It’s imaginably scary as hell to appear on reality TV. So when Sophia, Sistine, and Scarlet Stallone — yes, that Stallone — signed up for The Family Stallone on Paramount+, the butterflies in their stomachs rapidly flapped their wings. “We were bracing for impact with all of the negative comments that come with TV,” Sistine says. “We were like, ‘We know we signed up for this. We know we’re about to get an immense amount of hate, which is something we’ve never dealt with. But we are completely shocked with how overwhelmingly positive the response has been.” That’s not hyperbole. Just one week after the series’ May premiere, it was renewed for a second season — an immediate sign that fans, and also executives, were pleased with their work.
For the uninitiated, The Family Stallone’s premise is simple: Cameras follow patriarch Sylvester Stallone (you may know him from a little movie called Rocky) as he excels in the role of dad with his wife, Jennifer Flavin, for their three daughters, all coming of age in their 20s. It’s a sweet and easy watch, the type of show that’s fun to stream while doing laundry or catching up with a friend — and that’s in the words of Sophia: “Honestly, this is a show where you can put it on, look at your phone, and do what you need to do — it’s nothing to overthink or be overwhelmed by.”
That may sound trivial, but history has proven 30-minute glimpses into the lives of the rich and famous can hook audiences overnight. It also doesn’t hurt to have a last name as recognizable as Kardashian, Hilton, Osbourne, or D’Amelio.
Below, Sophia, Sistine, and Scarlet open up about the success of The Family Stallone’s first season — and what’s next.
StyleCaster: It’s fun to watch different Stallone generations interact on camera. I bet that drew in diverse audiences.
Sistine: It’s funny, our age demographic for this show is anywhere between 16- to 78-year-olds. My dad made a funny comment the other day. He was like, ’You guys are making me hip again. Should I get a TikTok?’ We are bringing in a new audience for him just like he is for us.
Sophia: That was actually our goal. We knew half the people would look for us and half for him. It’s been cool to intersect both worlds. My dad’s viewers say, ‘Wow, I didn’t know who the girls were and I’m getting to know them more.’ And the other side didn’t realize how big this family was and what our behind-the-scenes life is like.
Sistine: Any person can watch this show and feel some sort of relatability.
SC: I love how soothing it is.
Scarlet: We’re not trying to go crazy on camera and have everyone be like, ‘What happened?!’ We’re being our complete, honest selves. I love soothing TV — I can put it on for hours.
SC: What were you most surprised by in terms of production having grown up watching reality TV?
Sistine: The shocking part was the amount of time you commit. We really thought cameras would come two to four hours a day, shoot what they need to shoot. We shot from 8 in the morning sometimes ‘til 8 p.m., non-stop, six days a week. We really invested so much time into this. Everyone thinks it’s all so easy but you really are putting your personality and your true selves out for the public and if they don’t like it, it’s not like a character as if you’re acting, they don’t like you. We really pushed hard to try and stay as authentic as possible.
SC: Tell me about one of the hardest shooting days.
Sistine: Your breakup was quite vulnerable.
Sophia: Yeah, the breakup was pretty hard and you didn’t even see 90 percent of it. We shot hundreds of hours and you guys got 5 percent. But also, my heart journey and health was hard to be vulnerable about. I’ve been dealing with it since I was born so putting it on TV was kind of a shock.
SC: How did you decide what to share and what to keep private?
Sistine: For season one we were nervous because my parents did such a good job of sheltering us, so we got accustomed to being private. Now, looking back, we’re so ready. We’re off to the races. We’re ready to give more, share more, be more vulnerable, be more open. We probably held back 10 percent but for season two, we want to put it all out there.
Sophia: Getting adjusted to the camera was probably the biggest difficulty. It was nerve-racking! But we shot for over a year, so we got very adjusted to it.
Sistine: Also, I have to note that we wanted to share even more. In season one, I was talking a lot about the Relationship that I was in, but that’s involving people that didn’t sign up for a show. So I was desperate to give viewers — and same with Sophia — a look at our personal lives. Sometimes the people in our personal lives don’t want to be part of this world.
Scarlet: Good thing my ex-boyfriend was like, ’I’ll do it!’
Sophia: It definitely takes a certain person to be like, ’OK! Here we are.’
SC: Was it awkward to have a production crew around and pretend they weren’t there?
Scarlet: So awkward! I was shaking.
Sophia: We realized it’s very easy to forget they’re there as well. It does not take that long for the crew to be around, and you’re mic’d up and you’re saying dumb things, acting a certain way.
Sistine: You can tell in the first scene in the first episode when we’re sitting around the couch, talking about my mom and dad’s relationship — that was the first scene we shot on camera. You can just feel the awkwardness.
Scarlet: I was chugging my water.
Sistine: We were so shy! That changes as the show progresses. My dad said, ‘Wow, it feels like they’re not even there.’ That’s when it’s dangerous. We just let is loose.
SC: Were there elements of other reality TV shows that you wanted to adopt?
Sophia: We watch so much reality TV.
Sistine: What I like from Terry Bradshaw’s show — he has all daughters and is this older man that’s super goofy and fun — is the relationship he had with his daughters and the honesty and the practical jokes.
Sophia: The Kardashians are so close and seem so unified with each other and are each other’s ride or dies. That was something we also wanted to express on our show. What’s so fun about family reality shows is they’re all so different. You can take bits and pieces here and there but you can’t compare one to the other at all.
SC: So do you all live together in New York City now?
Sophia: Scarlet lives in Miami and Sistine and I live together in New York.
Scarlet: I’ve made myself at home, though. I propped on the couch and brought two bags of clothes and now I’m technically living with them. But not forever, I don’t want to freak them out. Let’s just say I don’t have a flight home.
SC: What are you doing for fun in the city?
Sophia: We’re all from California and the way people do summer in California is so different from the way people do summer on the East Coast. We’re really learning the lay of the land — everyone goes to the Hamptons for the weekend or Nantucket.
Sistine: Honestly, Sophia and I have been trying to put ourselves out there as much as possible. We went from saying no to everything to yes and burning out. I now understand the New York City burnout because we were getting FOMO. But we’re trying to mingle and meet as many people as possible and get our podcast, Unwaxed, back up and running. I love this city ‘cause it really pushes you to keep going. It’s never boring. We’re always out to get a drink, dance, party to ABBA.
SC: Season two is going to be so major. Beyond the show, what goals do you have?
Sistine: Right now I’m producing my first first film that I sold to MGM and Amazon. I’ve always dreamed of having my own fashion line, brand, especially sleepwear. I’ve always seen myself doing something like that. That’s the pipe dream, though.
Sophia: She’s a fashionista. I’m writing a book so I definitely want to finish my first book. I’d love to be a romance or fantasy author and build that up with my book club. My pipeline dream would be that I want to create an app — I’ve been working on a Dating App.
Sistine: We also want to be talk show hosts. We want to be the next Ellen! We love talking to people.
Sophia: We want Unwaxed to be live, touring!
Sistine: We want our own Eras Tour with our podcast.
Scarlet: I really want to act. I’ve loved acting for as long as I can remember. I’ve always dreamed about making it big in acting. I also really have been getting into designing. I don’t know exactly my route yet, but I do love designing, fashion, mostly shoes.
Sophia: It’s fun. We’re all so polar opposite in the things we want to pursue so it’s always interesting. We’re never in competition. We’re always supportive and we’re really excited to see where this show takes us. Regardless, we’re going to get there somehow because we have each other.