The Untold Truth Of The Apprentice
Up until his political campaign, most people had come to recognize Donald Trump mainly as a business mogul and reality TV star. The Apprentice is a one of the longest running reality TV shows still currently on the air. Over the years, the format has stayed relatively consistent, although the show eventually decided to focus on having celebrity contestants over regular ones. Like most reality TV shows, the truth behind The Apprentice isn’t necessarily what you’d expect, especially with Donald Trump as its host.
No one goes home after getting fired
During each episode of The Apprentice, somebody gets fired. They have to pack their things and leave the building immediately, and they’re usually shown getting into a cab and (presumably) going home. It seems like a terrible thing, but what really happens isn’t that bad. Since the show’s producers would like to keep the ending of the season (and eventual winner) a secret, they don’t want anyone knowing what order contestants go home in. If someone were to start filming for the show and then return home immediately, it would be pretty obvious that they didn’t win. Losers are actually sent to a nearby hotel, where they stay until the show’s finished shooting. This means that contestants kicked off early on essentially get a free vacation in New York City. It almost sounds better to get fired early on, because a free vacation is a free vacation. It’s surprising that people don’t jump for joy when they get kicked off The Apprentice.
The tasks are super easy
According to celebrity contestant and comedic magician Penn Jillette, the tasks given out by Donald Trump are surprisingly easy. The real difficulty comes with dealing with the other players. Jillette appeared in the fifth season of Celebrity Apprentice, and he’s been very vocal about his time on the show. He described the challenges as being of a “junior high” level of difficulty. The main reason why people make mistakes is because they have to deal with the drama of other contestants and it makes for entertaining television. Apparently, it’s really hard to focus on basic math and history skills when all of the people around you are trying to make you screw up.
The boardroom was built specifically for the show
Sorry to destroy the illusion, but the meeting room that appears on the show isn’t Donald Trump’s actual boardroom. The room is a set built specifically for the show, with hidden cameras placed around it. Trump’s entrance to the boardroom is shot from specific angles to make it look as if he’s entering from a hallway, but it’s apparently just a smaller room that houses equipment. Also, Trump’s chair is specifically designed to sit higher than all of the others. Don’t be too upset, however, because the show is actually filmed in Trump Tower. They wouldn’t fake that.
The exit clips used to be pre-filmed
Seeing someone get fired from the show is supposed to be a sad moment (even though it’s been established that they’re not really going home). During the first season of the show, however, even that moment was fake. In order to get the shot of each cast member leaving, the crew has to set up on the street and make sure the lighting is right, along with having proper shooting conditions. Outdoor shooting can be annoying, especially in New York City. In order to save time and money, the crew just filmed everyone’s exit scenes at once. That means they got all of the cast members together, and filmed each one of them pretending to leave, even though no one had been fired. So, even the winner got to experience losing. Starting with the second season, however, it was decided that it was worth the cost to film each person leaving the building as they got fired. It’s better that way, because reality TV show audiences want to see real sadness.
Winners don’t really become “apprentices”
The Apprentice is billed as “the ultimate job interview.” The winner of each season wasn’t just awarded a cash prize, they would get an actual job. This consisted of a one-year contract for $250,000 and the chance to run one of Trump’s companies. They’re also given the title of “Executive Vice President,” which must look pretty nice on a resume. The reality isn’t so glamorous. It turns out, reality TV contests aren’t the best way to find someone capable of running a multi-million dollar business. While each winner might get a nice amount of money and fancy title, they apparently just become a glorified spokesperson. According to the winner of The Apprentice’s second season, Kelly Perdew, she showed up for her first day on the new job and discovered that her only responsibilities were to appear at promotional events to help sell condo units. Then again, based on Trump’s business history, maybe that’s all that Trump can offer an apprentice.
Getting fired isn’t actually that bad
For most people, hearing the words “you’re fired” is probably one of the worst things they can ever hear. That’s how it’s meant to sound on The Apprentice as well, but the reality isn’t actually that bad. Sure, once someone gets fired, they lose the big payday that comes with winning the grand prize. The good part is that just being on the show ends up being pretty lucrative for people. Past Apprentice losers have gone on to other reality show appearances and public speaking gigs. Others have even been able to nab endorsements from Trump himself for their own projects. Winners are stuck fulfilling a contract, while losers are free to go do what they please. As long as they don’t bad-mouth the show, they can profit from whatever their reality TV fame brings them. Despite however you feel about Donald’s political campaign, the Trump brand is obviously recognizable, and it’s not hard for the show’s contestants to find a way to profit off of their connection to it.