Adrianne Curry’s Top 5 Tips for Surviving a Reality TV Show

Image credit: Adrianne Curry
Anyone about to plunge into the wild world of reality TV could learn a thing or two from Adrianne Curry. One of the few who has made a career out of reality TV, the model and actress parlayed winning the first season of “America’s Next Top Model” into several other gigs both in front of and behind the camera—not the least of which was her show chronicling her now-defunct marriage to Christopher Knight of “The Brady Bunch.” Along the way, Curry has learned how to survive cat fights, backstabbing cast members, crazy challenges, diva judges, and other things that make for quality reality television.

5 Never say never to doing it all again.

With a decade of experience under her belt, Curry said she knows she “could go onto any show and no one could eat me alive or even get to me because I’m like ‘yo, look—10 years under my belt.’”

But that doesn’t mean she’s above producing her own show.

“It would probably be competition based and I’d probably really jab at [“Top Model’s”] Tyra Banks and make fun of her panel of judges,” Curry said. “I’ve also thought about making a show about my life now, post ‘Brady.’ It would be the first reality TV show that’s airing exclusively online.”

4 Once your show airs, try to stop worrying.

Like everyone, Curry looks back on some of her youthful indiscretions—particularly those caught on film—with hindsight.

“I can’t say I regret them, but I can’t say I’d do the same with the mind that I have now,” she said. “When I started reality TV, I was about a year fresh off of drugs. And because of that, that totally stunted my development through my teen years. So mentally, I was like a 13 year old.”

3 Have a great story.

From the start of “Top Model,” Curry found ways to make sure the producers knew she was more than just a pretty face.

“I realized pretty quick that this isn’t about who’s beautiful,” she said. “It’s about their story, too. And I knew I had a f––– of a story. I’d been raped, molested, on drugs. I’d just cleaned up my life.”

2 Don’t waste your energy on the mundane.

One of the first things the audience sees on a reality TV show is the living quarters. This usually leads to the first real throw down as the bickering starts over room assignments and allegiances start to form.

Both when she was on “Top Model” and later when she was on celeb-focused “The Surreal Life,” Curry said she let the others have at that and chose roommates with the least potential for drama.

“I knew that conflict was going to be everywhere, so I try to find my sanctuary,” she said. “Let them eat each other f–––ing alive while you strategize and save your energy for the battles that mean something. I’m not going to fight for a bed in a f–––ing room when I’m going to fight for a modeling contract that’s going to change my life. Prioritize what you’re there for.”

1 Your secrets will get out. You might as well be the one to tell them.

Curry said that she had no idea what to expect when she, a young thing recovering from drug addiction, entered the first “Top Model” house. She says a publicist with the show told her early on that “if you’re going to throw yourself in the public eye, you might as well lay all your skeletons to bear now before everyone else gets a hold of them.”

“I thought about that and I was like, ‘OK I have a whole bunch of skeletons,’” said Curry. “Maybe I should just take the filter off and throw it all out there. People like that better than when they find out later that you’re a shark trying to look like a cute dolphin.”

Whitney Friedlander is a journalist, television fanatic and compulsive shopper living in Los Angeles. She's covered entertainment and fashion for the Los Angeles Times, LA Weekly and other publications.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

THIS WEEK IN NEWS