CBS has announced that Survivor: All Stars, one of the most anticipated entertainment events of 2004, will premiere following CBS Sports' coverage of Super Bowl XXXVIII on Sunday, February 1, 2004.

Survivor: All Stars will feature eighteen of the most memorable, entertaining and controversial castaways from previous Survivor editions. The series' best strategists, survivalists and personalities will collide with the winner earning $1 million and the title of the "Ultimate Sole Survivor."

According to USA Today, in additional to the increase from the show's usual sixteen castaways to eighteen, the show will air fourteen original episodes, up from the typical thirteen, and while the grand prize will remain $1,000,000, the payouts for the losing contestants will increase significantly, beginning with a tenfold increase in the $2,500 prize that the first ousted contestant traditionally receives.

As we reported earlier, CBS is refusing to publicly announce the names of any of the participating contestants until after the conclusion of the currently-airing Survivor: Pearl Islands (although the spoiler site has already released the reputed cast list.) For now, Survivor producer Mark Burnett would only state "We were simply casting for the most memorable characters we could find" while admitting that two contestants he hoped to cast declined his offer.

"Because they've all played before, their whole mantra is to expect the unexpected. So their own imaginations are doing them in more than anything I might do" Burnett told USA Today. As evidence of their paranoia, Burnett revealed that several of the all-stars wore three layers of clothing after seeing the Survivor: Pearl Islands contestants be forced to walk the plank and begin the competition much sooner than they'd expected. "I made it much, much harder," Burnett said, by offering no rations and tougher immunity challenges. "They got kicked in the butt from the very beginning."

Survivor: The Australian Outback,which premiered following CBS's coverage of Super Bowl XXXV on January 28, 2001, ranks as the second highest rated and most watched post Super Bowl program since the advent of Nielsen people meters in 1987. "It worked like gangbusters when we did it with the second Survivor," says CBS president Leslie Moonves told USA Today. "Why not continue the streak? This was pretty much a no-brainer."

Survivor: The Australian Outback delivered a 24.5 /39 share in households with 45.37 million viewers. In key adult demographics, Survivor: The Australian Outback posted a 21.8/48 rating in adults 18-49, 22.4/53 in adults 18-34 and 22.0/49 in adults 25-54. The current edition, Survivor: Pearl Islands is the second most watched program of the season, averaging 20.43 million viewers.