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.”

Survivor San Juan Del Sur's dark cloud is lifted

John Rocker

In its third episode, Survivor San Juan Del Sur improved significantly as John Rocker faced off against an Amazing Race villain. But the Exile Island reward challenge remains a drag on the series.


Why Dick Donato left Big Brother 13

Dick Donato

The Big Brother villain known as "Evel Dick" has finally revealed why he left the show during its 13th season: he learned he was HIV positive.

Also: Dick claims he had no choice but to leave the game.

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.