As part of Warner Bros and particularly Warner Horizon’s segment at Deadline’s first-ever The Contenders Emmys event, the studio highlighted reality shows Little Big Shots, The Voice and The Bachelor.

The latter The Contenders Emmys - 630x423is by far the longest running of the trio, and in fact one of the longest-running and most successful reality shows on television — one that has spawned a whole industry of dating spinoffs including the current The Bachelorette and Bachelor In Paradise. Debuting in 2002, it has yet to be nominated for a single Emmy — or much of any other award except for Teen Choice. But executive producer and president/COO of Next Entertainment Martin Hilton, along with Mike Darnell, President of Warner Bros Unscripted and Alternative Television, told the crowd packed with TV Academy voters at the DGA Theater that you have to be an extraordinarily well-produced program to last this long, and score higher than ever in the ratings.

Hilton admits The Bachelor is a guilty viewing pleasure for some but that the format has real legs because it is about real people doing real things. As he says in our conversation, you can’t do anything that “feels fake.” The fact that each episode and season seems to still provide water cooler conversation is a tribute to the production team and its ability to find compelling people to put in front of the camera, no matter how wacko some of them seem at times.

As Darnell, a master of this genre, says, “I implore you to watch,” and you can do that by clicking above to see more of our conversation.