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Producer Reveals Shocking Behind-the-Scenes Secrets About the Real Housewives of New Jersey (Exclusive Originally Published at FameWhorgas on September 23, 2012)

November 1, 2014 1 comment

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Screenshots from season 4, episode 19
(click the three separate images to enlarge the columns)

The following transcript is an interview with a former producer for The Real Housewives of New Jersey. The interview was conducted on September 17, 2012 and was first published at FameWhorgas in four parts starting on September 23, 2012. The interviewer, who exclusively shared this with FameWhorgas, was writing a piece on the reality of reality television and forwarded parts of the interview pertaining to RHONJ for the purpose of reading fan comments to get a different perspective on the transcript. I will not disclose the names of the interviewer and interviewee; however, I can say that I received this directly from the interviewer: this person, the one who conducted the interview, is the cousin of the former producer. My source saw that people were doubting the legitimacy of the interview when it was first published at FameWhorgas on September 23, 2012, so he/she wrote the following explanation:

“I was asked by my country’s main news website to write a piece on the reality of reality television. My cousin worked on RHONJ, so I asked for an interview. The interview was only given because RHONJ does not screen in my country, and I promised anonymity. We also don’t have any Bravo shows on television here. I called my cousin in Washington and spoke for 20 minutes before realizing I would have to watch the RHONJ to understand what was going on and who was who. So I went online and watched every episode and called back a few weeks later. The second interview (which was recorded) was an hour and a half and mentioned numerous shows from TLC and Oxygen, but I have edited it down to the relevant parts, mainly due to privacy for my cousin.”

Background Information

Q: “So can you tell me about your role on the RHONJ without giving away who you are”?

A: “It’s fine, my contract has finished. I worked on season 3 and 4 of RHONJ as a post production supervisor for 15 episodes.”

Q: “Can you explain why you no longer work with the RHONJ? Does it have anything to do with the rumors that the production team was fired due to a conflict of interest?”

A: “Not true at all, I can’t speak for everyone, um, there are quiet a few of the same team returning for season 5, but I was offered a role on another show and decided to leave for my career; no one was fired for a conflict of interest though.”

Q: “So how ‘real’ is the show? We discussed before (in a private conversation) about the various blog rumours; can you clear anything up?”

A: “Well, if you give me specifics, I can try.”

Caroline Manzo and Teresa Giudice’s Feud

Q: “I’m curious about the Caroline/Teresa feud. Was she really that angry that Teresa wrote those comments in her cookbook?”

A: (laughing) “Oh come on, at the start of the season the production team sits down and gives a general overview of where we want the storyline for the show to go. ALL of the wives are in on this. We discuss popular storylines from the season before, storylines that need tying up, and also ways of threading in new storylines that look organic to the story. Do you really think we spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on just following these woman around with no plan? No, the season and the storyline has a basic outline from the first day.”

Q: “So you’re saying there is no feud?”

A: “I’m saying the feud you are being fed is for television only and there are bigger issues there.”

Q: “Then why are we not being told what the bigger drama is? Wouldn’t it be better to show that than manufacturing the drama?”

A: “It’s up to the wives what they choose to put out into the public forum; nothing is forced on them.”

Jacqueline Laurita and Teresa Giudice’s Feud

Q: “What about Jacqueline and Teresa?”

A: “We knew at the end of season 3 that their friendship was ending; the main reason, I was told, for the feud was because Jacqueline was offered several endorsement deals (including a teeth whitener and a real fruit-based alchohol), and Teresa organised deals for herself with similar products which turned off the company wanting to invest in Jax and the Housewives’ name.”

Q: “Well, why was this not mentioned throughout the season? Why are we getting this confusing story that makes Jacqueline look crazy? Why not explain this to the viewers?”

A: “Jacqueline’s ‘character’ wouldn’t have endorsement deals; it didn’t feel right for the character. Jacqueline (the character) is a loving home mother who is trying to raise her children; we couldn’t go from doting housewife to celebrity endorsement maker; it wouldn’t feel organic.”

Dina Manzo Quitting the Show in Season 2

Q: “In season 2 you had a change of cast with Dina Manzo leaving; did she really leave because of Danielle?”

A: “There were legal issues around the filming of Dina’s daughter, and Dina and Danielle had off screen legal issues. Dina threatened to quit the show unless Danielle’s contract for season 2 was shortened; she basically told the producers it was her family on the show or Danielle, but the others didn’t back her, so she quit the show.”

Q: “What about Teresa? Did Teresa threaten to walk too?”

A: “No, none of the other wives did; that is why Dina is so angry at her family; I guess she feels like they chose the show over her.”

Q: “Well they did, so why is she speaking to Teresa then and not the others?”

A: “The others were her family.”

 

The Addition of the Gorgas to the Show and the Christening in Season 3

Q: “So tell me about the casting of the Gorga family? Did they really send in an audition tape saying they would take down Teresa, mafia style?”

A: “They auditioned, as does everyone. Look, it’s not like just because she is Teresa’s sister-in-law we instantly cast her because we had heard of bad blood between them. Teresa’s brother and Melissa were filmed for a short period and that was edited into a small compilation to see if they were interesting enough to be on television. This happens on every single show. Melissa does say that they will take down Teresa in the video, but in a playful manner. I’m also sure it’s been leaked onto the net, so it wouldn’t be hard to find.”

Q: “What can you tell me about the christening episode that introduces the Gorgas?”

A: “Well, I can say I was actually there that day. It was our first full day filming with a large team; we had been filming previous to that, but they were establishing shots. It was much worse than what was shown: the extended family didn’t want anything on camera, so what you don’t see is family members getting violent with the crew and grabbing their cameras and ripping microphone packs off and throwing them across the room. It was chaos.”

Q: “Why did Joe Gorga react the way he did? He was crazy.”

A: “I’ll just say, first day shooting nerves can make some drink and others take….I’ll leave it at that.”

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Editing Problems with Season 4

Q: “What is going on with the editing for this season [season 4]?

A: “Can you elaborate?”

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