Mike Darnell: The Man Behind Reality TV's Success

Mike Darnell is the man that brings us such high quality programming such as 'When Animals Attack' and 'Who Want to Marry a Multi-Millionaire?'. But he has also brought us the more successful 'American Idol' and 'Joe Millionaire'

Darnell is Fox's head dude in charge of reality programming. When confronted with those who question the morality of his creations he says, "My reaction is, Why not ask about the social responsibility of 'Seinfeld'? What was socially responsible about that? Nothing!"

And in further defense, "My responsibility is to entertain, to get you away from your problems for a few hours," he says. "It's just about having fun. Is a mediocre sitcom or drama somehow better than a great reality show?"

"I'm enormously proud of what I've put on," he says. "The bigger the ratings, the more proud I am of the show. That's not meant to be cynical. That's just the goal."

"I like to make noise," he says, smiling, his feet propped up on a table in his small, cluttered office. "I like making anything that will get a number. I just want to create big TV. I want it to get noticed and talked about. The thing that gets my excitement level up most, bar a few things, is when the buzz gets going. That's all TV is about. I want people to think, 'Oh, I have to go home and watch that!' "

His next project is a show called 'Married by America', which will debut in March and have couples matched for marriage by viewer's votes.

Read more about Darnell here.

Written by Steve Hall    Comments (0)     Feb-10-03  
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