NAPLES — Some of Naples’ hottest assets may become the newest stars of reality TV.
No, not the beaches, not the restaurants, nor the shopping centers.
But Naples’ women.
A TV production crew has been spotted filming about six women around town, as a pilot for a reality show.
David Walker, a local bartender who was filmed waiting on the women at Sea Salt restaurant at 3rd Street South in Naples, said the premise of the show seemed like the “Real Housewives” series, which follows the exploits of catty, well-to-do women.
Elizabeth Ganzi, a local producer, confirmed Friday that a local production company is teaming with a major network on seven reality television pilots based in Naples. The company is pitching the pilots to the network, which could pick up any or all of them, she said.
Ganzi could not confirm the names of the shows but said one does focus on powerful women of Naples, saying it was like “The Real Housewives” series meets “Dynasty.”
What people have been witnessing around town this week is a pilot for a reality television show involving some of the elite and powerful men and women of Naples, she said.
“The show will be highlighting these individuals’ lives and beautiful Naples with all it has to offer,” Ganzi said, reading from a prepared release.
The film crew was shooting at Sea Salt on Tuesday for lunch, Walker said.
“It was a full on production crew,” Walker said. “It was all dramatized.”
He described the subjects of filming as women of various ages and levels of beauty.
“It was just like reality,” he said, “They weren’t all like drop-dead gorgeous.”
Though, they did all sip on the “Sex and the City” drink of choice — the cosmopolitan, he said.
One of the women, he said, was a regular client at the restaurant.
The women and production crew were also at Handsome Harry’s, across the street from Sea Salt, on Wednesday night.
A camera crew piled behind the bar to film as the restaurant’s bartenders were serving drinks, observers said.
Lili Montez, co-owner of Sea Salt, said the restaurant was abuzz after the filming on Tuesday, and that it helped bring in a bigger lunch crowd that day.
Walker said he hopes the show makes it to prime time, at least to get the restaurant’s name out there.
“If it gets picked up,” he said “it’s free advertising for us.”
Chuck Ardezzone and Jean Pierre Fatta, founders of ITZ Realty TV, came up with the idea for the shows.
Ardezzone is a former New York City actor and a producer who has appeared on television shows, such as “Law and Order” and “As the World Turns.”
“We are planning to make this a film destination second to none,” Ardezzone said in a statement.
Fatta is an international business and marketing entrepreneur and one of the film's financier, according to the statement.
The production crews found men and women for the shows by scouting around town, Ganzi said.
Ganzi said she’s not sure when a decision will be made about whether the shows will be picked up.
If any of the shows get picked up, Naples’ economy could benefit, she said.
“We’re excited to work with these production companies and networks and have been in the planning stages for some time,” Ganzi said. “We believe these productions will directly impact the economy in our community as we are looking to hire cast and crews for the show.”