Sacramento Bee

3/13/06

Reality TV Exec Turns His Focus to Politics

By Bob Shallit

Dave Rupel is throwing a party.

Rupel is a Hollywood writer and producer with impressive credentials. He's worked on "The Real World," "General Hospital," "Guiding Light." He's the executive producer of a new miniseries, "The Real Housewives of Orange County," debuting on Bravo on March 21.

He recently moved here and is changing careers - to political campaigning, a field he figures is not that different from making movies.

"I've perfected the art of reality shows," he says. "I can make people love or hate (certain characters). It would be nice to do that in the political world where I really care about the issues."

The trick is selling himself to Sacramento's political community. Which brings us to the party.

Rupel has rented space downtown on the night "Real Housewives" debuts. He'll screen the show for a bunch of invited politicos and others.

"Housewives" alone may not lead to any offers. "It's light and frothy," he says of the documentary. Not hard-hitting campaign stuff. But it will get prospective employers in the door and lead to some serious job talk about Rupel's skills.

"It's a get-to-know-me event," he says.

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