Penn Jillette wrote a tell-all piece for Salon.com, mostly bashing The Celebrity Apprentice, but allowing that at least The Donald's show is more honest than DWTS.
Penn danced with Kym Johnsonon DWTS Season 6. They were the first couple fired eliminated, so there may be some bitterness mixed in with his usual biting humor.
“Like all desperate celebrities, I’ve been on more than one reality show,” Penn wrote in his Salon piece. “I also did Dancing with the Stars. I was amazed to find out that The Celebrity Apprentice was more honest and straightforward than DWTS. The idea of DWTS is pretty beautiful: half-assed show folk who aren’t dancers are teamed up with great dancers, and cameras video them while they learn to dance. [...] Dance is a joyous celebration of humanity, so it should be an uplifting, inspiring show to watch and even more beautiful to be on. But I hated the time that was spent with the production trying to get young ambitious Mormon women to cry. Guys behind the cameras would say mean things at attractive young men and women and washed-up celebrities about how it would ruin their lives if they didn’t win. The Celebrity Apprentice is more honest, in that creepy kind of way that the guy who admits he’s a racist is more honest.”
My my! It's not clear how young, ambitious Mormon women got involved in that, but Julianne Houghwas raised Mormon and she was on that season, dancing with Penn's fellow Celebrity Apprentice Season 12 alum Adam Carolla. She had won Seasons 4 and 5, so maybe she was being pressured to get better results on Season 6? Another Celebrity Apprentice alum, Marlee Matlin of Season 11, also competed on DWTS Season 6. There's a lot of crossover between the two casts. It’s hard to believe The Donald would be responsible for the more honest show, but this isn’t the first time people have grumbled about producer manipulation behind-the-scenes.