After winning Australian Survivor: All Stars and battling it out in the boardroom on The Celebrity Apprentice, David Genat has successfully made the transition from reality show contestant to TV host.
The 43-year-old model and actor is the host of Channel Nine’s brand new reality show Rush, a travel adventure series that follows 12 everyday Aussies on an adventure of a lifetime around the world.
Ahead of the series premiere on Sunday night, David Genat tells Yahoo Lifestyle he’s excited for viewers to tune in and see something that’s “never been done before”.
“So we get these 12 contestants and we put them in cultural festivals all throughout the world,” he explains.
“They have sensory deprivation, so they're in goggles and they have noise cancelling headphones, and they don't know where they are. Then they have to complete missions and find me and get around these countries with next to nothing - they only have a backpack and minimal funds. It’s incredible.”
While the show is undoubtedly a “money-can’t-buy experience” for those participating, viewers will also be captivated by the nine very different countries they filmed in: Brazil, Turkey, Jordan, India, Thailand, Ireland, France, Kenya and South Africa .
“It's an adrenaline rush, but it's really aspirational travel,” David adds. “We picked these really great festivals or unique experiences for the contestants to be a part of, and it really transports the audience into those situations. We're showing you real elements of these countries.
“That’s what I love about it because I've done a lot of travelling. I had a career for 20 years in fashion and I was travelling all the time, and I think there's something special about finding unique experiences in countries. That’s basically what this was for nine weeks straight.”
'A natural transition'
Speaking about his move from reality TV contestant to host, David says it felt like “a natural transition” and believes there couldn’t be a show better suited to him and his experiences than Rush.
“I had got off Survivor and wanted to be hosting immediately, and it was just that Covid kind of took me down the Celebrity Apprentice route, which was a great experience as well and introduced me to Channel Nine,” he details.
“I went into some meetings with those guys and they were like, ‘What are you looking to do?’ and I was like, ‘Well, I want to host my show’. So it was just a matter of finding the one that fit.
“I don't know how many hosts have actually gone through the gauntlet of multiple reality shows before, so it was an interesting experience for me. And being able to throw myself into the production side of things, I loved that so much.”
David adds that Survivor host Jonathan LaPaglia, who has been hosting the reality show for the past eight seasons, was a major source of inspiration for how he wanted to be as a host.
“JLP is someone where you see what he does and it's so impressive,” he remarks. “You realise how important he is to the process because you come with this certain energy to a tribal council and then it's on Jon to harness that and make you feel at ease or find out the hard questions.
“So I saw what Jon had done there and I wanted to bring my own unique brand to the contestants on the show. They’ve been going through some crazy stuff over the last couple of days and being able to bring that out but make them feel comfortable was tricky. So John was a good person to see do that because those tribal councils can be very, very intense.”
Rush premieres 7:30pm Sunday July 2 on Nine and 9Now.
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