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. rich

    This is quite funny. I know this man has to pay his legal bills, but to star in a reality show "I'm a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here!,"? LOL. Sounds like good practice for his expected prison run. Isnt this a flight risk? He might never come back to answer to the charges. While many of us may thing Blavojevich was a crooked politician, he sure does know how to survive and keep his name out there. He might just win this thing if allowed to travel.

    April 15, 2009 10:28 am at 10:28 am |
  2. mark

    A liberal going on a liberal network, priceless.............

    April 15, 2009 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  3. Bret

    This is about as sleazy as it gets. I wouldn't put it past Blago to try and shake down the other "celebrities" on the show. Enjoy your last few days of freedom Rod.

    April 15, 2009 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  4. J

    I admit, I might tune in. This is one of those things that's so surreal it's funny.

    April 15, 2009 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  5. John Starnes Tampa Florida

    Let me guess...and it will be hosted by Sarah Palin and "Joe the Plumber".

    April 15, 2009 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  6. Jackie in Dallas

    This is a travesty. I know that reality shows are all the rage...it is why I rarely, if ever, watch commercial TV anymore, but this is insane. I agree with Ben and others, below, that it is impossible to teach kids - or adults, for that matter - the difference between right and wrong when we reward those who wrong the American people like this. NBC needs to reconsider this SERIOUSLY. The only "reality" show I want to see this clown on is the 6 o'clock news being hauled off to serve his jail time. He won't be smirking long in the can!

    April 15, 2009 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  7. tom

    America is becoming a sick place. Goes to show you there is a difference in this country for those with power, money or influence and the rest of us.

    Daschel's nomination as well as the other 5 people who had outstanding taxes is further evidence.

    So much for Change.

    April 15, 2009 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  8. lb

    Rediculous! The man should not be allowed to profit from his notoriety and should be remanded to jail ASAP.
    I now know why NBC is my least watched television station.

    April 15, 2009 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  9. Some guy

    Maybe his hair will get a sitcom spinoff series. Have a nice day.

    April 15, 2009 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  10. duh ray ray

    He missed his true calling.He should have been a republican.

    April 15, 2009 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  11. MJM

    NBC must really be desperate to get a show and I don"t think this is the way to do it, but hey, what do I know!!1

    April 15, 2009 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  12. wyoming dem

    CELEBRITY JAILBIRDS life behind bars. Maybe he can be cell mates with Michael Vick, wouldn't that be special?

    April 15, 2009 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  13. janette

    NBC and it's "child", BravoTV, should be shut down! Bad taste is the phrase that comes to mind.

    April 15, 2009 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  14. Ohio Man

    Hmmm Michael Vick has dog fighting and gets 2 yrs + has to pay a ton of money and this guy does crime that affects the American people and gets on talk radio and may get a reality show.. yep this is America for u at its best... P E T A needs to get him about that fur on his head maybe then he will do some jail time

    April 15, 2009 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  15. jaye

    This is a disgrace for NBC... no wonder they're losing all their viewers.

    April 15, 2009 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  16. Destiny from Illinois

    Ugh... all he wants is attention. I can't believe I actually voted for him in '02.

    April 15, 2009 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  17. RRR

    Anyone under Federal Indictment should NOT be allowed to make money from their plight. Blago will be in jail soon enough.....THAT should be his reality show.
    This would only be appropriate if Alaska Ted Stephens was also on the show!

    April 15, 2009 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  18. Bud

    If NBC signs this Mobster I will, and ask everyone I know in the country to as well, boycott NBC and all of it's advertisers!! This is a disgrace!!

    April 15, 2009 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  19. Patrick

    Am I missing something, isn't he supposed to be in prison right now?

    April 15, 2009 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  20. Philip Grant

    This man is a defence lawyers nightmare.

    April 15, 2009 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  21. Bob the Observer

    So many people are justly taken out of the limelight, then the idiots at the major networks bring them back. Once it was Trump, now it's Blago.

    Rewarding criminals. Is it any wonder no one watches network TV any more?

    April 15, 2009 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  22. Jimin Texas

    We are drunk with the culture of celebrity in this country. The only redeeming thought is that it's even worse in England, our cultural parent. My advice is to make sure that Blago isn't armed. I wouldn't put it past him to shoot his way out, then deny he did so. I grew up in Illinois and moved to Texas as soon as I could. At least the corrupt politicians are covert here.

    April 15, 2009 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  23. Patrick

    He should be getting tortured in Gitmo

    April 15, 2009 10:39 am at 10:39 am |
  24. Ch in Maine

    If G Gordon Liddy and Ollie North (convicted felons)get "News Talk Shows" on the Faux network. Then why shouldn't Blago get a reality show? Will I watch it? Heck no. But hey it's afree country.

    April 15, 2009 10:39 am at 10:39 am |
  25. MiamiGeorge

    If the judge allows this it will be utterly disgraceful. We all might as well engage in crimnal behavior as it obviously is the way to go these days.

    April 15, 2009 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
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