How did Jeff Probst get ‘Survivor’ host job with this audition tape?

Jeff Probst has hosted all 33 seasons of “Survivor” and will be back on our TV screens next week to preside over “Survivor: Game Changers.” To promote the return of this reality-show competition pioneer, Probst stopped by “The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon” on Thursday. He was shocked when Jimmy Fallon revealed that he’d unearthed Probst’s audition tape that he sent in to “Survivor” producers in 1999.

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Back then, Probst thought it would be a good idea to put together a reel of his best bits to impress the likes of show creator Charlie Parsons and executive producer Mark Burnett. What seemed funny almost two decades ago is now cringe-worthy as evidenced by the clip above.

Among the low-lights are the opening shot of Probst dressed in the style of John Travolta in the 1977 disco-themed “Saturday Night Fever” strutting down the street. Try and forget that image once seen! And it goes downhill from there as Probst does pratfalls and silly stunts, all in the hopes of showing that he can survive anything.

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Despite this tape, Probst got the “Survivor” gig and proved to be a key element in its successful formula. Indeed, when the Emmy Awards finally introduced the Best Reality Host category in 2008, Probst won that inaugural race. He repeated for three more years. Then, in 2012 he was inexplicably snubbed and has yet to make it back into contention.

Could this be his year to return to the race he once owned? Sound off in our comments section below.

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