reality TV production costs are rising.

reality TV production costs are rising.
Reporting on the rising costs of producing reality TV shows, The Wall Street Journal reveals the price per episode of a couple series: UPN’s Top Model costs “about $800,000 a show,” while The Apprentice runs “just below $2 million an episode.” Compared to dramas, these prices are pretty low; despite its price tag, Trump’s show “is one of the most profitable programs on TV.” Still, reality isn’t staying cheap; “the industry is reverting to its profligate habits,” according to the Journal. Among the rising costs: “agents are ratcheting up prices for their clients,” “demand is so strong for experienced reality-show crews that salaries for casting coordinators and editors skilled at culling hundreds of hours of footage have soared 125 percent,” and sets are costing more as producers work to one-up each other and previous seasons of their shows.

The Sing-Off loses its star

Ben Folds

NBC's super-fun December a capella singing competition The Sing-Off is returning, but without its star judge, Ben Folds, and only as a two-hour special. Those are really depressing changes for a series that proved itself to be a super-fun show when it returned last December.


A film director talks about becoming a reality TV character

Anna Martemucci

What is it like to have your life turned into reality TV? Director Anna Martemucci, one of the two directors featured on Starz' exceptional reality series, talks about that, the competition, and her collaboration with her husband and brother-in-law.

Plus: How the show's producers tried to keep the $250,000 competition fair.

about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.