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Steve Harvey Gets Extremely Honest About How We See Him On TV: ‘I’m Tired Of Showing That Side Of Me’

There’s a version of Steve Harvey we all know and love. He’s “Mr. Blue Cheese” himself. His big suits were legendary decades before Robert Pattinson went viral for them at the recent Batman premiere. But it’s his particular brand of comedy and Favorite Uncle persona, across various television shows over the years, that have turned him into an icon in his own right. Yet the talk show host is now being extremely honest about reality versus his TV image, saying, “I’m tired of showing that side of me.”

For the recent cover of Paper Magazine, the 65-year-old was interviewed by none other than Michael B. Jordan, who currently dates his daughter, Lori Harvey. The Creed actor noted how he’s obviously gotten familiar with his girlfriend's father on a personal level, following years of only having a perception from seeing him on The Steve Harvey Show as a youth. Still, Jordan asked on behalf of the fans, if there’s an actual difference between the star's media persona and his actual self. He responded that there’s a “huge difference,” adding:

Family Feud is the biggest game show in the world. I’m on TV seven days a week, sometimes multiple times a day in a city. And I’m an entertainer, I’m happy. My job is to put a smile on people’s faces, young or old. I take that responsibility seriously, but that image is only a part of the day. What I’m doing moving forward, I’m tired of showing that side of me. ’Cause you see it everywhere. What I want them to see is: Who is the dude that built this life? Who is the hustler and the grinder that makes this life for his family? That creates this lifestyle for his wife, children and grandchildren? Who is that dude, because that dude is different than the finished product you get to see on TV, ’cause it ain’t all champagne pops and giggles, man. It ain’t.

A full Paper Magazine spread in Balenciaga is certainly one way to showcase a more serious side than his usual happy-go-lucky game show fare. The Hollywood vet shared that he found it easier to get the fame and success than to maintain it long-term, which he compares to doing 100 push-ups and then having to hold the position for the duration of one’s career.

He’s now headlining a new show called Judge Steve Harvey, which is akin to Family Feud with a gavel. But in the interim of the last 30-plus years in showbiz, he's explained that he’s been through the ringer: two divorces, business deals gone bad, living in his car for 3 years at one point, et cetera – all while having to be the personality we all know and love. He recognizes that his brand game is strong, but there’s apparently a lot more than meets the eye. As he put it to Michael B. Jordan:

It’s what you do in the movie, where everybody’s waiting on Creed to come out, right? But don’t nobody know it’s been three years in the making. Don’t nobody know how many trips into the gym you really had to do to get here. Don’t nobody know that you got to grapple with your personal life, your family life, your business life and then you got to get in front of that camera and be this dude that’s gonna show up for 90 minutes.

Steve Harvey’s fashion choices have seen a change in evolution of late as well. And fans are loving the pastel and silk of it all. However, the actor swears that part was “accidental.” He told the outlet that his wife just wanted him to do something different from his traditional 3-piece suit. Yet, previously, the entertainer had blamed Celebrity Family Feud for his former attire, which supposedly was missing only one element in his view.

In actuality, the game show funnyman wants everyone to know that he’s a lot more “serious” and “cool” in his regular life. This includes sipping Cognac and smoking cigars as a “yoga experience.” It also entails a lot of prayer and “deep thought about the future” as he plots his continued relevancy in a fluctuating entertainment industry. One thing, though, he knows will never happen for him: high-top sneakers paired with a suit. He said, “It'd be taking the pimp out of me and I can't do that.”

So say we all, Steve. So say we all. Fans can still tune in for his TV persona on Judge Steve Harvey on ABC on Tuesdays at 8 p.m. EST or stream it with a Hulu subscription!

Lauren Vanderveen
Lauren Vanderveen

Freelance writer. Favs: film history, reality TV, astronomy, French fries.