Jersey Shore is one of MTV’s most popular reality shows. Because the series has been on for more than 10 years, some people think Jersey Shore has to be scripted. We’re here to tell you that’s not true, per the producers who worked on the MTV reality series.
Pauly DelVecchio says ‘Jersey Shore’ isn’t a scripted series — ‘not even a little bit’
In November 2019, DJ Pauly D and the rest of the roommates cleared the air about whether or not Jersey Shore is a scripted series.
“We don’t have a script,” DelVecchio told Bustle. “Never had a script for 10 years, not even a little bit. Not even a little bit.” Reality television is rooted in — well, reality. So all of the drunken nights, hookups, and physical fights on Jersey Shore were real.
“We’re not produced,” the famed DJ continued. “Everything that happen[s] that we were watching, that sh*t happened.”
“It’s hard to watch some of it,” his roommate Deena Cortese added.
By not scripting the roommates, who were 20-somethings that signed up for what they thought would be a competition show, producer SallyAnn Salsano ended up creating some of the most entertaining television ever.
Ironically, the Jersey Shore roommates weren’t doing anything special. As DelVecchio put it: “I feel like people in life do [what we do on the show], they just don’t put it on film.”
Many reality shows feel scripted or overly produced, but Jersey Shore is authentic. “I think we were the realest reality show,” Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi said. “I can watch every other reality show and tell you, ‘That’s not real, someone told them to say that.’”
The ‘Jersey Shore’ cast couldn’t follow a script because they were drunk most of the time
A former Jersey Shore producer recently answered fan questions on Reddit. One fan wanted an explanation of the difference between scripted, staged, and edited series. In this fan’s mind, the Jersey Shore cast couldn’t possibly be “acting” if they were drunk most of the time, further proving the reality show was real.
“Some people here still don’t get it,” they wrote. “It amazes me that some people actually think [the Jersey Shore cast] was able to ‘act’ or ‘go off a script’ when they were wasted a majority of the time.”
The producer went on to explain each term and how they pertained to Jersey Shore.
‘Jersey Shore’ is always edited, sometimes staged, and never scripted
Thanks to a Reddit user who worked as a story producer for Jersey Shore during season 1 through 4, fans now know what’s real and what’s staged — not scripted — on the show.
“Scripted is like a movie, reading from a script your every word and not adding originality to it,” the producer said, adding:
Staged is when producers put certain things in certain places and mess with the chess table a little bit. For example, the bowl of questions during season 2 [of] JS. Producers staged that to call Ronnie [Ortiz-Magro] out.
On the other hand, editing is cutting pieces of footage and putting it together to “make content that would best fit the storyline, marketing, branding, and overall representation of MTV.”
Fans are looking forward to more edited, possibly staged, but never scripted Jersey Shore: Family Vacation when season 4 is released in November.