Proposed reality show on Civil War draws crowd in Gettysburg
GETTYSBURG, Pa. - A weekend casting call for a proposed reality TV show based on the Civil War drew potential contestants hoping for the grand prize: $1 million in gold.
Producer Kevin Dolan is shopping around "Sabers and Roses" and said he is hopeful of landing a network deal. Dolan owns the historic Landon House in Maryland, where real-life Confederate Gen. Jeb Stuart hosted his "Sabers and Roses" ball in 1862 before the battle of Antietam.
Dolan would host the show in the guise of his alter ego, "Johnny Reb." Contestants would be divided into Yankee and Rebel teams; each contestant would take on a role and have to fulfill increasingly difficult challenges while staying in character.
"I'm confident taking on big projects," Dolan said. "I've had a really good response to this. People are really passionate about the Civil War, and reality TV is really hot. There is an untapped mainstream market."
Saturday's casting call drew actors, Civil War re-enactors and those simply in it for the prize money.
"I've never shot a gun or a cannon, so I think that would be awesome," said Sarah Nance, 20, of Mount Airy, Md.
Dolan would like to premiere the series on April 9, the 140th anniversary of the end of the Civil War. The series would shoot in Texas, Maryland, Pennsylvania and New York, and would conclude in July in Gettysburg during the annual re-enactment there.
Dolan is working on a pilot culled from 50 hours already shot in Texas.