The Assistant Files, Vol. 51: Daryn Carp, Bravo’s Andy Cohen
Get ready: It’s Assistant Files time! Coming at you this week is Andy Cohen‘s go-to girl, Daryn Carp. But she goes way beyond just being his multi-tasking assistant; she helped him start his own production firm, Most Talkative, she creates and hosts the hilarious webseries @sk Andy, and so much more. From attending Real Housewives reunions to walking Andy’s semi-famous dog, this is one gig with a number of viewer-friendly perks.
BY DENA SILVER
What’s your background like?
I’m 26 years old, I grew up in Montclair, New Jersey–right outside the city. I went to school in Pennsylvania at Lafayette College and I was a neuroscience psychology major.
So how did you end up in the entertainment industry?
I always had this big dream of being a game show host…a dream I still have! I didn’t necessarily want to go to a communications school, so I wanted to have a backup degree in case my dreams didn’t work out. When I was a senior, I applied to the NBC Page program and got in.
What brought you to Bravo?
I was a page for eight and a half months, when my page program bosses found out about an open position for a production development coordinator at Bravo. They pulled me in because I had been very vocal from the beginning about what I wanted to do. I wasn’t sure if I was ready to leave the page program because I still had a solid three and a half months left, but I knew I had to take advantage of that opportunity. I didn’t know the job was to assist Andy Cohen, though!
What was the interview process like?
There were four rounds of interviews. My first two were with HR, just to get generic info. on who I was and my interest in television. My second-round interview is where I found out that I’d be assisting Andy. Admittedly, I didn’t really know much about Andy, and I wasn’t the biggest Bravo fan at all. I had to study up. My third interview was with the assistant previous to me, and the fourth was with Andy.
What was it like being Andy’s assistant?
When I first started, Andy was EVP of development for original programming at Bravo, so it was a lot of admin work and juggling a lot of schedules. Back then he wasn’t as big of a talent as he is now; he was on air one night a week when I started.
Give us the skinny on Andy’s food preferences, please!
He doesn’t drink coffee, just Earl Grey tea. I’ve only ever gotten him one lunch, ever, in over three years. His usual lunch, if he’s in the office, is a grilled chicken wrap with lettuce. On the side is grilled mushrooms, onions, and broccoli. He’s a man of health! Meanwhile, I’m usually eating a cheeseburger and fries.
What do you love about your job?
Definitely having the flexibility to pursue my own career while having Andy support my dreams and mentor me. I couldn’t ask for a better situation.
We have to know. Do you get to attend the Real Housewives reunions?
Anywhere Andy is, I pretty much go. The reunion tapings for Housewives are all-day shoots, so it’s a huge process. Anytime you’re sitting there, being interviewed for nine hours, it’s going to be an intense situation. But, to be honest, they’re super interesting. And you learn more about the ladies in those types of scenarios than you would on the reality series.
What’s the one part of your job that you’re not such a huge fan of?
I don’t love booking travel. I get very nervous to plan any sort of big personal travel thing for Andy because if I mess that up, I know that that’s his vacation time. And I don’t want to mess up his vacation time.
How particular is Andy about his travel?
Absolutely aisle seat, every single time, but never the front row in first class, because he likes to put his luggage underneath his seat. I’ve learned that the hard way.
Do you hang with Andy’s dog, Wacha, often?
I was involved in the adoption process pretty much from the get-go. Andy had me look up a couple rescue dogs online, I had sent him a bunch of sites, and he was going to go with a different dog originally, but we sort of talked him out of it. I’ve walked Wacha few times, even though that’s not in my job description. When I walk Wacha around the city, more people talk to me because they either recognize him or they just fall in love with his sweet dogface.
Have you ever been to his Hamptons house?
No, I’ve never been! I mean, hello, it’s been three years; I’m waiting for my invitation!
Do fans ever send Andy strange gifts?
Oh yeah, they send weird things. I’ve gotten a lot of paintings of him over the years. Once, a woman made this doll of Andy out of cotton and human hair. It was very, very interesting.
How do people react when they meet Andy?
Girls will flip for that guy! I mean, I’m a lesbian and he gets more girls then I ever could in a million years. Saying I’m Andy Cohen’s assistant? Girls just love it for some reason!
Duly noted! So, back to Bravo matters. You took on the task of @sk Andy. What that’s all about?
Andy used to have this blog on the Bravo’s website called Viewer Mail, where he’d field a bunch of questions from actual viewers and answer them off-the-cuff, while his old assistant filmed it on a flip phone. But after he became a bigger talent on Watch What Happens Live, I knew I could make it better. I went to my producer who was also a Page and we just sort of formed this idea of doing funny bits mixed with Viewer Mail. We write, shoot, and edit everything. All we need is ten minutes of Andy’s time every two weeks.
Are the questions for @sk Andy strictly from fans?
They’re all fan-based. We want to keep it that way, unless there’s something that we need to spark in him, so every once in a while, we might encourage that through our friend’s Twitter handles.
But we heard you’re not at Bravo full-time anymore. True or false?
I’m technically not an NBC employee and I’m only attached to Bravo only how Andy is; through Watch What Happens Live and through The Real Housewives. I left Bravo in January to start a production company with Andy, called Most Talkative. We have a few things in the works right now, but it’s very new concept. It’s really all about Andy taking his production eye and shooting it out to the world, so he’s very particular about what he wants to do and not do.
What do you do at Most Talkative?
My proper title there is chief of staff. Granted, there’s no staff at Most Talkative, aside from me and Andy. But when there is a staff, I will be chief of them.
So now what are your daily duties like?
The days vary because I like to consider myself as a professional problem solver. As problems arise, I take care of them in every sort of capacity. My hours have shifted a little bit since I started working on Most Talkative and now I have all these extra projects that I work on. ‘Ask Andy’ is my own thing, but I also do Bravo correspondent work, so no two days are the same. The correspondent work involves working the red carpet for our big events, and I usually do behind the scenes footage for any reunion show we’re doing. For example, I did the red carpet for NBCU’s Upfronts.
How would you define your relationship with Andy?
We’re kind of like frick and frack. Being with him for more than three years, he’s become more than just my mentor. He’s my father, my brother, and my child, depending on the day or the task. Our main thing is to give each other crap. That’s our shtick; he loves being playful and hard on me, just for fun.