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Survivor: Will The Show Be Renewed?

March 07, 2011 12:00 PM by Ryan Haidet

Typically by this time of year, CBS would have already announced that Survivor has been renewed for two new seasons.  But so far, that has not happened yet.  Will Survivor end after Redemption Island, or will the show be renewed for seasons 23 and 24?  Will host Jeff Probst step away from the show and move on to other opportunities like co-hosting alongside Kelly Ripa when Regis Philbin leaves his seat later this year?  Has American Idol‘s ratings killed Survivor?  Despite all of the signs that have some fans worried Survivor may be done, I think CBS isn’t finished with the reality hit yet.

By the end of January 2010, Survivor had been renewed.  We’re now in early March with no official word that the show will be returning, but I don’t think it’s dead yet.  There are strong signs that indicate Survivor will likely be renewed for more editions.

First, applications have already been submitted with online voting in the Sears contestant contest complete.  Does this mean that producers are definitely going to have a season because they’ve taken applications?  Absolutely not.  But they wouldn’t have taken applications if CBS wasn’t considering more seasons in the first place.  Why create a sponsored casting process without executing the end result?

Secondly, executive producer Mark Burnett told reporters in a conference call before the premiere of Survivor: Redemption Island that he believes there will be more seasons on the way.  He based his prediction on the simple fact that successful television shows stay on the air while others are ripped off the airwaves.  Yes, the ratings have dipped this season posting record-low numbers, but 22 seasons in, the show is still holding its own.  So far this season, the first three episodes of Survivor: Redemption Island have ranked in second place regarding viewership for the time slot.  That’s considering Survivor is now directly battling against American Idol.

Third, multiple sources from potential locations for upcoming seasons have been reporting news regarding Survivor‘s interest in filming the show in their area.  Again, proof producers are looking at the future of the show.

The biggest question mark is regarding Jeff Probst.  If he decides to dash to New York City to take Regis Philbin’s position, I think Survivor is toast.  Why would CBS want to bring new blood into a show that is already so old?  Survivor isn’t like Idol, folks.  It does have its solid footing with loyal fans, but Probst has more of an impact than many people realize.  He doesn’t just host the show, but he assists in producing it.  If he leaves, so does his 11 years of experience.  After all, who would be a good person to fill his shoes?  OK, maybe Charlie Sheen.  He does claim to have tiger blood, which might be the “winning” choice for Survivor.

Back to the focal point.

Will Probst take the Regis gig?  Nobody knows for sure.  But there is support for Probst if he does decide to leave Survivor.  Howard Stern said recently on his Sirius satellite radio show that if Probst wants to take Philbin’s post that he should do it.  Entertainment Weekly mentioned Probst in one of their features as being a good choice to replace Regis.  But it’s also important to note that Probst isn’t the only serious contender for the position.  Throughout the years, many other celebrities have stepped in to fill the seat when Regis was away leaving ample amounts of Hollywood folks to choose from with experience on the show.

Plus, Probst just launched JeffProbst.com, which is almost entirely based around Survivor.  Why bother if it’s only good for one season?  Unless he’s doing this now in preparation for NYC, but I doubt it.

I’ve covered the show for a long time now.  My gut feeling?  Survivor will return with seasons 23 and 24 with Probst along for the ride.  CBS understands the loyal fanbase and knows there is still a solid commitment every week like there has been since the show first premiered 11 years ago.  But if we don’t have an official announcement by mid-April, I think then it’s time start getting worried.  Until now, it’s just a waiting game.

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Topics: American Idol, CBS Reality TV Shows, FOX Reality TV Shows, Survivor |

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2 Comments »

2 Responses to “Survivor: Will The Show Be Renewed?”

  1. Aaron Says:
    March 9th, 2011 at 9:45 am

    I agree: I think Survivor will return for Seasons 23 and 24 with Jeff hosting. The Survivor Sucks forum have been talking about this one for a while. I think a majority of the Sucksters would like a female host if Jeff leaves. Mentions of Jenna Morasca have been made. I think Danni Boatwright would be great since she has all that experience as a news person. Still, Jeff must stay. He is Survivor and without him, it’s nothing. Also, there have been ideas that when the show does finish up it could be an all winners season.

  2. Betsy Says:
    March 9th, 2011 at 3:33 pm

    Hey Ry — Just read your article, but there wasn’t a question in my mind as to its renewal. The show is just too strong.

    I disagree with you, however, about a host. I think Jeff could not host anymore and we could have a very successful show with a new host, if he is the right person. I don’t happen to think a girl would fit the bill on this one — just personal preference. But if Jeff stayed involved as EVP then I think it would still have great success (as long as good casting and good ideas continued to flow!).

    As much as I have loved Jeff as host for all these years, I have no desire to see him on any daytime show. If he is bored, let him go do something else exciting, out and about — I’d watch that. But I’m not going to tune in to a morning show where they are playing spin the wheel with a caller to win a prize…that’s not Jeff’s style…or at least I hope not! He needs to keep his hands dirty, stay in the mix of excitement! So I’m thrilled he has been renewed for the next two seasons.

    This season, according to CBS, has a viewership that is up 150% from the same season last year. That’s huge, and possibly a key reason for its renewal. You can’t deny the buzz this season, and the first 2 episodes HAVE been great, and GREAT TV!

    Jeff could leave Survivor while they are still on top, but why would he? Every season is different. It’s a different cast, a different location, and different, and crazy personalities. It’s like going to work and never having the same day twice.

    Survivor does have a huge world wide fan base, and the original is still the original. I expect that as long as they are keeping it interesting, the show will go on. But, if you get boring seasons, like some that will remain unnamed, then there is no point. A few recent seasons have NOT been very good, and had this season been another downer, I could see a lot of people walking away from it, including Probst AND CBS. But they sure mixed it up and brought in something new. Probst has talked about keeping Redemption Island in the game for future seasons, and it definitely changes the game.

    Here’s hoping that we’ll continue to be entertained and sucked in by Survivor, because I, for one, still love it!

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