RANCHO MIRAGE — Are you ready to rumble?
At least eight former World Wrestling Entertainment stars are and they're moving into the quiet neighborhood of the Tamarisk Country Club this week.
“WWE Legends House,” a reality show that sounds something like a cross between “Big Brother” and “Surreal Life,” began shooting this week at what was once the home of the late comic actor Harpo Marx.
While executives involved in the show said no grappling or furniture busting is expected to occur inside the house, according to WWE.com, viewers will be able to “see what happens when the most colorful and combustive personalities in WWE history shack up, break bread and bruise egos.”
“Who knows what they're going to do? When you put that many egos into house you never know what's going to happen and it always makes for great reality TV,” said Kelly McLean, vice president of McLean Co. Rentals, which manages the property for its owners.
The cast and production crew are expected to be at the home through March 31, said Daniel Watson, general manager of the McLean Co.
“It was a natural fit,” Watson said. “They wanted a private property close to Palm Springs and they fell in love with this place.”
“WWE Legends House” is the anchor show for a new WWE Network channel that is slated to launch later this year on premium cable.
WWE executives approached the McLean firm about a month ago for the show and picked the 2.1-acre property out of six locations throughout the valley.
While “WWE Legends House” will be largely filmed at the old Marx estate, cast members will eat, drink and play throughout the valley with at least one golf outing and hot-air ballooning trip planned, Watson said.
Anthony Jensen, the show's producer, who has worked on reality shows including “The Apprentice,” confirmed WWE Hall of Famer Eugene “Mean Gene” Okerlund, the popular wrestling interviewer and announcer, will be part of the cast.
Other rumored cast members include Dusty Rhodes, Roddy Piper and The Iron Sheik.
Executives of the McLean Co. say they've had good experiences with renting houses to the producers of reality shows, including an episode of “The Bachelorette” that was shot in Palm Springs.
“There was a little hesitancy on our part when we asked the owners of the home because of the wrestling tie, but everyone has been very supportive and excited to see this show happen here,” Watson said.
But Tamarisk resident Sheldon Good, who lives across the street from the “Legends' House,” isn't too sure yet how he feels about the reality show being so close to home.
“There's been a lot of cars parked there and you can see there's some action going on, but it's very hard to determine how it'll impact me until it happens,” Good said.
Residents in the neighborhood have been concerned in the past about the home attracting too many tourists and celebrity seekers, but so far Good said that has not been a problem with the Marx estate.