'Survivor': Season 41 Production Delayed Due to Coronavirus

Filming in the next season was set to commence this month and is now eyeing a May production start.
CBS Entertainment
Jeff Probst on 'Survivor'

The Survivor franchise trades in blindsides, but here comes a surprise that doesn't involve the game itself: The next season has been postponed due to the coronavirus epidemic.

Production on the 41st season of the CBS reality series has been delayed due to growing concerns about the coronavirus, The Hollywood Reporter has confirmed. Production on season 41 was set to commence this month in the Mamanuca Islands chain in Fiji, with production on season 42 to film in May. In a letter to crewmembers obtained by EW, however, executive producer and host Jeff Probst announced production would be pushed back two months to May.

"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," wrote Probst. "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. 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."

A spokesperson for CBS added: "Due to concerns and uncertainty surrounding the spread of COVID-19 globally, CBS and the producers of Survivor have taken the precautionary measure to delay production on the 41st season, which was set to begin filming later this month in Fiji. Pending worldwide events, the plan is to return to production on May 19th. The health and safety of the castaways and production members is our top priority."

Survivor becomes the latest series impacted by the coronavirus. Filming on the next season of The Amazing Race was similarly halted, and a number of shows with studio audiences are opting to proceed with new precautionary measures.