The Kardashian family has been in the spotlight for nearly 15 years, and no doubt they have filming their show down to a science. Being in front of the camera is nothing new to them, and they have established certain rules that make the series exactly what it is today. There are also quite a lot of weird facts regarding the family and the show that we think viewers would find very interesting.
Keep reading to learn all the surprising rules and weird facts about filming KUWTK.
1. They're Not Supposed To Talk To The Paparazzi
Kim Kardashian had to be told to stop talking to paparazzi when she's out and about, because, well, she was doing it too often. She admitted, "Every time I'd go to the gym or go eat, every paparazzi would ask me questions and I would be like, 'Hey guys!' I wanted the attention."
The thing is, by talking to the paps, the family runs the risk of giving away too much information and potentially affecting the narrative (and surprises) of the show.
2. The Producers And Crew Can't Wear Shoes In Kris' House
Mama Kris takes the cleanliness of her home seriously, so much so that producers and crew members can't wear shoes inside her house — or, they must at least wear shoe coverings.
In a New York Times Magazine feature on Kris, the editor describes the scene at her house, "A production assistant in surgical shoe coverings handed out microphones, and people wired themselves up through the bottoms of their shirts while Kris invited them into the kitchen for coffeecake."
3. They Don't Film The Exteriors Of Their Actual Homes
When you think about it, this one actually makes a lot of sense — the shots viewers see of the exterior of the family members' homes are not their homes at all.
It wasn't always like that though, as at the beginning of the series they actually did show their homes, which resulted in safety issues for the family. Kim has said, "My old home in Beverly Hills was really my home and I would get people showing up at all hours ringing my gate and had to call the police on several occasions."
4. They Have To Pay For Their Own Vacations
The horror! Wow, the Kardashians may be more like us commoners after all.
In an episode of Keeping Up with the Kardashians, Kourtney expressed how she's over doing the show and complained about various aspects. One of those aspects was paying for a trip to Costa Rica. She said, "Why am I being sent this other huge bill? Why isn't production chipping in if we're using it for the show?"
5. Kris Takes A Cut Of What Her Children Make
We know Kris is her children's manager, and just like any other manager, she gets a cut of whatever they make. What's her cut exactly? 10%, and if you think about how much money her kids make, Kris is laughing straight to the bank. But they're getting a deal too, as most managers charge 15%, so we guess it's a win-win situation.
According to Business Insider, Kris made $17M off of Kylie alone in 2018.
6. Pretty Much Everyone Has To Sign An NDA
This is a rule mostly established by the family themselves, but it's still a rule of the show (and their lives in general) nonetheless. Basically everyone who spends time with the Kardashian/Jenner clan has to sign an NDA barring them from revealing anything about the family.
This is really no secret, but sometimes it's talked about more openly. Take their relationship with Blac Chyna as an example: when the family had drama with Chyna, instead of making a public statement, they sent a photograph of her NDA to ABC News.
7. Personal News Must Be Revealed On The Show
The Kardashians may be all over TMZ, but any big personal news is supposed to be saved for their show — you know, to cause people to tune in and in turn boost ratings.
For the most part, this is pretty on par with how their stories are revealed. Sometimes information comes out before we see it on the show, but even so, they try to keep at least something to be exclusive to the series. Additionally, sometimes TMZ will post a story just days before a new season or episode of KUWTK airs.
8. Kris Can Essentially Add Anyone She Wants To The Show
Momager Kris has a lot of say in her family's show, including who gets added to the cast.
Remember when Khloe was dating rapper French Montana? Apparently Kris, who is an executive producer, promised him a hefty sum of money to appear on the show, which isn't usually how it goes. A source told NY Daily News, "The way that the Kardashians' (show) is set up is very unusual. It's the only show that I know of where a producer can say, 'Here's the cast and this is what they're getting paid.' Usually to add a cast member to a show, you'd have to fire a cast member to keep the budget balanced. But in this case, Kris just offered French Montana a check to be in the show."
9. Everyone Needs To Sign A Waiver To Appear On The Show
Sometimes when you're watching the show you'll notice faces are blurred out, and that's because they did not sign a waiver allowing the network to show them.
At one point, Khloe's on-again, off-again beau Tristian Thompson's face was blurred, to which Khloe explained, "We obviously didn’t do anything. He might not have signed a waiver to show those images. Why would I want to blur his face? I’m not hiding his identity LOL."
10. The Crew Has To Be Ready To Shoot Footage On Their Phones
We're not sure if this applies to every single crew member, but we have a feeling someone would be in big trouble if they missed out on the opportunity to film a moment just because a larger camera wasn't in tow.
Jeff Jenkins, co-president of entertainment and development at production company Bunim/Murray, told The Hollywood Reporter, "There are days when there might be 30 crew people at a location to cover an event and there are days where there may be one person with an iPhone covering something incredibly intimate."
11. They Film For 10-12 Hours A Day
Yes, the crew films for 10-12 hours a day, and sometimes even more. It sounds exhausting, doesn't it?
They do this so they can capture all the footage and storylines they need, which is kind of funny to think about when you know they may end up reshooting many of them (more on that next). It's also joked about that the crew is at Kris' house 24/7 since her home is the central meeting place for the family, and because she's Kris Jenner and always cooking up her next idea.
12. They Often Reshoot Scenes
By now everyone should know that just because something is called "reality TV," does not mean it depicts actual reality. Throughout the course of the series, there have been many "organic" scene that the family has had to reshoot.
One producer admitted that a few scenes involving Kris Humphries, including his proposal to Kim, were among those reshot. Apparently, Kim didn't like her reaction — we guess the proposal wasn't too big of a surprise after all.
13. But Some Scenes Are Completely Genuine
Kourtney has made comments about the difficulty of shooting the scene showing her breakup from longtime boyfriend Scott Disick — those tears were definitely genuine.
Kim also said that they edited parts of Khloe's reaction to Caitlyn Jenner's transition, because "she was so upset."
14. Some Of Kim's Tears Are Fake
While Kourtney and Khloe's reactions were genuine, we can't always say the same about Kim's. We're not sure if this is real or not, but one source says that Kim occasionally uses a "cry stick" (which is common among actors) to keep the tears flowing when they reshoot scenes.
15. Kanye Comes And Goes As He Pleases
Kanye apparently made it clear from the beginning that he wasn't interested in being on KUWTK, though he does make an appearance from time to time.
Kim told The Hollywood Reporter that he said, "I'm not a part of the show. That's not what I do. I have my own career and life." She continued, "He'll really surprise you though. He'll be like, 'I'm not filming' and then randomly show up."
16. But He's Involved In The Show's Creative Direction
Adam Stotsky, the president of the E! network said of Kanye, "He’s a real creative force, clearly, and had thoughts on marketing, thoughts on presentation of the show, on the opening title sequence."
17. Kris Requires Certain Lighting While Filming
Beyond having her hair and makeup done before filming, Kris requires they use "bright lights to flush out her face."
"Flushing out" is not usually the look people go for, but it's clearly what Kris likes.
18. Filming On Location Takes More Planning Than You'd Think
We're not saying you don't know that having any of the Kardashians/Jenners out in the wild would cause a stir, but rather that the producers have to communicate with whichever location they're planning to visit.
For example, when Kris planned to go to Costco during a New York Times Magazine interview, the journalist was not allowed to attend because Costco would only allow three people to accompany Kris. The three people were the camera person, sound person, and a producer.
19. Kim Tips Off The Producers
Kim lends her expertise of her family, and what the viewers want to see, to tip off producers as to where they should go shoot.
She's said, "I'm very aware of what fans want to see. I think if you ask the crew, I probably produce the most, because I know what my sisters might not be sharing. So I'll tell them, 'Go over to Kourt's house right now. Something is going on.'"
20. Kris Has Control Over The Footage
While other Kardashian/Jenner family members may put in certain requests, Kris is the only one who has true control over the footage and can remove anything she doesn't deem fit.
21. Anyone Who Is Involved With The Show Is Part Of Their Circle Of Trust
The same way Robert De Niro's character had a "circle of trust" in Meet the Parents, so does Kris Jenner in real life.
Anyone who is part of the show or works for the family absolutely needs to be someone they trust. The momager told HuffPost, "Unfortunately, there are some bad people out there who have not good intentions. And, you know, I obviously can't control that, but to the best of my ability, we try to have people on our team who have our back, who we feel that we can really trust."
22. Kris Has A Stack Of NDAs
Speaking of NDAs, Kris apparently has a stack of them on a table in the foyer of her house. Next to the stack is a sign that reads, "What we say here, what we see here, let it stay here, when we leave here."
23. Khloe Never Wanted To Do 'Khloe & Lamar'
Spinoff Khloe & Lamar ran from 2011-2012, but it turns out, despite her experience with reality TV, Khloe never wanted to do it. She told The Hollywood Reporter, "I never wanted to do Khloe & Lamar; my ex-husband did. He sold it to E!, and I let it happen because I wanted him to be happy. I was the one who canceled it. It was way too much."