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Jennifer Saunders: Live webchat, Thursday 10 October, 12.15-1.15pm

(174 Posts)
RachelMumsnet (MNHQ) Mon 07-Oct-13 17:30:18

Jennifer Saunders is joining us this Thursday (10 October) between 12.15 and 1.15 pm to tell us about her memoir: Bonkers, My Life in Laughs.

Jennifer has been making us laugh since the early 80's; from Comic Strip through to French and Saunders, to the universally acclaimed Ab Fab with plenty of hilarious sketches thrown in (remember Comic Relief's take on Mama Mia?). We're delighted that we've been allowed access to some of the fabulous pics from the book which you can now see in our Gallery: The Many Faces of Jennifer Saunders.

Join us at 12.15 on Thursday to speak to Jennifer LIVE or if you're unable to make that time, post a question to her in advance on this thread.

DoItTooJulia Mon 07-Oct-13 20:05:31

Wow! How exciting!

My question is: how did you realise you were funny?

PuzzleRocks Mon 07-Oct-13 20:32:51

What was your proudest career moment? Do you think you get the recognition you deserve for proving women are just as far more hilarious than men. Do you think it's harder for women comics now or when you were starting out?

What advice do you have for mothers of girls?
Did you find your girls never had any shortage of "friends" and was it an issue sorting the genuine from the starstruck?

Did you think Ade would win Masterchef? Who is the better cook in the Saunders/Edmondson household.

Kudos to you for your laptime on TopGear. What's your favourite car?

Screw the one question limit, this is Jennifer friggin Saunders.

offtogetmesomebrains Mon 07-Oct-13 20:36:35

Hi Jennifer,

I read your interview in the Guardian last week and was quite taken by the bit about you appearing frightening or aloof to other people. I was lucky enough to inherit my mother's 'face like a slapped arse'. I've been told it's quite intimidating to outsiders even when I'm merely contemplating what I'm going to have for my tea. I'm really quite a gentle person inside. To counteract my mean exterior I work really hard contorting my facial muscles into what I think is a mood-neutral shape when I'm meeting new folk. It's pretty exhausting, and quite probably I look a tad on the constipated side.

Basically I was wondering if your blank/frightening/aloof expression bothers you or has been a hindrance to you?

(God…that's sounds pretty rude. Sorry! Clearly it's not just my facial expression that is inappropriate…)

ExitPursuedByABear Mon 07-Oct-13 20:46:45

Oh I have the scary face problem too.

I am more interested in your return to the saddle. Are you still riding?

owlface Mon 07-Oct-13 21:01:23

Are you still doing ballet? It was really inspiring for me to see your At The Barre documentary.

member Mon 07-Oct-13 21:01:36

Did you feel your hand was forced into writing your memoir after the release of an unauthorised biography which was cobbled together from press reports already in the public domain?

I used to frequent a pub in Aberdeen with one of your brothers 25 years shockago - I hope S is well!

buttermellow Mon 07-Oct-13 21:13:12

Of all the television shows and films that you've done, which was the most enjoyable to star in?

cocoleBOO Mon 07-Oct-13 22:06:20

God how exciting!

Any chance of any more Jam And Jerusalem?

And on a shallow note you have fabulous skin smile

midwifeandmum Mon 07-Oct-13 22:40:56

Oh dear if i wrote my memoirs. I think ppl would go blind if they read it dont tell my bosses at the nhs lol

Sooo excited to ask u a question jennifer, im a big fan.
I see ur daughter was born on same day and year as me 1986.
Sorry im rambling, just im a mega fan.
Some of my best laughs have been from your acting.
How do u keep a straight face when acting out those scenes?

Devoncalling123 Mon 07-Oct-13 22:42:15

Now that you and Adrian are grandparents, how do you both find this new role for you?

Ledkr Mon 07-Oct-13 23:09:03

Hi Jennifer.
I just want to thank you for making Ab Fab.
It has truly given my friends and I such a laugh, I've even been in a similar wine tasting "Inccident" to you and Patsy.
As I fellow breast cancer survivor I was sad when you had your diagnosis, I noticed you kept very quiet about it, was that deliberate because do many celebrities are very public about it, I actually found it refreshing that you didn't.
Btw you are looking fabulous.

BewitchedBotheredandBewildered Tue 08-Oct-13 01:04:50

I'm hoping I can claim to be one of your earliest fans ( as opposed to oldest) having seen you and Dawn at the Pavilion Theatre, Brighton, in 1977/78?
I'm not sure I really have a question to ask, but I would love to know how you teased Patsy out of Joanna Lumley.

Huge admiration and respect for your determined privacy.

Am actually choking a bit here, I think you are amazing.


Sparklingbrook Tue 08-Oct-13 12:18:48

Jennifer, my favourite sketch ever was the Wagon Wheel one when Dawn is trying to get the huge Wagon Wheel. Plus the school trip one 'this is sensible footwear for geography field trip Miss'. grin
Oh, and the chambermaid sketch.

Oh and envy at being married to Ade Edmonson.

Ooh bit gushy there. Sorry!

merlin Tue 08-Oct-13 12:27:43

Jennifer just wanted to say that Five Go Mad in Dorset is still one of my all time faves! "Ooh Timmy you're so licky" and "bags of tomatoes and lashings of ginger beer" are often quoted in this house!!

I loved the more recent 'grown up ' version too!

Carlammc1 Tue 08-Oct-13 15:12:28

I am am a brand new fan. I saw a few Ab Fab episodes 10 years ago on BBC America, and looked it up again on Youtube recently. Only to discover the actress behind the character! Now I am discovering more and more hilarious skits and shows! I am in love with French and Saunders!

My question is: Have you every been badly hurt from any of the comedy tripping over things or falls to the ground?

ICameOnTheJitney Tue 08-Oct-13 15:14:53

Hi Jennifer....I'd like to ask a question about being a female comedy writer. I was commissioned to write for the team of a BBC radio comedy series... which I won't name and I have to say it was SUCH hard work. Being the only female in the room with a bunch of loud mouthed, confident men was enough to reduce me to a very unfunny state. Maybe my skin is very thin but sometimes, I felt that some of them were deliberately poking at me with a shitty stick. I used to leave the studio and collapse in tears...with relief or disappointment I can't say.

Can you advise me on your coping strategies? What do you DO when men make you feel uncomfortable professionally...? If that's ever happened to you.

MrsBramleyApple Tue 08-Oct-13 17:28:14

Hi Jennifer.
Why do you think Viva Forever didn't take off like Mama Mia did?

headlesslambrini Tue 08-Oct-13 20:25:24

<curtsies in presence of greatness>

Who do you think is funnier - Dawn or Ade?

southeastdweller Tue 08-Oct-13 20:34:27

The Sunday Times review of your book mentioned you 'having digs at Mumsnet types'. Could you comment on that please?

invicta Tue 08-Oct-13 20:48:37


Just read your recent Daily Mail article, after being recommended it by my twin sister. We both had breast cancer, with me getting it literally as she finished her treatment. Some of the comments your article rang true - missing the radiotherapy routine and the nurses you saw daily, finding things pointless at times and how it always seems to loom large in your life. I'm coming up to the hear's anniversary of my treatment finishing. The weird thing about cancer is that I only had it for a few weeks, from diagnosis to operation. However, the treatment and mental thought process lasts a lot longer.

Confuseddd Tue 08-Oct-13 22:58:03

Hi Jennifer, thanks for speaking out about the BBC. All the old school tie, institutional sexism and golden handshakes for execs have got right up my nose too.

What changes would you make if you were made Director General of the BBC???

kodak15 Wed 09-Oct-13 00:40:38

Hello, Jennifer. I first saw you on BBC America in 1997, not long after my mother had died from breast cancer. You and Dawn made me laugh, and I am still thankful for that. The rhetoric used with illness seems to be increasingly combative in tone (here in the U.S., one always has to fight illness), and I was just wondering what you think about it.

cassieandchloe Wed 09-Oct-13 02:10:08

Hi Jennifer,

I am a writer too, and often aspects of my dreams make it into my stories. Have you ever incorporated any scenes from your actual dreams into your writing? If so, are there any examples you would care to share with us? Thank you lovely lady, for a million and one laughs! thanks cake wine

Gigondas Wed 09-Oct-13 06:24:55

In a recent Times interview you commented on cancer survivors as attention seeking-"You suddenly get so much attention, and if you're not used to that, I bet it can sway you a little bit."

These comments caused a lot of controversy ( including on here).
I don't think anyone would think attention would make up for having cancer and particularly coping with the fear of spread or recurrence.

You have since tweeted that this was a twisted representation of what you said.

Have you any comment on what you meant to say?

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