how analytical and super-smart she is. While being treated to an inside look at her real life.

Kara Mayer Robsinson with Patrick Fabian of Better Call Saul
Listen to NEW podcast here:
BONUS: Patrick Fabian Talks Tiger King:

And as your based in NYC - my favorite city - it must be fun meeting up with them there.

Kara Mayer Robinson:Yes! Having dinner at an Italian restaurant in midtown NYC with Elisabeth Moss, right off filming Mad Men, was something else… So was being sandwiched between The Americans stars Keri Russell and Matthew Rhys in a booth at the Russian Tea Room for an hour. And forming a genuine connection with Jesse Eisenberg as he produced a play in New York was priceless. I smile every time I see his name in my email — we’ve been in touch since then. I met quite a few people during my print journalism days who I later asked to be on the podcast and I now consider friends.

What made you decide to do a podcast?

Kara Mayer RobinsonThe media industry was clearly changing. My writing fees were being slashed in half (or more!). It was time to reinvent. And I was already frustrated by how little of my interviews I could share, because of space constraints. When you have a two-hour talk with an icon like Edie Falco it’s too bad everyone can’t be privy to the whole conversation. Enter podcasting — you get to hear it ALL.

Why do you think podcasts have become so popular?

Kara Mayer RobinsonThey’re so intimate. Hearing people talk right into your ears (assuming you’re wearing headphones!) is like nothing else. Take away the video aspect and people really relax into the conversation. It’s authentic and real. I can’t speak for all podcasts, but mine often feel like you’re right there with us, like old friends catching up over coffee — or like you’re eavesdropping on a therapy session. You feel a powerful connection.
Was it easy to set up a podcast? It looks like fun but there must be a good amount of techincal work to it. 

Kara Mayer RobinsonYes, it was fairly easy to set it up. I did research, bought a few basic pieces of equipment — two microphones, a voice recorder and editing software — and signed up for a hosting service, submitted the show to Apple Podcasts and other platforms, then started recording. But honestly, it’s wayyyy more work than I ever imagined.

I spend a ton of time booking celebrities, researching them, setting up the right studio spaces, editing, uploading to the website (, marketing, social media, etc. Now that I have a vibrant YouTube channel ( with 100+ videos with celebrities, there’s that extra component too — learning new equipment, editing videos, uploading, writing descriptions, etc. Plus I’ve had a handful of interns, which is helpful but also a lot of work to train and educate. Producing a podcast is super time consuming. But I wouldn’t trade it for anything.

Kara Mayer Robinson at a taping of a live podcast with Michael Imperioli of The Sopranos 

Give me some idea of what it's like for someone that wants to start their own podcast.

Kara Mayer RobinsonSee above! I’m sure people can do it in less time, on the side. For me, it’s my #1 focus, so it’s a full-time (or much more!) job. But you could probably do it in a few hours a week if you don’t release that often and if it’s just a solo podcast. The fact that I interview celebrities elevates everything (time, energy, logistics, etc).

How do you feel about #metoo? have you faced challenges in your career path becaue you are female.?

I support it 100%! And I’m thrilled it came to be. It’s hard to believe it took so long. To be honest, I’ve never seen my gender as a major factor in my career. I just push ahead full steam. I can’t say I’ve run into many hurdles or inappropriate behavior, like so many women have, so maybe I’ve been lucky. 

I look to certain women as particularly heroic, like Tippi Hedren who was harassed and threatened by one of the biggest Hollywood figures, Alfred Hitchcock. But she pushed back. In the 1960s, no less! When he threatened to ruin her career, she said, “Fine!” then walked away and slammed the door. That’s the short version — she shared all the details with me when I went to her ranch last year to record the podcast

Kara's interview with Henry Winkler got a Thumb's Up from fans.

Marion Ross (Happy Days) too. We all think of her as the perfect housewife and mom. But she’s a dynamo! She made her career happen, intentionally and while going up against tough people and situations. She’s a real hero of mine. I was pinching myself when I pulled up to her home in Los Angeles to record the podcast (I’m going to Marion Cunningham’s home!). But it was actually sitting down with her and reading her memoir that changed everything for me. She’s so much more than Mrs. C. She’s a fabulous role model.

So aside from chatting with the iconic Mrs. C, tell me about some of your other most memorable interviews.

Kara Mayer RobinsonSO MANY, Suzanne! Danny Aiello (Do the Right Thing, Moonstruck) dished on why he dislikes Martin Scorsese and declared me his new therapist. Michael Imperioli (The Sopranos, Goodfellas) was so forthcoming and open in each of my interviews that I was worried he’d never talk to me again (but he has — again and again — and even encouraged me to start doing live shows. He was my first guest. It was a BLAST and got me hooked on live shows. I’ve had a few already and more planned with Chazz PalminteriMichael Ian Black and more…). 

Kara Mayer Robinson chats with Beverly D'Angelis of the Vacation movies

Do I hear someone knockin' on your door and a Brady in the mix?

Yes. Suzanne Somers shocked herself when suddenly tears welled up as she talked about her emotional state. Ben Vereen teared up too. So did Tim Gunn. And Tim DalyAlex Guarnaschelli. And many more guests, to be honest. Hey, I’m a therapist, after all! Fan favorites are also some of my lighter, looser, catching-up-over-coffee interviews ,with actors like Peter Hermann (Younger), Alan Cumming (The Good Wife), Tony Goldwyn (Scandal), Jay Mohr (Jerry Maguire), Annie Potts (Young Sheldon) and yes... Christopher Knight (The Brady Bunch). They’re favorites, I think, because even though they’re famous, when you listen to our conversation, you feel like they’re your new best friends.

Kara Mayer Robinson with Tony Goldwyn of Scandal
Kara's Top Podcasts:

I’m hooked on Marc Maron’s WTF podcast. He has really evolved from a very self-involved host to a gifted interviewer. I also listen to Fresh Air with Terry Gross, Here’s the Thing with Alec Baldwin and Conan O’Brien Needs a Friend.

Kara's Top Five Flicks
At this particular moment (it changes!)…

The Godfather Part 2
Pulp Fiction
The Before Trilogy (It’s 3 separate movies…is that cheating?)

Connect on Social and Listen to her Podcast

Instagram @karamayerrobinson
Twitter @kara1to1

Links to Listen and Subscribe to the show: