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July 17, 2008

The Zen teachings of Ashton Kutcher

Ashton Kutcher dispenses philosophical nuggets at TCATCA -- On a panel for ABC’s "oh shoot let’s pick up something quick for fall" game show "Opportunity Knocks," executive producer Ashton Kutcher dispensed "Zen and the Art of Reality Show Production" philosophical gems that prove he is living in the Now.

On reality show editing: "You can succeed without hurting people. I believe that you always have to have compassion before you have judgment. And then any time you have judgment without compassion, it will fall apart. You might get a big pop really quick, but that energy will dissolve. So we always try to instill some universal compassion into the shows that we do.” [ex. "Punk’d,"  "Beauty and the Geek"]

On coming up with the idea for the show: “I don’t believe anybody owns ideas. We’re blessed with being able to manage ideas in our lives.”

On getting local residents' permission to shoot a game show: “Contrary to popular belief, the human condition is actually a positive one. If you present somebody with an easy opportunity to help somebody else, for the most part people will accept it -- as long as it’s easy."

On becoming a reality show producer: “This medium is an opportunity for all of us to express our voice. And the more platforms that you can do that on, the more impact you can have. I haven’t sought it out. It’s followed me.”

On actors complaining about the popularity of reality shows: “Have you ever sat at a dinner table and somebody set down a big cake, the dessert you really, really want, and you sort of start watching people take the pieces and it starts dwindling down and you start to get a little worried. ‘Am I going to get my piece?’ And you have all this anxiety as to whether or not you’re going to get your piece until you see the guy come out of the kitchen with another cake and it makes you go, ‘oh, it’s okay.’ And that all those actors that are sort of bitching about reality TV taking away their money or their jobs, I think that there’s another cake coming and they’ll be fine.”

And what will really blow your mind is when you realize, there is no cake.

Getty Images photo


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