Well, that escalated quickly.
The Town of East Hampton and the Bravo network have officially thrown down, with East Hampton denying the cable channel permits to film their new reality show Summer House in Montauk. The series, which follows a group of friends hanging out “in one of the most exclusive beach areas on the East Coast,” drew instant negative reactions from locals concerned that Montauk would become the next Jersey Shore.
Summer House was set to film at Kirk Park Beach throughout July. True Entertainment, the show’s production company, filmed at the IGA in Amagansett last weekend.
Bravo is known for their popular reality series The Real Housewives, which follows the daily lives of privileged women in cities like Orange County, Dallas, Beverly Hills and New York City. Several of the New York City cast members have houses in the Hamptons, including Ramona Singer, Bethenny Frankel and Jules Wainstein. But where the Real Housewives are mostly civilized adults (in public, at least), Summer House’s main hook seems to be watching beautiful young people as they party the summer away.
Showtime’s hit drama The Affair also shoots in and around Montauk, at locales like the Lobster Roll and Deep Hollow Ranch. The Affair makes a point of trying to portray the local culture accurately, emphasizing the unique, tight-knit community. The series is set to return to Montauk to film scenes for its upcoming third season.
There’s no word on how, or if, Bravo plans to work around the town’s decision. The show could attempt to film at private locations, for example. But for now, it’s East Hampton v. Summer House (our words, not theirs).
Dan’s Papers’ crack PopHampton columnist Lee Meyer will be following the saga as it unfolds, since it’s already more interesting than the show itself.