Dating Shows – Casting Guide

Reality dating shows became popular in the 1970’s with “Love Connection” and “The Dating Game”. They took a slightly more mature theme in the 90s with “Studs”, “Blind Date” and “Fifth Wheel”, but the format remained the single episode format in which one contestant chose someone to date based on the people on that show. We don’t really consider theses dating reality shows because a little known secret is that many of the people appearing on these early shows were aspiring actors and actresses who were on the show more to build their time in front of the camera rather than seek a connection.

The original of the modern season long elimination dating shows is the Bachelor, and this is the current standard for dating shows. There have been more than a dozen shows like “Joe Millionaire” or “For Love or Money” that had a slight twist on the format, but kept all the major elements of the show the same.

Because there is neither a cash prize like the adventure shows or a marketing boost like the business shows, the dating shows are considerably less competitive than the other genres. The selectivity comes in meeting the criteria the show’s producers are seeking for that season. As an example, for a season of the bachelor they are likely only to consider female applicants that are within a 10 year age range of the show’s star. Because there is so much filter that occurs just in the base qualification for the show, it has one of the best applicant to contestant ratios.

The casting calls for the dating shows are also fairly different as they can take place at a bowling alley, club or other public environment. These auditions are more about understanding how you deal in social settings so it’s important to feel comfortable where you’re going. If you live very near the place of the casting call, I’d recommend going up the weekend before to scope out the environment so that you look super comfortable in the environment. If you live a few hours away or it’s not possible to attend ahead of time, you may want to research the location online as this will be a major advantage during the audition.

Reality Dating Show Details
  • Casting Competitiveness: Three Star
  • Original Show: The Bachelor
  • Primary Network: ABC Network

Casting Tips for this Genre
The dating shows are based on the contestants building an emotional connection with the audience. The producers need to either really see you as someone who can bond with people so that they either root for you to be picked and find love or root for you to go home if you are one of the season’s heel characters. On that note, it’s good to come to the show and play to a character. It’s best if you can be a mix of two popular former contestants. It’s a very quick, efficient method of letting the producers understand who you are trying to be for the show as well as illustrating a knowledge of the know.
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