There are many of us who adore watching the many home renovation and design shows that populate HGTV. Because of our collective desire to have the most relaxing, beautiful, functional living spaces possible, we’ve made shows like Home Town, Love It or List It, Property Brothers, and Windy City Rehab major hits for the network. Now, though, former HGTV host Orlando Soria has shared an extremely candid story about what hosting on the network was like for him.
Orlando Soria Was Responsible For Many Unexpected Show Details
Orlando Soria’s time on HGTV didn’t last long, with him hosting Unspouse My House (later repackaged as Build Me Up) for two seasons, beginning in July 2019. While word has been slowly coming out about how all of the contractors / designers / hosts get their jobs done for each of their projects and what being a part of those series can be like for homeowners, few have talked about what being a lead on such a show is like. In a post on his website, Soria said he understands that hosting an HGTV show probably seems “glamorous,” but his experience was “an extreme amount of work” that made “having a social life impossible.” He continued, adding:
If anything, my thought was that HGTV hosts likely do way less work than it seems when we watch these shows on television. As you can see from what Soria noted, though, it was certainly not that way for him.
Just considering all of the details he had to think about in addition to actually redesigning homes is starting to give me a mild panic attack. This is not to mention going without food for way too many hours while filming. Soria said he did this so that he wouldn’t feel “food churning” while wearing a microphone pack wrapped around his stomach, and so that he wouldn’t have to use the bathroom, seeing as how they rarely had access to clean / private facilities while filming.
Soria And His Crew Had No Help From HGTV While Filming During The Pandemic
If this already seems like a bit of a nightmare, it does get way worse, as he was working on his show when the pandemic began…and had to keep working, but not under the safest of conditions. Soria said:
Orlando Soria Believes Many HGTV Hosts Have Similar Experiences
Soria continued, and said that after meeting and talking with many other HGTV hosts, he believes that the “rosy picture” of their work for the network is generally a “misrepresentation” and “all fluff and bullshit meant to keep them in good graces” with HGTV, with only the most celebrated and long-standing of them getting true decent / star treatment.
And, Soria also noted his feeling that the budgets for many of the shows are “so unworkably small” that the work becomes “unsustainable for everyone from top to bottom.” He revealed that his pay for Build Me Up only amounted to $17,500, and that because he was paid per episode he had to dig into his savings when shooting took longer than expected, while everyone else (all paid weekly) kept making money from the show.
In case you’re wondering, the network did give a statement to People about Soria’s post and would only say that they knew about it and “continue to wish Orlando well.”
Build Me Up began airing in July 2020, but three weeks later it was moved to midnight (despite what Soria calls “honestly decent, not cancelable ratings”), essentially cancelling the show. As he said:
Still, Orlando Soria also noted that he has “only positive things to say” about the people he personally dealt with at HGTV, and, overall, found the experience “wonderful, exhilarating, and absolutely worth it,” and said he would be willing to do it again. Though, I can only imagine, he would likely make some very specific requests beforehand should the opportunity to host an HGTV show arise again.
Bachelor Nation, Gilmore Girl; will Vulcan nerve pinch pretty much anyone if prompted with cheese...Yes, even Jamie Fraser.
Your Daily Blend of Entertainment News
Thank you for signing up to CinemaBlend. You will receive a verification email shortly.
There was a problem. Please refresh the page and try again.