The world of reality TV dating shows is full of surprises. Audiences love watching the drama unfold between contestants on popular shows like Love Island and First Dates, but little is known about what goes on behind the scenes. Over on the r/AskReddit thread, a user asked for other Redditors to share their experiences on the sets of popular dating shows. Do these reality shows live up to their names, or is everything fake?
Paid Pennies for Their Appearance
Imagine spending hours filling in long application forms, preparing for and carrying out video call interviews, and showing up on the day of a TV shoot, only to be paid $125 for your time.
This Reddit user was furious when they found out how little they were being paid for their role in a popular reality TV dating show. Some people do it for the experience of being on television, but there’s a fine line between exploitation and exposure.
Stuck in a House Together
This Redditor’s friend had the displeasure of starring in a reality TV dating show that required all of the contestants to live together in the same house. They were forced to fake romantic storylines and instigate fights for attention.
They were even given fake props to throw during arguments! And to make matters worse, they didn’t even live in the house — contestants were given free hotel stays. Audiences were misled, contestants were manipulated, but they found love in the end!
The World’s Most Stressful Wedding
Don’t Tell the Bride is a popular British reality TV show that gifts a free wedding to a happy couple. However, there’s a catch. The groom must plan every detail of the ceremony and reception, with zero input from the bride!
This Reddit user shared the story of their friend’s wedding, which caused so much stress for the groom that he looked physically ill! The participants reported all of the usual drama, including boring reshoots and exaggerated editing techniques.
Everything Is Manufactured
Okay, so American Idol isn’t exactly a reality TV dating show, but some contestants have been known to fall in love behind the scenes. This anecdote just goes to show how manufactured reality shows are, whether they are talent-based or romance-based.
This Redditor claims that their friend witnessed the filming of American Idol, during which the host made an auditionee walk around a restaurant to sing in front of unwitting diners. Producers told everyone how to react.
Terrible On-Set Treatment
We’ve established that the 2000s was a wild time for reality TV show contestants. This Reddit user was on Elimidate, another trashy dating show that was aimed at causing drama while helping singles fall in love.
The contestants were prohibited from talking to each other between takes, and they were denied food and access to their mobile phones. The producers would even take them aside after takes to try and rile them up. It sounds like a truly terrible experience!
Faking a Break-Up
This could make or break a couple. Have you ever had to fake a relationship split? That’s exactly what this couple had to do, after agreeing to appear on a reality TV dating show in the 2000s.
They were tasked with going on dates with strangers, before deciding whether they preferred their real partner or their new love interests. This couple decided to stay together, but the producers made them change their story to make a more interesting episode!
Only Scratching the Surface
This Reddit user was a contestant in a popular Netflix dating show. Although the show may appear realistic on-screen, the true events are carefully orchestrated by producers. The contestants are told where to stand and how to speak, and they often have to repeat conversations over and over again for the cameras.
The editing process is designed to create drama and entertainment for audiences, with many conversations cut short. Audiences are only seeing a small portion of their dates.
Free Candy at an Awkward Audition
This scandalous dating show Naked Attraction is controversial, for obvious reasons! Contestants volunteer to appear on the show with no clothes on, showing their body to the entire world. This brave Reddit user shared some insider information on the audition process.
They were asked to strip naked for producers, got their photo taken, and never heard from them again! At least they were given some free candy in the waiting room! This TV opportunity isn’t for the faint-hearted.
Beauty and the Geek
To make their reality TV dating show stand out from the crowd, some showrunners will come up with a wacky twist. This particular show is aimed at pairing up geeky guys with traditionally beautiful bombshells.
One Reddit user auditioned for the show, exhibiting his rap skills in the process. He didn’t get the gig, but he was given a rude awakening a few weeks later when his friend asked him to turn on his TV. They had stolen his idea!
Planted Studio Audience
This Reddit user has shed some light on the TV reality dating shows that are filmed in front of a live studio audience. Have you ever watched one of the big reunion shows that are filmed on a sound stage?
These shows tend to bring back members of the cast to stir up drama long after the cameras have stopped rolling on the main show. Everything is meticulously designed, even down to the race and age of the studio audience.
Actors Causing Trouble
This Reddit user claims that their ex-girlfriend had starred on a reality TV dating show. She apparently experienced a lot of drama on set, the majority of which was caused by planted actors/actresses! These hired guns are responsible for causing tension on set, which they accomplish by spreading rumors and spicing things up between contestants.
The contestants rarely end up together, and their love is manufactured for entertainment. If this is to be believed, then reality TV truly isn’t real!
Flirting With the Wrong Person
We head back into the First Dates restaurant with this embarrassing anecdote. One Reddit user claims to have been a contestant on the popular UK dating reality show. They had to wait for three hours before filming started, and they also had to walk into the restaurant twice to get the best shot.
The most annoying part of the evening was when they started chatting up someone at the bar, only to find out that it was their date’s sister!
The Fake House Fiasco
This 2000s dating show had a unique premise. Contestants had to dig around the bedrooms of unknown love interests, to determine whether they would be a good match based on the items found in their room!
This Redditor claims that the show was largely fake, and that the homes were rented from other families for filming purposes. Zac Efron even appeared on this show before getting his big break with Disney! Maybe he could shed some light on this claim?
Getting the Perfect Take
Here’s another story from the archives of early 2000s reality television. This Redditor was an extra in an episode of MTV’s Next. They shared an anecdote about the filming process, proving that even the smallest segment can be filmed over and over again to achieve the perfect take.
This unlucky contestant had to run off a bus and do a few backflips before being rejected by his girl. However, they had to do over 25 takes of the shot!
Real or Fake?
The world of reality TV is divisive. Some people working behind the scenes maintain that everything is fabricated. However, others maintain that these shows are largely authentic. This Reddit user believes that most of what audiences see on reality TV dating shows is real.
The manipulation happens at the level of pre-production, as the showrunners find out what will make the contestants tick. This allows them to create situations that will provoke real reactions, making audiences laugh, cry, or cringe!
Creating the Perfect Match
The success of a reality TV dating show will usually depend on how well the contestants have been matched. Producers will go to extreme lengths to ensure that the contestants will hit it off — or in some cases, have a huge fight! This Reddit user shared how producers put plenty of thought into their love match.
They had to fill out extensive questionnaires, take part in various tests, interviews, and undertake psychiatric evaluations. Creating love matches is a fine art.
Tensions Will Rise
Some reality TV dating shows revolve around contestants being cooped up in one house together. When they’re spending hours surrounded by other attractive singletons, this is where things can get juicy! However, producers often select contestants based on their personalities, deliberately putting contrasting personas in close quarters.
This environment can end up causing more fights than love affairs, especially when contestants have limited opportunities to leave the set. Shows like Big Brother and Love Island work on this premise.
First Dates Experience
Shows like First Dates are popular with audiences, as they get an insight into the initial meetings between lovers on a blind date. However, many people don’t think about the background dates that are also going on at the same time as the highlighted couples are on screen.
This Redditor shared their strange yet positive experience of being part of the show. They were told what to wear and the restaurant was quiet, but at least the waiters were nice!
It’s All About the Drama
High-intensity drama is just one of the reasons why reality TV dating shows like Love Island are so successful. And it’s no secret that producers will do anything to create drama and tension between contestants.
Meddling showrunners will often take things out of context through clever editing, or they’ll ask leading questions to make contestants second guess their actions and relationships. Some shows have even ended up in legal battles when contestants have tried to sue them over manipulated storylines.
An Unsuccessful Date
This Redditor shared a story from behind the scenes of a dating show with a twist. Contestants had to go on a date with a potential lover, but the dates all took place inside a car! At the end of the date, producers asked him if he saw a future with his date.
When he replied that they would probably stay friends, the episode was never aired. They were expected to fall in love in the span of two hours!
Keeping Lovers Apart
While some things in the reality TV world are completely fake, there are other situations that must be true to life. Capturing authentic reaction shots is important, as audiences will be able to see through the fakery of a set-up first meeting.
Therefore, on many dating shows the bachelors and bachelorettes are forbidden from meeting before the cameras are rolling. Large-scale security teams are hired to make sure that the potential lovers stay completely separate until they are on set.
Filming Out of Order
If you’re a fan of reality TV dating shows, you may be surprised to know that many sequences are filmed in the wrong order. This is often to make the filming process go more smoothly and prevent cast and crew from traveling between locations too many times.
For example, they will often record contestants getting into the cab at the end of their date before the date has even started! Contestants have to guess whether it went well or not.
Fake Love Triangle
This Redditor claims that she was an actress in the early 2000s and that her agency often supplied contestants for dating shows. The people involved in these shows often had to fake relationships for the cameras, including three actors who manufactured a messy love triangle!
It was all improvised to entertain audiences, and none of the affairs were genuine. Most viewers have an inkling that things are exaggerated for television, but this takes the fakery to a whole new level.
Stick to the Script
Reality television shows are often marketed on the promise of real situations involving real people. However, there’s a catch. Many reality TV shows (especially those produced in the early 2000s) are scripted.
Cast members usually have to express certain emotions or say certain things in order to advance the storyline, and many shows simply give the contestants a script to learn. MTV’s Next was a popular show in the early noughties, but rumors suggest that it was highly manufactured.
Cheapskate Producers Ask for Freebies
Here’s another secret from behind the scenes of the world of reality TV shows. Producers often have to stick to strict budgets, and as a result, they will do anything for a freebie. They have no shame when it comes to asking for free access to filming locations, free meals, and free products.
They often offer exposure as a form of payment for business owners. This tactic is controversial, as any businessperson will tell you that exposure doesn’t pay the bills!
Making Contestants Drink Up
Plying contestants with strong drinks is one of reality TV’s worst-kept secrets. While this seems ethically dubious, the producers of many popular reality TV dating shows will offer drinks to their cast members, which lowers their inhibitions and creates more dramatic and humorous situations for the cameras.
This Redditor’s friend was on a Bachelorette-style show, and they can confirm that this happens on set. However, their friend was made to sign a non-disclosure agreement, preventing them from exposing this.
Faking Zodiac Signs
Doce Corazones (Twelve Hearts) was a Spanish-language TV dating show that ran from 2005 to 2017. The popular show revolved around finding love based on your partner’s zodiac sign. It sounds like a great idea, but unfortunately, the show was not all that it seemed.
This Reddit user claims that they were assigned a star sign and had to pretend that they were a Sagittarius for the purpose of the show. Maybe love isn’t written in the stars, after all.
Worst Date Ever
It’s safe to say that sparks did not fly on this reality TV date. This Reddit user spoke about their experiences on a “terrible” reality TV dating show. While the producers insisted that they would set each contestant up with their perfect match, their date ended up being totally incompatible.
They even mentioned that their “dealbreaker” was one of the contestant’s favorite hobbies. It was clear that their relationship was never going to work, but that’s exactly what producers wanted.
Caught in the Axe
This Reddit user shared the story of the time they were cast as an extra on a reality TV dating show. They believed that the date was entirely fake, and that the two cast members clearly weren’t interested in each other.
It was basically a manufactured scenario, as the two lovebirds were filmed repeating segments of their date for the cameras. There was no chemistry, and the entire date looked like it had been set up for the TV production.
Producers Don’t Foot the Bill
Audiences love watching romantic reality TV shows. The popular show First Dates pairs up single people and shows what happens on their first date, as they share a meal at a fancy restaurant.
However, contestants have to pay for the majority of their food, as producers only contribute a measly $20. And contestants must spend long hours on set, repeating certain actions and staging phone calls to create some TV magic for audiences. It’s all worth it to find love!
Gambling on Set
Being a member of a reality TV film crew can be a difficult job. You have to be on set for long hours, making sure to capture all of the key moments between the cast. When you’re spending hours on set watching attractive people argue with each other, you have to find other ways to have fun!
This Redditor revealed that crew members place bets on what’s going to happen in the show! This apparently happens all the time!
Victim of Harsh Editing
While some producers claim that reality TV editing is judiciously completed to draw out existing elements of a story, others will admit that their shows are sensationalized to the max. This person’s cousin appeared on a reality TV cooking show, but the editing made her seem like a horrible person.
Their cousin received a barrage of online abuse, and the other contestants jumped in to defend her. The TV network refused to apologize, but at least the troll said sorry.
Real Reactions on Display
This Reddit user worked behind the scenes on a popular dating show. They claimed that the reactions were real, as bachelors and bachelorettes were separated until the cameras started rolling. However, they did often have to reshoot these scenes repeatedly, in order to get a range of camera angles.
So, these reactions are both real and fake. This pretty much sums up the world of so-called reality television. Some elements are genuine, while others have been clearly set up for entertainment.
Showing Her True Colors
Many reports claim that reality TV producers will meticulously edit the footage to manipulate contestants’ personalities or create high drama for audiences. This Reddit user has a different opinion. An acquaintance of theirs appeared on a popular wedding TV show and she seemed like a nasty person.
However, they believe that their acquaintance is actually a rude person, and the editing didn’t make a difference to her personality! Sometimes, the cameras show a person’s true colors. Editing can just exaggerate what’s already there.
Casting Models as Contestants
If you’ve ever wondered why reality TV contestants are so incredibly good-looking, this Redditor heard it through the grapevine that casting directors often contact modeling agencies to find the best-looking men and women.
Apparently, their male model friend found this out as the producers of various shows had reached out to his agency, in search of the ‘most interesting’ looking people. It just goes to show that reality TV isn’t always that real, despite what the TV networks say.
40+ Behind-the-Scenes Facts About Our Favorite Teen Shows
Remember rushing home from school to catch your favorite show on TV? Well, a lot more went into making these series than what you saw on-screen. Check out these behind-the-scenes secrets that fans have learned over the years…
Anya’s Speech on Buffy
The latter seasons of Buffy the Vampire Slayer take a grim turn, including a death in the episode, “The Body.” In one scene, Anya gives a chilling speech. Emma Caufield has since said, “I don’t want to burst your bubble, but I had to go to the bathroom. That’s all I was thinking about while shooting that.”
Zack’s Look in Saved by the Bell
Saved by the Bell fans would have no problem identifying Zack’s character. It helped that the young star rocked platinum locks for the entire run of the show.
As such, it might surprise fans to know that Mark-Paul Gosselaar isn’t actually isn’t a natural blonde but a brunette. To get the signature look down, Gosselaar had to bleach his hair every two weeks. After the show ended, the star joked to People that “getting back to my natural color took a while!”
The Iconic Veronica Mars
Before she starred in The Good Place, Kristen Bell brought an iconic TV character to life. Who could forget about Veronica Mars?
One thing you might notice throughout the show is Veronica’s signature style. In an interview with Vanity Fair, Bell said that “Rob built her [Veronica’s] emotional armor in the context of the story. I, along with the prop and costume department, built her physical armor — her leather jacket, her combat boots, her dark-colored wardrobe.”
Cast Ages in Pretty Little Liars
When you watch a teen show, you usually aren’t looking at teen actors. However, Pretty Little Liars actually veered younger in casting 12-year-old Sasha Pieterse as Alison.
However, that doesn’t mean that Pretty Little Liars stuck to an all-teen class. Bianca Lawson, who played Emily’s girlfriend Maya, was 31 at the time. In fact, you can catch Bianca Lawson playing a teen nearly two decades earlier when she appeared as Kendra in Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
Who Is Sabrina the Teenage Witch?
Before the Netflix series, fans were treated to a much more lighthearted version of Sabrina the Teenage Witch when the original came out. In this version, the character was brought to life by Melissa Joan Hart.
In an interesting twist on a few favorites from the era, the role almost went to Sarah Michelle Gellar according to some rumors. However, Gellar reportedly turned the role down to play Buffy Summers instead.
Unaired Freaks and Geeks
Freaks and Geeks was a show that many enjoyed but it ultimately didn’t last long. All in all, fans got to see 12 episodes following the adventures of the cast.
Just because that was all fans saw, though, doesn’t mean that’s all there was. The cast actually filmed 18 total episodes of the show, leaving six unaired episodes that we never got to see. Unfortunately for fans, the show was canceled after the 12th episode aired, leaving fans guessing as to what could have happened.
The Truth About Gilmore Girls’ Coffee
Part of creating a fully fleshed-out character means paying attention to the details. For instance, what does a character like to drink or what do they do in their free time?
Watching Gilmore Girls, it isn’t hard to see that one of Rory Gilmore’s “likes” includes coffee. However, the story isn’t quite the same for the actress who played her, Alexis Bledel. Since she doesn’t like coffee, the mugs she sipped from were full of Coca-Cola instead.
Debuting on That 70’s Show
Since it was on the air, That 70’s Show has become a cult classic. It even launched a few of its cast members to stardom for their work on the show. The show surely wouldn’t have been the same without Topher Grace as Eric Foreman.
The star of the series actually had no acting experience when he started the show, though. His resume only included a job at Dunkin’ Donuts. Still, it seems like it worked out in the end!
Introducing Kenan and Kel
Plenty of people remember tuning into Kenan & Kel to see the dynamic duo of Kenan Thompson and Kel Mitchell back during its original run time.
It was actually the behind-the-scenes and on-screen chemistry that the two actors had together that brought Kenan and Kel to life. While they worked together on the set of all that, their antics led not only to this show but the movie Good Burger as well.
Kelly Kapowski on Saved by the Bell
We already talked about one iconic character in Saved by the Bell. However, Zack is far from the only cast member to account for.
When it was time to cast Kelly, the casting directors were torn between Elizabeth Berkley, Tiffani Thiessen, and Jennie Garth. In the end, Tiffani Thiessen took the role of Kelly. Thanks to Berkley’s performance, however, the directors built the role of Jessie Spano so that the actress had a spot.
A Groundbreaking Episode of Dawson’s Creek
There are some shows that are entertaining and then there are shows that decide to do something a little groundbreaking. That was the case for Dawson’s Creek.
Dawson’s Creek actually featured the first gay kiss on network TV shared between characters Jack and Adam played by Kerr Smith and Adam Kaufman, respectively. When the show changed hands from Kevin Williamson to Greg Berlanti, Berlanti even took the job only under the condition that they allowed the scene to air.
Mila Kunis on That 70’s Show
No one can forget Mila Kunis’ Jackie Burkhart on That 70’s Show. However, the actress had to tell a few lies to get the role. The studio was looking for an adult actress.
Kunis later confessed to Jay Leno, “Legally I was 14 but I told them I was a little bit older. I told them I was gonna be 18, which is not technically a lie, cause at one point, I was gonna be 18.”
90210 Feuds Dissolving
Costars, just like any other colleagues, don’t always get along — no matter how great they seem to work together in the end result.
On the set of Beverly Hills, 90210, it was no secret that AnnaLynne McCord and Shanae Grimes weren’t the best of friends. However, McCord later revealed that after the show wrapped, Grimes actually called her. As a result, the two actually forged a lasting friendship after being “at each other’s throats” for the entire series.
New Roles on Gilmore Girls
Just because an actor doesn’t land the role that they were aiming for, it doesn’t mean that they didn’t impress the casting directors.
Sometimes, they love an actor so much that they invent a new role just to make sure that have space in the project. When Lisa Weil originally auditioned for Gilmore Girls, her eyes were set on Rory’s role. Instead, the directors ended up creating the role of Paris just for Weil.
Visions on That’s So Raven
That’s So Raven didn’t take long to reach an iconic status when it came to Disney Channel shows. One particularly memorable feature of the show was Raven’s visions.
Raven-Symoné shared that the “vision face” that we all remember was actually something she and her dad worked to perfect. She once shared with Buzzfeed, “The vision face was a work in progress for a while between me, my dad, and it was just a journey and then it became real easy and simple.”
A Scary Good Job on Twin Peaks
There are times that an actor does such a good job playing a frightening character that it’s genuinely chilling to watch. Some actors even frighten other members of the cast and crew.
When Eamon Farren shot his scenes as Richard Horne in Twin Peaks, his performance was so great that some of the cast was actually frightened. Harry Goaz has even said you could hear him acting some intense scenes before you were near enough to see what was going on.
Pulling in Viewers With Daria
During the era of Beavis and Butthead, MTV was looking to capture a demographic that they weren’t doing so great with — teenage girls who might be interested in MTV.
It was the president of MTV at the time, Judy McGrath, who first insisted that Beavis and Butthead needed a smart teen and a female character. Enter Daria. Later on, the character would get her own spin-off that became iconic for its deadpan humor.
Close Call for the O.C.
During the run of The O.C., Adam Brody became known as the character Seth Cohen. Yet, we almost didn’t get to see that at all.
That’s because, in the initial audition, Brody performed so poorly that Josh Schwartz wasn’t interested in casting him. This problem primarily came from the fact that Brody didn’t have his lines memorized during the first audition but managed to convince Schwartz for a second chance and nailed his new audition.
The O.C.’s One Regret
While we might aim for perfection, there are times that it just doesn’t work out. So, it makes sense that creators may sometimes have regrets about a project.
The aforementioned creator of The O.C., Schwartz, has since shared that his biggest regret is killing Marissa off. Schwartz once told MTV that killing off Marissa came with “a lot of factors involved, and it was something we really wrestled with. There were a lot of reasons, both creative and cynical.” Still, the backlash was surprising.
A Brief Resume Before Teen Wolf
From The Maze Runner to Teen Wolf, Dylan O’Brien has had a few recognizable roles by now. When he auditioned for Teen Wolf, though, that wasn’t exactly the case.
Saying that the star’s resume was a little light at the time is one way to put it. In fact, the actor only had a couple of YouTube links on his CV. Apparently, he impressed the creators enough, though, to give him his big break with the teen show.
Daria: Based on a True Story
Well, based on a true story might be a stretch. However, Daria’s name and appearance both came from real people. The creator of Beavis and Butthead, Mike Judge has shared that her name came from an old classmate.
Similarly, John Garret Andrews said about his first drawing of Daria, “It was a version somewhat inspired by my girlfriend senior year of high school, a smart but shy teenager with a sarcastic wit named Lindy Regan.”
The Secret Life of the American Teenager Doubts
We mentioned before that sometimes, actors step outside of their comfort zone for a scene. Sometimes, an entire role can challenge an actress as time goes on.
That’s how Shailene Woodley came to feel about The Secret Life of the American Teenager. The actress shared that it was challenging because, “Towards the end, morally, the things that we were preaching on that show weren’t really aligned with my own integrity.”
Trying for Roles in The Vampire Diaries
It didn’t take long for The Vampire Diaries to capture the attention of fans of a more supernatural teen drama. Casting helped a lot with this outcome.
As a matter of fact, Zack Roerig read for multiple characters before he was finally given the role of Matt. Prior to landing the character, he read for a few others including Tyler, Stefan, and Damon before they came to a final decision.
Getting Started with The Fresh Prince
The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air may not have introduced Will Smith to Hollywood but it was one of his first projects as an actor. So, he had to learn as he went a lot.
It’s pretty easy to tell that the young star was still learning how to act in the first few seasons. Especially in the first season, you can often see him mouthing the other actors’ lines as they say them. He’s since said that he doesn’t enjoy watching these early episodes because of it.
The Romance on Dawson’s Creek
Everyone has their own opinions on who should fall for who in their favorite shows. As it turns out, the people who work on the show feel the same way! Kevin Williamson, the showrunner of Dawson’s Creek, wasn’t totally down with the ending for Joey and Pacey.
He once told Entertainment Weekly, “I was a Dawson-Joey diehard. It was always going to be Dawson and Joey. I don’t care how romantic things got between Joey and Pacey. It was going to be Dawson and Joey, always. Until I started writing it.”
Jenny’s Style Evolution on Gossip Girl
As a show goes on, it’s not uncommon for a character to change and grow. This might include readdressing and introducing new elements to the characters’ personal styles. On Gossip Girl, no character had a greater style evolution than Jenny, played by Taylor Momsen.
This evolving style was largely inspired by Momsen’s own style change. Producer Joshua Safran once commented that “it was hard at a certain point to write for the old Jenny; we had to write for the new Taylor.”
No Gossip Girl Movie
There are a few teen shows that aren’t limited to the small screen. For instance, Buffy was a movie long before it became a hit show. Gossip Girl had a similar fate.
However, fans never saw the original movie that would have featured stars like Lindsay Lohan attached to it. In the end, the formula was changed to an episodic one and the hit show was born. The long-form series offered a lot more room to explore the characters as well.
Smallville With a Different Approach
Smallville gave us a teen drama look at Superman long before titles like Supergirl hit our screens for the first time. However, that actually wasn’t the original idea.
While the creators Alfred Gough and Miles Millar were fans of the iconic superhero, they were going to approach it slightly differently. Originally, they wanted the series to serve as a prequel, not for Superman but for his long-time love interest Lois Lane.
No Love for Jonas
Young fans of The Jonas Brothers probably didn’t miss an episode of their Disney show Jonas. Unfortunately, the brothers themselves aren’t as much of fans of the show.
Nick Jonas once shared that “We shouldn’t have done that. It really stunted our growth, you know? I feel like it was just a bad move. It was just not the time. Literally, we couldn’t evolve because of it.” They’ve noted that people didn’t take them seriously and the show was too young.
The Town of Tree Hill
You would think that with a title like One Tree Hill, the setting of Tree Hill was decided from the beginning. That actually wasn’t the case.
Before One Tree existed, the series was originally written to take place in Illinois. When Warner Brothers picked up the series but asked for a warmer climate. So, the setting was moved to North Carolina, and Tree Hill was born and shot in Wilmington.
Buffy’s Almost Casting
With a show as iconic as Buffy the Vampire Slayer, a lot of people associated the characters with the actors who played them. It’s interesting to see how things could have been different. One behind-the-scenes fact about Buffy would have really shaken up the show a bit.
When Charisma Carpenter (plays Cordelia Chase) originally auditioned, she was going to the role of Buffy. Similarly, Sarah Michelle Gellar’s original audition was for the role of Cordelia.
Lizzie McGuire’s Fashion Sense
Earlier, we talked about how Kristen Bell helped shape the appearance of Veronica Mars. Similarly, the writers of Gossip Girl were inspired by Momsen’s style.
Another great example of this approach actually comes from Disney’s Lizzie McGuire. When Hilary Duff was cast as the titular character, part of her casting was credited to her style at the auditions. Apparently, it worked as well because who could forget Lizzie’s iconic style?
Almost a Different Lizzie McGuire
On the topic of Lizzie McGuire and the casting behind it, Hilary Duff wasn’t always a sure choice for the role. Like many shows, they went through a few options.
Most notably, the role almost went to another actress who had a strong presence on Disney Channel and in teen roles at the time. Hailing from Parent Trap fame, Lizzie McGuire almost went to Lindsay Lohan. In the end, Duff won out.
Creating Sister, Sister
Tia and Tamera Mowry created quite a name for themselves on Sister, Sister. So, what goes into the behind-the-scenes work of bringing a show about the twins to life?
Tamera told Madame Noire, “We basically thought of a really cool idea. My sister and I loved Sweet Valley High and we loved Parent Trap so we wanted to do something like that. We met with an amazing writer named Kim Bass. He’s the one who actually created the show you guys watched over 20 years ago.”
Zoey 101’s Missing Star
Oftentimes, actors aren’t committed to a single project at a time. Because of this, there might be a scheduling conflict here and there. While filming Zoey 101, Jamie Lynn Spears wasn’t available to shoot an episode.
As a result, the episode “The Curse of PCA” was created with the entire plotline that featured Zoey with a bucket on her head. The actress was only a stand-in and Spears could miss filming those scenes as needed.
Not Very Gleeful
Glee was a show that garnered a lot of interest during its run time – both for better and for worse. One rumor was that the cast was getting tired of the show.
Fans only believed this behind-the-scenes attitude more after an interview with Jenna Ushkowitz and Kevin McHale on the YouTube series “Dating Straight.” During the interview, McHale reveals the “What Does the Fox Says” number was his breaking point but added that “I was the last one to break out of the cast, I will say that.”
Authenticity in Degrassi
If there’s one thing that fans sometimes noted about Degrassi, it was that it felt more down-to-earth than some of its more fantastical counterparts.
Especially in the earlier seasons, you might notice that the “students” looked more like actual teens than the average teen show. That was because the producers often had them wear their own clothes and do their own hair and makeup in the first few seasons to create a more authentic feel.
A First Kiss on Boy Meets World
Boy Meets World was a coming-of-age story that followed Corey as he grew up. This included seeing the character share his first kiss with Topanga. Of course, these kiss scenes can be awkward to film — especially if it’s your first kiss.
Ben Savage has told Huffington Post in 2014 that the scene in which Corey kisses Topanga for the first time was more than just Corey’s first kiss but the actor’s as well!
Creating Kurt on Glee
We’ve already seen an example of an actor that impressed a show’s creators so much that they created a new character just to give them a place in the project. The same concept happened on the set of Glee as well.
When Chris Colfer initially auditioned for Glee, he was aiming for the role of Artie. While he didn’t land the role, the producers were so impressed by his performance that they created Kurt with him in mind.
Penn Badgley and Gossip Girl’s Reveal
For everything that happened on Gossip Girl, there was always one big question. At the end of the day, the identity of Gossip Girl was revealed as Dan. It wasn’t a reveal that everyone was particularly impressed with.
That included more than some behind-the-scenes disappointment from Penn Badgley, the actor who played Dan. He’s said, “It doesn’t make sense at all. It wouldn’t have made sense for anybody. Gossip Girl doesn’t make sense!”