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'The Simple Life' producers already plotting sequel to the FOX series


By Reality TV World staff, 12/02/2003 

One thing we'll never say about FOX is that they're gun-shy. Despite their admission of being "greedy" in trying to go back to the well for a second edition of Joe Millionaire and other bombs such as second and third editions of Temptation Island, talks are apparently already underway for a sequel to the network's The Simple Life reality series that stars Paris Hilton and Nicole Richie.

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Produced by Bunim-Murray Productions, the Real World producers behind another previous FOX reality bomb, Fall 2001's Love Cruise, The Simple Life follows hotel heiress and amateur porno star Paris Hilton and her best friend, heroin addict, and Michael Jackson-defender Nicole Richie as they leave behind the comforts of their lavish lifestyle in Los Angeles for a chance to live "The Simple Life." Armed with a Louis Vuitton bag and a teacup chihuahua named Tinkerbell, Hilton and Richie move in with the hardworking Leding family in Altus, AR (population 817).

According to an Entertainment Weekly report, while discussing the impact that Hilton's well-timed sex tape scandal might have on the program's ratings (at least when he wasn't being told to "stop talking" about the topic by FOX public relations staffer Scott Grogin), Fox alternative programming chief Mike Darnell claimed that there were currently "no serious talks" about doing another season of the show. However when asked the same question, executive producer Jonathan Murray admitted otherwise and that his company was already plotting ideas for a sequel to the expected smash-hit series of which only seven episodes were originally produced. "We would love to do another season with Paris and Nicole. Paris is incredibly charismatic, and the two of them are very funny together." Murray said. "We have scenarios we're thinking of, but first we have to see if the ratings live up to the hype."

Given the program's massive "grassroots" buzz, like us, Darnell also seems to have little doubt that the program will have ratings success. "There's an enormous amount of buzz following these girls and the show," Darnell told EW. "When something is gonna hit big, you just know it." "People are fascinated by Paris because she's accessible and inaccessible at the same time. She's a celebrity and she hasn't even done anything yet."

For his part, Murray defends Hilton's amateur porn tape hobby. "It's human nature to want to put people down, but Paris and Nicole were brave to do the show and we should be applauding them." "Paris has nothing to apologize for. Somehow, something private got out. It's not her fault. She's an adult and she should be able to have fun with her boyfriend."

Then again, considering Bunim-Murray's role in covering up an alleged rape at the currently-filming Real World: San Diego house, perhaps he's correct that in comparison, Hilton has nothing to be ashamed -- at least her actions aren't under investigation by the authorities.










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