Idol auditioner Chris Bernheisel getting media attention, has sent 71 videos to Ellen Degeneres

Chris Bernheisel, the first auditioning contestant featured on Tuesday’s Omaha audition episode, will appear on the TV Guide channel next week, and Access Hollywood “plans to fly him to L.A. soon,” the Omaha World-Herald reports. But “[his] main wish is that his audition will catch the eye of national talk show host Ellen DeGeneres. Bernheisel said he just sent his 71st video package to Ellen, hoping to get a spot on her show.”

In other words, this kid is a total media whore, and he’s now living his dream. “Oh my God, it’s just insane. I never expected this,” he told the paper. At the conclusion of his audition, Simon Cowell told Chris he should cover the show for his FOX affiliate, but “he isn’t sure if that’s going to happen.”

Newsday points out that the FOX station is guilty of a “badly bungled promotion opportunity,” as when he appeared on the station, “[t]he anchors end the interview by saying they’ll check back with him now and then, and otherwise don’t let the door hit you on the way out.”

Still, he now has bigger and better opportunities. “[Next] Friday morning I’m going to be filming Idol wrap with Justin Guarini and Kimberly Caldwell, they’re past Idol contestants and we’re just going to talk about AI next week and stuff about auditions and everything. I can’t believe they chose me and it’s crazy,” he told that Omaha FOX affiliate, KPTM.

In a story on the station’s web site, Chris says, “There are 40-50 million American’s [sic] that know my name now which is exciting.” Also exciting is that he sucks at math (about 28 million people watched Tuesday night’s episode), and that Omaha’s FOX affiliate doesn’t have people who know that you don’t pluralize words by adding an apostrophe and an s.

Fremont man becomes overnight star thanks to ‘Idol’ [Omaha Word-Herald]
American Idol: 24 Hours Later, Chris Still on Cloud Nine [KPTM]
Did Omaha Fox Station Reject “Idol” Kid Too? [Newsday]
Fox duo crush competition [Variety]

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.