Saturday, August 18, 2007

What is a reality show but a script?

I call this the end of imagination and creativity. But both died out in Hollywood a long time ago.
As reality producers have been forced to reach further to invent something new or exciting, many shows have apparently left reality behind. The Discovery Channel last month said it would re-edit some episodes of “Man vs. Wild” after a British television network reported that the show’s star, adventurer Bear Grylls, was staying in a hotel on some nights when the show depicted him sleeping in the wild.

The Oxygen cable network heavily promoted a reality show that featured the actress Tori Spelling investing her inheritance from her television producer father, Aaron Spelling, in a bed and breakfast that she was to run with her husband, only to have it later revealed that she never actually bought the property. A lawsuit filed in New York last month charged Gordon Ramsey, star of the upcoming reality show “Ramsey’s Kitchen Nightmares,” with faking scenes, including hiring actors to pose as customers. The parties were ordered to go to arbitration by a Manhattan judge.

Until “Kid Nation,” no reality show had focused on taking a group of children from their homes and placing them in unknown situations, forced to deal with whatever arises and recording the results.

Just days after the shooting of “Kid Nation” ended, an anonymous letter was sent to the New Mexico governor’s office, the attorney general’s office and the sheriff of Santa Fe County, spelling out the bleach-drinking incident and other potentially harmful circumstances. That was followed three weeks later by a letter from Ms. Miles, the parent of Divad, that detailed many of the same incidents and injuries.

The program, which is scheduled to have its premiere on Sept. 19, was produced on the Bonanza Creek Movie Ranch, located on several thousand acres about eight miles south of Santa Fe. The ranch contains several dozen buildings in various locations, most of which were built for the filming and production of movies like “Into the West” and “Silverado.”
"Kid Nation" from the folks who brought us RatherGate.

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