To see someone face-to-face and to see their struggle and to see the journey that they want to take, that is really what resonates for us. And it’s also nice to look somebody in the eye and know that they are there for all the right reasons. —Casting director Randy Bernstein
Utah will host a casting call for NBC's reality TV show "The Biggest Loser" on Saturday, April 19. According to casting director Randy Bernstein, the new season will feature families of four who want to get in shape and improve the quality of their lives.
Salt Lake City is one of seven cities that will be holding open auditions for the show's 16th season. While video auditions can also be submitted online, Bernstein said that there is nothing better than meeting with applicants in person.
"To see someone face-to-face and to see their struggle and to see the journey that they want to take, that is really what resonates for us," Bernstein told the Deseret News. "And it’s also nice to look somebody in the eye and know that they are there for all the right reasons.”
Bernstein said he hopes people will come out to the Salt Lake City casting call with their family members, whether they be immediate or extended family. Those selected to be on the show will be arranged in groups of four.
Pre-regristration for the event can be done online and is encouraged. The pre-registration process not only helps the casting department know roughly how many people they should be expecting at the audition, but also allows them to get to know potential contestants before they show up.
Additionally, details listed online recommend that applicants bring three to five recent, non-returnable pictures of themselves to help support their story, as well as a pen, a current drivers license, food and water and a folding chair to use while waiting. All applicants must be 18 and older.
Information pertaining to the casting call and the application process can be found online at thebiggestlosercasting.com.
Those who apply for the show should be serious about their desire for change and highly motivated to regain a healthy lifestyle.
"I look for somebody who has a burning desire to lose the weight, keep it off and transform their lives," Bernstein said. "Really, what I’m looking for is somebody who will get to the ranch and not quit on the first day. Somebody who is not going to give up and is willing to take the challenge and go the distance."
Bernstein compared the life-changing opportunity of being on the show and receiving the help of professionally trained doctors, nutritionists and personal trainers to winning the lottery.
"There is no other opportunity being offered like that," he said. "Obviously, there’s a quarter of a million dollars up for grabs, but I don’t think that’s the main motivating factor. I think maybe at the end that is something that sort of lights up in someone’s head, but the motivating factor for being on ‘The Biggest Loser’ is really to transform your life."
"The Biggest Loser" has changed the lives of Utahns since the show first aired in 2004. In its past 15 seasons, roughly two dozen Utah residents and members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have competed on the show.
"In the Mormon community, the families are so close and so tight-knit that I feel like this show ... almost becomes an extension of your family," Bernstein said. "It's sort of — I don’t want to say a ‘religious experience,’ necessarily — but it’s definitely an experience that you’ll never forget and I think that is why ‘Biggest Loser’ is resonating so much with people in (this) community.
"I really think that the extended-family aspect of the show is what keeps people excited about it and coming back. It is a family."
If you go:
What: "The Biggest Loser" casting call
Where: KSL 5 TV, 55 N. 300 West, Salt Lake City
When: Saturday, April 19, 10 a.m.-6 p.m.
To pre-register: thebiggestlosercasting.com/web/apply
What to bring: A pen, a copy of your driver's license, other familly members who wish to apply (age 18 and older), a folding chair, food/water