Mtv Programming Chief Defends Jersey Shore
MTV Programming President Tony DiSanto has defended the new reality series Jersey Shore against Italian-American individuals and organizations who accuse the producers of presenting repugnant stereotypes of their ethnic group. Nevertheless, he told The Hollywood Reporter that he was "bummed out" by the backlash and hadn't anticipated it. "It never crossed my mind this would be offensive. I don't look at these characters as representing an entire ethnic group. They refer to themselves as 'guidos' sometimes, but it's more about the way they act, their behavior, what they're attracted to, their rituals." An Italian-American himself, DiSanto maintained that not all of the cast members are "fully" Italian-Americans. "It's more about a specific character type," he explained. The resulting controversy won't affect the show's content, DiSanto insisted. "If you try to make every show for everybody, you dilute the creative. If a particular person is offended, that's fine, watch something else." Meanwhile, MTV announced Wednesday that the series premiere of Teen Mom drew 2.1 million viewers, making it MTV's highest-rated series launch in more than a year.