I’m chatting with producer Loren Ruch about what happened behind the scenes of the often-dreaded kitchen challenge. This week: The best Kitchen Cousins moment on set. Plus, do the designers get to reunite after the season ends?
I love the Kitchen Cousins! It looked like they had fun on set. What was their best moment on the set?
We had many fun moments on the set with them, but the favorite for me was a behind-the-scenes moment that they probably don’t even know about! During evaluation, the producers (including myself) are in a control room watching the entire process. We have a director whose job is to call which camera he wants to use at any given moment to capture the drama and tension of what is going on. He originally had one camera allocated to John and another to Anthony so that they could each have their moment in the spotlight, but every single time our director would call for John’s camera, Anthony would end of finishing his sentence and we’d miss the shot. Then he’d call for Anthony’s camera, and John would end up doing the same thing and we’d miss that shot too! We were cracking up behind the scenes because they literally seem more like twins than even cousins. It was like a synchronized swimming routine! Finally, our director opted to just use one camera as a two-shot for both of the cousins so that we wouldn’t miss any more moments!
This week, the designers painted their own walls, but the cabinets and floors were installed overnight. How do you decide what the contestants get help with and what they have to do on their own?
Since this challenge had so many technical installs, we let the experts be the experts and the designers be designers. So, our cabinets and flooring were installed by Cabinets to Go and Lumber Liquidators, and the countertops were installed by professionals, too. However, since those are such large components in the space, we decided that instead of also giving them painters, they should do that on their own. Otherwise, it would have been primarily a shopping challenge rather than a design/build/decorate challenge, which was what we were looking for!
I imagine the designers get closer and closer the further they get into the competition. Do all the contestants get to reunite after the season ends?
I don’t want to share all of our secrets, but you may see a few of your favorites appear again in the finale! Once the show is over, it’s up to the designers to decide if they want to remain friends, and hang out, but HGTV doesn’t facilitate any reunions.
Where were this week’s kitchen boxes located? What happened to the materials after the show?
The kitchen boxes were located in a studio in the San Fernando Valley. Many of the materials were returned after we wrapped, because they were not used in a real homeowner’s home. If we were doing real kitchens, of course all of the materials would remain in the location we were making over.
When will we see Britany and Danielle’s kitchen in HGTV Magazine?
The winning kitchen will be featured in the October/November Issue, which is out on newsstands September 18.
Have a question for Loren? Ask him in the comments below — he may just answer you next week.