CBS confirms 'Survivor 17' will be in Gabon, be called 'Survivor: Gabon'
By Christopher Rocchio and Steve Rogers, 05/13/2008
CBS has confirmed that this fall's Survivor edition will take place in Gabon, an equatorial country located in west-central Africa. Survivor: Gabon -- Earth's Last Eden will be the official title of the seventeenth edition of the long-running reality series.
The network made the announcement at the conclusion of Sunday night's live Survivor: Micronesia reunion show, with host Jeff Probst presenting a preview that confirmed the filming location he had previously hinted at.
"Everyday millions of Americans go about their familiar routines with friends and family in safe surroundings. But this fall, 18 of them will be thrust into a land beyond their wildest imagination," said Probst during the preview.
"Located in equatorial Africa, Gabon is one of the world's last remaining sanctuaries of pure, untouched wilderness. The culture of Gabon reflects the beauty of this ancient land, with rituals and dances as pure today as they were generations ago. Gabon is the only place on the planet where surfing hippos ride the waves and elephants roam with gorillas as leopards keep watch. Eighteen Americans will be caught in the midst of nature's fierce battle for survival as they live among some of the world's most dangerous animals."
Online rumors that Gabon -- which borders Guinea, Cameroon, Republic of the Congo and the Gulf of Guinea -- would be the location for Survivor's seventeenth season had first surfaced earlier this year. Late last month, Probst had verified that Survivor's next edition would take place "somewhere very remote and on the equator."
"I didn't know where it was," Probst told Entertainment Weekly at Survivor: Micronesia's finale. "I had to look it up on a map. It is probably the most remote place we have ever gone."
Survivor: Gabon represents the first installment of the series to film in Africa since the show's Fall 2001 third edition -- Survivor: Africa -- which shot in Kenya.
"In Kenya, we had armed guards everywhere so that if something did happen, we could take care of it. We're not gonna have that [for Gabon] because they're telling us it is so remote and will probably be remote forever. But a gorilla could wander into camp," Probst told EW. "No one's really ever hung out there. We're going to leave a boma with some sticks and stuff, and the contestants will be given instructions that they need to finish it since we're a little concerned because it's so unknown."
"Survivor is one of those shows that you want to see in HD," Probst told EW. "People with bug bites are gonna look worse, people that don't have great bodies are gonna look worse, and people who are really attractive are probably gonna look... worse."
Survivor: Gabon -- Earth's Last Eden is scheduled to begin filming in June.