When we look back on our favorite reality shows from the past, MTV created some of the best ones and a dynasty of iconic reality stars. Between the ”Guidos” of the Jersey Shore and the dramatic cast of The Hills, there was a show for everyone to get hooked on.
However, once these shows went off the air, we always wondered what happened to the cast. What did they do with their lives? Who did they marry? Did they stick with reality TV? Find out what your favorite MTV stars are doing today and what they did with their careers once the cameras were gone.
Lauren Conrad – Laguna Beach: The Real Orange County
Lauren Conrad is one of the OGs of MTV royalty. Her rise to stardom began when she was cast on Laguna Beach: The Real Orange County, which was supposed to be the real-life version of The O.C. Fans loved Conrad so much that she got her own spin-off, The Hills. She became known for her iconic slow-motion tears and signature winged eyeliner. Conrad’s likeability led her to many more opportunities away from the cameras.
After her reality days were done, Conrad created her very own fashion line with Kohls, and she recently started a beauty brand called Lauren Conrad Beauty. She also released many best-selling books like “Lauren Conrad Beauty” and “Lauren Conrad Style.” Between working on her clothing line, beauty brand, and books, she married William Tell in 2013, and they have two sons. Although the rest of her castmates decided to join The Hills: New Beginnings in 2019, Conrad declined the offer.
Nev Schulman – Catfish
Back in 2010, we met Nev Schulman in the documentary Catfish when he started an online romance and became suspicious that the person behind the screen wasn’t the person he saw in pictures. Following the film’s critical and commercial success, Nev became the host of the MTV show, Catfish: The TV Show, helping others meet the real person they are talking to online.
While Catfish is currently in its eighth season, Nev has had some other side projects like competing on Dancing With the Stars, where he came in second place, and he appeared in the 2018 film Nobody’s Fool. With his wife Laura Perlongo, whom he met online, Nev is expecting his third child later this year.
Eric Nies – The Real World
The Real World was one of the first reality series on MTV, and it paved the way for all other reality shows. In the first season, The Real World: New York, people watched as strangers lived together while under the constant watch of cameras. During that season, Eric Nies rose to fame and went on to appear on the show’s spin-offs like The Grind and Confessions of a Teen Idol.
After working in reality TV for a while, Nies decided to become a “spiritual guide.” While The Real World was recently brought back by MTV with the original cast, Nies couldn’t join his fellow castmates in the New York City apartment because he tested positive for COVID. Although he couldn’t reunite with the cast in person for the first time in 30 years, he called in via video chat.
Johnny Knoxville – Jackass
We don’t know the psychological science behind it, but people in the early 2000s loved watching others get injured on TV. The pioneer of this movement was Phillip John Clapp, better known as Johnny Knoxville. Between 2000 and 2002, Knoxville was the star of the stunt show, Jackass, which later became a movie franchise.
Since the success of the Jackass film series, Knoxville has appeared in many other films like Men in Black II and The Dukes of Hazard. Knoxville also owns and operates Dickhouse Productions with his Jackass costars, Jeff Tremaine and Spike Jonze. In 2014, he announced a new production company to continue his longstanding relationship with Paramount Pictures. Knoxville found time between all his antics to start a family and get married.
Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi – Jersey Shore
While some people thought Jersey Shore gave New Jersey a bad reputation, there is no denying that Snooki is one of the greatest reality stars to come from MTV. She was the cast member everyone loved to watch, with her hilarious drunk antics and love life drama. The tiny, self-proclaimed “guidette” earned various spin-off series like Snooki & Jwoww.
While filming Jersey Shore, Snooki started dating Jionni LaValle, and although they had their relationship woes, the couple tied the knot in 2014 and have three children together. Like most of her fellow castmates, Snooki joined the crew for the reboot, Jersey Shore: Family Vacation. However, after a major blowout fight in Season 3, Snooki decided to quit the show because she wanted to spend more time with her family and focus on her store, The Snooki Shop.
Kristin Cavallari – Laguna Beach: The Real Orange County
Like her fellow castmate Lauren Conrad, Kristin Cavallari also appeared on Laguna Beach: The Real Orange County and gained notoriety from the show. She continued onto the spin-off, The Hills, and then received her own show, Very Cavallari, in 2018. The show followed her life and marriage with Jay Cutler and their three children until things took a shocking turn.
In 2020, Cavallari and Cutler announced their shocking split after seven years of marriage, but some people saw the warning signs on the show. Today, Cavallari focuses on co-parenting her children and working on her clothing and lifestyle brand, Uncommon James.
Ally Hilfiger – Rich Girls
While Rich Girls was not a major success compared to other MTV reality shows, that doesn’t mean people have forgotten about the cast members. The 2003 show followed the lives of the daughters of successful businessmen, and one of these girls was Ally Hilfiger, the daughter of Tommy Hilfiger.
One season was enough for people to understand the immense wealth of these young girls, but Hilfiger’s life was not as easy as it looked on the show. Following the reality series, Hilfiger was diagnosed with Lyme disease, and she wrote a book titled “Bite Me: How Lyme Disease Stole My Childhood, Made Me Crazy, and Almost Killed Me.” Today she is doing well and is married with one daughter.
Jenelle Evans – 16 and Pregnant
In 2010, Jenelle Evans appeared on the show 16 and Pregnant with her former boyfriend, Andrew Lewis. After giving birth to her first son at 17, she split from her boyfriend and documented her life as a young mother on MTV’s follow-up series, Teen Mom 2. As you might expect, motherhood at that age wasn’t easy, and Evans struggled with substance abuse.
Throughout her many struggles and run-ins with the law, Evans had two more children with different men. Most of this was documented on Teen Mom 2 until she was fired in 2019 when her husband killed the family dog. Since her departure from reality TV, Evans has filed for divorce from her husband, but it has not been finalized. She has also struggled to keep custody of her children.
Aubrey O’Day – Making the Band 3
Many young people have dreams of making it big in Hollywood, whether for singing or acting and MTV’s Making the Band gave up-and-coming stars the chance to be placed in a band managed by P. Diddy. In 2004, Aubrey O’Day took her shot and beat 10,000 women to become a member of the girl group Danity Kane. However, she was kicked out of the band by Diddy when she changed her image too much.
Although she was kicked out of the band, O’Day’s career wasn’t over. She landed a role on Broadway as Amber Von Tussle in Hairspray and appeared in a few other musicals. O’Day recorded a few solo albums before reuniting with Danity Kane. The reunion didn’t last long, and O’Day decided to move abroad in 2021 but has yet to reveal where she currently lives.
Mike “The Situation” Sorrentino – Jersey Shore
Back in 2009, it was cool to wear Ed Hardy shirts and show off your abs to girls in the club, according to Mike “The Situation” on Jersey Shore. He became one of the wealthiest cast members because of the many brand endorsements he received because of the show. Still, most people didn’t know Mike struggled with substance abuse until he admitted it during Season 6 after going to rehab.
Following the series’ success, Mike ran into trouble with the law for tax evasion and received jail time. The world watched as Mike dealt with his legal battles on Jersey Shore: Family Vacation, and he was able to marry his wife Lauren just a month before he went to jail. Today Mike has completely turned his life around and is an inspiration for others struggling with sobriety. He and his wife recently welcomed their first son, Romeo, after struggling to conceive.
Wes Bergmann – The Real World: Austin
In the 16th season of The Real World, we met Wes Bergmann. During the show, he talked about how excited he was to graduate and start his own business. However, after his success on the reality series, Bergmann decided to stick with reality TV and became a regular competitor on The Challenge.
Bergmann was a fan favorite on The Challenge, and people loved to watch him compete in the extreme challenges. He is ranked in the top 10 earners from the show and holds the top spot for the most eliminations on the series.
Whitney Port – The Hills
The Hills was filled with many iconic dramatic moments, and fans were delighted when Whitney Port got her own spin-off series, The City. When Port moved from California to NYC, she started working at Teen Vogue alongside Lauren Conrad and eventually got a position at Diane Von Furstenberg.
Port continued to work in fashion and started her own clothing line, Whitney Eve. She had a few appearances on other reality shows and ultimately decided to join her castmates for the reboot of The Hills: New Beginnings in 2019. Port is currently married to the producer of The City, Tim Rosenman, and they have one son.
Olivia Palermo – The City
Working alongside Whitney Port at Diane Von Furstenberg, Olivia Palermo was a socialite on the Upper East Side and joined the cast of The City. After working at the fashion brand, Palermo started a job with Elle Magazine. In 2009, she signed with Wilhemina International to focus on developing her brand.
Palermo never gave up on fashion and took her place in front of the camera. She appeared on the covers of many famous publications and had plenty of brand partnerships for her keen sense of style. In 2014, she married German model Johannes Huebl, and they continue to be one of the most beautiful couples today.
Catelynn Lowell – Teen Mom
After appearing on 16 and Pregnant, Catelynn Lowell became one of the first cast members of Teen Mom. She decided to give her first daughter up for adoption because she felt she was too young to be a parent. However, she stayed with her boyfriend Brandon, and they welcomed another child and decided to keep it.
Catelynn and Brandon got married in 2015, and many of the Teen Mom cast members attended the wedding. She has since welcomed another child and appeared on Teen Mom OG and Couples Therapy. Catelynn has continued to share her life on social media and recently shared that she and her husband are expecting another child.
Jaime Gleicher – Rich Girls
As the other half of the cast of Rich Girls, Jaime Gleicher is the daughter of Leo Gleicher and Ally Hilfiger’s former best friend. However, while filming the reality series, they had a falling out. After the reality series wrapped. Gleicher didn’t know what to do with her life.
Gleicher was treated for an eating disorder after the show ended and decided to keep herself out of the spotlight. She decided to get her master’s degree and works as a psychotherapist specializing in eating disorders and anxiety.
Whitney Purvis – 16 and Pregnant
We first saw Whitney Purvis on 16 and Pregnant, and she had one of the most intriguing storylines on the show. The teenager was a pregnant high schooler whose mom was also pregnant at the same time. Viewers watched as the young mom gave birth to her child and struggled with motherhood, responsibilities, and her newfound fame from the reality series.
Purvis and her boyfriend, Weston Gosa Jr., decided to move into their own place with their son, and after briefly separating, they got back together and had a second child. Since then, the couple has had many run-ins with the law, but Purvis has tried to stay out of the spotlight as much as possible.
Angelina Pivarnick – Jersey Shore
Although she didn’t last long on the first or second seasons of Jersey Shore, Angelina Pivarnick definitely left her mark on the reality series. As the self-proclaimed “Kim Kardashian of Staten Island,” Pivarnick got into many fights with her roommates and eventually left the show after a huge blowout.
After leaving the reality series, she did run into her former housemates, and they eventually settled their differences during the first season of Jersey Shore: Family Vacation. Pivarneck finally earned a spot in the family, and she made her castmates, Deena, Snooki, and Jwoww, bridesmaids in her wedding. However, her infamous speech led to a huge fight that took ten months to resolve. Pivarnick is currently still a cast member on Jersey Shore: Family Vacation.
Kelly Osbourne – The Osbournes
As the daughter of Ozzy and Sharon Osbourne, Kelly Osbourne was born in the spotlight. MTV decided to create a reality series about the famous family, and it was one of the most viewed series ever. The show did so well that it won an Emmy, making the family even more famous than they were before the series.
Kelly Osbourne used her reality and family fame to release her own music, and she was eventually one of the main hosts on E!’s Fashion Police. However, fame wasn’t all glitz and glamour as she struggled with substance abuse, but she overcame it and recently debuted her incredible weight loss transformation.
Ryan Sheckler – Life of Ryan
If you weren’t a fan of skateboarding in the mid-2000s, you might not know Ryan Sheckler. He was one of the top skateboarders in the country and used his fame to become an entrepreneur. MTV decided to create a series following the professional skateboarder in his day-to-day life, which aired for three seasons.
Sheckler decided to end the series because it was distracting him from skateboarding. Like Tony Hawk, Sheckler is one of the most influential skateboarders of all time, and he is still endorsed by brands like Red Bull, Oakley, and Etnies.
Stephen Colletti – Laguna Beach: The Real Orange County
While many of his costars decided to stick with reality TV or branch out into other businesses, Stephen Colletti used his fame from Laguna Beach: The Real Orange County to boost his acting career. Colletti landed a role in One Tree Hill as Chase Adams. He was also the love interest in Taylor Swift’s video “White Horse.”
After getting his foot in the door in the acting world, Colletti has appeared in many films and TV shows. He also wrote and produced his own series, Everyone Is Doing Great. However, Colletti refused to return for the reboot of The Hills: New Beginnings because he had enough reality TV for one lifetime.
Deena Nicole Cortese – Jersey Shore
During the third season of Jersey Shore, Snooki brought her best friend Deena Nicole into the madness of the shore house to replace Angelina Pivarnick. The “blast in a glass” was just what the show needed, and she quickly became a fan favorite with her drunken antics as the other half of the meatball duo.
After the show wrapped in 2012, Deena decided to stick with the reality TV route and joined her former housemates for Jersey Shore: Family Vacation. While she is now married and a mother, Deena is still her hilarious self, which is why fans are still so fond of her on the series.
Amber Portwood – Teen Mom
Amber Portwood has made headlines many times, but not for positive reasons. The Teen Mom star had her daughter Leah when she was 18 with her former fiancé, Gary Shirley. However, their relationship ended, and he gained full custody of their daughter while Portwood struggled with addiction.
After being arrested over 15 times, Portwood came back to Teen Mom to share her experience. She also had a second child with James Glennon, but their relationship ended with a restraining order against Portwood. The reality TV experience was not a positive one for Portwood.
Heidi Montag – The Hills
At the beginning of The Hills, Heidi Montag was Lauren Conrad’s best friend, but the two quickly became enemies when Montag started dating Spencer Pratt. Montag’s storyline for the remainder of the series then focused on her relationship and plastic surgery journey. She underwent ten cosmetic procedures and looked like a completely different person.
After the show ended in 2010, Montag and Pratt got married and welcomed a child. She also appeared on other reality shows like I’m a Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here and Celebrity Wife Swap. Both Montag and Pratt decided to join the reboot series The Hills: New Beginnings in 2019, but she is still not friends with Conrad.
Sammi Sweetheart Giancola – Jersey Shore
As the “sweetest B you will ever meet,” Sammi Sweetheart left her mark on the Jersey Shore because of her tumultuous relationship with Ronnie Ortiz-Magro and significant fights with Snooki and Jwoww. However, when the series wrapped, Sammi was in a good place with everyone and moved in with Ronnie, but people knew it wouldn’t last.
After the show, Sammi and Ronnie broke up, and she cut ties with most of her castmates. When Jersey Shore: Family Vacation began, no one was surprised that Sammi didn’t rejoin the cast because she wanted to stay away from Ronnie as she was in a happy relationship. Recently, Sammi broke off her engagement, and fans wonder if she will return to the show now that Ronnie has decided to leave the cast in Season 5.
Maci Bookout – Teen Mom
In 2008, Maci Bookout gave birth to her son Bentley, and her motherhood journey was documented on Teen Mom. She was dating Ryan Edwards, but their relationship ended with a restraining order against him. Despite struggles, she found love again with Taylor McKinney, and they got married in 2016.
The couple welcomed two more children, and they run a clothing brand called TTM (Things That Matter). Bookout joined Teen Mom OG, and she tried her luck on Naked and Afraid, where she had to survive in the wilderness for 14 days, but she only lasted two days.
Jack Osbourne – The Osbournes
Like his sister Kelly, Jack Osbourne gained more fame from the family’s reality series, which revealed his partying ways were much more of a problem than his family thought. Luckily, he got the help he needed and became sober while focusing on his fitness journey. He also decided to try his luck with more reality shows.
Jack and his dad, Ozzy Osbourne, starred on a show where they traveled and learned about historical sites. However, Jack has taken a step back since his diagnosis with MS (multiple sclerosis). The father of three was nervous about his sobriety during his diagnosis but used all his tools to stay sober during this trying time.
Mike Mizanin – The Real World
Most people know Mike Mizanin as “The Miz,” but back in the day, he was just Mike on The Real World: Back to New York. After the show, he competed in the spin-off Road Rules, and people loved him so much that he became the host of The Challenge.
He gained the nickname “The Miz” when he started wrestling in the WWE. While he no longer hosts The Challenge, Mizanin is on a reality series with his wife which is called Miz & Mrs., which follows their lives as a married couple. They have two children, and he is still wrestling.
Bam Margera – Jackass
Like Johnny Knoxville, Bam Margera was not afraid to perform any dangerous stunt for the cameras. The professional skateboarder grew to fame on Jackass and created spin-off shows like Viva La Bam. Margera shared his relationship on another reality show, but the marriage to Melissa Rothstein didn’t last.
After his first marriage ended, Margera married Nicole Boyd, and they had a son together. However, his addiction issues came to a head when he had some run-ins with the law. This resulted in him being fired from Jackass 4 because Paramount Pictures didn’t like his reputation. Margera started to harass his former costars on Instagram, and they filed a restraining order against him in 2021.
Jenni “Jwoww” Farley – Jersey Shore
Jwoww made a huge splash when she entered the shore house in 2009. The tough, Long Island native was always ready for a fight, which made for perfect reality TV. After Jersey Shore wrapped, Jwoww starred on spin-offs like Snooki & Jwoww and Snooki & Jwoww: Moms with Attitude. While her life on TV seemed great, she struggled with relationship issues and went through a very public divorce from Roger Matthews.
During the second season of Jersey Shore: Family Vacation, Jwoww opened up about her divorce because she wanted it to be over already. She has now found new love and revealed her engagement to Zach Carpinello on a recent episode of Jersey Shore: Family Vacation. Jwoww seems like she is in a much better place these days.
Jamie Chung – The Real World: San Diego
The reality star turned actress grew to fame from The Real World: San Diego in 2004. After competing on different spin-off shows, Chung took her talents to the big screen and landed roles in Sucker Punch and Big Hero 6. Since starting scripted roles, Chung has not returned to reality TV.
Besides her roles on the big screen, Chung has also starred in TV series like Once Upon a Time, This Is Us, and The Gifted. She really made a name for herself in the industry with just a little bit of reality fame. Chung also writes a fashion blog because people are obsessed with her style.
David Giuntoli – Road Rules
Like Jamie Chung, David Giuntoli took his reality TV fame and became an actor. After starring on Road Rules in 2003, he moved to L.A. to pursue an acting career. Giuntoli landed some pretty big roles on shows like Grey’s Anatomy and Grimm. Besides his fame, his role in Grimm helped him meet the love of his life.
While filming Grimm, Giuntoli met his wife, Bitsie Tulloch. They got married in 2017 and announced that they were expecting a child a year later. The couple recently moved to Washington state to be closer to all their work in Vancouver.
Max Joseph – Catfish
Max Joseph is known as the other half of the Catfish duo. However, he was shockingly replaced in 2018 by Kamie Crawford after deciding to step away from the show. Many fans couldn’t figure out why he would leave, considering he and Nev had such a great working relationship. Despite rumors, there was no bad blood between Joseph and Nev.
Before working on Catfish, Joseph had been a filmmaker, and he continued to create documentaries while filming the show. When he left, Joseph stated that he started to get very busy with other work. His film We Are Your Friends, starring Zac Efron, was a box office hit, and he wanted to continue this work instead of the show.
Theo Von – Road Rules
When he was just 19, Theo Von starred on Road Rules: Maximum Velocity Tour. After his success on the show, he participated in many seasons of The Challenge alongside other members of the Road Rules cast. In fact, he won several times, and it allowed him to pursue other passions.
Von decided to pursue a career in stand-up comedy and landed roles on a few different comedy reality shows. Today, Von is the host of two other podcasts and has a Netflix special called No Offense. Von also released a comedy album in 2017 titled 30lb Bag of Hamster Bones.
Pauly “DJ Pauly D” Del Vecchio – Jersey Shore
As the loudest member of the Jersey Shore cast, DJ Pauly D is now the most successful of his castmates. He was the first member of the show to get a spin-off series called The Pauly D Project. After gaining fame from the reality show, Pauly D’s slow DJ career took off, and he started performing around the world and at major music festivals.
Pauly D made sure to return to the reboot, Jersey Shore: Family Vacation, despite his busy schedule. The famous DJ has opened for the likes of Britney Spears and signed with 50 Cent’s label. Besides Jersey Shore, Pauly D has also starred in other reality series like Double Shot at Love with Vinnie and Pauly, where he met his girlfriend, Nikki Hall.