'The Bachelor' creator: I wouldn't want my daughter on the show
By Christopher Rocchio, 08/03/2009
Mike Fleiss has no problems putting other people's children on The Bachelor, but it's apparently a different story when it comes to his own kids.
"I could never be on one of these shows and I would never have my family on one of these shows," said Fleiss in a recent interview with Forbes magazine. "I hope my daughter is never on TheBachelor show. Now if my son wanted to be a Bachelor, that might be cool... no, I'm just kidding."
While Fleiss -- whose reality credits also include Are You Hot?, The Real Gilligan's Island, Superstar USA, The Will, Who Wants to Marry a Multi-Millionaire, Million Dollar Mysteries, Chance of a Lifetime, Battle of the Child Geniuses, High School Reunion and More to Love -- admits you "need a little bit of controversy to make any show go," he claims there "is a line."
Fleiss said that line is drawn when kids get involved and reiterated previous comments he made that a reality series starring "octomom" Nadya Suleman would definitely be out of the question.
"When there are kids involved is when I can't take it," he told Forbes. "With adults, they can make their own decisions and are responsibly for themselves; with kids, it's a television producer's job to sort of parent them -- but that being said, I would never do the Octomom."
In addition, Fleiss said he "wouldn't do" Jon & Kate Plus 8.
"Maybe because I have kids," he told Forbes.
Fleiss said it's "easier" to make reality shows now then when he started 10 years ago because "everybody wants to do them. He added reality series have also become an important part of any broadcast network's programming lineup.
"Where would Fox be without American Idol? Where would ABC be without The Bachelor and Dancing with the Stars? Where would NBC be without The Biggest Loser and America's Got Talent? Where would CBS be without Survivor?" he asked Forbes. "It's a very important part of their business structure."
Still, Fleiss said the number of reality shows flooding the airwaves has created a challenge in the industry, albeit a small one.
"The challenge is that people will become desensitized to even the craziest characters and storylines -- but so far it hasn't really played out that way," he told Forbes. "It seems to be growing in popularity and I'm sure its here to stay."
Fleiss specifically attributed The Bachelor's popularity among women by likening it to Monday Night Football.
"I think reality has an advantage because it's completely unpredictable," he told Forbes.
"I come from the world of sports and I look at these shows as sporting events. Certainly the ones that have a game element -- you don't know how it's going to end. You tune in to see who wins and who loses. I feel like a show like The Bachelor, which now is coincidentally on ABC on Monday nights where I grew up watching Monday Night Football, is now sort of become the equivalent of that for women."