Any fan of the MTV show The Real World knows the formula: random kids in their early 20s are plucked from all over the country to live together, work together and eventually, end up in the hot tub together sharing…um, secrets….and possibly STDs.
Despite the fact that their lives are being filmed 24 hours a day and judged by the MTV viewing audiences, kids are literally willing to do just about anything to be on this show. Why? For starters, they become instant MTV celebrities. Also, being on ‘The Real World’ is an easy way to eventually be cast on The Challenge and further extend your 22 minutes of fame.
The Ashley has always wondered what these kids have to agree to in order to get on the show. Luckily, The Village Voice got their paws on the official ‘Real World’ contract and have given us all a chance to look inside.
The Ashley read through the whole thing (which you can view here) and has picked out the-most interesting parts. Here are the things you must agree to if you are cast on ‘The Real World.’ (The Ashley’s comments are in italics.)
- You understand that you may suffer a lost limb or death (This may seriously hurt your chances of later being cast on ‘The Challenge.’)
- You may suffer ‘severe emotional distress’ or mental illness as a result of being on this show.
- If they find out that you have a mental illness, the Producer can broadcast, advertise or exploit it on the show.
- You have to agree to work at the ‘Real World’ “job” for as long as the Producer wants, and he gets to decide how much/if you get paid and what hours you work. (I’m pretty sure this is called “slave labor” if it’s not being filmed by MTV, yes?)
- You may be sharing a room with an ex-con, because Producers “are under no obligation to conduct background checks on your fellow cast members.” (“Oh, did we forget to mention that Freddie did some time in San Quentin? Don’t worry, he’s ‘rehabilitated’ now.”)
- You can’t come crying to MTV if you get herpes or any other STD from a late-night romp in the hot tub with one of your castmates. Producers can’t promise you that your castmates are free of STDs.
- For a year after the first episode airs, you need to be available at any time the Producer wants you for interviews, online chats, photo shoots, etc. (And they don’t have to pay you a dime!)
- Wanna quit? Don’t expect MTV to pay for your Greyhound ticket home. You are responsible for making your alternative travel arrangements if you go home early.
- The Producers have the right to defame or embarrass you, or portray you in a humiliating or ‘false light,’ and expose you to public ridicule. (Although the knuckleheads on this show seem to do a pretty good job of doing this on their own!)
- Wanna call Granny on her 80th birthday while you’re on location? Don’t expect MTV to foot the bill: you’re responsible for “all long distance phone calls made by me in these locations and…shall reimburse Producer upon request.”
Other exciting things we found out from this contract? The ‘Real World’ cast only makes $300 a week for shooting 24/7! They also have to give Producers the right to enter their house and place of work at any time. They can also take anything they want from your house, as long as they return it by the time the final episode tapes!