Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Does Your Multi-Culti Family Want to Be on TV?

I think I've seen the ad on about three or four different blogs and websites. Perhaps you've seen it too? The one with the headline from Left/Right TV that reads:

Production Company Seeking Multi-Racial, Blended Family For
Reality/Documentary Television Show

Well, one of the producers sent me the same request for help, hoping that some of you, dear Meltingpot readers, might fit the bill. Of course, I was flattered that the Meltingpot registered on somebody's list of blogs with a multicultural audience, but I didn't let the flattery go to my head. Before I posted the ad here, I wanted to make sure that this wasn't going to be some tacky, race-based Wife swap knock off. So I asked some questions of producer Meri Haitkin and she happily responded.

The Meltingpot: What other shows has Left/Right TV produced or been involved in?

MH: We do a little of everything here! But it’s all very high quality documentary/reality work. Such as:

This American Life, Showtime
The Salt N Pepa Show & I Wanna Work For Diddy, VH1
True Life & Exiled, MTV
Stealing Lincoln’s Body & Einstein, The History Channel
Running in Heels, Style

The Meltingpot: What is the goal of this new multiracial Brady Bunch program?

MH: Our goal with this television documentary/reality show is to present a blended, multiracial family who is lively, outgoing, and busy. In other words, a family that is going through the same triumphs and trials as all Americans are, only maybe their struggles are enhanced by sheer quantity of members, or by virtue of being multi-racial. Or not. We, as producers, are open to stories and scenarios for both highlighting these differences and subduing them. Our main goal is to demonstrate how the family is exactly like every other family (cereal-eating, chore-doing kids and homework-hounding, divide & conquer parents) but when relevant we also hope to highlight the extra issues that may come up racially or those that may come up because it’s two families combined into one.

It will be a non-scripted series that will show the family going about their everyday lives. We hope, in this way, to put a face to multiracial blended families of America and, in turn, we hope that though their presence alone (through the highly visual medium of television) that we can will do a great deal to begin to eliminate bias and judgment across America through compelling storytelling to a national audience.

I thought that sounded pretty cool, actually. So here's what Left/Right TV is looking for:

We are looking to find a Brady Bunch style group; meaning kids from separate, previous marriages, now living together as a whole new family.

We are particularly interested in racially diverse unions (such as
African-American and Asian). Real families dealing with real issues:
step-sibling adjustments, financial stresses brought on from the current
economy, distribution of labor and any other issues that come up in a modern
American home.

We also would like to ideally find a family that has only lived this new and
blended life for a year or less.

If you and your family are interested in being a part of this timely project
­please get in touch by sending a letter describing your family as well as
a recent photo of everyone to:

I asked Haitkin if the family had to be a Brady Brunch mix, instead of just a "traditional" mixed family with different cultures under the same roof and she said no. "The best stories are made from the best people and I’m not interested in turning away anyone with a great story right now," she said.

So there you have it. If you think this sounds like a positive opportunity, please send in your info to:

Would you be interested in watching this reality show? I definitely would. As long as it's not overbearing with the race stuff and just allows it to unfold. But it would be nice to see an interracial family on TV that doesn't ignore the uniqueness of their union either, ala Chris and Kate Plus Eight on TLC. A white mom and an Asian dad raising eight kids and nobody ever brings up race. That annoys me. So I wish this new show the best of luck. Keep me posted if your family becomes the next reality TV stars.



Spring @ forever spring said...

Gosh, I live in an Asian/African/Caucasian mixed race family. We've been in this particular constellation for exactly one year. Now I just have to figure out if I want to be on TV...not sure about that. Did they mention anything about pay? In this economy, USD is a motivating factor...

Thanks for passing this on, Lori.

LT said...

Hi Spring,

I don't know if there's money involved but I do know that almost everybody who becomes a Reality TV "star" gets access to resources, and I can think of no better family that could use some resources than yours. In that, perhaps someone who worked with trauma survivors might see you and offer to work with Desta in some way. Maybe. It's def. a calculated risk but could be interesting. Good luck if you decide to go for it.

Nikeshia said...

I kept wondering when a show like this would come along. I too thought it was really weird that Jon and Kate RARELY ever speak of their cultural backgrounds....the only time i remember is when Jon was making a Korean dinner. It seems like you would have to go out of the way for it to not at least come up in years. Grrrrr