I don’t know how much interest there will be in this story, but I’m willing to take a chance as I’ve been watching so much “Storage Wars” on A&E lately. It’s not that I particularly love the show, I enjoy it but it seems repetitive and I often question whether they plant items. My kid just loves “Storage Wars” though and apart from some minor adult humor and swearing that’s beeped out it’s usually appropriate for him and interesting. (I tried to watch “American Pickers” with him but it bugged me how much those antique hunter guys seem to take advantage of old people.)
The National Enquirer scored an exclusive interview with Dave Hester, the “Yuuuup” shouting high-roller storage unit buyer, The “Mogul,” who always seems to be feuding with someone. Sometimes I root for Dave, but he’s too cutthroat lately and seems to be bidding people up and generally being a pain. He probably is playing it up for the cameras. Well The Enquirer revealed just how much all the castmembers are being paid an episode and it doesn’t sound bad at $10k per. The show is wildly popular, though, and A&E must be raking it in. Dave wants a raise in order to come back for the third season. He said that he’s holding out for more money and will basically see if A&E thinks he’s worth it.
“Storage Wars” star Dave Hester says he’s ready to pack it in if he doesn’t get a big raise.
Right now, the fast-talking storage unit treasure hunter on the hit A&E show says his negotiations with the network are “at a standstill and he doesn’t know if or when they’ll start up again. The production is due to start filming the third season in a few weeks.
Although he won’t say what he makes and what he wants, sources said that Hester and his cast mates earn about $10,000 per episode, and he told The Enquirer: “I want as much as I can get out of them so that I can support my family and my employees. It matters what my market value is, what I bring to the show.
“A&E owns the circus and we’re the elephants out here working for peanuts! A&E is making a mountain of money on our backs now and they need to share more of it with the talent!…”
In its first season in 2010, “Storage Wars” was A&E’s top-rated nonfiction show of the year, drawing an average of 2.8 million viewers per week.
Since then, its popularity has increased tremendously. The two-part premiere of season 2 drew a whopping 5.1 million total viewers, making it the most-watched show in A&E history…
Dave, who’s been in business for 25 years, is holding out, and with no modesty, said: “If A&E doesn’t appreciate my skill level and talent – and what I brought to the show – I would hope they say, ‘Thanks, Dave, and here’s an unconditional release.’”
[From The National Enquirer, print edition, January 30, 2012]
Dave can be such an arrogant prick, but I have to admit I like watching him. This is what always gets me about reality shows – they talk a lot about money problems but they never admit to the great cash they’re making for doing the show, and they often act like they’re broke when they’re not. This bothered me on “Teen Mom,” it bothered me on “Sister Wives,” and it bothers me on “Storage Wars.” I think that Dave was probably the most successful buyer going into it, but if Brandi and Jarrod have made over half a million from the show so far it seems disingenuous that they’re acting like they’re broke. 50 episodes have aired so far for season one and two combined, so that’s half a million for each of the principal cast. I guess I don’t blame Dave for wanting more money since he probably considers himself the “star.” It seems like a hell of a lot of money for acting like yourself, but that’s the reality show world we live in now.