In Support of the Survivor Title Sequence

Should CBS bring back the Survivor Intro?

Photo: CBS

“One of the most recognizable aspects of (Survivor) is the title sequence…. You hear that great music and you remind yourself, ‘Oh yeah! Survivor is on the air again.'” – Jeff Probst, Behind the Scenes Survivor: Tocantins.

For the first time in the history of the show Survivor, there haven’t been official Main Titles released to the public.

From Survivor: Borneo to Blood vs. Water, Grammy Award-winning composer Russ Landau composed variations of the Ancient Voices theme to represent the culture of the region visited each season. Since Landau left the show in 2013, Vanacore music has continued to create variations of the theme song, starting with Survivor: Cagayan. Vanacore maintained the individuality of the Main Titles each season as they were released online (but were aired in international broadcasts of the show). 

Scott Duncan is the award-winning photographer and Videographer behind each Survivor Intro since the beginning. He continues to work with the show each season, bringing us beautiful, high-quality cinematography such as images of locations, wildlife, and contestants. Even with his incredible shots showcased in the Island of the Idols premiere‘s opening minutes, none have been used to create a Main Titles sequence for this season.

For the last 38 seasons, the opening credits have been cherished by superfans who recognize that the intro is an iconic and important piece to the brand that is Survivor. They are also used and appreciated by casual fans—especially at the beginning of each season—as a guide to the names of the new cast of characters. Contestants dream of seeing themselves in slow motion with their name in bold gold text, showcasing the intensity they experienced while participating on the show. 

On Twitter, the day Island of the Idols premiered on CBS, Jeff Probst shared that the Main Titles wouldn’t return due to, “…the expense… not being justified anymore” and that it “…can’t hold the attention span of today’s viewer.” Meanwhile, over half of this season’s castaways voiced their disappointment online about not being a part of this recognizable and iconic piece of the show.

Several fans have resulted in taking the time to edit their own versions of the Main Titles to be shared to YouTube. Many have also shared the #SaveTheSurvivorIntro hashtag on Twitter in an attempt to encourage Jeff Probst and the Survivor Production team to reconsider its decision and to continue the long-standing tradition of the Main Titles. 

With the recent success of Probst asking fans on Twitter for help to gain more control over the CBS promo spots, can fans also be successful in bringing back the Main Titles? Let’s work together to make this happen. Not only for us, the fans, but for those castaways we watch each week who had the opportunity to participate on Survivor. I believe the cast of Island Of The Idols and future contestants would be incredibly grateful to be included in such a visually stunning, important, and iconic piece of the Survivor brand.


Written by

Ari Bacher

Ari is a Broadcasting For Television graduate from Seneca College in Toronto, Canada. Ari started watching Survivor when he was 11, with the premiere episode of Survivor Tocantins. When away from a TV, Ari enjoys photography, reading Stephen King novels, and touring around all his American friends who travel up to visit him.

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