A new era of Survivor will begin as season 41 premieres this fall. As the 18 new castaways are announced, Jeff Probst is also introducing new elements to the game, starting with the length of it, which has always been 39 days.
“Survivor 41 is birthing a new era, starting with a much more dangerous 26-day game,” the CBS personality, 59, explains about the evolution. “So that means it is a very fast pace. It does force the players to make bigger decisions. So there will be new advantages and there will be some controversial twists.”
Included in this new era is what they are calling a “Game within the Game” element, which Probst describes as “an interactive experience for junior, future Survivor players” who will “have to spot and solve rebus puzzles hidden within each episode.”
The longtime host does anticipate some backlash from diehard fans as he continues to explain: “There’s a history on Survivor. Every twist we’ve ever done people have hated in the beginning, going to back to season 3 when we did the first tribe swap. Now if tribes don’t get a switch, they’re upset. It was the same with the idol, it’s the same with everything.”
This season’s cast includes an ex-NFL player, a neurosurgeon, rancher, grocery clerk, several college students, a stay-at-home mom, a pastor, a flight attendant and more.
A CBS press release also details how the 26-day game will be accelerated as “supplies are minimal, reward challenges are scarce and players find themselves faced with advantages that could significantly help their game or, just as easily, extinguish their torch.”
With that, Probst adds, “I’m trying to remind players to just keep moving and beat the game. It is fast. You’ve got to earn everything. And even then, there’s no guarantees that you’ll keep it. That’s Survivor right now, so buckle up.”
Scroll down to meet the 18 castaways for season 41 of Survivor, which premieres on CBS Wednesday, September 22, at 8 p.m.