‘Survivor’ Legend Richard Hatch Says Jeff Probst Is a Bully, Says Castaways Are ‘Cattle’

With Survivor: Winners at War now airing on CBS, Survivor fans are finally able to see more of their favorite dimpled host, Jeff Probst. However, not everyone is so happy with the reality television icon. In fact, former Survivor contestant Richard Hatch is now saying that Jeff Probst is a homophobic bully. He even claimed that Probst has abused his power in the past, and claims that Probst treats Survivor castaways like “cattle.” Here’s what Hatch had to say during a recent interview on the Domenick Nati Show

Richard Hatch claims Jeff Probst is lying about ‘Survivor’

Richard Hatch and Jef Probst of Survivor
Richard Hatch and Jef Probst of Survivor | Robert Voets/CBS Photo Archive via Getty Images)

When it comes to Survivor: Winners at War, there have been some notably absent faces. Jeff Probst recently discussed why John Cochran isn’t on the season, for example. However, some fans are surprised that Richard Hatch isn’t on the season. 

And Richard Hatch himself is surprised. In fact, he’s claimed that he was invited on the season and then dumped — and that Jeff Probst has been lying about it since. 

During a recent interview on the Domenick Nati Show, Richard Hatch explained, “I was invited and I agreed to participate. And I went through all of the pre-show evaluations. What’s really fascinating is some of the interviews Jeff Probst has been doing lately where he talks about, ‘Oh I don’t know if he was even considered.’ That’s just an outright lie. He knows I was considered. And in fact they paid for my physical and my pre-production work. So, you know, there’s no question about it. They invited me, I did all the prep work, I was cleared.”

Hatch went on to say, “And then I was told specifically ‘You’re in.’ Everybody who was in charge of deciding who wants to come, I was the only participant who every single one of them wanted me to participate. And then two days before I was scheduled to fly out to California, they called and told me and they called and told Tina the same day, the second winner, and they told us that the show is paused. I said, ‘I don’t believe you.’ And the director of casting said, ‘I told them you wouldn’t believe me.’ And I said I don’t, and I never heard from them again.”

Richard Hatch says Jeff Probst may be homophobic

Richard Hatch and Susan Hawk of Survivor
Richard Hatch and Susan Hawk of Survivor | CBS via Getty Images

Richard Hatch went on to explain that he feels as if there’s some latent homophobia within Survivor production, and possible within Jeff Probst himself. 

Richard Hatch said, “A big part of my being a villain as opposed to people recognizing that I played the game well, had to do with that subtle underlying, and sometimes not so subtle, homophobia. And I suffered greatly as a result of it after the show.”

“They use awfully coded language, which again is reflective of that homophobia. Jeff [Probst] has repeatedly said, ‘You know we’ve had to think about where the show is now. And it’s a family show so I just don’t think Rich fits in anymore.’ That kind of coded language has always been used in history. You know, it’s a family show. It was a family show when I won with 54 million viewers. Families watched a gay guy win the show and had wonderful conversations about what that meant. So it’s disappointing, let’s just say that. And I think it’s sads, to be represented by folks, particularly now that Jeff is executive producer, who I think are missing the point,” opined the Survivor legend. 

Hatch went on to explain how he’s being scapegoated, and why. 

‘Survivor’ cast members are ‘just cattle’

Survivor host Jeff Probst
Survivor host Jeff Probst | CBS via Getty Images

Survivor winner Richard Hatch went on to claim that CBS and Jeff Probst are worried about there being additional discussions around sexual harassment on Survivor, following the events of Season 39.

During his interview on the Domenick Nati Show, Hatch explained, “Yeah, Season 39 there was all kinds of blowback from how, what was presented, was presented. And when, or whether they should have removed a player from the game. And I think they didn’t want any more conversation about that. And I would have brought it up. And I think what’s happening is that they’re trying to scapegoat me and avoid responsibility.”

“The whole incident in 39 was about sexual harassment. And 16 years ago on All-Stars, they presented an edit, kind of a tease, to get people coming back to the next episode, that looked as if I engaged inappropriately with somebody else, this chick Sue Hawk. But in fact she had decided to approach me intentionally to instigate something, and I never touched the woman. But she screamed and yelled in the way she’s very much known for,” explained Hatch. 

He went on to add, “And we all went and watched all four cameras, all four views just to make sure that my perspective was accurate. And she and her lawyer and everybody else learned that it was, that I did nothing. That everything was initiated by Sue, and that there was no wrongdoing on my part. So that conversation definitely would have come up again if they brought me onto Survivor Season 40.”

“These folks don’t care much about us as individuals, if anything. They care about the folks that they like, that they become friends with. They care about the dollars that are made on this business. There isn’t really a relationship between the people behind the show and us. … Just another number, property, cattle. They don’t really care. They truly don’t. But there are many many people who are personally close with some of the folks making the decisions, Jeff Probst in particular. And if he likes you, you have more opportunities. That’s just the way it is,” Hatch said of Survivor and Jeff Probst.