BERKELEY - "Dude, we need a jock!" said one UC Berkeley student to another
as they left a small conference room at the Martin Luther King, Jr.
Student Union. "Where can we find a jock?"
They weren't just
looking for some muscle. On Tuesday (Jan. 28), the conference room
was the site of auditions for "Spring Break: The Movie," the
latest brainchild of reality-television mogul Mike Fleiss, and
the students knew that only a diverse cast of characters would have
a real shot
at stardom. Fleiss, a UC Berkeley alum and creator of "The
Bachelor," has sent his casting crew in search of the
perfect group of seven to ten friends (mostly male, although a
few female friends are
permitted) to film going wild on a spring break trip to Mexico.
Auditions are being held at UC San Diego, UC Santa Barbara, the
University of Washington and other West Coast universities.
producers Kami Herrington and Frazier Bain were hunting for the
perfect diverse cast.
"We want a group first and then individual characters," explained
casting producer Frazier Bain, who was holding court in the
student union conference room. "We'd like it to be a mixed group
of friends who have known each other a while, who are going
a good time
and have great camaraderie on the trip. And we'd like to have
a few of the people you expect to have on a reality-TV show."
the Back-Stabber or the Babe? "Wouldn't hurt," he
There was no shortage of athletic types. Upstairs in
a holding area, seven male UC Berkeley students and a young
had just met
awaited their chance to demonstrate their entertainment value.
Espinoza, a fourth-year polysci and mass communications major,
was camped outside the audition room with her friends in
protest of out-of-control student partying in Mexico. "It really
offends me that people think they can abuse the laws of a
country and get away with it because Mexico needs
the revenue," said the Mexican-American.
"I've been training for spring break all month!" boasted
John Bensley, a third-year student who was auditioning with
and football. Asked what exactly that training entailed, he
admitted he was kidding.
Bensley's friend Scott Macek, also a third-year
never watched "The Bachelor." "I don't watch
TV, period," he
says. So does he just want to be a movie star? "No, I
just thought it would be fun to go on a free trip with my friends."
Castell, a UC Berkeley senior who'd struck up a conversation
with Bensley and Macek in the lobby and invited herself along
as part of their audition group, was optimistic about their
just met them, but we're going to be friends. I make friends
smiled. "And I've had fun vacations every year — Paris,
Turkey, Hawaii — so Mexico would be really cool."
problem: It's not a free trip. "We want them to have the
same vacation they would have had if the camera crew didn't
Bain. Apparently the production company will pay for some undisclosed
costs, but the cast's sole remuneration will be watching their
exploits on screen.
Callbacks for potential UC Berkeley contenders
will be held Wednesday and Thursday, presided over personally
and the winning
group of friends will be chosen in the next three weeks, as "spring
break is closing in on us," Bain said.