Note: This does NOT spoil the results (or even the location) of “The Amazing Race” premiere episode. The “Survivor” premiere episode from Sept. 24 is spoiled within.
Most TV producers whose hit show get moved to Friday nights would throw a fit.
Instead, CBS and “The Amazing Race” threw a party.
To celebrate the premiere of the “Silver Anniversary” 25th season, creators Bertram van Munster, Elise Doganieri, nearly half the current teams, friends, family, and general public fans crammed The Underground Pub in Hermosa Beach on Friday afternoon to down “Philiminator Fireball Shots” and “Pitstop Premium Pints,” socialize (on social media and in person) and screen the East Coast live feed of the show.
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Nobody has industry parties in Hermosa Beach, but remember, these are the guys who travel 25,000 miles around the world twice a year in three weeks. This is not a geocentric bunch.
Also, CBS Senior Executive Vice President Kelly Kahl, the man responsible for the schedule, is a co-owner of the spot. (How do you think they got the feed live?)
True to “Race” formula, the appropriately chosen foreign themed venue (as in London’s subway system) is confusingly located up a flight a stairs on the second floor. It became a social media ground zero for the show on Friday.
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“You tweeting?” was host/producer Phil Keoghan’s most frequent greeting to well wishers.
No vanity credits here. Keoghan was relentless on his social media channels during the show. He was fielding, digesting and creating about 80 tweets a minutes from 20 minutes before the show throughout the hour.
After the show, he stayed long for an extended meet-and-greet where guests could take their picture on the mat with Phil, a cluebox and the iconic yellow envelopes.
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“The Race” has been on-air since 2001, and on Sunday nights for 8 years and 15 seasons in a row.
“We’ve been on Sunday night for so long. I’d be kidding myself if I was not nervous about making the move (to Fridays at 8 p.m.),” Keoghan told TheWrap. His instant read of the online fan reaction to the new season and timeslot: a thumbs up for Kahl’s move.
“We’re excited to move to Friday night. I’m legitimately happy,” Doganieri said, hitting pause on wrangling four columns of twitter monitoring app Tweetdeck on her computer.
“Sunday is crazy competitive,” Keoghan told TheWrap. “We’ve always had the football delay situation, parents have always been saying to me ‘Hey Phil, we have to get our kids to bed so they can get up early to go to school on Monday.’ We’re in good company (on Friday nights). ‘Blue Blood’ is a top ten show, ‘Hawaii Five-O’ is a great show.'”
They are in casting now for the next seasons and won the reality competition Emmy last month.
“We are happy that we have been on for 25 seasons, our silver anniversary,” Keoghan said. “We’ve been blessed with our 10th Emmy win, so we fell blessed. That’s why we’re having a party. What’s not to celebrate, c’mon!”
After the Emmy wins (20 under one roof between husband-and-wife creator/EP duo van Munster and Doganieri) they’ve taken to new challenges.
For Keoghan: Social media domination.
“This is the fastest we’ve ever started trending (on Twitter),” host/producer Phil Keoghan announced, as he jumped up from his booth during a commercial to run over to the microphone.
For the creator/EP’s: trophy storage.
“We actually built a shelf in our home (for all 20 Emmys),” Doganieri said. “I sent my 10th Emmy to my mother and father in Long Island. They have it on their mantle.”
Fellow first-generation CBS reality show “Survivor” won its first hour with the premiere of its 29th season on Wednesday. In a cross-over, two-time “Race” alum Nadiya Anderson appeared (already past tense) on this new season, and earned the shame of being the first person voted out.
Four of the eleven teams in this year’s race made it to the party: Boston firefighters Michael and Scott, mother-and-daughter flight attendants Shelley and Nici, dating couple Dennis and Isabelle, and NYC bike messenger women Kym and Alli. Also, the safe buried under sand on the beach made a live appearance.
This won’t be the last time fans hear from Racers until they are off the show.
While “Survivor” contestants are now prohibited from using Twitter during the season (to avoid deductive spoilers as to who knows and talks to who), “Race” cast are fully liberated on twitter.
As of ratings released by 9:15 a.m. on Saturday morning, the show had a 1.1 in the key 18-49 demographic and 5.52 million total viewers, behind ABC’s “Shark Tank” reality competition at 1.6 and 6.88 million total viewers and way ahead of Fox’s reality struggler “Utopia” and an NBC rerun of “The Mysteries of Laura”.