Russell Hantz To Appear On Australian Survivor Season 3

Is Russell Hantz going down under?

It’s been a busy few days of Survivor news, first The Amazing Race rumors, then John Morrison competing on Season 37, and now, Russell Hantz on Australian Survivor?

Inside Survivor has learned from multiple sources that three-time Survivor player Russell Hantz will compete on the upcoming season of Australian Survivor, which is currently filming in Fiji. And while we’re still hoping this is just a really late April Fools joke, it unfortunately looks to be true.

Hantz first appeared on Survivor in 2009, on Samoa, where he made it all the way to Final Tribal Council, a feat which he repeated in Heroes vs. Villains the very next season. Despite his aggressive gameplay and knack for finding idols, he lost both times due to a bad social game and lousy jury management. He returned alongside Boston Rob Mariano a year later to compete on Redemption Island, where he was unceremoniously voted out at the third Tribal Council.

If the rumor is accurate, and all signs currently point to yes, it would mark the first time a former Survivor US contestant has competed on an international version of the show. Rupert Boneham appeared on Survivor Israel in 2009, but only as part of a reward challenge – because what’s a greater reward than Rupert?

Australian Survivor was revived in 2016 by Channel Ten and has so far aired two seasons. The upcoming season is titled Champions vs. Contenders, which is set to pit “champions of public life” against “everyday Aussies” in a battle for $500,000. It’s hard to tell which tribe Hantz will end up on, given that he’s neither an “everyday Aussie” nor a “champion of public life.”

It’s also difficult to understand why Australian Survivor feels the need to include a US contestant so early into their comeback, especially given the positive fan reaction to the 2017 season which had one of the all-time great Survivor casts. While Hantz certainly brought a new life to Survivor back in 2009, his name eventually began to taint the franchise, especially after two controversial appearances from his nephew Brandon in later seasons.

This is one rumor we’re hoping is simply bad information, but that may be wishful thinking at this point.

What do you think about Russell on Australian Survivor?

Martin is a 31-year-old writer from England. He’s represented by Berlin Associates for comedy writing and writes about TV and entertainment, currently for TV Insider and Vulture, previously ET Canada and Yahoo. A finalist for the Shortlist Sitcom Search in 2012 for “Siblings,” Martin received his BA in English with Creative Writing from The University of Hull.

  • Whistler

    Only if he’s the first one voted off.

  • smartsenior

    Boston Rob and Coach weren’t available?

  • mypoody

    YASSSSSSSSSS. The KING has returned.

  • Cam Martin

    Horrifying. Please fire the entire OZ Survivor casting department immediately.

  • bryan

    NOOOOO!!! As an Australian who has enjoyed watching the first two seasons, this is news that will make me completely skip the season until he is voted out. Let’s hope the players have the good sense to vote him out first.

  • David Harrington

    Awful, if true. Just awful.

  • yeltra

    Damn! and I have so been so enjoying the Aussie version these last 2 seasons, but I guess all good things must come to an end. I never wanted to see that ahole on my tv screen again, so will have to seriously consider whether to watch or not. So disappointing.

    • The Best. Maybe.

      Look at all these people, judging a tv show they haven’t seen. It just looks disgusting if you ask me.

      • Ryan Neilson

        We may not have seen this season, but we have seen all 3 seasons of US Survivor he was on, and he brought nothing interesting in my opinion. All 3 would have been a lot more pleasant to watch without him.

      • Cerbian Kamarote

        They’re not judging the show, they’re judging him, and he’s a three-time douchebag. He’s not even Australian.

  • Anuris

    I’d like to see him one last time on US Survivor. Either on a “Legends” season or “Champions vs. Contenders” with the “contenders” being losing finalists or possibly even jurors. S40 (or S39) sounds like good time to make it happen, although it would be a pity to probably miss Parvati due to her having a young child at the time of shooting.

    Don’t know about AUS Survivor… I’ve never seen a single episode of that version of the show. But in case the US production is not interested in Russell anymore, I guess it’s good to hear that he ain’t finished playing just yet and we might get to see him at least on the sister show…

    Would be cool if after all these years he could actually somehow reinvent his playstyle, improve his social game and in general gain more respect as a player. Not sure if he’s even able to, but trying to play more like on Samoa than HVV would be a good start. Hopefully, if the rumors are true, he won’t be an early boot… Then this whole casting gimmick would be kind of pointless and it would only further tarnish his legacy…

  • AC0001001

    “This is one rumor we’re hoping is simply bad information, but that may be wishful thinking at this point.”

    With all due respect, Martin, speak for yourself. He makes for great TV and is one of the most iconic villains in Survivor history. It’s been so long since he last played I’m very curious to see if his game has evolved in any way since Redemption Island. Could make for a fascinating character study.

    • David Harrington

      Well, Martin is speaking for me when he wrote that. And, it appears as though a lot of people think the same way. Hantz does not make great tv.

  • Ryan Neilson

    Awwww, Australian Survivor was so good while it lasted. Lets just hope the people have enough sense to boot him the first chance they have, like in RI. To be honest, even throwing the first challenge just to get him out as quickly as possible would make sense.

  • q10

    interesting rumor. not a hantz fan but will watch regardless

  • The Best. Maybe.

    I can’t wait to see Russell playing again, whether it’s a Legends season or an international Survivor.

  • nipi ipin

    im so fucking shook

  • mahone

    Wish it were our Survivor

  • Heidi Petrone

    I watch Austraillian Survivor on Terrerrium TV. I love it and can’t wait to see Russell

  • Ryan Wilson

    If it is true, the aussie survivor community and players are well aware of the hantz legacy. The only plus to this would be if they did to him what they did in redemption island and voted him off early, finally letting him know he shouldn’t play again anywhere in the world. Last year’s cast would’ve voted him off in a heartbeat. But us super fans will watch regardless and pray the rest of the cast is as good as last years.

  • Paul Tognoni

    No fucking away! I’m not opposed to an Australia VS America survivor but not special guest stars ffs

  • Michael

    Love him or hate him, Russell brings life to every season of Survivor he’s on. People who are saying this has ruined Australian Survivor need to realise that it hasn’t rated well in the past. Bringing one of the most dominant players from the top rating season can only be a good thing.

  • Kyle Stacey

    I don’t think this is real because Russel has been active on Twitter during filming

  • Mariah Clark

    Honestly, Russell is one of my favorite players on Survivor. I think he deserves to win. He should have won. He may play dirty, but he plays the game and definitely outwits, outplays, and outlasts everyone else. Everyone who doesn’t vote for him is just too butthurt over a game show.

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  • Cerbian Kamarote

    Aw, you mad bro? Didn’t know Russell was your boyfriend.

  • Ken Buzzins

    Not a rumour. I’m watching him on the show as I type. Should be interesting.

    • It was a rumour back when I first posted about it back in May.

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  • WhiteHatBobby

    Must have been a CBS decision. His participation was part of the synergy to let viewers in Australia know that Network Ten is safe after bankruptcy, and had been acquired by CBS. It was the first Australian Survivor series to air under CBS ownership.

  • WhiteHatBobby

    Network Ten went into bankruptcy early 2017 and was acquired by CBS. This was a way to “introduce” the news that CBS owns Ten. The “Sports Tonight” relaunch and graphics package are taken from CBS Sports.