×

Remote Controlled: Phil Rosenthal on Eating (and Laughing) His Way Around the World in ‘Somebody Feed Phil’

Welcome to “Remote Controlled,” a podcast from Variety featuring the best and brightest in television, both in front of and behind the camera.

In this week’s episode, Variety‘s executive editor of TV Debra Birnbaum talks with Phil Rosenthal, the executive producer of “Everybody Loves Raymond” who now hosts his own food/travel show on Netflix, “Somebody Feed Phil.”

The show chronicles his culinary adventures in cities around the world, including Tel Aviv, Mexico City, Bangkok, Lisbon, as well as New Orleans. “I understand not everyone can afford to go overseas,” he says. But he says his goal is to “make it not scary to travel.”

“I just want to get you to travel,” he says. “Not just because I think the world would be nice if we all were exposed to each other’s experiences. But selfishly, it’s the best gift you give to yourself.”

It all started with an episode of “Raymond,” where the show traveled to Italy along with a very reluctant Ray Romano, who doesn’t like to leave home. But the actor fell in love with the experience. “He got it!” says Rosenthal. “The light bulb went off. And since then, I’ve wanted to do a show where I could turn other people on to how great it is to travel. And I’m using food and humor as the way to get you.”

Humor is a big part of the show (“Food is the great connector and laughs are the cement,” he says), but nothing is scripted (“We don’t fake one thing,” he says). But he acknowledges “the show is in fact part sitcom,” admitting that he’s become a character himself in his own series. “It’s funny when I’m uncomfortable,” he says. And he jokes he’s got the world’s worst poker face, so he can’t hide what he really thinks about what he’s eating.

Among the other recurring characters are Rosenthal’s parents, who make an appearance in the show as well as in an upcoming promo, where they try (hilariously) to find Netflix on their TV. “It’s a minute of true Jews and technology,” says Rosenthal with a laugh.

Rosenthal says he’s open to eating anything, but “I’m not crazy about bugs.” And although he ranges from high-end restaurants to street food, he says he prefers street food. “I’d rather have a great hot dog than a mediocre four-star meal,” he says.

You can listen to this week’s podcast here:

New episodes of “Remote Controlled” are available every Friday, and you can find past episodes here.

More TV

  • Harley Quinn DC Universe

    4 Things We Learned at TCA 2019: Day 1

    The 2019 Television Critics Association summer press tour kicked off on Tuesday with presentations from DC Universe, A+E Networks, and Nat Geo. DC Universe, the DC-branded streaming service, brought their adult animated series based on “Harley Quinn,” while A+E brought along a range of projects from across their portfolio. It was also announced that A+E [...]

  • The Boys Amazon Prime

    TV News Roundup: Amazon Drops 'The Boys' Final Trailer (Watch)

    In today’s roundup, USA releases the trailer for the second season of “The Purge” and Amazon drops the final trailer before “The Boys” launches.  RENEWALS Viceland has renewed the pro wrestling docu-series “Dark Side of the Ring” for a second season. The upcoming season will feature 10 hour-long episodes chronicling the lives of wrestlers inside [...]

  • WGA West Logo

    WGA West Unveils Candidates for Election That Reflects Discord Over Agency Campaign

    The WGA West has unveiled the slate of candidates for officer posts and board seats in the election that reflects the divisions among members over the guild’s handling of the campaign to reform its rules governing talent agents. Scribes Phyllis Nagy (“Carol”) and William Schmidt (“Yellowstone”) are set to challenge David Goodman for the president’s [...]

  • The Code CBS

    'The Code' Canceled After One Season on CBS

    Freshman military drama “The Code” is officially done at CBS. The news comes just one day after the show’s season finale, which will now serve as the show’s series finale. “Thank you to all you wonderful people who watched [‘The Code’],” series star Dana Delany wrote on Twitter. “Last night was our finale and sadly, [...]

  • Matt Tolmach'Venom' film premiere, Arrivals, Los

    Amazon to Develop Human IPO Series With Matt Tolmach Producing

    Amazon is developing a series inspired by the true story of a man who sold shares of himself to investors, Variety has learned. In a competitive situation, Amazon has landed the project, titled “JNNA.” It is described as a half-hour comedy about the next big investment craze — humans. It is inspired by Mike Merrill, [...]

  • Olympics

    NBCUniversal Projects More Than $1.2 Billion in Ad Sales for 2020 Olympics

    NBCUniversal projected it would sell more than $1.2 billion in advertising for its 17 days of broadcasts of the 2020 Olympics from Tokyo, citing the event as a rare opportunity for Madison Avenue to reach big audiences without the worry of politics getting in the way of a commercial message. The Olympics is “one of [...]

  • R Kelly Sexual Assult Accusations Mugshot

    'Surviving R. Kelly' Follow Up, Jeffrey Epstein Docuseries in the Works at Lifetime

    Lifetime is working on a follow up to the hit docuseries “Surviving R. Kelly” and a new docuseries about Jeffrey Epstein. Rob Sharenow, president of programming for A+E Networks, made the announcements at the Television Critics Association summer press tour on Tuesday. “The Aftermath” will be a four-part series featuring interviews with new survivors, psychologists, [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content