Mike Rowe on Thursday revealed the backstory of how his hit Discovery Channel show "Dirty Jobs" got started. Speaking on Glenn Beck's radio program, Rowe explained that he had just finished seven years of singing opera and was in a "freelance mentality."
"It's after the opera. It's after Home Shopping. It's after ten years doing a thousand jobs," Rowe said. "'Dirty Jobs' happens because my granddad gets sick, and he's a guy who built my house without a blueprint, the one I was born in. And he had never seen anything on TV that looked like work."
"So I said, 'Before you die, it would be great if I did something that you would at least recognize as vocational,'" Rowe continued. "That's what started 'Dirty Jobs.' It was supposed to be three one-hour specials. 10,000 letters later, after the first airing, I realized everybody had a story about work. The network realized it too. A new show was born, a new franchise was launched, and a new genre eventually evolved in cable TV about people who work."
"I don't want the blame or take the credit for any of that, but I was proud of my show," Rowe said. "And we did it like a good scout for nine years. We did 300. We shot in every state."
Rowe said when the show was done, he and his partner said, "we ran out of dirt and we ran out of jobs, but we didn't run out of people."
"We met a lot of people during 'Dirty Jobs' that I would have loved to put on TV, but they weren't disgusting enough," he laughed. "So we kind of circled back and said, 'What about the inventors, what about the entrepreneurs, what about the bloody do-gooders? What about these people who wake up every morning, not unlike some of the people sitting at this table right now, who are a little agitated that the world is not quite the way they want it? What about these people?"
Rowe said they knew they had to make another series. It's called "Somebody's Gotta Do It," and it premieres on CNN October 8.
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