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Studios have stake in 'Jon & Kate Plus 8'

By Luciana Chavez

McClatchy Newspapers


The solo interviews, addressing their marriage and eight children, don't signal a happy, united front in Gosselin land.

The editing experts at Serious Robots and the sound experts at Blazing Music + Sound toiled nonstop last month, not knowing what was going on with the Gosselin marriage or what those troubles might mean for the show.

For the premiere, seven editors, five in-house and two freelancers worked four days, with visits from TLC and Figure 8 personnel and many coffee runs and pizza deliveries, to put the show together.

"What has become challenging on 'Jon & Kate' is, the network and the audience are so hungry for new episodes, every episode we make gets (broadcast) instantly," she says. "Getting behind is not an option."

The visual folks at Serious Robots were expecting Season 5 to be more complicated; the show's producers want the content to mature as the Gosselin children do. Welsh says the interviews should feel different, too: less rehashing, more analysis.

The show will also have more destination and theme episodes. Welsh says the update won't strip the show of the raw quality fans love.

"There are no setups," she says. When Kate snaps at Jon and he rolls his eyes or the sextuplets erupt into giggles, it's real.

"We let those moments play out," Welsh says. "We don't really edit around (Kate). We haven't really found any need to."


Though Blazing Music + Sound has been in charge of sound mixing for the reality show since the beginning, in 2006, this was the first time that Johnson and Keane rocked out the actual music for the show.

"I think what we add is feel," Miller says.

"You get a little nervous, because you know a lot of eyes will be on it," Keane says. "No one is going to get off scot-free on (such a high-profile show). But as the time goes on, we're getting less and less nervous."


Figure 8, Serious Robots, and Blazing Music + Sound work well together, churning out "Jon & Kate Plus 8" and TLC's other show about a big family, "18 Kids and Counting," among others.

Everyone is busy. The days before the "Jon & Kate" premiere, the post-production people existed in a haze of work, phone calls and more work.

"By the end of the week, people will be dead, but it will be fun," she says.