Become a reality television star
Reality television programs offer an excellent opportunity for aspiring actors and everyday people to get television exposure and win money or other prizes. Quite a few stars of reality shows have gained celebrity status because of the exposure they received on reality TV shows.
Reality Show Casting Basics
Most reality shows maintain websites with all the information applicants need to set up reality casting calls. Be sure to read all the fine print, because if you fail to follow the instructions to the letter, your application will probably be deleted. Many television network websites have information about current reality shows as well as details of a new reality show they may have coming down the pipeline.
When directors are in the process of casting reality TV shows, they are looking for everyday people, not professional actors; hiring an agent or taking acting classes is not necessary. Casting directors like to see colorful and unusual personalities, so try to overcome any shyness and highlight your unique qualities and experiences in your application or audition. Many reality shows strive to include contestants with strong personalities in the hopes of engineering conflicts among the contestants; thus, you shouldn't be shy about giving your opinions when asked.
In your application or audition, be sure to tell the casting director exactly how the show will change your life. When casting reality TV, the director and TV producer are looking for contestants whose lives will be greatly impacted (for better or for worse) by being on the show. Don't try to create a character; be yourself, but be your biggest and brightest self!
Which Reality TV Shows Are Right for You?
With the proliferation of reality shows on television, sorting them all out can be confusing. Broadly speaking, reality TV shows can be classified into the following categories:
- Documentary-style or "fly on the wall" programs; examples include The Real World, Big Brother and COPS
- Dating competitions, like The Bachelor, The Bachelorette and A Shot at Love
- Job and talent search shows, including America's Next Top Model, So You Think You Can Dance? and The Apprentice
- Fear-based shows, such as Fear Factor
- Sports shows like The Ultimate Fighter and Tough Enough
- Makeover or self-improvement shows, including Extreme Makeover, Supernanny and The Bad Girls Club
- Renovation and makeover shows, such as Extreme Makeover: Home Edition and Pimp My Ride
- Hidden camera shows, like the venerable Candid Camera and the newer Punk'd
- Social experiment shows, like Wife Swap and Faking It