“The world is ready for you. Good luck. Journey protected. Go!”

The Red Tea Detox

The Wonderful Race‘s 31st season premieres Wednesday, April 17, and can function a forged filled with actuality TV veterans from CBS’ holy trinity of the style: TAR, Survivor and Massive Brother all vying for the $1 million prize as they journey greater than 25,000 miles all over the world. 

After 18 years, 31 seasons and a file 10 Emmy wins for Excellent Actuality TV Competitors Sequence, this race remains to be wonderful, with virtually unparalleled scheduling, filming points and ambition, having filmed in over 89 nations with a crew of over 70 folks on the bottom. 

Through the years, sequence co-creators and spouses Elise Doganieri and Bertram van Munster and fan-favorite host Phil Keoghan have revealed some behind-the-scenes tidbits about present, together with the sudden journey points rivals face, simply how many individuals work on TAR, and the way Keoghan virtually ended up internet hosting one other iconic actuality TV competitors sequence: 

Origin Story: Most individuals have a horror story about touring with their pals, together with Doganieri, who got here up with the concept for TAR in 1999 after her husband van Munster returned dissatisfied with what was at present being provided up within the TV world after a significant convention. 

Working as an promoting govt with Ogilvy & Mather on the time, she then pitched the concept to van Munster when he challenged her to provide you with an thought for a TV present in 5 minutes.

She then recalled backpacking by Europe along with her school roommate and greatest good friend after they graduated and the drama that went down throughout their adventures. 

“Midway by the journey, we simply acquired bored with one another and had an enormous blowout,” she instructed Awards Every day. “We took the time without work from one another and later acquired again collectively. Every part was high-quality after that.”

However the expertise clearly left a mark, one she relayed to her husband, who had beforehand labored on Cops

“I stated to Bertram, ‘Would not or not it’s nice if we may have two folks know one another do some form of journey all over the world, a race the place they might be competing in opposition to different folks doing the identical factor?'”

The Title: When the husband-wife producing group initially pitched the present, they did not have a reputation but.

“We had many, many titles,” Doganieri stated, together with Across the World in 80 Days, earlier than happening to disclose an govt at CBS got here up with The Wonderful Race. “We liked it. Every part’s wonderful about it.” 

Internet hosting Duties: Earlier than Keoghan was picked because the present’s host, he really was one of many frontrunners to land one other main job at CBS: Survivor. After all, that gig finally went to Jeff Probst, one other one in every of TV’s most beloved actuality TV hosts. 

“It was at a time when not quite a lot of foreigners got a chance to do one thing like that,” Keoghan instructed New Zealand’s The Listener in 2005. “One of many causes I used to be instructed that I did not get the job was that I used to be a New Zealander.”

One yr later although, he was picked for The Wonderful Race, with Keoghan saying, “They gave me a shot, however they requested me to Americanize my voice.” 

Earlier than touchdown TAR in 2001, Keoghan was identified for his internet hosting duties in New Zealand, together with Spot On and That is Pretty Attention-grabbing, and he was identified for his unusual and typically harmful adventures on Journey Channel’s Phil Keoghan’s Journey Loopy.

The Casting Course of: Need to be on the present? Simply be your self, in accordance with Doganieri. 

“Once we’re sitting in auditioning, we will inform immediately if someone is making an attempt to be one thing that they are not, making an attempt to anticipate what we wish or not being utterly trustworthy about who they’re,” she instructed UpRoxx.

Nonetheless, there are some character traits which are extra engaging to the casting group. 

“We all the time forged for Kind-A personalities, super-competitive folks. It is all the time good if they’ve a humorousness, as a result of you must have a humorousness to be on the highway for therefore lengthy. And it is also for individuals who have fascinating personalities with one another. It could’t simply be, ‘We’re greatest pals and we have now an excellent time,'” she defined. “Individuals who are likely to have relationships which are so excellent and easy-going aren’t the most effective TV typically. Now we have to see, underlying, that there is a little drama there, a bit of spark.”

Whereas the present began scouting for contestants in later seasons, they nonetheless settle for auditions, with the present’s former casting director Lynne Spillman as soon as telling Selection they’re simply searching for “the most effective groups and numerous relationships. Which means, not all married {couples} or brothers, and so on. We attempt to discover one thing for everybody (within the viewers).”

READ  Gigi Hadid Continues to Show That She's a Grasp of Model

The Amazing Race


Casting Necessities: Normally, it is most well-liked the group members have identified one another for not less than one yr earlier than making use of, and have a “relatable” relationship. Oh, and also you each should be 21 by the beginning of the race. 

As soon as you might be picked, you might be largely by yourself in the case of packing what garments to carry with you, although the present tells you what you cannot carry: your personal cash (money or bank card), cameras or any form of helpful instruments, like maps, translation books, journey guides, any electronics, GPS, and so on. (Selfie cams have been launched in season 26, BTW, and the present did an all social media star outing for season 28.)

And after race formally kicks off, the final rule is the group members cannot be greater than 20 toes other than one another always. 

Journey Woes: As a result of they cannot carry their very own cash, the groups are given bank cards from the manufacturing firm to ebook their journey. And firstly of every leg, they’re given a sum of cash to cowl their bills other than airline tickets, like meals, lodging or any sudden restore prices, amongst different issues. When you do not use all your stipend on that leg, the remaining cash rolls over. But it surely you burn by it earlier than attending to the subsequent leg, you possibly can can try and earn more cash so long as they abide by native legal guidelines; borrowing from different groups or asking locals for some money (simply not at airports within the U.S.) is OK. (There’s additionally a rumor a couple of small emergency fund that the assigned crew carries and breaks out solely in excessive circumstances.) 

Getting two tickets on a last-minute flight (no reserving prematurely and no enterprise or top quality, by the best way!) is difficult sufficient for the typical individual, however the groups really should safe 4, as they can’t journey with out the two-person crew. 

“The groups are chargeable for buying tickets for his or her crew and if they do not have sufficient tickets for themselves, and their crew, then they cannot go,” Keoghan revealed in a Reddit AMA. 

Whereas they’re technically in hiding, the contestants are often given a stipend and may go on supervised outings. 

Plus, it makes it simpler to transport everybody to the ultimate pit for the massive end on the finish of the race. 

Planning Course of: Whereas TAR could typically really feel spontaneous and daring, it’s meticulously plotted out behind-the-scenes months prematurely. 

“In each season, earlier than we go away, the artistic is 100 % locked. It is really locked just a few weeks prematurely earlier than we go away,” Doganieri instructed UpRoxx. “Every part is deliberate out. All of the Non-Elimination Legs are deliberate out. All of the Quick-Forwards. Every part is deliberate out and locked earlier than we go away. All of the clues have been written proper now. All of the host scripts have been written. CBS and the authorized group have signed on every thing at this level.”

In an interview with Awards Every day, Doganieri and van Munster revealed casting is step one, earlier than they “begin a map and desirous about the route we wish to do.” Then the areas have to be cleared by the Security and Safety group. 

With regards to selecting the areas, van Munster provided a reasonably sensible instrument within the decision-making course of: “The logic comes from the place do the plans fly and with what frequency.” (One place they turned down? Qatar.)

Plan B: The one time the present adjustments their plan is “by a pressure of nature,” Doganieri defined to UpRoxx. “We’re checking climate studies on daily basis. Many occasions if there is a location that we lose due to climate, there’s backup plan. Now we have quite a lot of Plan B’s in place that we all know like, ‘OK. If that river’s gonna flood, there’s one other river over right here that we all know we will use.'”


Filming Is Quick and Livid: After months of preparation, the precise filming of a season is comparably brief: 12 episodes in simply 21-25 days, with over 2,000 folks engaged on the present total. Given the breakneck tempo of the present, there is not quite a lot of downtime, although the contestants and crew stay in shut quarters.

“We’re all in the identical resorts,” Abbatista revealed to The A.V. Membership. “Really, a lot of the occasions after the legs, we ate with the crew. It is form of such as you’re touring as a household.”

READ  Miley Cyrus's Daring New Tattoo Is Completely Miley

In a Reddit AMA, Keoghan additionally opened up in regards to the speedy schedule and the way a lot time he really will get to spend with the contestants. 

“The present occurs in a short time and time is all the time a problem for us. Many individuals do not realize that we shoot all 12 episodes in simply 21 days,” he wrote. “When you consider all of the worldwide journey and the opposite journey that we do to get from place to position, there’s not an enormous period of time to be hanging out. That stated, I do file in-depth interviews with the groups after they check-in and that is actually the time I get to attach with them.”

Phil’s Pit Cease: Ever surprise what Keoghan is doing as he waits for the groups to reach? He is working and making an attempt to get the newest data on the race because it’s taking place to organize.

“Aside from briefing the greeter about how the present works and taking pictures the intro’s I must do on the pit cease, 99% of my time is spent holding my telephone and furiously writing down story notes about what’s taking place with the groups,” he revealed in his AMA. “The data is coming from all these in manufacturing who study something new about what is going on on. If we did not have the flexibility to textual content on the present and typically make telephone calls, it might be virtually unimaginable for us to make the present. There are time the place we’re in such distant areas that I do not get data beforehand and in these circumstances, I’ve to debrief the groups on the mat to unravel what’s occurred. As well as, some manufacturing folks should bodily carry me the data to me on the mat so I can administer the penalty.”


Keoghan additionally spends quite a lot of time doing analysis for his scripts, wanting to verify he’s providing new data to viewers on the areas the present visits. 

“We begin researching the present months prematurely after which I begin engaged on my scripts a couple of month out. The bottom line is to present the viewers some takeaway about what we’re going and the issues we’ll be doing,” he wrote. “So I work laborious on fascinating factoids since I do know folks love studying in regards to the world which watching the wonderful race. I really like that the present not solely entertains but additionally informs.”

As for what occurs when one group is hours behind the remaining? Keoghan stays prepared for something.

“There’s all the time the possibility {that a} group could come to the mat by chance earlier than they’ve accomplished the course so, as soon as once more, I keep on the mat it doesn’t matter what,” he stated. “One time, I used to be on the mat in Poland season 11 for 19 hours straight.”

19. Hours. Straight. 

Shut Name: On TAR, Keoghan has by no means missed a pit cease, however he virtually did in an early season when he discovered himself detained in Ukraine. 

“I acquired held in immigration in a single day,” he instructed TMZ. “I did not have the correct papers apparently or so that they thought. In order that they put me in a holding room in a single day, in the meantime, the groups have been racing and there have been considerations I would not make it to the mat. Fortunately, the U.S. ambassador was an enormous Wonderful race fan and she or he acquired me out.”

He made it simply in time to satisfy the groups on the mat. Phew.

Emmy Awards, Phil Keoghan

Frazer Harrison/Getty Pictures

The Which means of Keoghan’s Necklace: In case you’ve got ever puzzled if the necklace the host wears in each episode means something, he revealed its distinctive origin throughout his Q&A. 

“I’ve worn it on each season. It’s an indigenous necklace from New Zealand which was given to me as a manner of offering security over water,” he wrote. “It is origins come from the Maori folks of New Zealand. It is really an ornamental fish hook. For essentially the most half, they’re carved out of bone or inexperienced stone.”

In later seasons, Keoghan added one other accent by beginning to put on hats, however it was as a result of he wanted the additional safety from the solar after having six facial sunspots eliminated.

“My dermatologist stated, ‘You have to cowl it up.’ It is not all Race‘” he instructed the New York Publish. “I grew up within the Caribbean and I’ve had quite a lot of solar harm through the years. Now I attempt to be actually cautious.”

READ  Airbnb landlords comply with pay SF $2.25M over unlawful renting

Giving Again: For the producers, it was essential for them to go away a optimistic mark on distant areas they’ve filmed in. 

“We like to go away one thing behind that is good for a spot which may’ve wanted one thing,” Doganieri stated. “In Ethiopia, we put roofs on homes,” and the present additionally has rebuilt colleges in among the locations they’ve visited.

They even constructed a fishing village in Vietnam, which Van Munster stated “they may by no means afford to do” if TAR hadn’t filmed there.

The Amazing Race, Harley Rodriguez, Jonathan Knight


Movie star Attraction: New Children on the Block’s Jonathan Knight, skilled athletes, Olympians and different celebrities have competed through the years, however the present has but to do an all-celeb line-up.

Through the years, Keoghan admitted to The Hollywood Reporter he is had followers pitch an all-celebrity season. However given the grueling filming schedule, he stated, “I believe a season with all celebrities is likely to be a nightmare.”

Among the superstar followers who’ve expressed curiosity? 

Neil Patrick Harris talked about it as soon as. Sarah Jessica Parker, I bear in mind, talked about it as soon as. I do know Ellen DeGeneres has talked about it on her present earlier than,” he revealed. “There was a quote from her that if she was on The Wonderful Race what she would do. Julia Louis-Dreyfus, I do know loves the present. Drew Barrymore I believe was one. I noticed Matthew McConaughey carrying an Wonderful Race T-shirt in {a magazine}. I do not suppose we might have hassle getting curiosity. I believe we might have hassle locking it in.”

Actuality Worlds Collide: whereas the upcoming season is made up of groups of all actuality TV vets, with stars from TAR, Survivor and Massive Brother, Keoghan as soon as admitted he wasn’t the most important fan of bringing on stars from different franchises (like they did with Massive Brother {couples} Jeff and Jordan, and Rachel and Brendon, and Survivor‘s Boston Rob and Amber, and Ethan and Jenna).

“On a private degree, I am much less of a fan of that than I’m in bringing in some new individual with a novel character,” he admitted to THR. “It is to not say it did not work, however I am simply not as a lot of a fan of that cross-pollination. I believe the reveals are so totally different that to me it is a bit of complicated. That is my opinion is all.”

Pre-SUR Life: Earlier than she turned probably the most standard Bravo actuality stars due to Vanderpump Guidelines, Stassi Schroeder really competed on The Wonderful Race along with her dad, stepmom and brother in 2005. They maintain the glory of being the primary and solely group to ever be eradicated of their hometown. 

“I did not have an opportunity to consider if it was one thing I needed to do,” Stassi instructed ET of competing the present. “It was all the time simply been one thing that I’ve achieved. After which I spotted that I used to be form of good at it.” 

She was 17, brunette and simply as unapologetic as she is on the Bravo actuality hit, saying, “I bear in mind why we misplaced—as a result of my household did not hearken to me. As a result of I am all the time proper! If they simply would’ve listened to me!” 

Overcoming Tragedy: The primary season of The Wonderful Race premiered on Sept. 5, 2001, lower than one week earlier than the tragic occasions of 9/11 would without end change the nation. 

“The world had modified from one second to a different, and we have been doing a present about touring abroad, about airplanes,” van Munster instructed  The New York Instances in 2004. “At that time, I believed the present was over. I did not suppose we had an opportunity.”

In an interview with the Tv Academy, he went on to say, “We had individuals who did not need to go on a airplane, who did not need to go to a international nation, we had a number of producers who did not need to do it anymore. We had all these points.”

However van Munster stated nobody at CBS ever talked of canceling the present within the wake of the terrorist assault, with Doganieri explaining, “The good factor is that we have been in a position to proceed doing the present and it did hold that ingredient of individuals nonetheless needing to journey and the world remains to be good. In a manner, possibly, our present helped hold a optimistic spin on issues a bit in a time that was so devastating.”

The Wonderful Race season 31 premieres Wednesday, April 17, at eight p.m. on CBS. 

Do not miss E! Information each weeknight at 7, solely on E!


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here