The cringiest celebrity interviews on 'The Ellen DeGeneres Show'

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Ellen DeGeneres
Ellen DeGeneres has faced backlash for her behavior in 2020. Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images
  • Ellen DeGeneres has welcomed some of Hollywood's biggest stars on her talk show.

  • Some of the host's interviews with celebrities have resurfaced due to their uncomfortable nature.

  • Insider listed the most cringe-worthy interviews that took place on "The Ellen DeGeneres Show."

  • Visit Insider's homepage for more stories.

Since being named the "Funniest Person in America" by Showtime in 1984, Ellen DeGeneres has built her career as a goofy, straight-shooting comedian best known for hosting "The Ellen DeGeneres Show."

The narrative surrounding DeGeneres' career shifted in 2020, however.

Various members of the show's crew and several guests spoke up about their negative off-screen experiences with DeGeneres.

While a lot of the stories have taken place behind the scenes, there have been plenty of on-screen interactions on "The Ellen DeGeneres Show" that have raised eyebrows as well.

Here's a round-up of the cringiest celebrity interactions on "The Ellen DeGeneres Show."

Michelle Obama called DeGeneres 'annoying' to her face during a CVS run

The talk-show host took the former First Lady shopping to prepare her for regular life after her husband, former U.S. President Barack Obama, finished his second term in office.

While Michelle smiled and laughed along as DeGeneres opened unpaid-for products and badgered her, the "Becoming" author grew visibly irritated by the host's behavior.

At one point, DeGeneres tried to sign a sleeping infant's forehead and pointed a megaphone directly into the stroller.

"She's out of control," Michelle apologetically told the baby's mother, adding to DeGeneres, "You're scaring her."

As DeGeneres' shenanigans - operating a Coinstar machine, cracking open boxed wine, and finding ointment for Michelle's made-up "rash" - came to a close at the self-checkout line, Michelle's annoyance became evident.

While inserting cash into the machine, DeGeneres asked if Michelle could put her face on money.

"No, I can't," Michelle answered. "You'd have to have done something grand like Harriet Tubman."

"I make the world happy every day," Degeneres countered, leading Michelle to respond, "You should've freed some slaves. You know, you're really annoying. It's like taking a 3-year-old to the store.

Martha Stewart shut down DeGeneres after she asked if the lifestyle guru knew what 'sexting' was

Martha Stewart, Snoop Dogg, and Anna Kendrick sat down for a round of "Never Have I Ever" on a 2016 episode of "The Ellen DeGeneres Show."

To kick off the game, DeGeneres asked the players if they'd ever sexted. When the players noticed that Stewart held up her paddle to confirm that she had, DeGeneres asked, "Martha, you've sexted? Do you know what that is?"

The lifestyle guru responded, "I have used technology for a lot longer than you have, Ellen."

With Stewart's longtime friend Snoop Dogg between them, the women laughed it off before DeGeneres pushed her guest to divulge who she sent the messages to.

Examining the front and back of her paddle, Stewart responded, "It doesn't say, 'None of your business.'"

DeGeneres pulled up a nude paparazzi photo of Justin Bieber while asking him about his love life

With a blurred-out nude shot of the singer displayed in the background, DeGeneres asked Bieber a string of questions about the photo of him vacationing in Bora Bora in 2015.

Eventually, she drew attention to the figure laying down behind Bieber and asked if she was his girlfriend.

"No, it's not," he quickly replied, explaining that the woman was "just a friend."

Dissatisfied with his answer, DeGeneres asked him, "You just brought a friend to Bora Bora? And you're just naked with your friend?"

Bieber looked down and said, "Why are you putting me on the spot like this? Gosh."

As DeGeneres continued to fish for answers, Bieber whispered an audible "stop" before covering his face with his hands.

Hasan Minhaj called out DeGeneres for mispronouncing his name

Based on the opening moments of Minhaj's 2019 appearance on "The Ellen DeGeneres Show," the interview seemed to be going smoothly, with both the host and guest gushing that they were "huge fans" of each other.

The interview took an awkward turn, however, when the host botched the pronunciation of the comedian's name.

"No," he told her twice before he offered the correct pronunciation, adding, "I actually want to do this on national television."

She mispronounced his last name again before correctly placing an emphasis on the "h," leading the comedian to explain that people have recommended changing his name for his career.

"When I first started doing comedy, people were like, 'You should change your name.' I'm like, 'I'm not gonna change my name. If you can pronounce Ansel Elgort, you can pronounce Hasan Minhaj.'"

Cher told DeGeneres that she was a 'b----' during an excursion to a Drybar

The singer's patience ran thin during a 2018 trip to a Drybar studio with DeGeneres, who was more focused on cracking jokes than styling the women's hair.

After they pulled out a series of wigs toward the end of the segment, the talk-show host proceeded to put on a long brown head of hair and mimic Cher singing her song "If I Could Turn Back Time."

"Right," Cher said, seemingly unamused. "Of all the bad ones I've heard of me, you know, this is probably the worst."

DeGeneres continued to sing, even misquoting the lyrics and pointing out that certain references in the song didn't make sense. She asked one of the women in the studio if she agreed with her and told Cher, "They know me better than they know you."

Cher responded, "You're such a b----."

Their '5 Second Rule' game didn't go well either

Toward the end of the game, which requires the player to name three words pertaining to the subject in five seconds, DeGeneres and Cher both agreed that they love chocolate. When the talk-show host asked if it "turned her on," Cher got flustered.

"No, I didn't mean it in that way. B----," she said.

DeGeneres then replied, "Give my guest Cher the last category please."

Though the audience laughed, it became clear that DeGeneres was annoyed and signed off by saying, "We both lost. I'll be right back. She won't."

Celine Dion wasn't amused when the talk-show host criticized her son's hair

DeGeneres told Dion that she was "forgetting" to cut her son's hair in 2007.

She then pulled up a photo of the young boy and said, "Look at him. He is beautiful but look at his hair. When are you going to cut that hair?"

Dion then began defending the length of her child's hair, asking DeGeneres if she had "a problem" with it.

"Some people shave the head of their children, and people say, 'Oh, isn't that terrible?' Well, I don't even cut my son's hair and they say, 'Oh my god, when is she going to cut her son's hair?' You know? Whatever I will do, I won't please everyone," she said, explaining that her son made his own decision to keep his hair long.

"When he's ready, I'll cut it," the singer said. "And when I cut it, they'll say, 'Oh you know what? It's a little short.'"

DeGeneres swiftly changed the topic to Dion's music after the uncomfortable moment.

DeGeneres forgot that Katy Perry was once married to Russell Brand

Before playing a game called "Will You Perry Me?" on a 2017 episode of the show, the singer asked, "Do I have to get married... again?"

DeGeneres replied, "You were not married," clearly forgetting an entire segment about Perry and then-husband Russell Brand's married life on her show.

"It's been a long time," Perry told her, referring to her marriage and subsequent divorce in 2012. She initially ignored DeGeneres' questions asking her who she was married to before identifying her former groom as Brand.

Though DeGeneres said she forgot, Perry pointed out that the host previously gave her wedding gifts on the show.

A cooking segment between DeGeneres, Nicole Kidman, and Giada De Laurentiis left viewers uneasy

The actress and the talk-show host took pointers from De Laurentiis, but the tension was evident during the 2017 segment of "The Ellen DeGeneres Show."

In the middle of a risotto ball recipe, the chef referred to Kidman as "the woman who can't cook."

The remainder of the interview was awkward, and it was clear that there was no chemistry between Kidman and De Laurentiis.

Kidman tasted the De Laurentiis' finished product and told her, "It's a little tough."

And, instead of trying to keep things on track, DeGeneres spent the entire segment eating the old food that's been sitting out too long, failing to listen to De Laurentiis, and making jokes at both of her guests' expense.

The video went viral and inspired headlines like "Ellen, Nicole Kidman, and Giada De Laurentiis cook together, but no one has any fun."

Dakota Johnson told DeGeneres that she didn't know if the talk-show host liked her

When the "Fifty Shades of Grey" actress visited "The Ellen DeGeneres Show" in 2018, the comedian gave her a hard time for not extending an invitation to her birthday party. So when DeGeneres asked why she didn't hear about Johnson's 30th birthday in 2019, the actress stood her ground.

"How was the party? I wasn't invited," DeGeneres said.

Johnson responded, "Actually no, that's not the truth, Ellen. You were invited. Last time I was on the show - last year - you gave me a bunch of s--- about not inviting you, but I didn't even know you wanted to be invited."

DeGeneres raised the point that most people prefer to be invited to parties, making the moment even more uncomfortable.

"I didn't even know you liked me," Johnson told her, leading DeGeneres to say that it was always evident that she was fond of the actress.

Johnson then assured DeGeneres that she was invited but decided not to come, getting confirmation from her off-stage team, who claimed that she was "out of town." The host then segwayed into talking about comedian Tig Notaro, who performed a set at Johnson's party.

"She's my favorite comedian," the actress told DeGeneres, who looked shocked.

Johnson then got up and pretended to leave the tense interaction.

Wendy Williams told DeGeneres that some people think she looks like Justin Bieber

During a game of celebrity-themed "Heads Up," Williams was tasked with describing the "Baby" singer without naming him.

"As much as I want to not like him, I love his new song, and he really is cute. Some people say that he looks like you," Williams said.

When DeGeneres looked surprised and didn't respond, Williams turned to the audience and added, "I've heard that. You've never heard that? They say it in a good way."

DeGeneres quizzed Taylor Swift about her dating history

When Swift visited "The Ellen DeGeneres Show" in 2012 to promote her album "Red," the host dedicated an entire segment to the singer's love life.

Right off the bat, DeGeneres referred to Zac Efron as Swift's boyfriend, despite the musician's insistence that they never dated. Even as the host began asking about "Red," she steered the conversation back to her guest's personal life.

Because Swift stayed tight-lipped about her past partners, DeGeneres projected photographs of men on a large screen and told the artist to ring a bell if the individual in the picture inspired the breakup track "We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together."

Swift refused, telling DeGeneres that the song's meaning was the "one shred of dignity I have left," but the host prodded. After DeGeneres cycled through a slideshow of men, Swift pleaded for her to stop.

"This makes me feel so bad about myself. Every time I come up here, you put a different dude up there on the screen, and it makes me really question what I stand for as a human being," she told DeGeneres.

Read the original article on Insider