Mitch Dean’s life is about to change. In the space of a few months he’s gone from Shire-based stonemason to star of Network Ten’s new “dramality” show The Shire, which premieres tonight. Despite being the face (and voice) of the promos and having much of the show revolving around his life, the 23-year-old was never interested in auditioning in the first place. We caught up with Mitch late last week to discuss how he got involved, his history with on-off girlfriend Gabrielle, and if he’s ready for what’s to come out of the show.
Can you tell me about the audition or casting process?
I originally didn’t even want to audition. What happened was my friend Josh called me up and told me he wanted to audition for The Shire. I’d heard of it, but I wasn’t really fussed. I said, “No worries mate, I’ll come down.” Pretty much he just wanted me there with him to talk and converse with each other so they’d see how he would look on camera. So it was all about him. I went down there and I met the casting producer. Josh was running about 15 minutes late and I walked in and knocked on the door, and she’s like, “Josh, thanks for coming,” and I’m like, “My name’s Mitch. I’m just here to help him out.” It was a little bit awkward for a second and I was more or less making small talk, asking a bit about the show — I didn’t really have any interest.
To cut a long story short, he was running late and she was like, “Mitch, while you’re here, can I just audition you? See how you look on camera?” She had a camera there, started asking questions, like, “What are your hobbies? Tell me a little bit about yourself. What’s your story? What do you do for a job?” From there I got a few call backs saying, “We’re interested, we just want to know a few things.” They were constantly asking questions about myself. That was the audition process. It went for about a month with lots of questionnaires, security checks, police checks and all that kind of stuff. Then at the end of the day I get a call saying, “You’re in! You’re on the show.” Poor Josh didn’t get a call back from the first audition. He was absolutely gutted. He was like, “Why did I ask you to come down with me?”
More from Mitch when you keep reading.