Heidi Klum Gets Funny with Kids

Heidi Klum turns Art Linkletter in her new Lifetime series. Though she’s somewhat of a stern host on “Project Runway,” she’s a conduit for kids on the new “Seriously Funny Kids,” premiering tonight.

She interviews them, does challenges with them and sometimes plays pranks on them. Mostly to see how funny they are.

But, she told critics on the press tour last month, “it doesn’t always work.

“I interview 12, 13 children a day,” she says. “When they come to me and they talk to me, sometimes nothing happens. Sometimes when we pre-interview them and, you know, we do a little chat with them, they’re really fun and outgoing and they really can’t stop talking. And then all of a sudden, they’re on my set with the lights and they totally clam up and they don’t say anything.

“So you never really know what you’re going to get, but it’s kind of the challenge because you go in there,” Klum says. “They’re not actors, I’m not an actress, I’m not a comedian.; I’m a mom, and, yes, I have done a little bit of television, but I’m not a professional. So I chat with them as a grownup and I ask them questions that might interest children, but also grownups because really it is a show for grownups.”

Sometimes, it’s funny for what the kids ask her, like the one who inquired about her boyfriend or husband, and if they play hide and seek, and if he ever finds her.

“These kind of things that are so funny for us grownups and he doesn’t even know that he’s doing it and he’s so innocent and that is what is so sweet about them,” she says. “And the children are all different. Because sometimes there are kids there where, you know, the stage mom is there and, you know, the mom kind of wants their kid to be on there, but you feel it immediately. So it’s a variety of different kids. Some just don’t say anything.

“So you never know what you get, which is fun and interesting for me. It’s a challenge for me,” Klum says. “I do ‘Top Model’ in Germany. I do ‘Project
Runway’ here in America and even though it’s always different, there’s always a different panel and there’s always different people that are in front of me. But with children, it is just a whole other ball game because you really never know what you’re going to get. And I know that from my kids because they tend to be all over the place, too. One day they’re into something and the next day, I’m like, ‘You loved this yesterday. How come you don’t love it today anymore?’ I don’t know. You know, they just — so unpredictable.”

She’s just learned to adapt. “You just have to go with the flow,” she says. “I can’t really prepare for it. I mean, there’s definitely certain subjects that I want to know about prior to because I don’t want to really, you know, hurt anyone’s feelings. If there’s a divorce or something negative in the family, that’s not a subject that I necessarily want to talk about. So I definitely do a little bit of my homework before so I don’t really hurt anyone’s feelings because it’s supposed to be fun and I want to keep it light, but otherwise there’s no preparation. We have all different topics about what they want to be, what bugs them about grownups. You find out a lot of things from them.”

“Seriously Funny Kids” premieres tonight at 9 on Lifetime.

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