The Real World: Zuccotti Park? While the 27th season of MTV’s reality mainstay The Real World (which is currently situated in sunny San Diego) likely won’t actually take place in the downtown Manhattan hub where the Occupy Wall Street movement has swelled over the past month, Bunim/Murray Productions is hoping some of the politically-minded 20-somethings who have taken part in the historic operation will also want to take part in the television landmark.
On Tuesday night, Bunim/Murray, the company which produces and casts for The Real World, put up a post on New York City’s Craigslist with the subject “Part of Occupy Wall Street? Real World 27 Wants You!” The post reads:
“MTV’s Real World is seeking cast members to tell their unique stories on our show. If you are over the age of 20 and appear to be between the ages of 20-24, and the description below sounds like you, we want to hear from you!
Are you a part of the OCCUPY WALL STREET movement?
If so, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. Your subject heading should be YOUR NAME and WALL STREET.
Please attach 3 RECENT PHOTOS and a brief BIO, including your full NAME, DATE OF BIRTH (for ID purposes only) as well as your CONTACT INFORMATION including PHONE #.”
Sasha Alpert, the Senior Vice President of casting for Bunim/Murray Productions, explains to EW why the agency sent out this particular post. While Alpert says that Bunim/Murray puts out a variety of reach notices for casting calls, those involved with the OWS movement have generated particular interest. “This all came out of the current zeitgeist,” Alpert says. “We are always looking for people who are involved in whatever is going on in the world around them. We are always looking for passionate people.”
While Bunim/Murray is in the midst of the casting process for the upcoming season of The Real World (open casting calls will continue to take place throughout the country until the end of the month), Alpert is hoping that those involved with OWS who feel oppressed by the the current economic system won’t feel so disheartened to not try out. “We want everyone to feel comfortable coming to the open calls. We want a broad spectrum of people and people in their 20s right now feel disenfranchised,” Alpert says, noting that The Real World gives a “voice to people that might otherwise not be heard.” (After all, the series is no stranger to having cast members with a cause. The late Pedro Zamora was an activist who successfully used the show as a forum to get public involved in the conversation about HIV/AIDS.)
While Alpert notes that “it’s hard to say” if OWS participants will respond to the call (the post has been up for about 48 hours), she hopes the location (“New York has always been a great city for us, we tend to get a lot of great people in New York”) and the desire for those who are “passionate about this movement” to get their message out there could attract possible cast members. “It’s a movement that isn’t going anywhere and that’s growing,” she says. “[The casting call could find someone] who reflects whats going on.”