Queen of Versailles is becoming a reality show

The thrilling documentary Queen of Versailles is becoming a reality series, as NBCUniversal has signed Jackie Siegel for a six-episode series that will film a presentation reel over Labor Day weekend, The Orlando Sentinel reports.

At the same time, David Siegel, the owner of Westgate resorts, just announced his purchase of the Orlando Predators. It’s not clear if the team will end up on the series, but in August, AMC is debuting a show about an arena football team with famous owners: 4th and Loud, which follows Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons’ new arena football team, the LA KISS.

I previously argued that a Siegel reality series is a bad idea–or at least, it won’t be anywhere near as wonderful as the film. That was primarily because Jackie said she wanted editorial control, and the film was wonderful (watch it!) because the filmmaker just hung around for years and captured great moments.

Jackie does offer some hope, however, telling the Orlando Sentinel that she doesn’t want the show to be scripted but will instead “follow me around on my crazy secret life”:

“I hope they will just let me be me and let me do my own thing. I think that’s what people that saw the movie really liked, because it was real, whereas reality can be somewhat scripted.”

For his part, David Siegel is, well, grumpy: “I don’t like reality shows,” he said, adding that he’d be in front of cameras “Only if it’s good for business. I don’t need any more pain.”

Surprisingly, man not eaten alive on Eaten Alive

Eaten Alive

Discovery Channel’s happy family holiday special Eaten Alive aired Sunday, rewarding viewers for their two full hours of viewing by ensuring that they spent quality time in the company of others instead of wasting that time doing something else that might not have been as satisfying, such as buying things that have labels which accurately reflect their contents.


Winter 2015 reality TV debut schedule

winter 2015 reality TV schedule

Mark your calendars with all these upcoming reality TV show debuts, including Celebrity Apprentice, The Bachelor, and another season of MasterChef Junior, all of which kick off in early January.

There are also 20+ shows debuting in December--including the one-off return of The Sing Off. No winter break for reality TV.

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.