Biggest Loser films 2 endings …and here’s proof.

By David Knox on May 29, 2013 / Filed Under News, Top Stories 23

00316EXCLUSIVE: As we know, Reality TV finales have a habit of filming two or more endings, in order to keep the audience from spoiling the winner before broadcast.

Whether it’s a plate of food with two different scores, a celebrity dive with alternate scoring or multiple apprentice champs…

Now we have photographic evidence of weight-loss numbers being fiddled after The Biggest Loser filmed alternate endings for its finale.

Last night mother and daughter team Robyn and Katie won the TEN series but the numbers varied on their final weight loss in two different endings.

In a ‘faked’ ending  (picture below) Robyn’s final weight was 74.1 kilos and Katie’s was 88.1 kilos.

In the ending that went to air (picture above) Robyn was down to 73.1 kilos and Katie was higher at 89.2 kilos.


BL8 Robyn and Katie (2)

TEN Publicity accidentally sent out a photo of the ‘fake’ ending to media last night, correcting the error this morning with a new photo.

TV Tonight understands the finale was filmed some weeks ago and contestants were not told who had won.

This afternoon a TEN spokesperson said, “It’s standard practice for reality shows that are filmed in front of a live audience to shoot alternate endings in order to protect the result from leaking and spoiling the end result for loyal viewers who have committed to watching the program.”

But while Reality shows continue to film ‘fake’ endings in order to minimise potential leaks, they risk jeopardising the credibility of their shows. Shows that have filmed multiple endings have included My Kitchen Rules, Celebrity Apprentice, Celebrity Splash, MasterChef: The Professionals.

The Voice, Dancing with the Stars, Australian Idol and So You Think You Can Dance have managed Live finales, MasterChef has cleverly filmed its scoring on the afternoon of the finale and kept all its contestants on site until the episode airs. House Rules has also indicated it will stage a Live finale.

Other Reality TV producers may need to consider Live finales given audiences are now wise to the trick of phony scores.


  1. hannigans_heroes May 31, 2013 at 1:01 am -

    I get the scales being fake; I think that it’s reasonable for them to be pre-weighed and the weigh in order tweaked for dramatic effect– and besides, it’s pretty obvious the scales are fake anyway. No biggie.

    I don’t like the faking two endings; their reactions just never seem genuine and takes the real reality out of it. And I’m disappointed the TBL did this as well, especially considering this is someone’s weight; not someone’s food.
    I figured that the real winning weights were the weights that were used in the aired finale and that the rest were just meddled with for the audience throw off. At least TBL had a studio audience as an excuse, but where are the rest of the shows excuses?

  2. thatsnicmeyers May 30, 2013 at 2:49 pm -

    Shannon confirmed in a radio interview on Tuesday night that the finale was filmed 5 weeks ago.

    Why do they wait so long to air it? I agree with other commenters: it would be much easier to air the show then have a Live finale (a la Survivor, RuPaul’s Drag Race, Australia’s Next Top Model). As well as helping with spoilers, it also gives the reunion show (if they choose to have one) another dimension because the contestants get to comment on how they were perceived and some stuff (private interviews, etc) that they didn’t see while competing. I can say that this method made the RuPaul’s Drag Race finale much more interesting.

    Also, as others have stated, it leaked during the first season of TBL that the contestants are weighed beforehand without knowing the result and the “stage scales” are used for the filming.

  3. Jason S May 30, 2013 at 11:58 am -

    Like anyone takes these kinds of show seriously. They are just a form of “entertainment”, just as manipulated and programmed as anything else. I actually don’t have a problem with this practice because it fits with the model they are trying to deliver. My problem is that these shows continue to be billed as “reality TV” which has never even been close to the truth. This story reinforces that point.

  4. Karlos May 30, 2013 at 11:26 am -

    It is pretty obvious that the “scales” they step onto on the stage are not really scales. Of course they would be weighed beforehand so that the producers can control the dramatic elements. I appreciate the trouble producers go to to avoid results being leaked, but I hate the idea of multiple endings being filmed. Can’t they just do a live finale the way Survivor does in the US? Or pre-record the finale that afternoon like they did with S1 MasterChef.

  5. daveinprogress May 30, 2013 at 11:24 am -

    I’ve always understood that they were weighed first, and then the producers scheduled the order for the cameras, but as a dieter who has regular weigh ins myself, weight can fluctuate even within like ten to 15 minutes between jumping on the scales. If it is all so tampered with, it does make the results pretty distorted, but it is reality tv – the emphasis on tv!

  6. daveinprogress May 30, 2013 at 8:28 am -

    As a former program maker, i get the palava they go through, as a viewer there are some things i would rather not know!

  7. Andrew May 30, 2013 at 7:35 am -

    I thought it was revealed years ago that the on-screen scales are not real. They are weighed beforehand without revealing the numbers to the contestants. It also allows the weigh-in order to be tweaked for dramatic effect.

    Have you ever seen a modern scale bounce around so wildly? It is for dramatic effect. And if you see some overseas seasons they have scales that simply zero in on the actual figure.

    To me it doesn’t alter the level of reality and it is enjoyable – that’s what counts.

  8. Mac May 30, 2013 at 3:36 am -

    As a fan of TBL, I find this very disappointing. Considering weight loss is evidential, not judgemental. Now I only start watching it a couple of seasons ago but I thought the finale was shot within a few days of broadcast, some weeks after the final episode was shot? If so, I don’t see why they can’t just broadcast a delayed, factual finale.

  9. Seriously May 29, 2013 at 10:43 pm -

    @Glory Days: I agree, I have always thought the producers know the results before they film. It’s hard to believe those “scales” are actually real.

  10. hotgoat May 29, 2013 at 9:32 pm -

    Which is the fake ending? The second picture has a weight loss higher than the first, that would mean the fake ending for Gerald and Todd would have 400 grams more for them to have a winning score.

    The winning margin was around 150-200 grams.

  11. MC82 May 29, 2013 at 8:53 pm -

    I understand TBL doing this because they have a studio audience. What I don’t get is why shows like MKR and The Apprentice need multiple endings as they’re filmed on a closed set.

  12. jesicka309 May 29, 2013 at 8:03 pm -

    So do the contestants know whether their weight loss was enough or not? Which score is their actual weight and which is the one that was chosen to be shown as the ‘winning’ weight?
    That’s not exactly ethical or psychologically right! This is people’s weight, not the Apprentice or Masterchef where people just win some money.

  13. Leigh-Roy May 29, 2013 at 7:33 pm -

    I interviewed the winners today and they had no idea they had won, except when they were the “first” to dummy there win, it was s more natural reaction from the crowd because they werent told it was a set up. Hence why Robyns husband and son ran from the crowd on stage in excitment.

  14. Glory Days May 29, 2013 at 6:56 pm -

    I think the producers weigh the contestants off screen before shooting so that they know who is going to win, then get them to weigh in a certain order. Funny how the winner(s) are always the last to weigh in.

  15. David Knox May 29, 2013 at 6:08 pm -

    In the case of Loser it does raise questions about the scales used by the show. Are we to believe the scales are wrong / the info is typed in by prdn assts / or they aren’t really scales at all?

  16. Andrew May 29, 2013 at 5:32 pm -

    I’m not sure that as many people would care David has suggested. Personally I thought the BL final was well produced and entertaining. The most important element for me is to not know the result in advance, so I am willing to accept fake endings to ensure this.

    It is also worthwhile noting that it can be difficult for a show to switch from taped episodes to a one-off live show. The very first season of Masterchef highlighted how hard it can be to produce a quality yet secret final. The quality that was maintained throughout the series suddenly dropped when it came to the segment recorded that afternoon, with a lack of background music amongst the obvious indicators that they did not have enough edit time. BL would be even more challenging to produce with editing to keep the episode short, costume changes, not to mention inserting the “before” projections including moonwalking, all taking some time to complete.

  17. Sam G May 29, 2013 at 5:20 pm -

    I heard that Next Top Model likes to film both finalists winning as well, except they go for their real reactions…

  18. Mr. J May 29, 2013 at 5:03 pm -

    The contestants deserve a lot of credit. Their fake reactions are very convincing. Especially Dan &steph. Ive seen experienced actors would struggle with such emotion.

  19. Dr_Rudi May 29, 2013 at 5:01 pm -

    David, reality television has no credibility; there is nothing at risk.

  20. Andrew May 29, 2013 at 4:57 pm -

    Given that these shows thrive on creating fake drama it’s no surprise they now thrive on creating fake results.

    Leaves fans guessing are the winners they see actually on their own merits or is it just who the producers decides is the more worthy (marketable?) winner.

  21. John Jackson May 29, 2013 at 4:55 pm -

    This sounds so stupid. So does this mean their reactions aren’t real?

    They have to go up and get weighed twice, with different numbers showing and they get told they have to act sad or act happy, instead of just doing it one go and having a natural reaction?

  22. jezza the first original one May 29, 2013 at 4:54 pm -

    “Reality” becomes scripted drama

  23. Sam G May 29, 2013 at 4:44 pm -

    Why cant they all just do it like Amazing Race and keep the winner a secret?

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