'Owning Manhattan' Star Ryan Serhant Says the Drama and Deals Are Real (EXCLUSIVE)

'Owning Manhattan' is the New York City version of 'Selling Sunset.'

Chrissy Bobic - Author

Jul. 5 2024, Updated 11:40 a.m. ET

The Owning Manhattan cast
Source: Netflix

To some reality TV fans, there are few things more interesting than a show about real estate agents. Just ask the millions of fans of Netflix's own Selling Sunset. But now, the streaming platform has a show to represent the East Coast — Owning Manhattan. It contains a lot of the same drama among real estate agents but with a totally different cast.

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The only thing is, are the Owning Manhattan real estate agents real? It would be easy for producers to pluck a few actors out of existence and give them the role of a lifetime as faux real estate agents for a big Manhattan firm led by Ryan Serhant on a reality show.

Whether or not that's what happened, Season 1 cast member Jonathan Nørmølle revealed to the world some claims that all is not what it seems on the show.

Ryan and Jonathan from Owning Manhattan stand in an apartment
Source: Netflix

Ryan Serhant with Jonathan on 'Owning Manhattan.'

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Are the 'Owning Manhattan' real estate agents real?

Owning Manhattan follows Ryan Serhant's real estate firm in New York City, and the team that reports to him. With plenty on the line, including million dollar homes and the working relationships of these employees, there's never really a dull moment on the show. But, based on Jonathan's claims, that may be because much of the series was fabricated for the sake of making it interesting.

In June 2024, Jonathan told Daily Mail that Netflix hired cast members based not on their professional prowess as real estate agents, but on something else entirely, likely their internet presence.

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But for what it's worth, Chloe Tucker Caine's LinkedIn lists her career details as a real estate agent. Jordan March also had a background in real estate before Owning Manhattan premiered.

Maybe some of the agents fell into their more high-profile roles because of the show, but despite Jonathan's claims, it doesn't look like any of the cast members are paid actors or anything close to it.

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Ryan reassured fans the deals and drama on 'Owning Manhattan' is real.

In an exclusive interview with Distractify, Ryan admitted the stakes were different in letting cameras into his brokerage, compared to Million Dollar Listing, but his team was excited.

"With Owning Manhattan, the stakes are totally different... because now my name’s on the door. It’s exciting because I know that we’re doing some incredible things at SERHANT., and the world should see that," he said. "Were agents excited? Yes, definitely. It’s been a fun thing to add into the mix on top of all of the crazy work we’re doing day in and day out."

owning manhattan cast
Source: Netflix

While he did admit there were challenges to filming, especially the live deals, fans are seeing "the good, the bad, the ugly and everything in between."

He continued, "You’ll see that ring true with the cast too, it really is authentic in what was going on in our lives at the moment...There are real deals happening and real drama and it’s unlike anything we’ve seen before."

Watch Owning Manhattan on Netflix.

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