Is it just us or do the seasons of 90 Day Fiance just get crazier and crazier? The couples’ stories get more insane with each iteration of the show. Like this season for instance, where Robert proposed to Anny after only eight hours of knowing her.
But despite the crazy stories that each couple brings to the table, we find ourselves rooting for them to work out time after time. And that’s not just a coincidence. The casting department for the show spends a great deal of time finding the perfect subjects who teeter on the line between being outrageous and relatable. So, how exactly do they find such great casts season after season?
How did ’90 Day fiance’ start?
Matt Sharp of Sharp Entertainment recognized that people loved stories about relationships that overcome obstacles, so he put together a promo for a show about people looking for cross-continental love. Unfortunately, no one else believed in Sharp’s idea and he was turned down multiple times.
Finally, in 2013, Howard Lee, an exec from TLC, saw the promo and knew they were on to something.
“At that time TLC [was] really not in the love and relationship space,” Lee told Entertainment Tonight.”I always thought that was a void … and I told Matt, ‘You’re going to stop showing it. We are going to greenlight this, we want it!'”
90 Day Fiance then premiered in 2014.
“I saw this whole brave new world of how you find love,” he said “It was not just regular courtship, there was also a massive ticking clock to it. I could see how the finale of the show would be. Every series has to end in a certain way … [this had] a deadline. You’ve got 90 days to bring your significant other from overseas and see if you both really are in love in that try out period, and you make a decision: do you carry on this journey to marriage, or does [someone] go back home?”
What does casting look for when finding people for ’90 Day Fiance’?
The success of the show relies completely on the casting, which is why Lee still has a hand in choosing every person.
“No one is allowed on the show unless I condone or support the casting,” he said. “It all has to be run by me.”
“Everyone from Sharp Entertainment, and our incredible production team at TLC — everybody evaluates this casting closely,” he continued. “We take a half-day to all-day sessions, and it’s nonstop. We take sometimes up to a year and a half to begin casting just for a franchise. I’m looking at casting right now that doesn’t even air until the end of 2020 or until the beginning of 2021.”
The main thing casting is looking for is genuine emotion.
Since the show has become so popular, more people who are only seeking fame have begun to apply, but those people are screened out for the most part.
“If you don’t see somebody who forgets about the cameras and truly has a desire, need and longing to express the potential of what could blossom out of the relationship … we can’t cast them,” he says.