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HindustanTimes Sun,21 Dec 2014
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Hindustan Times
New Delhi, March 19, 2013
First Published: 15:17 IST(19/3/2013)
Last Updated: 15:21 IST(19/3/2013)
Reality check: Public’s interest in her personal life made Kim Kardashian an international superstar and one of the highest paid stars on tv who believes that reality is a new form of entertainment

The lowdown


With shows like Bigg Boss, Roadies, Splitsvilla, Dance India Dance, Khatron Ke Khiladi, India’s Got Talent and Sa Re Ga Ma Pa gaining popularity, a reality TV star’s career is very promising. A reality TV performer plays himself or herself in a television serial. It is usually a contest in which participants have to strategise and keep themselves in the show to win a grand prize. Such shows are generally action-packed and/or high on the drama quotient. There is no consistency in terms of earnings. You will be at the top one day and at the bottom the next. You have to put in long, hard hours of work, wear the right clothes, remain presentable. All of it constantly keeps playing on your mind. You cannot come out on top if you have not done your homework properly. Don’t expect instant success, you will need to work hard to get recognition

Clockwork
4.30am: Wake up
8.30am: Duties for the day are discussed and allocated
9am: Breakfast
9.30am: Prepare costumes for the contest in the evening
12noon: Have lunch, rest
5pm: Contestants have to act out roles assigned to them
9pm: A contestant is eliminated amid drama and a flurry of emotions

The payoff
The remuneration depends on one’s popularity. A very popular contestant can earn around Rs. 5 lakh to Rs. 6 lakh a week. Other contestants can get around Rs. 3 lakh to Rs. 4 lakh a week. If you end up winning the show, you get fame as well as a handsome amount as prize money. It can also help you bag roles

Skills/TRAITS
* Confident before the camera
* Go-getter and ready for any kind of adventure
* Grounded and not too emotional

Getting there
Watch out for ads in papers and apply if you think you can make the grade. Training in theatre/ acting helps. You have to have an interesting personality and be game for anything required in the show. Being fussy about what you eat and how you dress will not help. If you love adventure and have the patience to deal with difficult personalities on the sets are likely to be more successful in a reality show. It is important to identify your talent before choosing to participate in a reality show. It does not make sense to take part in a singing show if you do not have the talent to sing well

Institutes and URLs
* National School of Drama, Delhi www.nsd.gov.in
* Film and Television Institute of India, Pune www.ftiindia.com

Pros and cons
* You meet interesting people
* Irregular hours
* No guarantee of long-term success

Taking part in a reality show is about being yourself. It is up to you to branch out and make the best out of this career -- Rannvijay Singh, winner of MTV Roadies, season 1


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