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Jeff Probst becomes ‘Survivor’ regular as he approaches Game 44

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New York – For a while Jeff Probst couldn’t have imagined he’d be doing what he wanted to do on Wednesday, as host for the start of season 44 of “Survivor.”

And it’s not just because of the ephemeral nature of television, a 44th season of anything is a rarity, even one that made waves when it first aired on CBS in the summer of 2000.

In those early days, people were uneasy about Probst. In 2001 he studied screenwriting, acted, wrote and directed a wildly popular independent film.he tried short talk show. He admitted, “I’m sick of being called a ‘host.'”

However, as showrunner Mark Burnett began leaving, Probst added “producer” to his title and has since risen to the rank of “showrunner”—in industry jargon, meaning He is in charge of everything.

At 61, he’s giving it his all as an evangelist for “Survivor.”

“I’ve never been more excited to be on the show,” he told The Associated Press in a recent interview. “I hope it’s obvious. I hope it’s obvious that I really like Survivor.”

It’s still a well-designed game that tests survival skills in a harsh (if cute) environment as well as social and cunning skills in order to stand your ground at the end and win the $1 million prize. Even if one cast member is a drag, “one of the show’s greatest strengths is that it hits the reset button every season,” says Dalton Ross, executive editor of Entertainment Weekly and the show’s senior chronicler.

so it can, um, survive the scandal player kicked out In 2019, after being accused of inappropriately touching young women or making some ineffective adjustments, such as “Huobi,” which was introduced and dropped after one season.

Other new ideas, like a hidden immunity icon or a “David and Goliath” season that Probst really likes, keep the show fresh while sticking to the basic structure.

CBS also ordered producers to increase diversity, which Probst said added to the show’s richness. The 18 castaways for the new season include five black players, three Latinos and one Asian American.

“People who don’t watch Survivor, I think they might mistake it for some sort of survivalist show, or they think it’s just a reality show,” Probst said. “When ‘Survivor’ really becomes one of the greatest adventures you can live, both as a player and as a viewer.”

As Probst became more involved with the show, Ross said, the way he worked on screen was noticeably different.

“Jeff started putting more opinions and personality into his hosting,” he said. “Before that, it was more of a master of ceremonies role. You realized he could be the eyes and ears of the audience, he could speak for the audience. That was one of the most important changes he made as a host. It made him The elements of the game that the players have to deal with.”

“Survivor” has made Fiji a regular set after years of traveling to and from different locations. The jungle is a character in itself. High-definition photography and drones make things more visually appealing than ever, Ross said.

When asked for his opinion, Probst demurred best player of all time, and admitted that some seasons started running together. He said he would lose a “survivor” quiz.

“I’d see an early cut of an episode, but I don’t remember who got voted down, even though I was the one from the tribal council that extinguished their torch,” he said.

And, yes, he’s excited about the new season, calling it one of the funniest player combinations the show has seen in a while.

“It’s intoxicating,” he said. “Honestly, I believe one of the reasons we’re still on air is that it’s attractive. If people watched the first episode of Survivor 44, I don’t know how you wouldn’t watch the second. You’d Hooked.

Starting Wednesday, Probst will host a podcast with showrunner Brittany Crapper and fan Jay Wolff that airs after each episode. “Fire With Jeff Probst” Insiders will see how the show is put together, he said.

Rather than spoil the magic, CBS wanted to deepen its relationship with fans, he said.

With broadcast television struggling to attract viewers, “Survivor” is a solid performer on CBS and one of the few family shows that people of all ages can enjoy. The show seems destined to last for a while, and it’s hard to imagine without the man “not only the face of ‘Survivor,’ but also the pulse of ‘Survivor,'” Ross said.

When asked if he would like to remain on the show as long as it airs, Probst at first dismissed the question as an impossibility.

Then he answered quickly.

“At this point, yes,” he said. “Really, yes. Because my life revolves around Survivor, all my creative ideas are formed through Survivor. Every conversation, book I read, podcast I listen to, every Everything… gets filtered through my ‘Survivor’ filter.”

Copyright 2023 The Associated Press. all rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.

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