'Survivor: Heroes Vs. Villains': The cast reveal is here! (Who's in? Who's out?)

CBS revealed the cast for Survivor: Heroes Vs. Villains tonight during The People’s Choice Awards. The cast features 20 former players that fans either love (like Rupert Boneham from Pearl Islands and Tom Westman from Palau) or love to hate (Jerri Manthey from The Australian Outback and Russell Hantz from Samoa, back just a few weeks after completing season 19). But there are several noticeable absences as well. The season is being touted as a 10-year anniversary celebration of the show, however Heroes Vs. Villains contains zero contestants from the groundbreaking first season. Producers attempted to include season 1 winner Richard Hatch, but he was still under house arrest at the time (for, ironically, not paying taxes on his million dollar Survivor winnings) and unable to fly to Samoa, where the season was shot. “Yes, we wanted Richard to come here for sure,” executive producer Mark Burnett told EW.com while filming on location in August. “But the law is the law and we are unable to achieve that.”  [The complete list of competitors and exclusive video of the entire cast is after the jump.]

The cast in general tilts toward contestants from more recent seasons: For example, there are just as many contestants — three — from the lightly regarded season 18, Tocantins (J.T. Thomas, Tyson Apostol and “Coach” Benjamin Wade), as there are from the entire first six seasons of the show (only Colby Donaldson and Jerri from The Australian Outback and “Boston” Rob Mariano from Marquesas). Says Burnett: “I think you need to honor the fans that have stuck with it in the last few seasons and new fans that were very, very young when it started, and honor the people they want to see.” Fans will also likely be divided over the fact that nine of the 20 players are three-peaters, including two (James Clement and Amanda Kimmell) who will be competing for the third time in six seasons. “At the end of the day, we looked at the names, and we said, ‘let’s forget about who’s been here once, or twice or three times,'” host Jeff Probst told EW.com in Samoa. “‘Who do we want to see play again? Who does the audience want to see?’ And that’s really what governed our choices.”

Two choices that will no doubt inspire a bit of head scratching are the inclusion of Panama runner-up Danielle DiLorenzo (as a villain, even though she did not do anything remotely villainous) and Cook Islands’ Candice Woodcock (as a hero, even though her most famous move was mutinying from her own tribe). In fact, both players were surprised themselves to find out they were being classified as such, judging by their EW.com on location pre-game interviews (which can be viewed below).

The filming for Heroes Vs. Villains commenced on August 9 on the island on Apia in Samoa at the same two campsites used for season 19. (Filming wrapped in mid-September just before the tsunami that devastated the island.) The contestants arrived for the start of the game via four New Zealand military helicopters and were immediately thrust into a brutally physical challenge that results in one topless player and two painful injuries. (All of the challenges will be based on classic challenges from past seasons.) The season premiere will air February 11 at 8pm on CBS.

For exclusive on location video interviews with the cast of Heroes Vs. Villains, click on the video right below the cast list. For revealing quotes from the contestants on how they’ll play, as well as Jeff Probst’s take on each of them, check out our special Survivor gallery. And for continuing inside scoop on Heroes Vs. Villains (including analysis on each player) delivered right to you, follow me on Twitter @EWDaltonRoss.

The full cast of Survivor: Heroes Vs Villains:


Rupert Boneham (Previous seasons: Pearl Islands, All-Stars)

James Clement (Previous seasons: China, Micronesia)

Colby Donaldson (Previous seasons: The Australian Outback, All-Stars)

Cirie Fields (Previous seasons: Panama, Micronesia)

Amanda Kimmell (Previous seasons: China, Micronesia)

Jessica “Sugar” Kiper (Previous season: Gabon)

Stephenie LaGrossa (Previous seasons: Palau, Guatemala)

James “J.T.” Thomas (Previous season: Tocantins)

Tom Westman (Previous season: Palau)

Candice Woodcock (Previous season: Cook Islands)


Tyson Apostol (Previous season: Tocantins)

Randy Bailey (Previous season: Gabon)

Sandra Diaz-Twine (Previous season: Pearl Islands)

Danielle DiLorenzo (Previous season: Panama)

Russell Hantz (Previous season: Samoa)

Jerri Manthey (Previous seasons: Australian Outback, All-Stars)

“Boston” Rob Mariano (Previous seasons: Marquesas, All-Stars)

Parvati Shallow (Previous seasons: Cook Islands, Micronesia)

“Coach” Benjamin Wade (Previous season: Tocantins)

Courtney Yates (Previous season: China)

[ewbrightcove “60464432001”, “60382977001”, “475”, “345”]

Photo Credit: Monty Brinton/CBS

Comments (381 total) Add your comment
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  • Jenn

    Why is Sandra a villian? Because he’s my favorite player ever, I immediately want Tom to win. But I bet they gun for him early on. If he makes merge, I predict it’s over for everyone else. Other people who will be kicked off because of previous game play and/or likability: Rupert, Colby, Cirie, JT (Mr. Perfect Game). Basically, all heroes. People I’d love to see go ASAP: Danielle, Jerri, Rob, Parvati. All villians. People I want to see make it to the end and lose again: Russell and Amanda…that would really suck for her.

    • Elle

      Yeah, I don’t see Sandra as a villain at all. So excited for JT and Rupert to be back though! Plus, i wanna see how Russell tries to manipulate all these players.

      • stlcardsfan

        this was filmed BEFORE Russell’s season aired, so they have no idea of how he played the game

      • soony

        yes but there are different people it´s gonna be harder maybe impossible play the game same way

      • KWise

        I don’t think I understand their use of the word “villain.” Some are villains in terms of their playing style (they lied a lot, not trustworthy, etc). Others seem to be villains from an audience standpoint (i.e. Courtney – didn’t we all HATE her? But I don’t remember her gameplay being especially villainous. Or am i forgetting something?)

      • KWise

        Same thing with Coach – he was villainous in the sense that the audience hated him. But he didn’t really have any strategy that involved being a villain….an idiot, yes. But no strategy.

      • John Debono

        If it counts for anything I don’t want to see Sandra back period. She was loud and annoying back in Pearl Islands and only won as the lesser of two evils as far as I’m concerned. (Lillian)

      • soony

        I like Pearl Islands but i really do not know who is Lillian! Pretty easy victory.

      • christianslovematch

        Good to see Colby back

    • AcaseofGeo

      How is Sandra a villain??? I agree! She was a great player and she stuck by Rupert, a hero. Anyway I am SO EXCITED to see these old faves come back, good or bad.

      • Porkins

        i wish i was coach’s other assistant coach.

      • Bantha Poodoo

        Hey spoiler people…you might enjoy finding out what happens before it happens, but the rest of us actually want to watch the show with a little bit of suspense. So if you know or think you heard something, warn us first or shut it!

    • KaTie

      You go Russell! This one is yours. Watch Boston Rob and JT I think they may be you’re only competition.

      • JacinBourne

        KaTie, bless his napolean heart, he doesn’t win S20 either. Guess that is why he looked so very, very sad in S19 finale – he knew he just blew his last chance. Gotta love his pimp-hat, oxy, felonious self!!! He does make for great TV.

      • Kiara

        You’re wrong! Russell does win!!!

      • me

        I thought the exact same thing at the reunion. I assumed the reason he was so frustrated and went after nat’s title is bc he knew he didn’t win S20 and at least wanted to get the recognition. In that moment I almost felt a little sorry for the guy, for playing so hard and losing it twice. Then I rememberd this is realityTV and the guy is a self claimed millionaire with a nice, good looking family. I guess he could do a lot worse

      • NC

        I love how they are playing Russell in the interviews and promos and everything, as if he was sitting at home minding his own business and all of a sudden got the call from CBS asking him to be on S20

        Final tribal council for Season 19 was filmed July 19, contestants arrived in Samoa for Season 20 August 6

      • Markus

        I heard he lost again. And this time earlier than his first run. Doesn’t surprise me, his opponents on this season are a lot smarter than the Samoa cast. He won’t find idols like he did in Samoa, so I heard.

      • soony

        I am curious how he will look like after game, because it must be very demanding for body to play twice in such short time.

      • Adrian M

        well if you want to see what he looks like after the game, check out the Reunion of Samoa. that was in December of 2009, months after filming of Heroes Vs. Villians.

      • AnnR

        I certainly hope those seasoned players are a heck of a lot smarter than those dead brains in season 19. And I hope the producers don’t feed him all the HIdol clues like they did in season 19.

      • soony

        Maybe I should write right after he left the game.You know, bring me your torch …tribe was spoken. Of course (like a big fan) i saw reunion.

      • Fiona Bloemker

        I think the filming for this one finished at the end of Sept. Does anyone know if they were there when the tsunami hit? They would have been on the beach, which would have put them on the path of tsunami.

    • Celimene

      Love Sandra. Don’t quite understand why she’s a villain (aside from “I CAN GET LOUD TOO, WTF!”) but ho hum. Just glad to see her back. Let’s hope she’s a two-time winner.

      • Feliz

        I agree, Sandra should swap places with Cirie.

      • Musica1

        Sandra was a wimp and shouldn’t have won. She’s not really a villain, but definitely not a hero either.

      • badguykris13

        i think she was in the villains tribe because back in the pearl islands the night rupert got voted out, she threw all the fish rupert caught, and in the process her closest ally christa took the blame… so it’s like setting her closest ally up for the kill

    • Marko

      It’s interesting to note that none of the S20 players had ever seen Russell play. We have the advantage of knowing his strategy in S19 but the Heroes & Villains did not because the season had not aired yet. It is concievable that he used the exact same strategy.

      • Allan

        It won’t matter if they saw him play or not. These are all veterans and will not be easily blindsided this time around. I hear he doesn’t last long.

      • orville

        That alone should be a big red flag to the rest of the players. They have to know that he was picked right away for some sort of outrageous behavior (especially since he’s on the villains team), so him being a villain *and* an unknown entity should get him out quickly.

      • Todd

        The spoilers I’ve read say that Russell does use his same strategy and it works exactly the same…He goes to the end again and loses to a not-so-dominant female again.

        Strangely, I hate just as many heroes as I do villains, and like a lot of the villains (Especially Parvati!) Cirie should be a villain. In a good way. But they really didn’t get good “Villains”…except Russ, Parvati and Rob. For example, why not Natalie? Great Villain!

      • Persia

        cheers to your Parvati love!! We need to stick together, the haters are already starting. PARVICTORY!!!! i love Russell too. I hope they align, they would be unstoppable.

    • stacimcc

      Don’t you remember how Sandra did all sorts of things around camp? she was the original saboteur before Russell! she threw out ruperts fish after she conspired to get him voted off and let her blond friend take the heat? she just didn’t get as much grief for it b/c she was playing with Fairplay!

      • AcaseofGeo

        Actually Sandra did NOT vote Rupert out. In fact, I specifically remember her telling the jury that she was not responsible for a single one of them being voted out. Am I correct or am I misremembering something here??

    • izikavazo

      It’s all how they edit people. Remember Ozzy, he was my hero, one of the best players of the game.. until they brought him back and showed what he’s really like. That’s why he didn’t win the first time, he was an ass.

      • KarinaT

        I don’t think it was just editing in Ozzy’s first season, I figured he wasn’t that cool in the second season because the fame went to his head and he thought he was awesome.

    • Dana

      I’d love to see evil Russell win it this time, but judging by how upset he was at finding he had lost at the reunion show for Samoa, I bet it was because he had already filmed Heroes VS Villains and did not make it that far so when he lost he knew he had missed both his chances of winning. He is one of my favorites though. Excited for more of Coach he always made for great TV, I hope there is much more of him standing with lighting effects behind him and sounds of thunder ;)

    • Rosalie

      This is crap! Gretchen from season one is the ultimate heroe in every aspect of the game! She was able to survive the elements, she had gret leadership skills and she was the biggest threat to the Tagis. Colby is anything but a hero! He is a coward at best. In Australia he voted Jerri and Amber off before they voted agains Elizabeth and Roger. He has no clue about what TeamWork means. Last but not least, he has no dignity. During his final tribal council he was kissing the juries butt left and right.Too bad he is friends with Jeff Probst and he keeps coming back. What an insult to the series that they did not include a single person from season one. I will not be watching this show this time around.

      • ccc

        It might not be that they didn’t include them, it could be they didn’t want to come back!

      • Druzki

        Colby didn’t vote Amber and Tina was behind of those both votes. Colby at least sacrified zero vote game for his tribe

    • Snsetblaze

      Why is Sandra a villian was absolutely my first thought – especially with Rupert on the hero side. She wasn’t a villian and she did not have “villianous” gameplay but she wasn’t really a hero either. She did make a few bad moves, a few smart moves and had luck on her side – and was against someone who was let back into the game in the final 2. And no one else from Season 1 would come? There are too many three-peaters on this list. The heroes seems to be stacked with the better athletes. I almost can’t wait to see Tom Westman trample everyone again though it might be a little tougher for him this time (JT, James Clement, Boston Rob and Rupert are no slouches). I would have liked to see Steven from JT’s season (and would he have been placed on the villan or hero side?), Rafe, Yul Kwon or Michelle from Cook Islands or Shi-Ann again or Terry the fighter pilot from the season Aras won.

      • Aaron

        I guess she’s a villain because she threw away the fish after Rupert got voted out. Weird I know, but Mark and Jeff are not that smart.

      • els

        Heck yeah about the three-peaters! I LOVE Rupert to death, but there ARE other heroes as well as villans out there then the ones they keep putting on the show over and over, it’s like Survivor’s steady income for some of them at this point. What I’d LOVE to see is a “SURVIVOR – Should Have Been’s” – people who were old for medical reasons, etc, and really had no control over their fate, like Mike Skupin, Good Russell from Samoa, etc.

      • Mytribespeaks

        Yul should’ve come back, along with Terry, and I think the “Dreams” guy who cheated Yao-Man out of a car in that deal would’ve made a fantastic villain!

    • Bar

      I want Stephanie and Candice to be on the final two. My final four players would be Colby, Stephanie, Candice and J.T. I’m tired of seeing Parvati, Amanda and James on TV. I think that players like Sandra, Danielle, Coach and Randy should be the first ones to go.

      • aahiyah

        villians are so good they won the changells 2 times in a row the players i want to go are russel sandra and coach man suger was weak the voted her of i just finshed watching it parvati sould go amanda because the last survivor she shouted to break stephaine shoulder and they did but heros still won!!!!!!omg

    • LargeEventPlanner

      To John Debono, Whatever – you are a fool! Sandra won by the largest margin ever. Go Sandra!!!!!!!

  • drew

    I was really hoping for Brendan from tocantis. Oh well still should be interesting

    • Cheryl

      Same here!

    • Henry

      Hey, does anybody wish Kenny from Gabon would
      have made it onto this season?
      I think he would make a great villain. Some
      of his ideas were kind of stupid,
      (like the time he tried getting bob to give him the immunity necklace) but he
      was a pretty interesting character.

      • Bama

        No! He was just irritating.

      • badguykris13

        well he earned the title the Master of Blindsides back then in his season

  • Alicia

    Wow, lots of three-peat contestants on this version. No wonder they had to throw the “how many times have they been on” rule out the window.

    • Eric Cartminez

      WTF…how do you people not see Sandra as a villan? Sandra sabotaged the fish at camp and allowed Chrita to take the fall. that was hardcore! Sandra had no true allies. she would have screwed anyone over as long as it saved her. Eric Cartminez loves Sandra but he hopes the delicious Stephanie wins!

  • Abe

    How is Sandra a villain?

    • Paul

      I think Sandra is considered a villain because she was the only Survivor contestant to never have won/been a part of a reward challenge or individual immunity. Lil chose her over Jonny Fairplay and that mistake cost her a million dollars since the jury overwhelmingly would not have voted him sole survivor. The 57 year old got voted out then brought back and won the last immunity challenge and should have won Survivor in my opinion.

      • ben

        you are an idiot if you think Lil should have won survivor! if you get voted off, they should have never came back into that game to begin with.

  • lo

    nice, Sugar was one of my faves, but she don’t stand a chance to win.

    • Kerblah

      Please don’t post spoilers dude :(

    • XSE Drake


    • moi

      ok buddy. dont spoil stuff. or at least put a spoiler word with big capital letters before you start running your mouth off. and if that doesnt work, EW, ban the guy.

      • Colly

        Spoilers should be banned from these comment pages some how. Or at least banish or block the ones that do spoil. Low lifes like that are not wanted here.

      • Ty

        Apparently these trolls are hangout at Survivor Sucks forums it’s a kinda losers club.

      • surfan

        the ultimate hero rupert and the ultimate villain russell would make for an ultimate final 2 this season..

    • Miss Blair

      Ick. I hope Aspartame is off first and cries. Soooo fake.

  • MsDaisy

    James, the gravedigger….yummy!

  • Dr Will Hatch

    Sandra was a villain for a variety of reasons. She treated people who weren’t in her alliance like crap. She threw childish tantrums whenever she didn’t get in her way. She threatened to murder Lillian’s family(Not shown on season 7) and kicked sand in her face.

    • Robb

      Sandra was my favorite because she DIDN’T play alliances. Her strategy, as I remember strongly because I thought it was brilliant, was to do whatever she needed to get by another 3 days…

  • Patrick

    Anyone upset that Fairplay isn’t in here?

    • Cola

      Considering he is a quitter, HELL NO!

    • katie

      he was cool his first roundm, but he was a total disappointment when he bowed out early on his second round

    • KC

      Oh hell NO! That guy isn’t a “villain” as much as he’d like to think so. He’s just annoying.

      • Mimi

        Annoying as HELL! So glad he’s not going to be on this round.

    • Laura

      He would’ve been my first choice for the “Villains” tribe. This show is a travesty without him.

  • Paul

    I think that reality shows like Big Brother,Amazing Race, and Survivor should have a rule: no more than twice for competing. if you win the big prize twice that’s great but it’s not play until you win. If any of these contestants are on Survivor for a FOURTH time I will be really ANGRY!

    • AnnR

      Agreed. Another Boston Rob game is humbug.

    • Luke

      On that note, I hope there’s not another Big Brother All-Stars please for the love of God!

  • Elyssa

    I love Courtney! Haha. The girl has spunk. :)

  • Marie-Claire

    I’ve read that Jeff Probst hates ‘Fairplay’ so much that he’s threatened to walk if JF is ever included in any further “Survivor” events.

    Can’t believe Sandra is considered a ‘villain’. Where’s Yul? He should be a hero, IMO. But I’m thrilled to see Tom Westman, JT, Cirie, James (he can tear apart trees with his bare hands but seems like a nice guy too!)and Rupert.

    • orville

      I heard the same thing about Probst and Fairplay. As for Yul, isn’t he working for the government now?

    • Leo

      Yul is probably making a million a year working for the FCC, I doubt he’s got anything more to prove.

    • Musica1

      Actually Johnny Fairplay came back in Fans vs Favorites and just didn’t really play at all. He just wanted to go home. So he did. Early.

    • Laura

      Probst, how about showing some level of professionalism and putting your personal b.s. aside to give the fans what they want? Sometimes Probst’s lack of professionalism and clear bias can be entertaining but it’s getting old when it dictates who is on the show.

  • Joseph

    What I found interesting is that more then one person saw Cirie Fields as a target that needs to go early. Also funny that she wants the physical men out of the game because she is all strategy.

    • Victor

      And the physical men know she thinks that way from Micronesia season and their targeting her!! JT and Tom said it and so did James. I doubt she will last long.

    • Cammy

      She wants the physical players out first? Well that’s most of her tribe; Tom,JT,Steph,Rupert,James,Amanda,Colby.

    • John Debono

      I love Cirie but the favorites were stupid for keeping as around in Micronesia and the heros would be stupid to keep her around long.
      P.S Pissed that they picked Candice over Michelle from Fiji.

  • C

    How could they not include at least one contestant from season one?! What a disgrace. If the obvious players said no (Rudy, Sue, Kelly, Colleen etc.) how about Gervase, Greg or Sean. I’d love to see Sean’s next ridiculous voting strategy (remember his ABC order?) Does Mark Burnett think that NO ONE remembers season one? That all of the viewers are teenagers? Very disappointed!

    • Kareeze

      Or crazy Greg and his coconut phone. But apparently Probst hates him too

      • C

        Greg is my all time favorite Survivor contestant! Loved his wackiness. Shame Jeff Probst doesn’t like him… wow, way to hold a grudge!

      • Miss Blair

        I dont think Greg would ever do it again- they prob. tried but couldnt find him! Didn’t he go crazy from all the publicity after season one and eschew his old/new life, go off the grid, and start a school in Peru or something? oh Greg… you were a classic.

      • soony

        Greg from Palau?

    • J

      Would love to see Gervase again. Or Gretchen (that was the first season, right?).

  • dancerindc

    Normally I’d say I wouldn’t watch, because I quit this show several seasons ago.

    But the thought of seeing Tom Westman shirtless again, um…

  • Megan

    Terry (aka The Most Deserving Player to Never Win) should be there taking his vengeance out on Danielle (she thinks she’s a HERO?!)! I’m presuming he declined the invitation, because they’d be crazy to not ask him back! I’ll take Tom in consolation. Rooting for Tom, Sugar, and Russell!!

    • Tara

      I’ve watched every Survivor season and I don’t even remember Terry, who’s that? The FOUR most deserving players to never win are Russell, Rob Cesternino from Amazon,Stephenie LaGrossa and Yau-man.

      • Kiara

        Russell for the win!!!!!!

      • Bella

        I’m in the exact same boat as you. I had to wikipedia the cast and when I cam e across Danielle and Terry I had absolutely no recollection of these people and I too am a diehard Survivor fan.

      • Holly

        Seriously? Terry coming in third was the reason they started the “final three” instead of final two. You must’ve skipped Panama…

      • Remy

        Jonny Fairplay played a great game too. Russell, I don’t think he played that great other than find idols which doesn’t impress me. He sucked at the social game which is key!

    • lobo

      Tata – you’re right on target. And I’m wondering why Yul didn’t make it…

      • KJ

        Didn’t Yul take a job with the FCC? I’m sure he’s not back because he’s got a real job… sad though, Yul was awesome!

      • Ian

        Yul CHOSE not to go back and why would he? He’s got nothing more to prove and his current income is probably in the millions anyway.

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