Survivor Season 41 Release Date, Cast, And How To Watch

After more than 20 years on the air, "Survivor" is one of the longest-running reality TV shows. In fact, the show is credited with igniting the reality TV explosion of the 2000s, with wildly popular shows like "The Bachelor," "American Idol," and "Dancing With the Stars," following it. Producer Mark Burnett recalled showing the first season of "Survivor" to reporters for the first time. "At that moment, I was just excited," he told The Washington Post in 2015. "Little did I realize it truly [would become] a game-changer."

After a COVID-19 induced hiatus, "Survivor" is coming back for Season 41 in Fiji. A press release (via Heavy) announcing the season called it "one of the most dangerous seasons in the history of the show." Host Jeff Probst elaborated on the changes in an Instagram video. "[The hiatus] led to us creating a new game that is much more dangerous," he said. "You could refer to it as 'Survivor 2.0,' you could call it 'Dawn of a New Era,' which it is." He went on to say, "'Survivor 41' is like the monster in a horror movie and if you're a player, it's coming for you. So either you devour the monster or the monster will devour you." Yikes!

So when is this new and improved version of "Survivor" hitting the airwaves? Here's everything we know.

When does Survivor 41 start?

"Survivor" Season 41 officially premieres in its usual Wednesday timeslot on September 22, according to Heavy. "Survivor" has been airing on Wednesdays since Season 21, "Nicaragua," in 2010, per Reality TV World. Season 1 of "Survivor" actually aired on Wednesdays too, but the show moved to Thursdays for Season 2 in 2001 to compete directly with NBC's "Must See TV" lineup, led by the hit sitcom "Friends."

Scheduling chief Kelly Kahl said in 2010 that CBS had been struggling on Wednesday nights, and moving a show with a massive fanbase like "Survivor" would help ratings on that night. "... the thinking is that [viewers] will follow these shows where they go," CBS' entertainment president Nina Tassler told The New York Times at the time.

According to Gold Derby, "Survivor" typically films two seasons back to back, with one airing in the fall and one airing in the spring, so we can likely expect Season 42 to premiere sometime in early 2022.

What's going on with casting this season?

As filming for Season 41 of "Survivor" was supposed to begin in March 2020, the cast had already been finalized at that point, per Gold Derby. But with COVID-19 delaying production by a full year and CBS' new 50% diversity mandate for reality show casts, the final cast ended up being retooled. However, all 18 members of the cast are new — no returning players will be coming back this season.

An official cast reveal is imminent considering the premiere is barely a month away, but the lack of official news hasn't stopped cast leaks from coming out. Inside Survivor compiled a list of the 18 rumored cast members for the new season, a diverse group of individuals from all over the United States and Canada, ranging in ages from 20 to 52.

During the finale of Season 40 — called "Winners at War" — host Jeff Probst urged teens to apply for the show. "You should apply, especially if you're young," he said. "I'm talking teenagers — 16, 17, 18, 19. Do it. Cool parents and a cool school? Who knows. It could happen."

How can I watch Survivor 41?

Like all previous "Survivor" seasons, the show will air on CBS, with episodes available the next day on Paramount+, according to Parade. Like most CBS shows, it will likely also be available to stream on with a valid cable subscription. No cable? No problem! Since CBS is an old-school over-the-air network, anybody can watch it for free with a TV and an antenna.

If you want to spend the next month getting caught up on past seasons, you have a few options. Two past seasons are available on Netflix: Season 20 — "Heroes vs. Villains" — and Season 28 — "Cagayan." Seasons 1, 3, and 12-28 are all included with Amazon Prime, while all 40 seasons are available to stream on Paramount+.

Host Jeff Probst tweeted the official trailer on August 13. The trailer consists of exasperated voices saying things like, "This is a very dangerous situation" and "This season is the most different ever." At the end, a voiceover says, "We're back, and the monster is hungry." What makes this season so dangerous? You'll have to tune in to find out.