The first two seasons of the show were just 10 and 12 episodes, respectively. When MTV ordered the series’ third installment, the network wanted 28 episodes -- but shot in the same amount of time they had to film the other seasons.
“We never had to script anything,” Gateley says. “We just had to make things happen faster and be more efficient about shooting, because we had more episodes to produce every year.”"
“Did we know that Heidi and Lauren were going to be at the same club when they didn’t?” Gateley asks. “And did we help, you know, make that happen? Absolutely. But once they were in there, you know, we weren’t making anything happen.”
“[There was] a need to produce more episodes, not necessarily more drama,” she adds.
“That’s when we started covering more characters, too,” Gateley notes. “We started covering Stephanie Pratt and her friendship, and Lo [Bosworth] came back to the show .... Lauren just couldn’t sustain [it] … There’s only so much that happens in someone’s life in a few weeks time, or a few months time.”
Heidi Montag and Spencer Pratt agree that season three was the turning point for the show, telling ET’s Ashley Crossan they amped up the drama in their lives for the sake of good TV.
“Season three on, at least in our relationship, [the drama] was all scripted,” Montag confesses. “Any fake fights that we had, all that, was not completely genuine … a lot of those conversations were just taken out of context I think.”