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How Much Influence The Producers Really Have Over Gold Rush

It should come as no surprise to most TV watchers at home that reality shows don't always necessarily depict reality. It makes sense to an extent. How much of people's days are just spent scrolling through their phones and getting work done on the computer? It doesn't make for compelling television, so it makes sense that those behind the scenes have to spice things up from time to time. But it may surprise some people to learn just how many moments are staged just for the cameras. 

Discovery's "Gold Rush" is not immune from this phenomenon. As much as the series seems to rely on the elements and the natural grit of the teams mining for gold, producers still have ways to interfere with the digging. And it's not like they try to make that interference a secret. Series producer Ed Gorsuch spoke with Reality Blurred about the show and how exactly his role as a producer allows him to steer the plotlines into more productive directions.

For Gold Rush, it's best just to 'go with the flow'

Naturally, it's all about the give and take, and it's not like "Gold Rush" is entirely scripted or anything like that. According to Gorsuch, they always follow the lead of the mining teams. They have a plan in place to get as much gold as possible, and it's really just up to the camera crews to catch as much as possible that will aid in the story. As he put it, "They'll come up with 10 different ideas, and one of them will really stick, hopefully — one will be the thing we're going to hang a season on. That's the big idea; that's what we're going to choose to emphasize. And then it's the give and take about how do we tell that story with them."

It's not a matter of just telling the teams what to do. That doesn't work, but they can steer them on a more productive course. As Gorsuch goes on to say, "I find that with the miners, you go with the flow. Whenever we get in the way and try to bring shape to something that doesn't go with the flow of what they want to do, we fail. The more we can be in sync with them and work with them, the better. The shows are better."

He went on to explain how they allow the miners to do what they do, and in editing, they give the madness some structure. So while they do have some influence over what gets seen in the finished product, they don't make the miners do things they don't want to do by the sound of it.