Little Wooden Boat

Are you being real?: The One and Only podcast

Mark Cronin is one of the top reality TV producers in the history of the field. He has produced close to fifty different shows including The Surreal Life, Flavor of Love, Rock of Love, Charm School, Below Deck, and Below Deck Mediterranean. Today we discuss the authenticity of reality TV, what it teaches us about human nature, and where it’s headed in the future. This episode is for both lovers and haters of reality TV, and has gems of knowledge for all of us about how to be real, face our fears, and take risks.

Episode Quotes

“The best reality shows, reflect true human nature.”

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The Dr. Drew Podcast with Mark Cronin

Reality TV producer Mark Cronin joins the show for a discussion about his extensive career working as the creator and executive producer of various reality TV shows starting with Singled Out in the 90s and continuing to his work today on hit shows like Bravo's Below Deck. 


Influencive: Unconventional Wisdom / Influential Minds

If you’ve ever caught yourself lounging on the couch obsessively watching what happens to a seemingly everyday character on your favorite reality TV show, then you should probably know the name Mark Cronin, who I recently interviewed. He is the wildly successful reality television producer, best known for creating the “celebrity-reality” genre that has taken the entertainment industry by storm.

He is the creative genius and founder of Little Wooden Boat Productions, the famed company currently producing the game show Idiotest on GSN (Game Show Network), and Mark himself is the Executive Producer behind Below Deck, and its spin-off, Below Deck Mediterranean, both aired on Bravo.

MediaPost Interview with Mark Cronin

Veteran TV producer Mark Cronin had an unusual background for entertainment. “I went to school for chemical engineering. I hated that career, though, and got myself out by harassing the ‘Howard Stern’ TV show until they hired me in the early ‘90s,” he explained.

From there he became a showrunner for MTV’s ‘Singled Out,” before launching his own production company, Mindless Entertainment, for game and talk shows — and eventually the reality show, “The Surreal Life.” “That became a big hit. Now I produce ‘Idiotest' for GSN (in our fourth season now), and ‘Below Deck’ and ‘Below Deck Mediterranean’ for Bravo,” he added.

Charlene Weisler: How has content creation changed (or not) since you first started in the business?

Mark Cronin: When I started in reality TV, it was still a pioneering genre. Now, as a mature business, there are standard procedures, positions and production methods. In the early days, I think we were making it all up as we went along.

Weisler: How do you craft a character’s image that the audience will believe?

Cronin: When people are on a reality show, you really need them to reveal the truth about themselves. Some people do it easily and willingly, and others have more trouble being honest and real in front of the camera.

I always construct and cast my shows so that the truth will come out one way or another. Once someone is being honest, truthful and revealing, the audience will know it, recognize it and love it.