Already, there are, without saying names, a lot of folks that I get texts from—all the time—saying I am watching this, I need to be on the show. If you could see my phone…
My friends are waiting for Boston Rob and Russell Hantz.
Well, send them on over. To me, we need more of the icons of Survivor. And obviously, Boston Rob is on the top of my list as well because he’s such a great player. I’m hoping for many seasons to come because there are so many fantastic players. And look at Pilot Pete; it doesn’t have to be someone that you’d expect.
The internet reaction has been insane. Do you pay attention to it, does it give you ideas?
I don’t think people realize that I do read those things. And sometimes I think—that’s a really good idea. I laugh at things, when, like, people were asking why Jennifer Aniston wasn’t on there and obviously Jennifer Aniston is probably not going to be on Traitors. But mostly the fans have fantastic ideas. We make these shows for the audience, so why would I not consider those?
Will “normal people” ever be invited back on the show?
I don’t think it’d be just reality stars. I’d like to see more athletes. I love to see people out of the box. I love people like Jon Bercow [former speaker of the UK House of Commons] because you’d never expect him, so I’d like to broaden it to more quote unquote celebrity types. I’m not sure if non-celebrity types will come back because we’re having so much fun this way, but never say never.
Is there anyone that you’ve been personally sad to see voted out or murdered early?
[Spoiler alert!] I was disappointed to see Johnny Bananas going so early, because he can play a game, and he never even got a shot. I know Maksim Chmerkovskiy [Dancing With the Stars] so well, and I think he could have shook things up a bit longer.
Does a big game player like Bananas have a target on his back from the get-go, though?
That’s the hard part of doing the casting here. On Survivor, the players don’t know who everybody is unless they’re doing a special season or bringing someone back. Here, they all know each other so well, and they know the great players. Do you take out a great player or do you want to play against them and beat them?
During casting, was there anyone who stood out and made you think: my money is on this person?
Yes and no. The Parvatis of the world, you knew were going to do well. You knew C.T. was going to do well. You know Dan [Gheesling, Big Brother] is going to do well. So those don’t surprise me. The Phaedras and the Petes, those are pleasant surprises for me. The ones that aren’t straight down the competition reality line, those are the ones I’m having fun watching. And you should never discount someone like Bergie. Sometimes fans think that person is just sliding by, but they really have a plan. Pilot Pete, to me, is playing such a good game right now.
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