By Jim Schutze
By Rachel Watts
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
By Anna Merlan
By Lee Escobedo
One thing casting director Jason Horowitz says he's not looking for are people who've watched all 32 seasons of The Real World and think they have to live up--or, c'mon, down--to the show's sensibilities and standards. Just be yourself, he advises--and barring that, FF figures, just talk about how much you like having three-ways. No? That's wrong? Keep in mind there are 30,000 people vying for 13 slots--those odds are so not awesome. But as Horowitz reminds, "There are just some people meant to be on reality TV." Dunno if he meant that as a good thing. Doubt it.
So, Jason, what do you look for in a Real World or Road Rules candidate?
We look for outgoing, dynamic, energetic people who don't have a problem sharing their stories and details about their personal lives in front of millions of people.
Uh, does anybody these days? TV has become one giant confessional.
You'd be surprised. There are things people prefer to keep private, but then they don't get their 15 minutes. It's really anybody who has a different perspective. We try to, each season, present a different perspective and tell a different story than we have in the past.
I assume people will show up and just line up around the bar?
It's usually a long line. They fill out a short application, then they wait around for a little more, probably, which isn't good for them but good for us, so we can see a lot of people. Then they break up into a group of 10 to 12 of their peers and have a group discussion. We find the group discussion works for this purpose. The people with the strong opinion and personalities shine, and we don't want anyone to walk out the door feeling like they didn't have a chance. Topics run the gamut from political conversations to social conversations--anything important to 18- to 24-year-olds' lives.
Well, we get the obligatory sexual topics.
Awesome. Such as?
It depends. Dating, just any problems people have encountered, pet peeves, anything that's going to spark interest.
Most people trying out have seen The Real World. Do you worry they're trying to act like they think a cast member should?
The casting directors can spot the pretenders and people trying to give us what they think we want. If you're trying to stir up debate or controversy and you're doing it for attention, the casting director will realize it and weed you out. We don't want people to put up a front, which is difficult, because you don't have a lot of time and the casting director is looking at everyone.
Making the show's pretty slim odds.
There are 29,987 disappointed people, yeah. But every year we do sign those seven for The Real World and six for Road Rules, and the year before those people were probably watching the show on their couches. It's gotta be someone. --Robert Wilonsky
New Entries in the Dallas Dictionary
quincy (kwin’se) adj. at once underrated and overrated; see also fergainst it [Queer Eye for the Straight Guy is, like, so quincy]
bolton (bol’tun) vt. to pretend you’re taking something like a man when you can’t stop crying in public [Would you stop boltoning when I’m trying to fire you?]
ted (ted) vt. to abruptly change one’s mind for no apparent reason [You said you love me yesterday, and today you want to break up? Why you tedding me?]
lipscomb (lip’skum) n. 1. any octogenarian with cornrows. 2. any former felon with cornrows
laff riot (laf ri’et) n. any public protest in which reporters outnumber protesters [That display down at City Hall today was a laff riot]
cowboysplusdotcom (kou’boiz plus dät käm) adj. when something is overpriced, useless and sure to fail; see also cuecat [This fake Rolex I just bought from a pawn shop for $29.99 is so very cowboysplusdotcom]
kraddick (krad’ik) n. a local sensation that bombs miserably when introduced to a national audience
bullock (bul’uhk) vt. to replace a former Law & Order star as the biggest celebrity in a major metropolitan area [Dude, Angie Harmon is about to get bullocked by that chick from Speed]