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I was on staff in Trailer F on the NBC lot during the casting of "Lost" in the last, sunny days of pre-911 Burbank. The internal NBC cable system allowed us to tune in to the studio while they were rehearsing 'Days of our Lives.'
Casting Producer, Sasha Alpert, who cast the Real World for Bunim/Murray, and her protégé, then-twenty-four-year-old Rob LaPlante, who went on to untold megabucks as Casting Producer of The Apprentice, were numbers one and two in the trailer respectively.
Also present was Jen Sklar who later went on to cover the Hollywood Party scene for Variety.
I was working with the same Alpert/LaPlante team on a show being produced by Ben Affleck's Fortitude called the runner which was to have aired on ABC but was just barely cast when 9-11 happened.
Not only were our hopes for Lost completely and instantly buried by the 24-hour news coverage you may recall in the weeks following the tragedy, ABC balked at The Runner because of its, in retrospect, completely tame content, and it never shot or aired.
It is difficult now to remember the feeling of those days. Everybody freaked.
Basically, every project in Hollywood that had so much as someone being sneaky in it got scrapped.
Fear Factor survived...
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