LAST MAN STANDING
Survivor host Jonathan LaPaglia explains why this season of survivor is its most unpredictable yet
Survivor host Jonathan LaPaglia talks to TV SOAP.
If you think lming a show on a tropical island would mean plenty of opportunities to put your feet up and relax by the beach, you are so wrong. Jonathan LaPaglia worked day in, day out, to host reality show Survivor in Samoa, alongside a 200-strong crew.
“The truth is it’s a beast,” he says. “It’s way more work than you realise just from watching the show. It’s just a massive, massive show. It’s every single day, no days off … it’s a lot of hard work but I enjoy working hard so it’s all good.”
Survivor started off with 24 contestants facing the ultimate test of strategy and endurance while forgoing the creature comforts of home. Now, as the numbers start to dwindle, LaPaglia, who is also known for his acting on dramas Love Child and The Slap, sat down with
TV SOAP talk frontrunners, blindsides and dark horses.
How is this season shaping up compared with season one?
This bunch were not afraid to stick their necks out and make some moves, make a
lot of moves actually [laughs]. They’re all swinging for the fences this year. It’s going to be a roller-coaster ride.
Have you noticed any frontrunners emerging?
That’s the intriguing thing about this game. To be honest with you, the crew and myself included lost a lot of money placing bets on who was gonna get out in front and who was gonna win! It’s just so unpredictable. What we found particularly this year was one person one day looked like they were sitting pretty and they were going to make a mad dash to the end and then two days later they found themselves on the bottom of the pile and then they get voted out. It was really changing that quickly this year.
Have there been any dark horses?
Another thing that was kind of peculiar this year was pretty much everyone played really hard in the sense that almost everyone was trying to make big moves. There were very few people who were sitting back and waiting.
Everyone loves a good blindside. How epic are the blindsides so far this season?
Pretty epic. There are a lot of blindsides and a couple of beauties in there for sure [laughs] – some very memorable blindsides for the audience and also for the people that were blindsided [laughs]. They will be thinking about it for years to come.
I always find it funny that people get upset that they’ve been blindsided because isn’t that the name of the game?
It is. To be honest with you, this season not everyone, but pretty much everyone, they were complimentary to people that blindsided them so they really respected the game. They actually took it as a compliment that they got blindsided because they were obviously a threat on some level so they took it like they should take it. Having said that, it’s a social game and we as humans want to be part of a group so when you get ejected from the group it still hurts on some level. It’s a double-edged sword but for the most part I think the people that were voted out [this season] respected the way it happened.
Having watched participants up close for two seasons, have you been able to identify what qualities make a successful contestant?
From my observations one of the best ways to get further in the game is to execute moves in such a way that get other people to make moves for you without taking the credit for it in the moment because if you make big ashy moves suddenly you have a target on your back at some point and then you’re at risk of being voted out.
So ideally you want to make moves that are not big and ashy but the ip side to that is once you get to the end and you have to prove to the jury that you made those moves so you need to do them in such a way that you can lay them out and prove that they were yours.
What’s your favourite spot in Samoa to film and why?
There’s a location called Tapa Tapa beach. I just really liked it because the beach was really pretty and the eld was right next to the beach so it always had — you know, Samoa’s incredibly hot, doesn’t matter where you are [on the beach] at least there there’s always a nice breeze — so it’s pretty [and] has a breeze.
You said you didn’t get a day off. Does that mean you didn’t get any time to explore?
No, once I get to that island it’s just all work. Last year I bought a 1000-page book and I didn’t get to read one word of it. It really is non-stop, you know, if I’m not shooting then I’m prepping for what’s coming up so I really didn’t get much time to enjoy the rest of the island. But having said that I stayed in a nice resort on the beach so whenever I could I jumped into the ocean for a quick rejuvenation! TVS
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