Reality TV Crews Get Rush From Toughest Shoots

Reality TV seems so spontaneous that it’s hard to believe how much work goes into making it. But for the DPs and camera operators tasked with capturing the action and the drama on the fly, the genre is one of the most demanding in the business.

“It can be busy, it can be hectic and it can be crazy,” says Shaun Newton, a camera operator on MTV’s “Are You the One?” which wrapped its fifth season in March.

“Twelve-hour days are typical for us,” Newton adds. “But it can be rewarding, and it’s a really cool job. There’s a camaraderie that comes from working together and putting your passion into it — no matter how vacuous some of these shows can be.”

Newton has worked on reality television since practically the beginning. He got his start in 2000 as a PA on MTV’s “The Real World” — considered a seminal show for the genre — and has since operated the camera on some of the most popular reality series, including “Jersey Shore,” “The Apprentice,” “America’s Next Top Model” and “Cops.”

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