Big Brother 13 Interview: Robyn Kass, Big Brother Casting Director

Every Big Brother preseason we’re flooded with auditioning questions on how to apply, nail the audition, and end up in the BB House. While I’d consider myself quite the Big Brother connoisseur and a dedicated fan since the first season I’ll be the first to admit that when it comes to casting the best reality show evah, I only know what I’ve gleaned from those more adventurous than me. So, armed with a stack of the most often asked casting questions and my own curiosities of what goes on behind the curtain, I turned to Big Brother Casting Director Robyn Kass of Kassting Inc., who graciously agreed to be interviewed and share her unmatched insight.

Robyn Kass has lead the casting for Big Brother for the past decade since Big Brother 2 along with 26 other reality shows including Survivor, The Bachelor, and The Bachelorette. Having earned her first casting gig with Big Brother in 2001 it’s easy to see Robyn’s professional and personal interests shine through when it comes to making sure each season has the very best Houseguests possible.

So if you’re planning on filling out that Big Brother 13 application, submitting your audition video, and even attending every casting event in your area, then read on to find out everything you should know going in to the casting process.

Robyn Kass on making your Big Brother audition the best it can be:

Big Brother Network: What tends to grab your attention the most in an audition?

Robyn Kass, Kassting Inc.: It’s pretty easy to tell when someone is trying too hard. It’s difficult to explain, but we can tell if you’ve rehearsed what you’re gonna say. Don’t do it. Come in fresh minded, but willing to open up and talk. If we ask you a question, give explanations and stories to back up what you’ve said. We like examples…. if you say “I’m controversial” our next question will probably be “great, give us an example of being controversial….” that’s when there’s usually a LONG pause. Don’t say things if you can’t back it up.

BBN: What are the top three things you’d recommend avoiding during an audition?

Kass: 1. Avoid one word answers….. “So, it says on your application you have 7 sisters, wow”…. “yep”. We’ve just given you a huge opening to tell us about your big family and you answered with “yep”, happens all the time.

2. Avoid dressing in something that isn’t “YOU”. Please come to an audition dressed nice, I always say that, but dress in your style. If you’re not a suit and tie guy do not wear one. If you’re a girl who’s more comfortable in jeans, wear jeans and a cute top. You’ll do better in your audition if you look good, feel good and are comfortable.

3. Remember, it’s not a job interview. You do not have to be “PC” with your answers. Don’t worry about offending us or keeping it “clean”, if you’re a person who cusses, go for it. We want to see the real you…. I always tell people to talk to me like they’re having beers with their closest friends.

BBN: Settle the age old question. Which gives applicants a better chance: in-person audition or video submission?

Kass: Really, it doesn’t matter. At this time in the game, season 13, we know what we want….. we watch every tape that comes in and we watch the open calls too, so wherever you feel more comfortable. Some people are more at ease at home, with their friends around and some people like to meet us in person, some like to do both. We’ve had contestants on BB who have applied every way possible, so no right answer.

BBN: What’s the one thing you wish every applicant knew going in to his or her audition?

Kass: I like every person to be unique. I just wish everyone would relax and have a good time. Nothing worse than leaving an interview thinking “I wish I said this or that”.

Robyn Kass on past Big Brother Houseguests:

BBN: Which HG has surprised you the most once you saw him or her in action inside the house?

Kass: Hummmm, great question. I’m probably surprised at the same moments all the viewers are surprised….. Jerry motor boating April, Joe talking about STDs, Chima breaking rules, Howie with his “personal moments” in the pool shed…. I could probably go on. I’m guessing it would be the same list as any fan.

BBN: How often are HGs cast with the expectation to clash or hookup but end up getting along or having no chemistry?

Kass: We don’t really have any of those expectations going into the house. We know the stress of the house will bring out the best and worst in people and will result in conflict and romance, it just does. But we don’t go in thinking specific people will bump heads or hook up.

BBN: How many super fans keep showing up year after year like last season’s Matt Hoffman?

Kass: Lots, and I hope they never stop. I’m sure the true fans know how many cast members applied year after year before getting on (e.g., Dick, Dan, Kail, Matt, Ronnie)

Robyn Kass on Big Brother season themes:

BBN: Do auditions ever drive the season’s theme (as a pattern emerges) or do CBS and Allison Grodner Productions direct your team to look for certain angles/styles?

Kass: All twists come from CBS and AGP (Allison Grodner Productions).

BBN: Which past season theme has been your favorite to cast?

Kass: HA! Most fun?? The twists are always very difficult for us to cast. As difficult as the themes are it makes my job challenging and never dull. It’s Sophie’s Choice, I can’t choose. :)

BBN: If you could suggest a theme to production, what would it be and why?

Kass: Absolutely no idea.

A huge ‘Thank You!’ goes to Robyn Kass for taking the time to humor this Big Brother fanatic. I look forward to the work she and her team does every preseason and can’t wait to see who Kassting Inc. throws at us for Big Brother 13!

Learn more about Robyn Kass and Kassting Inc. at

Photo credit: Carla Ray Thompson


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  1. SO will big brother be having canadian applications this year. I love the show but I think that it would be more interesting with canadians.

  2. i still feel having all seniors in the house would be hilarious,,the golden girls were a great hit, and big brother would be as well,seniors won’t spend their time just laying in bed (boring to keep seeing that) they are outspoking and have great past storys to share.

    • I agree I think it would be really funny or even funnier make it half and half and really make it interesting

      • I agree! I think it would be better to have half the people 40 and over and half the people younger. I am kind of sick of seeing only young attractive people on the show. It was better when there was an older dynamic but there are never enough older people picked for the show. We could show you some laughs!!! I wish they’d do this at least once! Older people watch this show too!! Not just the younger crowd!

  3. Ok I have been a fan of Big Brother since season 1. I have gone out for Big Brother since season 8 this now being season 13. Every season seems to me that they take no only the same type of people but also a majority from the west coast mainly California. They all seem like model types. Last season they casted a young lady from there own soap opera. They have not taken a person from New York since Alex from season 9. Me being from NY is highly upset by that. I hear Robin saying be yourself but most people i see on the show are far from being themselves. So i mean I’m going to try out again this season which is also my lucky number 13. I’m just me a hard working fun person to be around and someone to spark up good conversations.

    • I agree with you that most of them are model types. I from California but don’t have 10 look but I can spark up conversation and manipulate people. The problem during the questions you need a chance to show it is not like they can see if you don’t have the opportunity to react. Maybe do a competition during casting call. I have ways taking advantage of others only when I am a houseguest you will find out how

      • Wow least someone sees what I’m saying. TY Jeanette.We are the viewers and want to see more realistic type people not another Rachel type or Janelle type

    • Tommy, which BB12 HG was from a CBS soap opera? I think you’re mixed up a little. After the season was over CBS had Rachel and Brendon come on a soap, but that was after the show and neither had been on the soap before that.

      It’s also hard to say that those HGs aren’t being themselves when we don’t actually know them and can compare to how they acted back home.

    • Seeking—Males and Females: 21-60, attractive, must be fun, outgoing, energetic, “characters” a must, NY accents a plus.

      This post
      ed by a casting director for Big Brother 13 on Reality Wanted. here now iam not ugly but but not a model type. You are going to tell me i’m going to get a fair shot because they are looking for quote ” Attractive People” come on down hmmmmm

  4. So like I said I have listen to all the advice from Robin Kass from this interview. The interview she did did on Realitywanted and from one of her previous interviews on the early show with Julie Chen and they all sound the same but also somewhat confusing. Be yourself then show us your wild side
    make up your which is it be yourself or be wild

    • If you’re both then you’re set, but if you’re not the kind of person who can be both yourself and entertaining then you may not be ideal for Big Brother. Like it or not, they cast who makes the best show.

  5. I can act out like these people they have chosen but the first season they seemed more like people at home could relate to

    • Sorry Matt I made a typo I mean she wasn’t a regular on there. Plus I have done tried 5 times already to get on big brother season 8 they 12. 4 Times were open castings this season will be my 6 attempt to get on. I’m not bitter.hahaha

  6. @ Jeanette, okay, getting closer! Hang in there! Remember, be yourself but manipulate. Be yourself but react with opportunity. Oh, p.s., no one is a 10! No matter what they say!! Kick behind but be nice when ya do it!! (smiley face)

    • Tishe, it is funny because some people who are good looking do not have personality I like to put them in their place they a flaws a physical disfigurement that prevents them being perfect. I can kick behind but and be nice never know whats comming lol
      Tommy keep on trying I understand it is frustrating not succeeding but keep it up. Don’t worry what others they like try discouraging you because most of the time it others who did not make it or afraid of trying out.

  7. This is Matt from BB12. I could care less if you believe it’s me or not, but it is. As someone who has applied all but two years since Season 2 and was essentially cast twice, I can assure you that “real people” DO make the cut. I’m a web developer. I work a Mon-Fri 9-5 job. I’m a generally normal, boring person. I sent essentially the same casting video in over and over, which consisted of me talking into a camera that was spun around on a tripod. No fancy editing. No crazy stunts. But I had a passion for the show and a drive to win. Casting is NOT rigged and is NOT (necessarily) made for “beautiful people” (clearly! – I have a fucking horrible physique). You don’t need to be a model/bartender/aspiring-actor to get picked. I couldn’t be more “middle-america”. These casting people are experts at sniffing out bullshit. If you try to “play a character”, don’t even waste your time applying. Anyway, yeah – that’s my free advice. Best of luck to you all!

    • Welcome, Matt! Thanks for the insight to the casting and validating that it’s real and honest.

      Everything I saw at last year’s audition event in DC supported that idea. Real fans (and even complete novices) from all walks coming in for their chance to be part of Big Brother.

      While some folks are inevitably going to be recruited, it’s still possible for regular, die-hard fans to rise to the top and make the cut.

      • Matt I was at the DC casting I was one of the first 4 people seen there. I met with Ted I can’t remember his last name . That was my 5th time. He asked if I saw the show,who my fav houseguest was and who am I and what do I bring to the show roughly what he said.

      • I’d guess we met then. I was there covering the audition event for this site and talked with many of the early auditioners. I just couldn’t write down any names.

  8. Matt all people are real lol, but we talking about a certain look Big Brother looks for and yes it is the same look. “Reality check”. Come on you look at the past players it is a look like. Also if you read other websites you would know that other people made the same commits over the years. Get real Barbie dolls, Kent (plastic —) .Every year same. They still pick the same image.”While some folks are inevitably going to be recruited, it’s still possible for regular, die-hard fans to rise to the top and make the cut.” from Matt” have to see ” Big Brother fan

  9. Matt, I have to say some because we all different I guess it is “the up bring” The ones she says” I am so beautiful touch my breast don’t they feel real” I can get any man “Well if they only knew what kind of person. It works go for it lol . If you have a great personality then it is cool. I like to be on the show just to mimic to adopt somebody else’s voice, gestures, or appearance, in a deliberate and exaggerated way, especially to amuse people.

  10. This will be my third season to audition and I can’t wait til it starts. I have tried both, video submissions and casting calls, and am always willing to keep the faith that this year is the year. I prefer the open call method. It gives you a chance to actually meet a “real” person associated with the show and, for me, make a personal connection. I think that casting is really just open to energetic, real people who would mix well with others. True, they have a pretty good idea of what they want, it’s just that “it” factor when they see it that makes you stand out and be counted.
    Matt, thanks for taking the time to help us here and giving your valuable advice for all wanting to be a part of the best reality show in history!

  11. Hey Randy and Jeanette,just want to wish you guys luck. This will be my 6th attempt not as many as Matt from BB12. Matt got one question for you, you said you got casted 2 times. Does this Count also last season. Why didn’t you appear sooner than last season. Funny thing is i post comment and get so many comments to one post see i can be a great houseguest because i can stir things up.

  12. Hey Matt from Big Brother 12!
    I, like a lot of you have tried out and this will be my third attempt. While reading the comments I noticed that in your open calls many of you mentioned that you were actually asked questions for it. I think that the open call I went to last year at my local mall was complete bs because not only did they not ask me any questions and gave me some time(2 min) to give my pitch but the time they scheduled it and the fact there was very few people who auditioned makes me think that it was a hoax. Never the less I keep trying as well and will be sending in my audition tape and possibly going to a real open call in NYC and not a bogus one like the one they had here in upstate, ny. I love this show soo much. The dynamic, the challenges, the overall social experiment that is Big Brother. Good luck to everyone and maybe some of us will get on the show after trying out over and over again like Matt said given the number of years that Big Brother lives.

  13. Matt, what is a good time to arrive at a casting call? Yes that was a joke about people I just being sarcastic just mocking a little irony .

  14. Hey guys, I was just wondering if this season was going to be another all stars season for the HG’s from seasons 8-12 because there is alot of rumours circulating around on youtube and etc. So I was just wondering back in season 7, was there any casting done or did they just announce that there was going to be an all stars season and that they werent going to do any casting.

  15. I think they should have a 16 too 18 casting calls i think this would be a lot of fun i dont know if it would have as many hits but teenagers always have tons of drama and me being one i would def. try out!!!

    • Brain, I am just a positive person and a people person with a great personality is an easy going person who can interact and positively affect many different kinds of people. As a people person, l can converse with people by being genuinely interested in who they are not what they can do for you. Begin to make others feel comfortable and create a positive atmosphere. Not full of myself I am NOT conceited, or think that I better than everyone else. @ Brain one who talks about others is that person who is negative feelings of themselves hmmmm!!! One only can wonder. Have a nice day!!!!!

      • Hey jeannette it sounds like you would be a good contestant for Big Brother and I hope you get on it. All the qualities that you listed have come in handy for a lot of the past winners like Jordan :D. I love Big Brother and I didn’t mean any ill will with my comment. Sorry. Thanks for the information on when auditions start.

  16. Ok so now still waiting for the open casting dates. Hey I looked at the application deadline and I thought it read March 13th. Did anyone else see the same thing.
    This is number 6 trying out wonder should I mention that at the casting to show how determined I am to get in the house.
    I want to show how I can outsmart people and get to the end. Just by simply being me

    This needs to be the year because damn I don’t want to get to be Jerry’s age and finally make it.

    • Hang in there, Friday’s coming! Do not have such a hang up with age, if you do, quit while you’re ahead. Good Luck dude!

    • The Eligibility Rules posted somewhere on Big Brother Network state that the deadline is March 19th for applications to be mailed, but the Rules listed at state Deadline: There is no firm deadline at this time.

      • That’s correct. It’s a rolling application process, so just keep sending them in.

        They started reviewing them last week, but will continue to accept applications.

  17. This quesiton is to anyone at the BB Network: You can either submit your application through the mail w/video tape, or at an open casting call, correct?
    I turned mine in last year at an open call.


    • The instructions say to mail it in to the address information provided, but if you already hand delivered one in the past then I suppose that’s possible.

      Personally, I’d mail it in, otherwise the casting staff has to lug it around the country until they return to their office.

  18. My question is how many super fan’s as you call them get past the open casting. I have been to 5 open casting and never got past them. This will be number 6.
    I have been a fan since Eddie won season 1. I like Evil Dick season 8, James season 9, Casey season 11 because they are all straight up. I like Jerry from season 10 because he was just a cute old man hanging with the young people. I liked Rachel because she was just fun to watch.
    I couldn’t stand Jen from season 8 or Jesse from both season 10 &11 because they were both ego maniacs. On the application they tell you to name the houseguest you like and dislike well see i found that hard because each season i have someone i like and dislike which i was planning to list on my application. Because i have followed the show for so long. Right now top of my list of houseguest i don’t like is sorry Matt from BB12 because one you thought you was smarter than everyone else and saying your wife had a life threaten illness.I would not of went to that extreme.

  19. I did both last year sent in my application and then went to casting call with another application and picture. I gave it to the person who does the interview Tishe what is a twatter? Twitter is a website like facebook I guess has information on shows,so does reality wanted, ,Big Brother live events some of websites I check out

      • Yes Jeanette must of been a bad boy but then I look and it is back waiting for moderation review from my post on March 15th. Jeanette I agree with some people here you seem to have all the traits they looking for. I’m just finally go in with a take no shit attitude which I haven’t shown before because I guess I did what Robin Kass did say in the interview I was trying to be PC. I’m alot like you. Easy to talk to and hang with but feel they can’t really see the true person in a 2 minute interview.

  20. Well Matt I don’t see what I said was out of line. I asked a question Gave some background stated what I thought of previous houseguest either good or bad. Wow I must be a good person for the show because I know how to be controversial and antagositic lol sorry Matt if you felt I said something wrong or out of line. I been conservative at the previous casting this time I’m coming with guns blazing and ready to answer any question straight up and to the point.

  21. I have another question how many of you guys watched last season. I’m sorry these people were not the smartest group because they all worred who was the mystery player and no one knew about the so CALLED BRIGADE. I mean we had a college professor in Ragan, 2 lab tech types in Rachel and Brendon and a Sheriff and none of them figured out about this group. Unless i wss in that Alliance I would of picked it up in the first week and would of worked to pick them off one by one. Sorry Guys you were proud to reach the end together but you was lucky. These Guys were not the smartest players just the luckiest.

    • what? Lucky?? They beat a college prof., a couple of lab techs, and so on. The sheriff? She wanted to play it under the radar so low, she tripped on her own feet. (she was a desk cop)

  22. So Tishe does mean I have an American vote for Big Brother ? maybe I should get votes to bring to casting call Number one fan lol

  23. Tommy I think they will show up end of the month on CBS.Com that alight because you have less time to wait. I sure they have to make sure of the time slots . Matt is your tape on the internet when you tried out ? How did you do your casting call and did you come in in front of the line ,middle, last?

  24. Robyn just tweeted :Despite any crazy internet rumors, BB13 is NOT an Allstars. A fresh season, new HGs, please apply! Open calls posted starting next week!

  25. The castingLos Angeles, CA – Saturday, April 2nd 1PM to 4PM, Spot 5750, 5750 Hollywood Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90028 – Map
    Boston, MA – Saturday, April 9th 12PM to 3PM, Bell In Hand Tavern, 45 Union Street, Boston, MA 02108 – Map
    Atlanta, GA – Saturday, April 9th 11AM – 3PM, Hard Rock Cafe, 215 Peachtree St. NE, Atlanta GA, 30303 – Map
    Scottsdale, AZ – Saturday, April 16th 12PM – 3PM, Firehouse Bar & Grill, 4312 North Brown Avenue, Scottsdale, AZ 85251 – Map
    Spartansburg, SC – Monday, April 18th 9AM – 12PM, Dave Edwards Toyota, 2450 Reidville Road, Spartanburg, SC 29301 –

    • Hey well Jeanette good luck to you because looks like you will be seeing the. Casting directors first in LA so break a leg and knockem dead hope I make it to the show w you

  26. I have been applying on and off since season 5. I’ll go to the open call again this year and see what happens. I do think they are looking for people to be themselves during the audition. I’m not sure they are really looking for someone who is wild or has a large character neccessarily because many seasons they have had very boring people, like Kail, or Monet. But i think they like to have a mixture of different types of personalities in order to create drama. And of course, if you are a model type, that doesnt hurt because the powers that be think viewers want to see model types on the show who take his or her shirts off a lot.

  27. i always wented to have a change to be a meember on the big brother shw i have no money to fly but i would love to hear back from you because it wouls be my first adventour away from my panents they are my favorite poeple in the world today i hope that you can find in your hreats to let me on the show if you would

    • @Joseph: You don’t have to fly anywhere to audition. Just mail in your application. That’s the only way they can ever consider you to be on the show (can’t be part of the show if you don’t apply!).

  28. If you mailed in an application and get an email to come to a casting call do you need to bring another application with you and more pictures? I’m confused?

  29. I think we need half seniors and half younger people and see what a interesting mix that would make (all of course with interesting personalities)

  30. Hi everyone on my way home from the Boston open casting wow feels like they didn’t even give you 2 minutes to answer a question. The guy who interviewed was cool now have to sit and wait and bops in the next week or two I hear back
    online with me were 2 guys who audition for seasons 2 to 12 and both haven’t had any Luck either.

  31. I am resending a comment I made last month..I sent it to the Big Brother Network, and Robin Kass at Kassting Inc. I sent it to Kassting Inc. three times. I never received a reply of any sorts from either one. Maybe it was not important to them….It should have been…..Here it is:

    Daniel, no need to resend short novels. This is a fan site, we do not cast for the show. My advice is to be a convincing potential HG, not to beg for the casting company’s pity. – Admin

  32. First of all I think Canadians should be aloud to apply, we love big brother;) I want on this show so bad, but don’t have a chance because I am canadian. :(:(:(

  33. I absolutly LOVE Big Brother if I could change something though I woud have more diversity between hg like overweight hg ocd hg a little less then perfect house guests it would make it alittle more interesting maybe a husband wife big brother

  34. dates should be in for casting calloh yes big brother fan not enough want more Tishe Read Twitter or look for Twatter (LOL)

  35. Jeanette I see you said open casting would start in April but they gave not released the city or actual dates of when they would be. I figured on or maybe realitywanted they would know the dates by now. Lol what they waiting to the last minute.

  36. Well, my friend, it wasn’t on “twatter” Dog poo, I am lost? I do not do the twitter. I would not even begin to try. My nick name for my ” beloved computer is Dinosaur” I am checkin’ on you and the rest of the die-hard fans!! So, what’s new? Worst case scenario, you will be here with us, instead of stuck with a bunch of ” dorks “, yes? It is getting close!! Hang in there!! I do not even know you, but you, will be interesting to follow! (hugs)

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