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Survivor 41 is back in production

A year after Survivor shut down its production, and almost nine months after Survivor host and showrunner Jeff Probst said “We don’t have a plan yet” about resuming production, the long-running CBS reality show is officially starting filming on Survivor season 41 in Fiji.

Probst announced this in a video posted to Twitter, saying he had “some exciting news to share: Survivor’s going back into production.” Minutes earlier, CBS posted a video with Survivor’s theme song to Twitter.

Earlier this year, Probst said in a Cameo video that plans for filming this year were underway.

Nearly every other reality show—except The Amazing Race—has gone back into production over the past nine months, including CBS’s three other major reality shows: Big Brother, Love Island, and Tough As Nails.

But Survivor had a series of obstacles to overcome: Fiji’s closure, and the show’s apparent unwillingness to film elsewhere; an international crew, including many Australian crew members; and American cast members coming from the epicenter of the epidemic.

Those have been overcome, obviously. Probst said “Fiji has invited us back to their beautiful country,” and added, “We have all of our C0VID protocols in place so everybody in Fiji will remain safe, all of our crew will be safe, and of course, our players will be safe.”

Survivor host and showrunner Jeff Probst
Survivor host and showrunner Jeff Probst. (Photo by Robert Voets/CBS Entertainment)

Earlier this month, Inside Survivor’s Martin Holmes reported on some of those plans, including a “staggered approach of flying in crew” with new arrivals “restricted to their own rooms for 14 days.”

He said “filming [is] expected to start early April and finish mid-May,” with season 42 filming starting in late May.

This will be the first season of Survivor that will be produced under other protocols, specifically two new mandates that come from CBS:

Did Probst and Survivor’s producers also use the year off to make any changes to the show’s creative plans? That remains to be seen.

But Jeff Probst does seem extremely excited—even more than when he watches family members hug and kiss during the loved ones visit. In the video, he says:

“I’ve got to tell you: I can’t remember a time I’ve been this pumped to shoot Survivor, and I’ll tell you why: The past year has reminded me—and I hope it’s reminded you—that you gotta live your life like it’s one big great adventure, and Survivor fulfills that. So I am thrilled to say: I will see you on the island for season 41.

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  • Andy Dehnart is the creator of reality blurred and a writer and teacher who obsessively and critically covers reality TV and unscripted entertainment, focusing on how it’s made and what it means. Learn more about Andy.

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