Survivor’s Season 41 and Season 42 production has been delayed due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
CBS has postponed the back-to-back production of the 41st and 42nd Survivor seasons that are currently scheduled to air in Fall 2020 and Spring 2021, Entertainment Weekly reported.
Season 41 of Survivor was supposed to begin filming on March 24 in the Mamanuca Islands in Fiji, however Survivor host and executive producer Jeff Probst informed crew members in a letter on Wednesday that cameras will not start rolling until at least May due to the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, according to EW.
Season 42 of Survivor was reportedly set to begin filming on May 24, a few weeks after Season 41 was scheduled to wrap production.
Assuming the two-month delay isn’t extended further, both Survivor seasons will still reportedly be filmed in time to maintain their original premiere dates.
Survivor’s 41st season is expected to debut in September 2020, while CBS plans to premiere Season 42 of the franchise in February 2021.
While there hasn’t been a confirmed case of COVID-19 in Fiji yet, CBS executives and Survivor producers don’t want to put anyone — including locals — at risk given the show’s cast and crew hail from nearly two dozen countries.
In Jeff’s letter obtained by EW, he wrote the following: “Hey Survivor crew, Due to the growing short-term uncertainty surrounding the global spread of COVID-19 and the corresponding desire for the continued well-being of our amazing crew, we have decided to push back our start date for Survivor season 41.”
“Though Fiji has no reported cases and is beautifully remote, our crew numbers over 400 and are flying in from over 20 different countries, creating a need for more time to fully analyze and create our new production safety plan.”
Jeff continued, “This situation is unprecedented and we are learning more information every day. It is out of concern for the well-being of all of you that we have taken this step.”
“Our intention is to begin production after the [Season 40] live show. Therefore, subject to new information, our new planned start date for production would be on or about May 19th, 2020. Our intention is to still to shoot both seasons 41 and 42.”
“We know many of you will have questions and we will start a communication chain to keep everybody up to date,” Jeff added.
“We are the most experienced international television team in the world and for 20 years we have calmly and successfully managed a variety of production issues. We will navigate this one the same way.”
“Thank you for understanding our need for this extra time to create our plan. Jeff,” he concluded.
Last month, CBS already had to suspend production of Season 33 of The Amazing Race after filming its third leg due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“Due to increased concerns and uncertainty regarding the coronavirus around the world, CBS and the producers of The Amazing Race have taken the precautionary measure of temporarily suspending production on the 33rd season of the series,” a CBS representative told Variety in a statement.
“All contestants and production staff are in the process of returning home. At this time, no Racers or anyone on the production team [traveling] with them have contracted the virus, or shown symptoms, and we are not aware of anyone being exposed to it.”
CBS said the decision was made “out of an abundance of caution.”
“Everyone involved in the show will continue to be monitored when they return home. The health and well-being of the Racers and the production team are our top priorities.”
The Amazing Race’s Season 33 teams had reportedly already traveled to England and Scotland prior to the sudden suspension of the show’s production.
While it has yet to air on CBS — or even have a premiere date announced — The Amazing Race’s 32nd season already completed filming over a year ago.
Meanwhile, CBS will continue to air Survivor: Winners At War on Wednesday nights at 8PM ET/PT, which filmed in May and June 2019.
Survivor veteran Rob Mariano was voted out in the latest episode, making him the sixth castaway sent to the Edge of Extinction.