Showing posts with label reality TV. Show all posts
Showing posts with label reality TV. Show all posts

8.24.2011

Tales From Reality TV...The Bathroom Edition

After last weeks tale of reality TV wedding chaos,
I though I'd share another one of my adventures on TV.
This one is a little different.
It was on a major cable channel,
but it too involved chaos.
It began innocently enough...back in my wedding planning hey day I had contact with a lot of TV peeps - someone was always looking for a bride, groom or vendor to be on a "new" show. One day a producer for a "talk show" called to see if any of my brides wanted to be on a particular show. There were requirements: you had to be a busy woman, you had to be available the next day for filming, you had to own a house, and have a big bathroom.

This particular segment was for a master bathroom makeover...not a full makeover, just a easy-peasy accessorizing makeover to make you feel like you are in a spa when you come home at the end of a busy day.

After a few attempts at finding a bride, I called the producer to tell her it was a no-go...she said "Do you want to do it?" At this time my son was about 1 and she thought it would be perfect to create a spa like oasis for a busy working mom.

Let me think...you are going to fancy up my master bathroom (which was huge but blah). YES! I am a glutton for punishment (this happened after Part 1). I completely understood that there would be no new tile, vanity, etc...that this was a cosmetic/accessory fix. Still..no problem...sign me up!

Here is where it gets good...
I get Mom on board to watch Joe.
I clean the bathroom.
I buy a new outfit.
My husband rolls his eyes.

The next morning, the crew arrives and spend hours setting up in the upstairs bathroom - lighting, cameras, taking parts of my window out so they can film from the balcony.

Downstairs, the on site producer interviews me...
asks to film me interacting with my son...
yells cut...
then the producer says to my mom...
"Take him. We are done with both of you. You can leave."
That was so warm and fuzzy right?

Finally the "host" shows up...late and complaining...and way too full of herself.
She goes up stairs to scope out "the set."

I head up stairs, I find the host laying on my bed - waiting. Wow that is class!

They do the reveal. Here is where I have to act...I was expecting a beautifully appointed master bath - candles, towels, shelving, plants, etc...but I got:
a two seafoam green towels,
a tabletop fountain,
and a Pepto-Bismol pink robe.

I take a BIG breath and put on my happy face,
"Oh wow...this is so gorgeous. Just what I need after a hard day. You all are so amazing." (BLEK!)

In actuality it looked like they went to the clearance section at Bed, Bath, and Beyond...which I later found out that is what they did.

The host then says...
"Why don't you take a break now and enjoy your gorgeous bathroom."
I am handed the robe. Yep, they want me to put that on and be filmed looking like a Hostess Sno-ball. Then they ask me to get into the bath (while wearing a bathing suit - thank god the getting in part was not filmed!).

Now the real fun begins...they have been at my house for 10 hours, insulted my mom, insulted me, slept on my bed, and now everyone is frantic because...
"We are losing light!"
Now we go into fast forward....

"Get in the tub...close your eyes relax...say something relaxing...say something witty."
You have to get this right we have 5 minutes.

HALT...
The camera crew on the balcony has freaked my dog out - he starts barking and trying to jump over the fence - scratching and howling galore.

The neighbors hear the commotion...
they call...I cannot answer - I am in the bath...
they come over...ding-dong...
I jump out put on my GORGEOUS pink robe...answer the door tell them what is happening...puzzled looks on their faces.
Run back upstairs, jump in the bath...
finishing filming...
or so I think...

...I hear hubby (I so thought they would be done before he got home) the producer and host (if you only knew who this was...but I won't say!) tell my husband he needs to go find some place else to hang out for a couple hours.

Pin drop....

That did not just happen...oh yes it did. A few "nice" words later,
hubby goes downstairs to wait. He gives them 20 minutes to finish and be out.

I am finally down with my "relaxing" bath. I get dressed. I talk to the producers. They start packing up the accessories. Um, I thought I got to keep the decor...
that is what Producer #1 said.
"Oh no honey...we need this for filming in the studio.
Then we will messenger it back to you."

I am slightly dumbfounded but at this point exhausted
and beat up and just want them out of my house.

After they leave I find the host's very expensive shoes.
I call Producer #1...she calls back 2 days later.
I ask her about the decor/props/etc.
Ya know...when might I be getting them back.
Her: "Oh we returned those items to the store."
Me: "I thought I was supposed to get them."
Her: "Oh yes, but we found out we were over budget...so we had to take them back."
Me:"...even the robe I wore."
(Yes it was ugly, but seriously at least throw me a bone)
Her: "Yes. All of it. I'll send a messenger for the shoes."
Click.
That was it.

Sno-Ball or have seafoam green towels or a table top fountain...but it was the point of it.

This experience was very different than my other experience...there was not a million dollars involved, just an ugly worn pink fluffy bathrobe (shudder) and a very irritated husband.

For all of my bad tales...
I do have two really good ones...
anyone want to hear those?
I know, I know...
tears and drama and much more exciting
and make better TV than happy, happy!

Whew...sorry that was long!
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8.18.2011

Tales From Reality TV

This has been a rough week so far.
So I am giving you a blast from the past....
I LOVE reality TV (sad, but true)
And once upon a time I was on a few shows (just once).
Here's my tale...

(this is not the couple in the story...they chose to remain anonymous)


For some background...It was the height of wedding craziness in L.A. Wedding planners were vying for top billing and over the top weddings. New bridal magazines were being published... and television shows developed on what seemed like a daily basis. In the email inbox was a constant flow of teasers for auditions. So, no, my tale is not one of taking my top off to date a has-been rock star or a middle aged (although HOT!) soap opera stud...my trashy reality show had much more tame content, but was trashy nonetheless.
How to Make a Beautiful Bride Ugly
In my ultra-glam life as a wedding planner in L.A., I was introduced to some casting directors at an industry event. They were there with a purpose, of course - casting a new reality show for a major cable channel. Armed with their video camera, the group was asking wedding planners "How would you plan a wedding for $5,000?" Apparently my charm and smart ass comment was a hit. Oh, you want to know my answer "Drive-thru McDonalds - a complete meal and a party favor - and call it a day."

Yes, that lovely answer got my foot in the door. By the time I auditioned for "The Show," I was feeling pretty confident. One of the casting directors had taken a liking to me (not that kind of a liking...he liked boys!). He told me what to wear, what they were looking for, and that I was one of the top four already. He even told me what my role was - they needed a stern but lavish planner, an eccentric male planner, and a best friend planner - that was to be me!

I arrived, portfolio in hand and looking oh so fabulous...only to be greeted by a waiting room of my peers. No worries - I had this in the bag (I really did). But, my oh my, let the snarky comments commence! The competition was fierce...seriously do not EVER underestimate the competitive nature of the wedding planner. After enduring hours of the planners worrying, wondering, invasive questions, and making flippant comments when the producers were in ear shot..."How would I ever find time to do this - you know with a baby and all?"..."Aren't you too booked with real weddings to handle one more gig?" "I thought you were moving?"...finally it was my turn to take the stage.

I make my video, meet with the producers, and in an instant I am being whisked into another room to talk money, time commitments, and meet with the writer (yes, people, reality shows have writers and producers encouraging certain "things" to happen.") What just happened here? Oh, I was hired! I am handed a contract that basically reads:


"You agree to work for two months on end, 24/7 and earn peanuts for pay...starting the day after tomorrow. We will call you at all hours of the night. You will provide us with any and all information you have collected through your years as a wedding planner. We will abuse you. You cannot tell anyone what you are doing. If you mess up, you owe us $1,000,000. Please sign and return this in twelve hours."

I am assigned a couple...a very cute, young, charming couple. The writer tells me to give her four scenarios and themes for "my couple" within the next two hours. OK, get real, this is L.A. - it will take that long just to get back to the office. They don't care - "This is Hollywood, baby!" I am to come back tomorrow to present the idea in person along with all vendors and props. I work all night, ignore my family, and shop for my props (spending my own $$).

In the morning, I chat...argue..with the writer (YES...reality shows have writers - IMAGINE!). It seems they don't really want a $5,000 wedding. They want a $50,000 wedding basically given to them for free by my contacts in the industry. They are, however, going to pass it off as a $5,000 wedding. They also ask me to "create conflict" and go against everything the couple has asked for. For example, my bride was modern and edgy - she was in a rock band - but she explicitly stated she wanted a white wedding dress. They refused to let me dress her in white...I could pick black, pink, or yellow. "Hello, I thought I was the planner?" I quickly learned that many reality shows don't necessarily want happy...they want drama, they want tears...anyway they can get it.

The next day, as I prepare to return for the second part of the audition, I get a phone call. Seriously, I am in my car driving north. The conversation goes something like this...
Producer: "No need to come in today."
Me: "Oh, are we rescheduling? I am totally ready."
Producer: "No, we won't be needing your services anymore."
Me: "May I ask why?"
Producer: "You ideas are not working for us."
*CLICK*
Me: "Hello..."

WTF! What just happened!? I am all kinds of ticked off...and sad...and totally bewildered. I was genuinely excited about this project and it turned into a big fiasco. Within the hour, I start getting phone calls from my industry contacts...all the ones I had provided them with. They had all been contacted by the show and been asked to participate. I must say, I have some pretty amazing wedding pals, because when they were told I was no longer working on the project, the said "No!" Yes, they ROCK!

So, yes, the show was produced, and it ran for two seasons. The wedding I was supposed to be a part of was just awful - they tried to implement many of my ideas - they even used my quote...they sucked at it! They even managed to turn one of the most beautiful brides - inside and out - into an ugly mess.(the photo above is NOT her).


After that I was on three to four other shows  - they are not all like the situation I describe above. Another wedding show I was a part of was lovely and the producers, etc. were fabulous to  work with (but they liked tears too - good or bad).

But wait...I was in a design-type situation on a show and that was a fiasco...maybe I should share that too?


So...do you love or hate reality TV?
If you love it, what's your favorite show?


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There is still time to enter to win a copy of the Magic Warble by Victoria Simcox!
Just visit the giveaway post!

7.18.2011

New Design Star Episode Tonight!

So, did you watch it? Did you Catch Design Star last week?
I watched it twice. I LOVE that show.

I will have to say I usually pick my "winner" during the first show, but this season i cannot quite put my finger on it...I want to see more. In fact, I am always a little sad when the first designer gets voted off...sometimes nerves and circumstance get the best of them and they never get their chance to shine.

BUT...Tonight,
Monday 7/18/11 at 9/8c on HGTV,
I get my second chance to check out Design Star
and try to make my prediction.
I will say that for the premiere episode, I wholeheartedly agreed with the judges on the room they selected to win. The bonus room designed by Karl and Kellie is fabulous - such a great use of space. I can imagine myself cozied up in that bonus room nook reading my favorite magazines!

I LOVED that mural painted by Karl (I kind of love Karl so far too).

In the Living Room designed by Leslie and Cathy, I liked a good portion of what they did, but Leslie's find of that table made of old rubber tires was AMAZING! What a cool piece that is contemporary and modern but looks fabulous in this room and is such a great focal point.

I also liked Meg and Tyler's bedroom...
of course I did it was a shade of purple
(and we know how I feel about purple)!

Be sure to check out Design Star tonight at 9/8c on HGTV!

So, did you watch?
What was your favorite piece?
Who's your favorite designer?
I must add that David Bromstad is super charming as this seasons mentor! 
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Disclosure: This post is part of a sponsored campaign by Crafterminds and HGTV Design Star. My opinions are my own.

11.25.2009

How to Make a Beautiful Bride Ugly

It is that time again...Writer's Workshop at Mama Kat's.
Head on over and check it out!
My selection for this week:
#2 - Describe how your audition for a trashy reality show would go.
Boy do I have material for this!


For some background...It was the height of wedding craziness in L.A. Wedding planners were vying for top billing and over the top weddings. New bridal magazines were being published... and television shows developed on what seemed like a daily basis. In the email inbox was a constant flow of teasers for auditions. So, no, my tale is not one of taking my top off to date a has-been rock star or a middle aged (although HOT!) soap opera stud...my trashy reality show had much more tame content, but was trashy nonetheless.
 
How to Make a Beautiful Bride Ugly
In my ultra-glam life as a wedding planner in L.A., I was introduced to some casting directors at an industry event. They were there with a purpose, of course - casting a new reality show for a major cable channel. Armed with their video camera, the group was asking wedding planners "How would you plan a wedding for $5,000?" Apparently my charm and smart ass comment was a hit. Oh, you want to know my answer "Drive thru McDonalds - a complete meal and a party favor - and call it a day."

Yes, that lovely answer got my foot in the door. By the time I auditioned for "The Show," I was feeling pretty confident. One of the casting directors had taken a liking to me (not that kind of a liking...he was gay!). He told me what to wear, what they were looking for, and that I was one of the top four already. He even told me what my role was - they needed a stern but lavish planner, an eccentric male planner, and a best friend planner - that was to be me!

I arrived, portfolio in hand and looking oh so fabulous...only to be greeted by a waiting room of my peers. No worries - I had this in the bag (I really did). But, my oh my, let the snarky comments commence! The competition was fierce...seriously do not EVER underestimate the competitive nature of the wedding planner. After enduring newer planners worrying and wondering and asking constant questions, and more experienced planners commenting about "How would I find time to do this with a baby and all," every time the producer came out, it was my turn to take the stage.

I make my video, meet with the producers, and in an instant I am being whisked into another room to talk money, time commitments, and meet with the writer (yes, people, reality shows have writers and producers encouraging certain "things" to happen.") What just happened here? Oh, I was hired! I am handed a contract that basically reads "You agree to work for two months on end with peanuts for pay...starting the day after tomorrow. We will call you at all hours of the night. You will provide us with any and all information you have collected through your years as a wedding planner. We will abuse you. You cannot tell anyone what you are doing. If you mess up, you owe us $1,000,000. Please sign and return this in twelve hours."

I am assigned a couple...a very cute, young, charming couple. The writer tells me to give her four scenarios and themes for "my couple" within the next two hours. OK, get real, this is L.A. - it will take that long just to get back to the office. They don't care - "This is Hollywood, baby!" I am to come back tomorrow to present the idea in person along with all vendors and props. I work all night, ignore my family, and shop for my props (spending my own $$).

In the morning, I chat...argue..with the writer. It seems they don't really want a $5,000 wedding. They want a $50,000 wedding basically given to them for free by my contacts in the industry. They are, however, going to pass it off as a $5,000 wedding. They also ask me to "create conflict" and go against everything the couple has asked for. For example, my bride was modern and edgy - she was in a rock band - but she explicitly stated she wanted a white wedding dress. They refused to let me dress her in white...I could pick black, pink, or yellow. "Hello, I thought I was the planner?" I quickly learned that many reality shows don't want happy...they want drama, they want tears...anyway they can get it.

The next day, as I prepare to return for the second part of the audition, I get a phone call. Seriously, I am in my car driving north. The conversation goes something like this...
Producer: "No need to come in today."
Me: "Oh, are we rescheduling? I am totally ready."
Producer: "No, we won't be needing your services anymore."
Me: "May I ask why?"
Producer: "You ideas are not wokring for us."
*CLICK*
Me: "Hello..."

WTF! What just happened!? I am all kinds of ticked off...and sad...and totally bewildered. I was genuinely excited about this project and it turned into a big fiasco. Within the hour, I start getting phone calls from my industry contacts...all the ones I had provided them with. They had all been contacted by the show and been asked to participate. I must say, I have some pretty amazing wedding pals, because when they were told I was no longer working on the project, the said "No!" Yes, they ROCK!

So, yes, the show was produced, and it ran for two seasons. The wedding I was supposed to be a part of was just awful - they tried to implement many of my ideas...they sucked at it! They even managed to turn one of the most beautiful brides - inside and out - into an ugly mess.