Canadian Survivor

Sunday, November 12, 2006
NO spoilers here. Just me ranting and raving. Why Can't I Be On Survivor?

I recently came across a website which I wish I had known about much earlier. was created by Ian MacKenzie, a fellow Canadian and fellow Survivor addict. From what I read on his website he "discovered" Survivor about the same time as I did - first season but not right away like everyone else. Ian's struggle to get on Survivor was documented in various national newspapers, on radio programs and television. It was also picked up by some in the US as well. He managed to collect almost 4000 signatures on an online petition as well as the endorsement of 18 former survivors, including Ethan Zohn, Jerri Manthey, Colby Donaldson, Lex, Rob and Amber, and Scout. He put a LOT of time, energy and creativity into his quest to be a Survivor. Alas, he has given up his quest to spend his time on much more worthwhile causes. I contacted him via email this morning and he sent a lovely response quite quickly (isn't it nice when people do that?).

Sadly, it seems as though CBS and Mark Burnett have never "officially" came out and said what the reason behind allowing only Americans to compete. Ian did include a link to a radio interview that Jeff Probst did on a call-in show which offers some insight. It would still be nice, however, if they would put something official on their website and explain things to us eager fans. Essentially what Probst said was that the format of the show is such that they are only allowed to have Americans on it due to the fact that other countries can create their own version of the show or some such nonsense. Seems that the original Survivor was created in Sweden and other countries, such as Australia and the UK, have created their own versions. Why can't Canada do the same thing? Australia apparently even had a Celebrity Survivor edition!

I have a suggestion for all those die hard Canadian Survivor fans out there. Ok, actually I have a couple of suggestions. The only way things are going to change is if we band together and demand either (a) our own Canadian version of Survivor, or (b) we be allowed to apply to be a contestant on the American version of the show.

Here's what I'd like people to do:
1. Write Mark Burnett and CBS. Let them know that people up here are HUGE survivor fans and that should be able to compete alongside our southern cousins. Send in a completed application package including your audition video. If they receive enough of these, they've got to start listening to us!

CBS Television Network
51 West 52nd Street
New York, NY 10019

Mark Burnett
Survivor Entertainment Group
9899 Santa Monica Blvd.
PMB 2002
Beverly Hills, CA 91522

2. Write to Canwest Global. This is the company that televises Survivor here in Canada. I'm not sure if they are the people who may possibly have the rights to create a Canadian version but it never hurts to try. Tell them that you'd like them to create our own version of the show. You can contact their viewer relations through email or write to them via snail mail at the following address:

Corporate Head Office
CanWest Global Communications Corp.
3100 CanWest Global Place
201 Portage Avenue
Winnipeg, MB R3B 3L7
Telephone: (204) 956-2025
Fax: (204) 947-9841
If you decide to write any of them, and you get a response, please let me know! I'd love to hear what they had to say! You can also send Ian your love and support by email.


il tedesco said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
il tedesco said...

Being an American I never considered reality TV inequality. You have my support.

Wandering Coyote said...

Wasn't there a Canadian on the second Survivor? Kal? Kel? Or something... The accused him of hiding food I seem to recall...

mister anchovy said...

The locale: Canadian Shield country.
The date: The first week of June.
The theme music: The blackfly Song to open the show and Four Strong Winds to close it.
The incentive challenge: Winner gets a bottle of DEET and a long-sleeved, light coloured cotton shirt. Everyone else has to walk around in bathing suits
Food: trout if you can catch them

Red said...

I vote for Canadians to be able to take part in US Survivor! Email the Probst too!

The UK had its own version of Survivor, that much is true. But it was so shit, Karen! Uninteresting competitors, boring challenges, and a lot of waffle in between. Needless to say, it tanked, and a second series was never made.

I guess the celebrity version of Survivor would be "I'm a Celebrity: Get me out of Here!", which is due to start here in the UK this week, I think. But there's no bite to it, the challenges are soft, they are given every comfort imaginable, and we've never watched past the first series. Although, they say that David Gest will be one of the participants this season, so that could be interesting...

Anonymous said...

Why don't you pitch it to the stations there and get them to back it while you produce it? This way, you are not only a survivor, YOU are survivor Canada!

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