Rosie O'Donnell's much-anticipated return to television -- "The Rosie Show" -- is set to debut Monday evening at 6 p.m. CT, 7 p.m. ET on the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN).
O'Donnell's debut episode will feature actor and musician Russell Brand, whom she has identified as her new official celebrity crush, replacing Tom Cruise. Brand, she said in a recent promotional video, is "my new Tommy and beyond. He's Tommy exponentially. He's Tommy times ten." The show is being taped at Harpo Studios, the television home for 25 years of Winfrey's groundbreaking show.
(Scroll down to watch a preview of "The Rosie Show.")
The 49-year-old actress was spotted in Chicago's Lakeview neighborhood, near her new home, Sunday evening, apparently celebrating her show's impending first episode with her girlfriend Michelle Rounds. As Chicago Pride captured, the two were taking in Show Tunes Sunday at Sidetrack with friends. O'Donnell has also been seen at Zanies Comedy Club, Rainforest Cafe and at Cullen's bar and restaurant in recent weeks.
Beyond the interview with Brand, what else can viewers expect from O'Donnell's show? She explained last week in an AP interview that the show will not be "a political show" nor an "antagonistic show."
"I do have a strong political voice and in some ways that will come out but that's not the entree," O'Donnell explained.
Each episode will include questions from the audience, a game show segment and, of course, an opening monologue. An audience member at a test taping of the show said last month that O'Donnell came across as confident.
Nearly a decade has passed since O'Donnell's previous daytime talk show was on the air. In that time, she has run into some scuffles with various celebrities, particularly during her stint on "The View," when she and Elisabeth Hasselbeck exchanged words concerning the Iraq war.
WATCH a brief preview of O'Donnell's new show below:
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