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Ryan Seacrest Dishes on 'Shahs of Sunset'

Exclusive: The man behind the Persian phenomenon spills some secrets.

If you're one of those people who doesn't really pay attention to the credits on shows, you may have missed that the driving force behind the production of Shahs of Sunset is none other than Ryan Seacrest. Yes, that Ryan Seacrest -- the one who seems to have taken over the entertainment world since his big breakthrough on American Idol back in 2002.

With Shahs being a certified hit and gaining fans and viewers week-over-week, we had a few questions for Mr. On the Air about how it all came about, what he thinks about each cast member, and when will we ever see him with a Reza-worthy mustache. Here's what he had to say:

How soon did you know that Reza would be a star after seeing his casting tape/meeting him for the first time?
The second I saw him.  He was so honest, so funny, such an extrovert.  His look, his sense of style, and his willingness to say what he is thinking, I knew he was made for TV. 

Did people think you were taking a risk when the concept of the show was floated around?
Sure, I think we expected to raise a few eyebrows.  But Persian Americans have such a rich and beautiful culture with a deep history, in the end, we felt it was worthy of showcasing so audience could be educated as well as entertained. The show isn’t political in any way.
Being in Hollywood, how aware were you of the large Persian community?
One of the great things about LA is that it’s a melting pot of cultures. So, I have friends in the Persian community.
What are the chances of you ever growing out a Reza-worthy mustache?
If I could, I would. 
Lilly is quite the new addition to the cast. What’s your take on her?
She's great.  She's fun, she's loud, and she's beautiful.  A really great addition.  She brings a lot of color, story, and drama to this season.
GG’s temper seems to be a recurring theme each episode. Any concerns she’ll go too far?
GG is who she is.  It’s not fiction.  She's real and not afraid to be real and say what’s on her mind. The great thing about GG is she knows she has a big temper.  She admits it. I think she is self-aware and knows her faults.

What’s the most surprising thing you’ve learned about each cast member?
 • MJ is a cosmopolitan woman who likes to get wined and dined. But she’s also sweet and domestic.  She really knows how to take care of people. She wants to settle down and take care of a family.  She's just been jaded to marriage by her parents.
• You look at Mike and think he’s just a guy’s guy.  In actuality, he’s truly a kind and caring person and a bit of a momma’s boy, which is endearing.
• With all of Reza's loud comments and flash, all he really wants is to settle down and have the white picket fence.  He wants kids and that picture perfect life. I would love to see him have that one day. 
• It's so interesting to see Asa and Reza get along now.  They're so similar. They both have been outsiders their whole life.  Always trying to figure out who they are and where they fit in.  I'm glad they finally connected.
• It was surprising to me how down-to-earth Lily is.  I think her Texas upbringing has something to do with that.
• I guess the most surprising thing about GG for me is that she's never had a full-time job, which is unusual for somebody her age (30).

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