TheWrap speaks to Authentic Entertainment's Lauren Lexton and Drew Hoegl about the show's production
Jeff Lewis and his off-the-wall team of house flippers/designers return to Bravo for a seventh season on Wednesday.
The team has survived economic slowdowns, divorce, broken friendships, employee turnover and avoided being sued by several unsuspecting interns and arrived at a new place on Season 7.
“The thing about this season is that it's a little bit lighter and funnier,” executive producer, Authentic Entertainment's Lauren Lexton, told TheWrap. “I don't think that there are as many bigger, heavier issues looming on the horizon.”
“When we start this season, a lot of the business drama has been ironed out,” Executive producer Drew Hoegl added. “And this season has allowed Jeff to get back into the personal relationships with his staff. It's really funny, it's maybe the funniest season the show has ever seen.”
TheWrap asked the producers to answers some burning fan questions about the past seven seasons.
1. The cast is so nuts. Do you cast for the show or have a say on who works for Jeff?
Lauren Lexton: These are Jeff's actual hires. I think the more you just stand back and let Jeff do the things that he would ordinarily do, the funnier it becomes because he really is his own worst enemy sometimes.
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I think Andrew is the perfect example of an amazing character who Jeff hired last season and you never thought he would last, but actually he goes through a lot of learning in this season. And who knows if we'll be back for another season, but if we are Andrew has actually transcended Jeff in a weird way. There are ups and downs but his character is the perfect example of somebody who is kind of playing to Jeff's strengths and weaknesses.
2. Jeff's partner Gage was introduced in Season 5, but there was a sense that he had been around for a while. Why did it take so long for the show to introduce him?
Lexton: Well, he was much more background in the business in the beginning. And I think as he became much more day-to-day and vital to Jeff's business, that's when we decided, ‘Yeah, of course, he's a character because he's part of the whole equation.’
3. The cast doesn't seem to hide much. But, are there boundaries as to what you can and can't shoot?
Lexton: Not at all. Wait until you see, there are some doozies this season in terms of boundaries, it's hilarious.
Drew Hoegl: You watch this season and you will realize how few boundaries there are for sure.
4. Do Jeff's clients who allow the show to film them and their homes get a discount for the services?
Lexton: They are actually hiring him and they are paying him.
Hoegl: Yeah, those are full-on paying clients. They don't get any kind of discount from us or special dispensation from the show.
5. “Flipping Out” has won over critics, who are usually very snooty about reality series, over and over again. Why hasn't the show won an Emmy?
Lexton: I don't know, we try. I think that it has this kind of cult respect in a weird way, but it's also still a very small show. It's not loud and splashy like our other shows like “Honey Boo Boo,” so generally it falls under the radar a little bit.
This year we are hoping that this season it is a little different because of the new Emmy category, Outstanding Unstructured Reality Program. Bravo, I'm sure is going to submit for that. And that I think does give us a little bit of a better chance, because it seems to at least fit the kind of show it is better than past years.
Watch a preview from the upcoming seventh season above.
“Flipping Out” premieres Wednesday at 10/9c on Bravo.