A new season of Australian Survivor is just a little over a week away, and according to host Jonathan LaPaglia, it is going to be “more brutal” than ever.
The seventh season of the hit Network 10 series was once again filmed domestically, this time in the Charters Towers region of Queensland. This location was said to be immensely tough on both cast and crew, with extreme heat leading to several people passing out on set.
“It was even more brutal, if you can believe that,” LaPaglia told Who magazine. “The terrain is still very rugged and tough for the players, but the biggest difference was the temperature… I mean, it was really hot in Cloncurry, but it was excruciating in Charters Towers where we shot.”
The previous season, Brains vs. Brawn, was filmed at Cloncurry in rural Queensland. That season was marked by its dusky, desert terrain and high temperatures, but the upcoming Blood vs. Water season is said to have pushed contestants to their limits.
“[The heat] was really the toughest thing,” LaPaglia continued. “We had a number of players and crew collapse because of the heat.”
For the first time ever on Australian Survivor, castaways will enter the season in pairs, competing with and against their own loved ones. This includes two-time champion and Survivor US icon Sandra Diaz-Twine, who will be playing with her daughter Nina.
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Sandra echoed LaPaglia’s comments about the extreme conditions of the season. “Australian Survivor kicked my ass, physically and mentally,” she told the Sydney Morning Herald.
She added: “I feel like Australia was my hardest location ever because the heat would actually… I would feel a burn, a sting on my skin. And then the cold at night was a cold I’d never felt before—and I’m from Connecticut, where it snows.”
Australian Survivor: Blood vs. Water premieres Monday, January 31 on Network 10 and 10 Play. Previous seasons are available to watch in the US on Paramount+.