"It was sort of like, ‘Who’s gonna wanna watch a show around four fat dudes in a pawnshop?’"
Corey Harrison freely admits to doubting the potential the "Pawn Stars" (10 p.m. Mondays, History) – right up until it debuted, 3 years ago this month.
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Now, it seems prefer its stars room the only people in the human being not tuning in to the goings-on at the family-owned gold & silver Pawn, 713 las Vegas Blvd. South.
For the three months ended June 17, "Pawn Stars" to be the highest-rated collection on cable, averaging 6.3 million viewers an episode. The airs in 151 countries in 30 languages. However Corey’s just seen the once.
His childhood friend and co-star, Austin "Chumlee" Russell, doesn’t clock it, either.
"I grinned and also beared it and got through one episode. I’ll never ever watch the again," claims Corey’s father, Rick. "It’s simply too weird watching myself top top television."
The only constant viewer among the actors is Rick’s dad, Richard, much better known come fans as The Old Man. "I have to. My wife makes me," that explains. "My wife is bound and determined, she’s gonna watch that program."
But while they may avoid the town hall the series, they absolutely enjoy the benefits that come through it.
Over the past three years, assorted combinations of them have showed up on talk shows ranging from "The Late display with David Letterman" come "Live! through Kelly," played "Who wants to be a Millionaire" for charity and co-hosted Fox’s brand-new Year’s eve countdown. Rick, Corey and Chumlee filmed an upcoming illustration of "iCarly" therefore Rick’s stepdaughter, a large fan the the Nickelodeon series, can meet the cast.
"One the the perks," Corey says, "is when John Mayer calls you up and also tells you, ‘Hey, buddy, I simply bought a ranch in Montana. As soon as are friend gonna come by? once are us gonna cave out?’ It’s simply not miscellaneous I ever expected come happen."
"(Jon) Bon Jovi personally invited united state to his concert," Chumlee adds, " ’cause his son wanted to meet us."
Business at the save – which has actually doubled in size and grown from 13 employees to 55 – is booming. A concession was standing was recently mounted in the parking lot of to feeding the overflow crowds.
And they’ve tapped ancillary markets, earning money from personal appearances and merchandise, offering whatever from T-shirts – castle sell an ext than 100,000 a year – come bobbleheads.
"I was born to be a bobblehead," Chumlee claims proudly.
But while castle rarely should worry about such day-to-day hassles together lines, bookings or dress codes, they insist they’re quiet the same people they’ve constantly been.
"You know, life hasn’t readjusted that much for me," Corey offers. "It’s just, everything’s gotten a small nicer. Ns drive a nicer car. I live in a nicer house."
"I still hang out with the exact same people," stack says. "I still perform the very same stuff."
All those perks, though, come in ~ a price.
While Richard to be shopping for a hat during a recent pilgrimage to a regional outlet mall, his wife wandered off to browse. Together he was wait for her, the says, "a busload of tourists from Argentina showed up. I counted ’em. I took 27 pictures."
He’s likewise been swarmed by pan at Disneyland. Rick’s been surrounding in Europe. "In brand-new York," Chumlee says, "I obtain mobbed ~ above every corner."
What should have actually been a quick trip to a Wal-Mart turned into "a two-hour ordeal" because that Corey, as he quit to shake hand or take it a photo "literally every 5 feet."
"I’ve obtained an 11-year-old stepdaughter and also a 9-year-old son," rick says. "It would certainly be pretty to simply take them locations without having actually to wear a hat and also shades the totality time. Human being can simply be rude, you know what ns mean?"
He’s mindful to allude out the he doesn’t mind interacting with fans, as long as he’s alone.
"People walk up to me, ‘I don’t typical to bother you once you’re with your family, however I’m bothering you,’" that adds with his renowned laugh.
But at the very least Rick has actually the choice of disguising his appearance.
"I don’t have actually that luck," claims the heavily inked, distinctively shame Chumlee, who could never, ever be mistaken because that anyone else.
Clearly, though, this are an excellent problems to have.
And your fame offers the men the possibility to help others. Corey singles out the experience he’s had providing the wishes of sick and also dying youngsters who want to accomplish him as the best component of the three-year ride.
"I mean, it’s simply powerful," he reflects. "It’s such a weird feeling. I don’t even really take into consideration myself a celebrity, and they desire to perform that."
It’s come to be a way of life that, nevertheless of the drawbacks, none of them seems passionate to offer up.
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"I’m 71 years old. I was really not planning on beginning a 3rd career," Richard says. "Twenty-one years in the Navy. Thirty years in the pawnshop. Ns was ready to quit.