An American production company wants to record the everyday life of Rob Ford, Toronto's crack-smoking half-mayor, and turn him into a reality television star. Comedy writers could not come up with a better narrative for Rod Ford than what we have watched play out over the last year or more, in real life, so it should not surprise anyone that enterprising television types want to capitalize on this man who is above parody. He already gets embarrassingly drunk in public, occasionally becomes violent with his coworkers, and offends people he claims to care about. Rob Ford might be the perfect reality television star.
The Globe and Mail's Ann Hui reports that Pilgrim Studios, the company responsible for The Ultimate Fighter, American Chopper, Dirty Jobs, Amazing America with Sarah Palin, and a bunch of other shows you watched for hours while too hungover to change the channel from Discovery, recently approached half-mayor Ford's representatives while the mayor was visiting L.A. to attend the Oscars and appear on Jimmy Kimmel Live! This was the company's pitch:
“I’m writing because I’m interested in speaking with you and Mayor Ford about the possibility of developing an unscripted television project together,” an executive of the studio wrote to the mayor’s spokesman at the time, Amin Massoudi, in an e-mail obtained by The Globe.
It is unclear if a meeting between Ford's representatives and Pilgrim studios ever took place, let alone whether a show is in the works. Rob Ford and his brother, perpetual sidekick, and fellow city councillor Doug Ford have indicated an interest in a reality show.
Currently the Ford brothers sporadically release episodes of a Youtube show in which they talk about about everything and nothing. Here, you can watch Ford try out his impressive Jamaican accent. But what exactly would a Rob Ford reality show, on real television, look like?
This show would presumably give us an illuminating look into what life looks like behind the scenes, at home, where Ford is tendered and well-fed. It has potential to be unbelievably depressing. Ford has an alleged history of domestic abuse. We already know Ford as a photogenic subject, so the potential GIFs would probably gloss over the darker parts, if any of them make it to air. Or, maybe maybe he'll offer weed with the production assistants:
Victoria Hills, ex-girlfriend of Mr. Fickel, told police that she went with Mr. Fickel to Mayor Ford’s home sometime in January, 2013, and, while she sat chatting with the mayor’s wife, Renata, the mayor asked Ms. Hills “whether she smoked marijuana and if she’d like to smoke a joint.” She declined. “The mayor came back with something that looked like a joint,” the affidavit reads. “He was the only one that smoked it. It smelled like marijuana.”
Yes, sign me up for Smoking Doobies with Rob Ford. I would watch that show.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.