PLAINS TWP. — Hundreds of people from Northeastern Pennsylvania and other states vied to be some of America’s most famous house guests.
On Thursday, CBS affiliate WYOU and Mohegan Sun Pocono hosted a “Big Brother” casting call at the casino’s Grand Ballroom, prompting folks to bare their idiosyncrasies for a chance at a reality TV appearance. Candidates who began lining up around 8 a.m. were given two minutes in front of cameras.
Digital manager of PA Homepage Mark Prutisto said CBS is looking to get a sense of who individuals are.
“The idea is to get personalities on camera, because the show is personality driven,” Prutisto said.
Before auditions began, “Big Brother” Season 17 contestant and Scranton dentist, John McGuire, riled up the crowd and answered questions for people who were as much fans of his as they were house hopefuls. The reality show veteran had some advice for those waiting to try out.
“Just get in there and let all your weird out,” McGuire said. “They’re trying to put a bunch of crazy people in the house.”
McGuire also had words for those who might be selected.
“It’ll change you,” McGuire said. “No matter how long you’re there, you’re locked in the house with nothing to do. You get bored. You get crazy. You definitely come out different than you go in.”
Michael Diehl of Auburn, New York, was first in line. The school teacher was dressed in full superhero regalia with a shaved head that left only a “BB” of hair on the back of his head.
“I teach second grade, so I dress like this all the time,” Diehl said. “I just turned 50, so I figure I have a lot of experience. We’ll see what happens.”
Diehl said he wants to show CBS he’s young at heart and willing to do anything to win “Big Brother.”
John Casolite of New Brunswick, New Jersey, came to show his humorous personality and that he’s a die hard fan. On his sixth open call, the 33-year-old said he can leave his job in a moment flat to participate in the process.
“I want to show them how I’ve gained experience in social gaming,” Casolite said. “I’m a facilities and equipment manager for the largest gym company on the East Coast. My job is very competitive on a corporate level, and I’m constantly having to come up with strategies to make sure the other people who work with me don’t get ahead of me. I’ve learned how to distance myself from feeling bad about people I have to step over.”
J.T. Brennan of Kingston said his nerves got to him a bit in front of the cameras, but the 22-year-old grocery store manager said “when” he gets selected he’ll enter the game with some strategy.
“I work all day with customers,” Brennan said. “I know how to read people, based on if they’re giving off good or bad energies. I’ll give the first week to get to know everyone, before I decide who I’m going to work with to get far along in the game.”
Reach Matt Mattei at 570-991-6651 or [email protected]