SOURCE: American TV Distribution

April 21, 2008 11:00 ET

Television Series Reveals Pre-Marital Secrets of Couples

DALLAS, TX--(Marketwire - April 21, 2008) - Hollywood may be the entertainment capital of the world, but Dallas, Texas over a thousand miles away, is the hotbed of Reality Television. That's the location of the studios of Tommy Habeeb, a prolific and successful producer of television shows like "Cheaters" and "Stag," two of the tube's most popular reality shows, chronicling the basic instincts of the human condition.

Following the phenomenal success of "Cheaters," Habeeb decided to create the next generation of a show that was fresh, different and having greater appeal to a younger audience. Securing a PPV (pay-per-view) contract insured the necessary stream of income to produce a quantity of shows and an opportunity to get programs in the can. It also provided time to work out the kinks while getting funding for the series, prior to rolling it out for broadcast. While this was a somewhat creative and unique approach, it enabled the process to function.

The "Stag" format is based on the uncensored taping of activities of the prospective groom or bride during the pre-wedding bachelor party. Usually the last night of partying is very unrestrained and people let off steam, making for a memorable video that is viewed by the couple, the following day.

During several of the screenings of the 3-day taping sessions, four of the future brides, confronted by their fiances' indiscretions, ran to the kitchen on the set and grabbed large knives with which to administer their own swift justice.

When the smoke cleared, the most original excuse given by a male partner caught in a compromising situation, according to a poll taken by the show's crew: "I was with the other women, so I could learn something new to add to our relationship!"

"With 50 episodes wrapped and ready in the can, I had enough product to do a slow roll-out for 'Stag,' the same way we brought out 'Cheaters' one station at a time," he reflects. "Since 'Stag' is a controversial reality show with obvious emotional impact due to its subject matter, several station groups had been waiting for the ratings to see if there would be any negative response before launching its full syndication. The first test hit big, with no backlash and 'Stag' has had big ratings, beating its predecessor in its time slot."

Even after reviewing thousands of applicants seeking to have their "test of love" memorialized on "Stag," only 50 of these couples were selected for the series. Each show required 30 crew and staff members and took an entire month to complete, from concept to final editing. That's when reality really sets in especially for the producer!

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