Real World Wiki
The Real World: Chicago
Pic season 11.jpg
Season Information
Season No. 11
Location Chicago, Illinois
Season Run January 15, 2002 - July 9, 2002
No. of Episodes 24
Starring Keri Evans
Kyle Brandt
Aneesa Ferreira
Tonya Cooley
Chris Beckman
Cara Kahn
Theo Gantt III
Season Chronology
Previous The Real World: Back to New York
Next The Real World: Las Vegas

The Real World: Chicago is the eleventh season of MTV's reality television series The Real World, which focuses on a group of diverse strangers living together for several months in a different city each season, as cameras follow their lives and interpersonal relationships.

It is the first season to be filmed in Chicago, followed by season 30's Real World: Skeletons.

Season Changes

This was the first season of The Real World to feature two openly gay cast members, Chris Beckman and Aneesa Ferreira. A previous season, The Real World: Hawaii, featured two LBGT cast members: Justin Deabler, who is gay, and Ruthie Alcaide, who is bisexual.


The Chicago roommates were assigned to three different jobs at the Chicago Park District. Some were lifeguards at the Lake Michigan beaches while others worked with inner-city children on a park mural. The cast then worked on "Chicagoween" (a portmanteau of "Chicago" and "Halloween") and had to devise a story to act out for the children at Chicago's Halloween celebration.


The cast resided in a loft at 1934 W. North Avenue in the Chicago neighborhood of Wicker Park, which had formerly served as a sweatshop, storage facility, and, after falling into disrepair in the 1980s, a drug den. After it was renovated, it served as Urbis Orbis Café, a classic hipster hangout, then an antique shop. Chicago Scenic Studios constructed the loft's interior, and interior decorating was overseen by local designer Suhail. After filming, fixtures and other items used during the production were auctioned off, and the space was converted into a Cheetah Gym, which opened in 2002


Cast Member Age* Hometown
Keri Evans 22 New Orleans, Louisiana
Kyle Brandt 23 Lincolnshire, Illinois
Aneesa Ferreira 20 Narberth, Pennsylvania
Tonya Cooley 21 Walla Walla, Washington
Chris Beckman 24 Brockton, Massachusetts
Cara Kahn 22 Parma, Ohio
Theo Gantt III 19 Riverside, California

*Age at the time of filming.

9/11 Attacks

The season depicted cast members dealing with learning of the September 11th attacks, although criticism was leveled at the series, as the cast was actually at Wrigley Field for a photoshoot when they learned of the event. However contrary to rumors this was not staged, it is just that producers brought a television in to the loft to see the attack footage to inform them and for their reactions.


Bunim-Murray Productions experienced a number of problems with the production of this season, including a nearby shooting and numerous protests, vandalism, and arrests by locals critical of MTV and its parent company, Viacom, and opposed to the production's perceived contribution to the neighborhood's gentrification.