You want the truth behind the success of "Keeping Up With The Kardashians?" You Kan't handle the truth! For nearly 14 years, fans have gotten their fill of the Kar-Jenner crew, but there were things that you never saw, and that's not by accident. For instance, remember all those cutaway shots that showed the exterior of Kardashian-Jenner family members' homes? Yeah, those weren't their houses. "It was so unsafe. The Hollywood Star Tours would stop by too, because they recognized my home from our show," Kim Kardashian once told the Daily Mail. "After that, we realized how unsafe it is to show the exterior of our homes. So now we use different homes for the outside for security purposes. The interior scenes were the real deal though."
Keep reading to read other secrets behind "Keeping Up With The Kardashians" as we say goodbye…
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Kim Kardashian and Khloe Kardashian got paid the most. The two women reportedly took home more than half of the family's contract money… then again, they were featured the most. With reports claiming the family's most recent deal was worth $150 million, that means Kim and Khloe each got at least $37.5 million.
Want to visit Kris Jenner's house? Sign a waiver. Cosmopolitan reported that the family matriarch kept a stack of non-disclosure agreements at her front door. Kim basically confirmed as much. "Btw NDAs for all!!!! #KUWTK" she once wrote while live tweeting. The NDAs supposedly say you can't disclose anything about anyone. Period.
Kendall Jenner never let her romances be filmed. "Kendall's always had this rule — she felt like she had to be with someone for at least a year before she let them be a part of the show, because she doesn't always know what people's intentions are," "Keeping Up With the Kardashians" executive producer Farnaz Farjam told Bravo's The Daily Dish. "So that's why we kind of kept her personal life out of it, just because she had a rule."
Like Kendall Jenner, Kourtney Kardashian was very protective of her romantic life when "KUWTK" cameras were around. Granted, her relationship with Scott Disick was well-chronicled, but she locked it up after that. She even prohibited her family from discussing her relationships on camera. While appearing on the E! reunion special that aired after the series finale in June 2021, Khloe Kardashian said of Kourtney's relationships, "We weren't even allowed to talk about it. We're not saying to put him on, but Kourtney wouldn't even let us mention, even though there's paparazzi photos [of her with guys], so we were frustrated that we couldn't even talk about what Kourtney was doing."
Even though they're not on camera, the "KUWTK" crew was a big part of the show, and they had rules too. The New York Times reported that the crew was required to wear shoe protectors in Kris Jenner's house, for example. But the crew did reportedly get paid very, very well, as producers knew that filming was a grind.
Kylie Jenner filmed for her family's reality show for more than half her life. Her most embarrassing moment came on the first season when she was 10 when Kylie played around on a stripper pole installed in Kris Jenner's bedroom. "The stripper pole was so embarrassing," she told E! "I wish it never happened."
Kris Jenner has always been very particular about how the family looks. In chatting with ELLE, Kendall Jenner said, "[Kris] would have a nail artist come to the house once a week and she would make us get our nails done. She was like, 'You are never going to look like you're not put together.' So we were always getting them done." The momager also had the right to edit unflattering footage (and has!).
Sure, there were producers and directors, but Kim Kardashian really called the shots… which made her always up in everyone's business (for better and for worse!). "I think if you ask the crew, I probably produce the most because I know what my sisters might not be sharing," Kim told The Hollywood Reporter. "So I'll tell them, 'Go over to Kourt's house right now. Something is going on.'"
Although the show was highly produced, there was one episode that Kim Kardashian, Khloe Kardashian and company filmed by themselves on iPhones: the season 18 finale. At the time, the coronavirus pandemic was gripping the world and stay-at-home orders were in effect. People magazine reported that each cast member was given a brand-new iPhone every week, and everyone recorded 16 hours of footage a week. Executive producer Farnaz Farjam told ELLE that crew members donned full hazmat suits to install lighting and iPhone tripods for the confessionals during the time. The family took even more precautions, like waiting an entire day to enter those same confessional rooms.
All those reactions and scenes weren't exactly the genuine artifact. Court documents have stated that the family rehearses or reenacts scenes if they don't like how they were initially filmed. Need an example? Kris Humphries (remember him?!) asked Kim to marry him twice on camera because she didn't like her reaction in the initial proposal footage.
Kanye West, Kim Kardashian's estranged husband, didn't exactly abide by filming rules. "Kanye was like, 'I'm not a part of the show. That's not what I do. I have my own career and life,'" Kim told The Hollywood Reporter. "He'll really surprise you though. He'll be like 'I'm not filming' and then randomly show up." Kanye, though, did have some behind-the-scenes input.
The hardest episode that Kourtney Kardashian ever had to shoot was when she and Scott Disick broke up. "I had a lot of anxiety about it and finally said, 'Let's just get this over with.' I sat down and started crying," she told The Hollywood Reporter. "You go through something, and then you move past it. Then you do your interview and get all riled up again. And then you see the episode and start seeing all these comments [on social media]."
Caitlyn Jenner has claimed that she came up with the idea for "Keeping Up With The Kardashians," not Kris Jenner and Ryan Seacrest, as has been reported. Kris later called Caitlyn's claim "so absurd."