April 15th, 2009
09:26 AM ET
5 years ago

Blagojevich hoping to appear in NBC reality show

Blagojevich has inked a deal to appear on an NBC reality show, if a judge allows.
Blagojevich has inked a deal to appear on an NBC reality show, if a judge allows.

(CNN) – Former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich's career as a politician appears to be over, but a new career in the world of reality television could just be beginning.

The impeached former governor has inked a deal to appear on an NBC celebrity-themed reality show, assuming a federal judge allows him to travel as his criminal charges remain pending, the network said in a statement.

The upcoming show, called I'm a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here!, pits 10 celebrities in a Costa Rican village for a month while they battle each other in competitions and put their survival skills to the test. The show will air nightly and viewers will have the final say on which celebrities have to go home early.

According to the Chicago Tribune, the financially-strained Blagojevich stands to make $80,000 a week for his appearance on the show. Blagojevich's attorney will soon make a formal request that the former governor be allowed to travel outside of the country for the gig, the Tribune also reported.

An ill-fated earlier iteration of the show ran on ABC six years ago, when the celebrity cast included Melissa Rivers, Bruce Jenner, and Tyson Beckford. Chris Judd, the onetime husband of Jennifer Lopez, won the competition that year. The show drew little attention then and was not renewed.

Blagojevich, who was impeached and removed from office earlier this year, pleaded not guilty to federal corruption charges Tuesday. A federal grand jury indicted him this month on 16 felony counts, including racketeering, conspiracy, wire fraud and making false statements to investigators.i


Filed under: Rod Blagojevich
soundoff (119 Responses)
  1. phoenix86

    I thought he was going to get a position in the Obama administration. He would be the most honest politician there.

    April 15, 2009 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  2. lf

    If he appears on the Reality Show, he may wake up as to all that has happened. Perhaps he is thinking beyond confinement time and headed for stardom in Hollywood's tinsel town.

    He may do well in some political roles in cinemas. At least he has had some experience pro or con in civilian life.

    April 15, 2009 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  3. Better Show

    I think they should wait until he's convicted and in jail then have the show, "Get Me Out Of Here" showing his life with Bubba behind bars. Take the proceeds and pay it into the various funds he raided in Illinois.

    April 15, 2009 10:05 am at 10:05 am |
  4. Big Ed

    What he wants is beyond the last thing I could possibly care about.

    April 15, 2009 10:05 am at 10:05 am |
  5. Chas in Iowa

    Now that's a "jump the shark" move. Fonzi would be proud.

    April 15, 2009 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
  6. Saad

    NBC, don't do it. If you do, it will the start the end of your legacy.

    Instead, allocate some resources for a legal battle to send this man to Gitmo. Then, when he is there, give him 5 minutes of airtime from there. This will increase your legacy.

    April 15, 2009 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  7. Ray Fisher

    Might as well, TV is not entertaining anymore only commercials. So much for cable TV what a crock!!!

    April 15, 2009 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  8. David in Indiana

    People can't help but watch a train wreck. We feel better about ourselves when we see someone having problems that we are not involved in. The only "Reality TV" that I watch is the news, so I could care less if he's on the show.

    I wouldn't turn down 80 grand for a week though.

    April 15, 2009 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
  9. Sharon

    How much longer is this clown going to be allowed to embarass the people of Illinois? Blago, just go away!!!

    April 15, 2009 10:11 am at 10:11 am |
  10. Foxy

    We should boycot NBC for rewarding such ....not celebrity....notoriety!

    April 15, 2009 10:11 am at 10:11 am |
  11. AJ

    Since when is Blago a celebrity? Why would the producers give a criminal a spot on the show? This is American pop culture at it's worst.

    April 15, 2009 10:12 am at 10:12 am |
  12. Steve

    Please God, someone stop this idea now.

    April 15, 2009 10:12 am at 10:12 am |
  13. John from LA

    Sad day for NBC-boy has that network gone down the drain!

    April 15, 2009 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  14. Qui-Tam Relator

    Aahh America the only place on earth where you can have federal charges brought against you and then escape reality to go to reality, WOW !

    April 15, 2009 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  15. GrandOldFlag

    This is ridiculous. He is a criminal and should not be free to fly off to a beach vacation.

    April 15, 2009 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  16. Ed, Santa Fe, NM

    WHO WOULD WATCH THIS?

    April 15, 2009 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  17. chris

    No journalistic Integrity in America at all.
    I wanted to major in journalism but I changed my carreer......

    April 15, 2009 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  18. Dan in NY

    Blago wants us to take him seriously? If he was serious about proving his innocence, he would be fighting in a dignified way. Instead, he wants to ride his new-found fame – and fame he only got because he is accused of being corrupt! At least when he's in jail, he can watch re-runs of his TV stint and think back fondly on all he accomplished. The people on that island better watch out for him. He will stab you in the back!

    April 15, 2009 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  19. Dan

    Will he ever let up? He seems to think he's so important when he was just a small blip on the news radar.

    April 15, 2009 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  20. Gracie

    This is so STUPID. I wouldn't ALLOW this fool to leave the country under any circumstance. He's nothing but a con artist.

    Bottom line.

    April 15, 2009 10:20 am at 10:20 am |
  21. Spencer

    He should be in prison, not on TV. I'd thought it was bad enough with "Celebrity Apprentice." Apparently not.

    April 15, 2009 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  22. Susan

    This is despicable, and I am very disappointed in NBC. This is a public official indicted on federal charges.
    The people of Illinois should boycott NBC and all of it's affiliates. What a slap in the face to the citizens of Illinois.

    I personally will not watch him on television until the day they haul his a#% to jail.

    April 15, 2009 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  23. Peter C.

    How about if the network just waits for old "Blog" to go to jail before they start filming? I'd be willing to subscribe to pay-per-view to see some of the things that (deservedly) might happen to this goof once he gets there. Instead of "Jail Break" they could call it "Jail Prom".

    April 15, 2009 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  24. obama/mama

    I would watch him. In these crazy times you need to laugh to stop from crying.

    April 15, 2009 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  25. Lynne Duncan

    "I'm a celebrity???" How about "I'm a criminal!"

    April 15, 2009 10:26 am at 10:26 am |
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