CBS reveals 'Survivor: Samoa' castaway identities, tribal leader twist
By Christopher Rocchio, 08/27/2009
CBS has announced the identities of the castaways who will be competing on Survivor: Samoa and also revealed the game-opening twist the cast encountered when the competition was filmed earlier this summer.
"This group reminds me a little bit of Fans vs. Favorites in terms of there's a sense of fun and actually looks like they'd be fun to hang out with," Survivor host Jeff Probst said.
The long-running CBS reality series' nineteenth season will begin with the 20 castaways -- two more than CBS had originally announced in May's Survivor: Samoa announcement -- being divided into two tribes and immediately forced into choosing a leader before having the opportunity to converse with one another.
"From the start of the game, Survivor embraces this Samoan culture by incorporating an ancient tradition of electing an individual leader of the village," said CBS in its announcement of the format twist.
"Without speaking, both tribes must immediately choose one member of their group to become their sole decision maker, their chief. How important will the role of tribal chief be in determining the fate of each tribe?"
In addition, the cast also includes one (as of yet unidentified) castaway whom the network is proclaiming will emerge as the biggest villain in Survivorhistory.
"One of these castaways will become the biggest Survivor villain ever," CBS announced in on-air promos it began airing Tuesday night.
Although the network is also billing Survivor: Samoa as "the biggest Survivor" and the cast as "super big," three previous Survivor editions have also featured 20 castaways: Spring 2005's Survivor: Palau, Fall 2006's Survivor: Cook Islands, and Spring 2008's Survivor: Micronesia - Fans vs. Favorites.
Slightly smaller than the state of Rhode Island, Samoa is located only a few hundred miles northeast of New Zealand and is comprised of the western islands of the Samoan Islands group (American Samoa, a United States territory, comprises the eastern islands).