TV Article

The O.C.

High school backs out of MTV reality show. The community no longer trusted the Super Bowl halftime-show producers to film its students, despite promises of scholarship money

The nipple-ripple effect continues. On Wednesday, the exposure of Janet Jackson's piercing led to a production shutdown of a new MTV reality show about high school students in California's Orange County. According to the Associated Press, angry parents persuaded the Laguna Beach Unified School District board to vote unanimously to bar MTV from filming on school grounds. MTV had promised to pay the district a fee between $12,000 and $40,000, plus royalties for college scholarships, but the parents no longer trusted in the good will of the network that produced the scandalous Super Bowl halftime show.

The board had approved the production only last week, and shooting had begun on Tuesday. But that approval had come before Justin Timberlake ripped off Jackson's snap-on bodice. ''Last week it didn't seem like the contract was counter to the district's mission, which is the education of the students,'' board member Kathryn Turner told AP. ''This week it does.''

MTV said in a statement that the network regretted the board's decision, and that producers would decide whether to continue filming the series off campus. MTV also canceled a special on the making of the halftime show that had been scheduled to air this weekend.

Originally posted Feb 06, 2004