Producer has plan to keep 'Boss' going

Published: Friday, March 5 2010 12:00 a.m. MST

"There's no doubt that when you're casting any program with real people, you've got to find that mixture of people that are going to feel comfortable about having a camera pointing at them and yet still essentially behaving normally," Lambert said. "If they're just doing it because they want to be on a TV show, then, on the whole, it doesn't work. They come across as not authentic."

But some people are better at faking it than others. And the Heenes — who both took acting classes — apparently were better at it than most.

The fact remains, however, that viewers would be wise to take anything that happens on a "reality" show with a grain of salt.

Not surprisingly, Lambert said that's not really a problem with "Undercover Boss." And, clearly, there's a fundamental difference between how people end up on this show and how they end up on "Wife Swap."

"With 'Wife Swap,' people apply to be on it," Lambert said. "But this show, nobody applies to be on it."

There are, of course, discussions between the companies involved and the producers. And the bosses on "Undercover Boss" are clearly acting — it's part of the premise for them to act like entry-level employees.

But the other employees are more in "Candid Camera" mode.

"Once we have got the agreement of the companies, we do research within the company to try to work out where we think it would be good for the boss to go," Lambert said. "But in that sense, we're much more likely to come across people that wouldn't dream of being on television who agreed to be on it because we asked them nicely and they know their company's in favor of doing it. So I think, yes, we're able to capture people as they genuinely are."

"Undercover Boss" airs Sundays at 8 p.m. on CBS/Ch. 2.

e-mail: pierce@desnews.com

Friday on TV

High school basketball (Ch. 14): 5A semifinals (2 and 4 p.m.); 4A semifinals (5:30 and 7 p.m.)

Ghost Whisperer (7 p.m., Ch. 2): A ghost warns Melinda about a bomb.

Who Do You Think You Are? (7 p.m., Ch. 5): Debut of this surprisingly engaging series in which celebrities investigate their genealogy and family history. First up: Sarah Jessica Parker.

College volleyball (7 p.m., BYUTV): Pepperdine at BYU

Caprica (7 and 9 p.m., Syfy): A rival industrialist threatens Daniel; a rogue STO leader (guest star James Marsters) tries to acquire Zoe's avatar program.

Medium (8 p.m., Ch. 2): Allison gets mugged.

Numb3rs (9 p.m., Ch. 2): Two men who were sexually abused by a teacher as children are killed.

Spirit Awards (9 p.m. IFC): Eddie Izzard hosts these awards presented to independent films.

Friday on TV

High school basketball (Ch. 14): 5A semifinals (2 and 4 p.m.); 4A semifinals (5:30 and 7 p.m.)

Ghost Whisperer (7 p.m., Ch. 2): A ghost warns Melinda about a bomb.

Who Do You Think You Are? (7 p.m., Ch. 5): Debut of this surprisingly engaging series in which celebrities investigate their genealogy and family history. First up: Sarah Jessica Parker.

College volleyball (7 p.m., BYUTV): Pepperdine at BYU

Caprica (7 and 9 p.m., Syfy): A rival industrialist threatens Daniel; a rogue STO leader (guest star James Marsters) tries to acquire Zoe's avatar program.

Medium (8 p.m., Ch. 2): Allison gets mugged.

Numb3rs (9 p.m., Ch. 2): Two men who were sexually abused by a teacher as children are killed.

Spirit Awards (9 p.m. IFC): Eddie Izzard hosts these awards presented to independent films."Undercover Boss" airs Sundays at 8 p.m. on CBS/Ch. 2.

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