Joe Millionaire

2003, TV Show

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A+E Orders Reality Series Married at First Sight

A+E has given a series order to Married at First Sight, a reality show that will follow six strangers who have agreed to get legally married the moment they meet their partner, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

An adaptation of a Danish format, Married features...  Read Full Article

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A+E Orders Reality Series Married at First Sight

A+E has given a series order to Married at First Sight, a reality show that will follow six strangers who have agreed to get legally married the moment they meet their partner, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

An adaptation of a Danish format, Married features... read more

Reality TV's Growing Pains: What Will It Take to Find The Next Big Hit?

It's time for a reality-TV reality check. Even top executives and producers admit that the genre has become tired — an overload of singing battles, food challenges, screaming housewives and dating competitions. "We've been in a huge reality drought," says Greg Goldman, the new president of Studio Lambert USA, which produces Undercover Boss.

The broadcast networks continue to coast on the enduring success of veteran franchises like Survivor, but they're not minting many new hits. In cable, the success of docuseries like the Real Housewives franchise and Love & Hip Hop has led to a glut of such shows.

But a shake-up may finally be on the way. CBS recently named a new head of reality TV, Chris Castallo, while Fox is looking to fill the top job in its alternative department (which infamous reality kingpin Mike Darnell vacated at the end of July). There's also a new head of unscripted TV at AMC, while TruTV and A&E, both big reality networks, have new bosses. read more

Exit Interview: Reality Guru Mike Darnell Recounts His Most Notorious Shows

As the president of alternative programming at Fox, Mike Darnell developed a well-earned reputation as a showman with a wicked mind. "I usually like to take a pitch and twist it into something more evil or more dangerous," says Darnell, who was once called "Fox's Point Man For Perversity" by the New York Times.

Darnell, the man behind some of the most notorious reality series and specials on television over the past two decades, left Fox at the end of July. He's now moving on to Warner Bros. Television Group as president of unscripted and alternative TV.

It's the end of an era for Fox, which meets reporters at the Television Critics Association press tour on Thursday without Darnell for the first time in decades. Network execs are still mulling Darnell's replacement. (Among names that have been rumored for the job: National Geographic Channels CEO David Lyle and president Howard T. Owens; Sharon Levy, Spike TV's executive vice president of original series; and Nigel Lythgoe Productions president Kary McHoul; among others).

American Idol was easily the biggest hit on Darnell's watch, but we all know the ins and outs of that show. Now that he's exiting Fox, we asked Darnell to recount the rest of his greatest reality hits — and misses.

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Q&A: Fox Reality Kingpin Mike Darnell on Why He's Leaving, and What's Next

There's a reason why they call Mike Darnell the "dark prince" of reality TV. Darnell, who on Friday announced his exit as the president of alternative entertainment at Fox, is still best known for his in-your-face fare like Joe Millionaire, Alien Autopsy: Fact or Fiction, The Swan, When Animals Attack and Man vs. Beast.

Some of those shows, like Who Wants to Marry a Multi-Millionaire and Temptation Island, led to juicy TV scandals. (It's why the New York Times once billed him as TV's "point man for perversity.") But Darnell also oversaw the biggest TV phenomenon of the past decade: American Idol, a show that was unbeatable in its prime... read more

Fox's Longtime Reality Boss Mike Darnell to Exit After 18 Years

Fox's longtime head of alternative programming Mike Darnell, who helped launch American Idol  and Joe Millionaire, is leaving his post after 18 years, he announced Friday.

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Premiered: January 06, 2003, on FOX
Rating: None
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Premise: A reality switcheroo in which 20 women cozy up to a man they think is worth $50 million, but who's actually a $19,000-a-year construction worker. As producer Jean-Michel Michenaud puts it: `Will they see him for who he really is or be blinded by money?' The series was a big hit, yielding a flop sequel titled `The Next Joe Millionaire: An International Affair.' Set in Italy, the show featured 14 European women (who'd never heard of the original) competing for the affection of a rodeo cowboy.

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