Gold Rush: White Water’s Kayla Johanson has been enjoying her newfound fame since late last year. But according to a recent interview, she almost passed on the show.
And that’s because Johanson wasn’t sure she wanted to shake up her already lucrative business. Before joining the Gold Rush franchise, Johanson was a six-year dredge mining veteran. And she enjoyed the freedom of being self-employed.
“I wasn’t sure if I was going to [join] or not, mainly because I already had my own dredging operation going here. And I usually work by myself, so I’m my own boss,” she told Hollywood Soapbox. ” I make my own schedule, and I don’t really have anyone telling me what to do. At most, I might work with [one] other person if I bring in some help. But for the most part, I work by myself. So I was kind of [on] the fence if I wanted to change that and leave that behind.”
Furthermore, Johanson was a little camera shy before starting out. And the first week of filming was incredibly intimidating.
But now, she’s nearly three months into her Gold Rush: White Water career, and she feels confident about being a reality star. So we’ll probably be seeing her for many episodes to come.
Why Fred Hurt Left ‘Gold Rush: White Water’
Since the very start of Discovery’s spinoff series Gold Rush: White Water, Fred and Dustin Hurt were two of the show’s top-earning miners. But last year, Fred left the series. And considering the fact that he was so successful, the exit came as a complete shock.
Discovery made it look as though the senior Hurt had left in search of other gold-mining opportunities. But according to a Facebook post, that story was misleading. Fred Hurt did leave Gold Rush: White Water to look for better opportunities. But it wasn’t because he was simply ready to move on.
Instead, it was because the show wasn’t paying him fairly.
“I am a working-class guy like most of you,” he wrote. “After spending more for four years straight than I made, there was no way for me to continue. But the main reason is simple……and I quote…. ‘If you want a Miner, call me…….if you want an Actor, pay me like one.’”
Some commenters were confused about the story. One person even shared that each cast member was making “$22,000 per episode,” and they claimed they verified the number with another star. But Hurt said his payscale was much different.
“The Other crews may have been paid that,” he responded. ” 5 members of my crew got $0 , only their share of gold produced. We were not compensated for any of our operating expenses as the Others were. My compensation per episode was a joke….less than a third of the Others. Bottom line…..I’m entertaining millions of people using my own resources ……and Discovery is pocketing all the profit”