The Real World: New Orleans (Courtesy Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)
The Real World: New Orleans is the ninth season of MTV's reality television series The Real World, which focuses on a group of diverse strangers living together for several months in a different city each season, as cameras follow their lives and interpersonal relationships. The series was filmed from January to May 2000 in the Belfort Mansion on St. Charles Avenue, and first aired on MTV later that year, with the cast living in a remodeled Civil War-era mansion, called The Belfort, in the Garden District, New Orleans. It was the second of four seasons to be filmed in the American South, the first being The Real World: Miami in 1996.
Author Anne Rice has a guest appearance this season.
The cast lived at the Belfort Mansion, a , two-story 19th Century Greek revival mansion at 2618 St. Charles Avenue in the Garden District of New Orleans. The mansion was originally built for Alexander C. Hutchinson, who lived there with his wife until his death in 1902. It was later divided into apartments, but was in the process of being returned to a single family residence when producers discovered it. New Orleans based art director Monroe Kelly and architect Lee Ledbetter restored the mansion's original plan, enabling it to serve as the season's production set. After filming ended, it took nearly four and a half years to complete the process of returning it to a single residence. The property managed to survive Hurricane Katrina in 2005 without any serious damage.
Almost every season of The Real World, beginning with its fifth season, has included the assignment of a season-long group job or task to the housemates. The New Orleans cast was assigned to work at a New Orleans Public-access television station, with a different cast member acting as the producer of the segment every week.
The cast appeared on the cover of the June 24, 2000 issue of TV Guide, the only season cast to do so.
Jamie, who is described by MTV as "cocky, confident and astoundingly ambitious", is a Web entrepreneur and Ayn Rand fan who likes spending time with his male friends, but hopes to get married one day. Melissa developed a crush on him, and flirted with him during the series, though he does not return the feelings beyond friendship. After the show, he appeared on more than one season of the spinoff Real World/Road Rules Challenge.
Matt is a devout Catholic, and an avid fan of hip-hop and culture, who's been putting himself through Georgia Tech by working as a web designer. During the season, Matt occasionally criticizes Julie for her actions, and says he has a male instinct to protect her. She developed feelings for him, but he did not reciprocate, even when she playfully kissed him on the day they moved out of the house. Matt pursued girls in New Orleans, but never began a relationship on the show.
Melissa, is a half African-American and half Filipino whom MTV describes as a "5-foot-2-inch bundle of manic wit." Her friends compare her to Chris Rock for her sense of humor. She admits she doesn't easily get along with other women, and demands attention from guys. Her mother is a very traditional Filipino, and Melissa is eager to leave Tampa, which she feels is largely populated by closed-minded people. Melissa sometimes channeled her emotions into painting after she befriended Lionel Milton, a popular New Orleans artist. She was part of the cast of Oxygen Network's defunct prank show Girls Behaving Badly. She married on September 29, 2007, and is now named Melissa Beck.
Battle of the Sexes
Danny is a man whom MTV describes as an adorable, spontaneous and playful "modern day James Dean", with a devilish grin and sly gaze who, having escaped small town roots, is something of a "lost soul". He is close to his mother, but not as much so with his strict father. Despite being gay, he does not connect with the local gay community back home in Atlanta. During his stay in the house, Danny was in a relationship with Paul Dill, an officer in the military. To protect Paul's identity during his visits, his face was blurred each time he appeared on camera. After his time in the military ended, Paul and Danny appeared together in an MTV special, with Paul's face no longer blurred.
Battle of the Seasons 2002 (Won)
Kelley is a sorority girl who was dating a medical student named Peter, and spent her time with him rather than in the house. MTV describes her as "opinionated, sassy, strong-willed" direct in her honesty, and loyal to her friends. Kelley works today in television marketing in Los Angeles. On May 29, 2004, she married actor Scott Wolf, of the TV show Party of Five.
Julie is a Mormon college student who was attending Brigham Young University, and was worried about repercussions from the school administration, as she was living with men as well as women, in violation of the school's honor code. Her coming to terms with the world outside of her home and upbringing provided was a recurring theme throughout the season. Julie's strained relationship with her father was also a focal point of the show: they have a heated argument when her parents come to visit and her father dismisses her as "just being emotional".
David is an African-American singer who works out every day, does not drink or smoke, has a 4.0 grade point average, and aspires to be the first black President of the United States, a mindset he achieved after bouncing back from the heartbreak of a breakup with the girl of his dreams. MTV describes him as "a superbly talented musician and a deeply entertaining person" and a "sweet, vulnerable guy trying to run as far away as possible from the Chicago ghetto he grew up in and the legacy of his preacher father's departure from the family". He has several sexual partners during the course of the season. He avoids conflict with his housemates, dismissing them when they attempt to resolve issues with him. During the season, he performs a rendition of "The Star Spangled Banner" at a sporting event attended by his housemates, which brings Melissa to tears. In 2003, he performed his original song "Come On, Be My Baby Tonight" on the sixth episode of the first season of the Comedy Central sketch comedy TV series, Chappelle's Show.
The New Orleans cast was the first (and to date the only) cast to be featured on the cover of TV Guide, appearing on the June 24, 2000 edition.
Discussions on race are a staple on The Real World. On a boat trip in Louisiana, the boat guide referred to a type of stork the group spotted as a "nigger stork". Melissa took offense to the comment, and to the fact that Jamie was not as offended. After the show, it was revealed that the tour guide apologized to Melissa. In another discussion on race, Julie expressed that she was raised to cross the street if she saw a black person. After this, Melissa stated she was tired of talking about racism.
During the cast's group trip to South Africa, Melissa and Julie talked about racial issues, and were upset that David again sequestered himself from the group, preferring to spend time with their African tour guides.
In a crossover event with that season's Road Rules, (the sister series to The Real World), the Road Rules cast's mission was to steal the mansion's toy robot dog. The housemates, recalling that the Road Rules team from years back had stolen the eight ball from the Miami cast's pool table, hid their eight ball, not realizing that it was not the target.
Though Stoffer and castmate Melissa Howard left the house as friends, their friendship later dissolved after disagreements regarding speaking engagements and monetary disputes, with Howard indicating during their time on the 2003 Real World/Road Rules Challenge: Battle of the Sexes that they were no longer friends.
After filming, Julie Stoffer was suspended from Brigham Young University for violating the school's honor code, which prohibits unmarried students from living in the same house with unrelated people of the opposite sex, including when school is not in session. Both Stoffer and her parents, themselves BYU alumni, criticized the manner in which the school suspended Stoffer, on the grounds that the letter with which BYU notified Stoffer of their decision, according to the Stoffers, implied that Stoffer had sexual relations with her male housemates, which Stoffer characterized as "totally false and slanderous." The school gave Stoffer six days to appeal their ruling, and included an outline of actions that Stoffer could take to regain admittance to the school, but as Stoffer was traveling while filming the MTV spinoff series, Real World/Road Rules Challenge, she did not file an appeal, and later stated that felt no respect for the school or its Honor Code, accusing the institution of assuming, on the basis of a "technical[ity]", that she was guilty of immoral conduct, when the footage shot during her time in the Real World mansion established otherwise. Stoffer was later a correspondent and host for the TV show The Electric Playground on the video game-themed cable TV network G4. She also speaks on behalf of Path-U-Find Media, promoting her moral values and working in abstinence and anti-tobacco campaigns.
Melissa Howard created a blog during her time on the show called Princess Melissa, and as of 2008, continues to maintain it. She went on to become an actress and comedienne who has worked on The Jamie Foxx Show, and starred in the Oxygen sketch comedy series Girls Behaving Badly. She also appeared in the 2005 Bravo show Battle of the Network Reality Stars. In 2007 she married Justin Beck, a guitarist for the group Glassjaw, with whom she bore a daughter, Shalom Mazie.
David Broom continued his musical work. Among his appearances was a 2003 performance on Chappelle's Show, appearing in the sixth episode of that's show's first season.
Kelley Limp moved to Los Angeles, where she works in marketing for the television industry. In 2002, she began dating Party of Five star Scott Wolf, after meeting through a mutual friend in New York City. They married in May 2004, and live in Santa Monica, California. Their son, Jackson Kayse, was born on March 22, 2009.
Matt Smith became a sports writer for the NBA's Phoenix Suns and webmaster of www.lifeteen.com. He married his wife Candyce on April 13, 2007. They live in Phoenix, Arizona, and had their first child, Norah, in September 2008. Their second child, Stella St. Clare, was born in October 2010.