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Why Isn’t The Amazing Race Season 33 On The Fall TV Schedule? Longtime Host Phil Keoghan Explains

Amazing Race host Phil Keoghan discussing contestants.
(Image credit: CBS/ The Amazing Race)

Thanks to a season that was already finished and waiting for distribution, fans were treated to new episodes of The Amazing Race last Fall. Because of the pandemic, however, nothing new has been shot, leading many of us to wonder what the road map looks like. Well, longtime host Phil Keoghan weighed in on where things are at right now, and it’s a mix of good and bad news.

The good news is everyone in on board with figuring out how to make shooting another season work. Pre-production has begun, and the process of working through all the practicalities is under way. The bad news is those details aren’t figured out yet, and they’re going to be complicated. Here’s what Phil Keoghan told TV Insider...

We’ve started pre-production, and now we’re going through the process of, how do we do this? When do we do this? What does it look like? How is it different from what it was before? How do we engage the viewers working with different rules, essentially?

The pandemic created a mountain of challenges for movies and TV shows to work through as they tried to find a way to continue shooting safely. For some, that challenge was a lot harder than others (see the NBA renting out Disney World), but it’s hard to imagine any show with a bigger uphill battle than The Amazing Race. The popular reality show typically shoots in a dozen or more countries and features consistent interactions with large volumes of people including random locals. Setting all that up is complicated in normal times. In a world where you often have to take Covid tests in specific windows to even be admitted into countries, organizing something like The Amazing Race seems near impossible. 

It’s so great to hear everyone involved is committed to making it happen though. Given the show doesn't do the big ratings it once did, it wouldn’t have been a shock for CBS and company to say they were putting production on hold until the world stabilized a bit more. It doesn’t sound like that’s going to happen here, though. Phil Keoghan even reiterated that during the same interview, saying there’s “no doubt” it’ll be back. Here are his exact words...

We’re going to do it. What I can tell you is there is absolutely no doubt. CBS is committed to doing it. And it will happen. The question is just a matter of when and how, and that’s exactly what we’re doing right now.

I love The Amazing Race, and there is no leisure activity I have missed more during the pandemic than traveling. There’s nothing quite like seeing new places and experiencing new things. The Amazing Race was a great way to get that experience vicariously, along with a few other similar shows. I felt a lot of that watching the much-anticipated Season 32 (despite its alliance-related shortfalls), and whenever the show returns (tentatively penciled in for next year), I’m sure I’ll watch and feel the same thing. 

Mack Rawden

Enthusiastic about Clue, case-of-the-week mysteries, the NBA and cookies at Disney World. Less enthusiastic about the pricing structure of cable, loud noises and Tuesdays.