Casting Call: The Charlie Sheen “Reality Show”
Insider Barbara Barna Abel on the actor’s epic meltdowns and the new crazy season of Celebrity Apprentice.
-Barbara Barna Abel
I was almost too busy to write this week. No, not because I’m too pooped to Goop like Gwyneth, or shooting new episodes of Glee (what did you think of this week’s episode?), but because – like everybody – I’ve been wildly distracted by the crazy tragic train wreck that is The Charlie Sheen “Reality” Show.
I’m not buying his epic meltdown as performance art, he’s an addict who needs immediate treatment before he leaves his five kids fatherless yet I cannot deny the spectacle is compelling and I’m as riveted as you. With mainstream news orgs devoting full hours to Tigers’ Blood, Adonis DNA, the Goddesses and Winning, I’m not sure it’s even possible to tune this one out. As Whoopi Goldberg pointed out on The View, Charlie Sheen is getting more coverage than Haiti did.
Speaking of winning…a new season of Celebrity Apprentice premiered on Sunday with a maxi 2 hour episode. What really caught my attention this time is that half the contestants are Reality Show Veterans:
Richard Hatch (Survivor)
Star Jones (Popping The Question on Lifetime – btw I cast that show)
Lisa Rinna (Harry Loves Lisa)
Nene Leakes (Real Housewives of Atlanta)
Gary Busey (Celebrity Rehab)
Latoya Jackson (Armed and Famous, DWTS, Celebrity Big Brother)
Jose Conseco (The Surreal Life)
Niki Taylor (Make Me A Supermodel)
Chuck LaBella is a genius Talent Producer (other credits include Who Do You Think You Are?, Last Comic Standing) and has done a smart job here. Reality Show Veterans know how to be on a reality show and there are fireworks right out of the gate. The gloves are off between Starr and Nene as they slam each other on the show and in the media (I didn’t see that one coming).
For anyone who missed it, Star Jones won the first challenge – managing a pizza restaurant – as project manager of the female ASAP team and my childhood heartthrob, David Cassidy, got the heave ho while complaining that his project manager, Richard Hatch, was physically aggressive to the point of shoving and hitting and lacked any integrity. Are we surprised?
How long before we see Charlie Sheen on one of these shows? Mark Cuban of HDNet has already reached out to discuss a possible reality show or talk show…
Casting Call: on a cheerful note, HGTV is looking for real people to be featured on a number of their shows.
About Barbara Barna Abel:
Barbara Barna Abel is the President of ABEL INTERMEDIA LLC, a Casting and Talent Development firm specializing in non-fiction, alternative and reality programming, private coaching and personal branding across the media spectrum. Visit her at barbarabarnacasting.com. Tweet her: @barbarabarna
Barbara has a track record for recognizing new and emerging talent, casting a wide net in her searches to include genres such as television, online media, print, comedy, animation, off-Broadway, food, fashion, interior design, sports, music and film. Among her finds: Queer Eye for the Straight Guy’s Fab Five, Clinton Kelly of What Not To Wear, Adam Richman of Man vs Food and comedian Beth Melewski in the upcoming Cash Cab Chicago.