May 21, 2011 03:42 PM by Ryan Haidet
Grant Mattos became very close friends with “Boston Rob” Mariano throughout his experience on Survivor: Redemption Island. But by the end of the whole show — which Boston Rob eventually won — Grant became frustrated by that friendship when he was voted out of the game only to finish in eighth place. Shortly after the live reunion show at the Ed Sullivan Theater in New York City, Grant talked with me on the red carpet about his time on Survivor. He revealed his current feelings toward Boston Rob while also declaring he doesn’t buy Phillip’s story whatsoever. Be sure to check out the video inside this article for all that and much more!
Ryan Haidet, RealityTVMagazine: We saw how disappointed you were during the reunion show when Jeff Probst brought up your relationship with Rob. It seems like it’s still tough for you. Give us a little bit of insight on how you feel today.
Grant Mattos: I wouldn’t consider it disappointment. Well, actually, I take it back. There was disappointment on the division that I felt came between Rob and I during the whole experience. Like I said at the finale, there comes a time when you make a choice to what you’re willing to do for that million dollars. Is that stepping on the shoulders and heads, and just kicking people out of the way while trying to get there? Or is it staying true to someone you thought you had a pretty strong relationship with? That’s what he and I had from day one — or so I thought. That’s why I think you could see throughout the show, there was a lot of emotion. There was a lot of feeling. There was a true relationship that had been forming. …
Ryan Haidet: But in the end, you voted for him.
Grant Mattos: In the end I voted for him because out of the three people up there I think he deserved it the most. You’re between a rock and tight spot. My hat is off to him. I congratulate him. He’s been playing this game for a long time. It’s just not the route I personally would go. And it’s not the way I live my life. I think there’s a cop out that people say that it’s just a game. “Survivor is just that; it’s just a game. It has nothing to do with real life. When I’m in my real life I do this.” I don’t buy it. I don’t believe it. Like I said, it’s such an extreme situation that you’re put in, you can’t help but have your true self come out. It comes out in everybody. There comes a time when you make a choice to do what you do to get where you need to be. That’s why I’m elated with my experience. I think I learned a lot about myself. I thought I had a well-rounded experience. I totally dug it.
Ryan Haidet: Moving away from Boston Rob, let’s talk about Phillip — the other giant character of the season. Do you buy it? Do you buy his story?
Grant Mattos: I’ll tell you what. He played the game in such a way that he was able to say, “You know what? I meant to do that.” I don’t buy it for a second. I think the way he played the game, that is truly Phillip Sheppard — if that’s his real name.
Ryan Haidet: When you came into the studio tonight, the audience was talking about how different you look. Is this a new look for you?
Grant Mattos: This is what happens when your dreadlocks retain a lot of moisture. You get back and there’s who knows what living in your hair. There’s a smell that comes with it. Dreads are a lot of maintenance. So yes, it is a new look — and a healthy look. (Laughs) But I love dreads. I love the process of it, so I may grow it back. I’m growing my hair out now. I may do it (dreadlocks) again. But keep ‘em dry. You gotta keep ‘em dry. That is the only difference I think. My hair is just different. I don’t know about anything else.
Ryan Haidet: It was nice talking to you. Thank you very much.
Grant Mattos: Thank you, Ryan.
Check out my interview with “Boston Rob” Mariano — the winner of Survivor: Redemption Island:
Check out my interview with Phillip Sheppard — the runner-up of Survivor: Redemption Island:
Check out my interview with Natalie Tenerelli — the third-place finisher on Survivor: Redemption Island:
Check out my interview with Ashley Underwood — the fourth-place finisher on Survivor: Redemption Island:
Check out my interview with Andrea Boehlke — the fifth-place finisher on Survivor: Redemption Island:
Check out my interview with Mike Chiesl — the sixth-place finisher on Survivor: Redemption Island:
Check out my interview with Matt Elrod — the seventh-place finisher on Survivor: Redemption Island:
Game images courtesy of CBS. Red carpet photos by Melissa Fouse.
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