We're on House Hunters International!
Last summer, while still living in Warsaw, we filmed an episode of House Hunters International! In case you're not familiar with this TV show, it follows different expat couples and families as they look for housing abroad. Our episode aired on HGTV on May 9 and was described as "Bringing Up Baby and Business":
Here is a little backstory of how we got on the show:
Due to the popularity of the show, many couples approach the channel and its production companies with hopes of being on TV. But the opposite actually happened to us.
One day, out of the blue, we received a message from a casting director on our Instagram (who knew that thing would be useful?) asking us if we were interested being on the show. We did a quick Skype interview, where I think she was just making sure we actually moved from sunny California to not so sunny Warsaw out of our own accord.
She left the decision up to us, and after an intense deliberation that lasted oh maybe 5 seconds, we said 'Hell yeah!' I mean, how could we turn down the experience, right? Plus, Mr's mom is a big fan of the show, and we thought it would be a nice surprise for her to see her son on TV.
Since Poland wasn't exactly a prime expat destination, House Hunters hadn't done a lot of episodes there. But besides showcasing a relatively unknown country, there were two other reasons they dug our story:
Reason #1 - Mr left a perfectly good job in San Francisco to move to a country where he didn't know anyone and didn't speak the language to start his own business...
Reason #2. All this while I was pregnant.
So as you can see, our situation was tailor-made for reality TV :)
When the film crew flew in, we didn't know what to expect as neither of us has done much (if any) TV in the past. But we ended up having a blast. Though after five 10-hour work days (yes, that's how long it took to film those 20 minutes of air time!), we were glad to be done.
Since we aren't professional TV actors and this wasn't exactly a Hollywood production, there were lots of bloopers along the way. From an unexpected burst of rain to a flock of pigeons flying in our faces to an old Polish guy yelling at us for propping the door, shooting a reality TV show involves a lot of unpredictability. But that's what makes it fun. In fact, I wish we could see all the out-takes as there was a lot more footage than made it into the episode.
Once we got comfortable with the camera and the crew, we began to have fun with the show. Mr jump-tested all the beds, made allusions to a certain fertility statue we found in one of the apartments, and on one occasion even snuck in his pinkie (to my total embarrassment):
In fact, this is the image we kept receiving from our friends who watched the show back home.
We wouldn't have been able to have so much fun in front of the camera if it wasn't for the crew. We quickly made friends with the cameraman and the sound dude who were old pals from the UK, as well as the American director who, it turned out, had a friend in common with Mr (small world!).
My favorite part was seeing how the crew managed to film us in tight quarters, like the bathrooms. Turned out, no Polish bathroom could stop these guys:
When we were moving from the U.S. to Poland, we never thought it would lead to us getting on American TV. But then again, this move has been full of surprises.