Pat Bullard, <EM>Here Come the Newlyweds</EM> Pat Bullard, Here Come the Newlyweds
Here Come the Newlyweds, a show that's half Survivor and half The Newlywed Game

, features seven newly married couples competing for a large cash prize in a series of challenges (like wives guiding blind-folded hubbies into parallel parking spots). Besides getting to know all seven couples, you'll get to see some familiar and beloved Dancing with the Stars personalities, as Elena Grinenko and Tony Dovolani teach the newlyweds to tango and Carrie Ann Inaba judges their performances. Pat Bullard hosts the charming and addictive new show, which premieres at 10:02 pm/ET on ABC on March 2. Seems like you're having a great time hosting this show.
Pat Bullard: I'll tell you, everyone I talk to about it, it's one of the most fun things I've ever done in television. I've done a lot of stuff. It was just fun. It was very loose and relaxed. That's how it seemed, like it wasn't scripted or rehearsed; you could joke with the couples and no one took it too seriously.
Bullard: I took a meeting with the producers, and they told me the show that they wanted to make, and I said, "Yeah, I'd like to make that show, too. Good luck!" And I thought, that's the end of that. But not only did they bring me in to do the show they talked about, that is the show we did. It was unscripted and it was just about being friendly with these young couples who have never been on TV before. Make them comfortable and make sure they have fun, and that's what I did. And that's a pretty good job to have! When you got to know the couples better, were you expecting any drama or catfights?
Bullard: I actually didn't, because as the show went along, I became like a viewer. I was becoming so attached to these couples that I didn't want to see any of them go. And I think that's unlike a lot of reality shows that I've seen. Usually there's a villain, and this guy's innocent, or that guy should go, but I liked them all so much, it was hard to say goodbye to any of the couples. What did you think about the diversity of the couples on the show?
Bullard: It was great, we had really diverse couples, from an arranged marriage to an interracial marriage to a couple who had only known each other for nine months. And the arranged marriage, at least in my eyes, was one of the best.... They are Muslim, and it was a good exposure to people with that lifestyle, which I had not had before. I realized, man, they are really humorous and very much in love. You have to admire the fact that they kept their values and never sacrificed what they believed in. So there wasn't a lot of smack-talking during the competition?
Bullard: Well, getting close to a half a million dollars... for any couple, let alone newlyweds, it's a lot of money. So there is competition, but never with that kind of back-stabbing; they cared for one another, and that's what makes the show interesting and refreshing. Do you have any favorites to win the game?
Bullard: I was getting information [on how the couples were faring] as we were going along, and I was shocked so many times. Couples I thought would do well didn't, and I was like, "Man, are you kidding? How did that turn of events happen?" Nothing was ever obvious. Do you think Elena, Tony and Carrie Ann from Dancing with the Stars will help create some good buzz for your show?
Bullard: Absolutely. I think the network is just putting out such tasteful stuff. Saying, "We're the network that brings you good-taste reality." I love that Oprah's [Big Give] is our lead-in. But having Carrie Ann on the show... she was the perfect fit from the moment she walked into the club where we were doing the dance competition. She was completely perfect; she got the show and understood the couples. She was as charming as she is on her own show, and I think she'll bring in a big part of the [DWTS] audience.

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