We all know that winners of Survivor take home a million-dollar prize, but perhaps it’s better to be the host than a contestant. It turns out that Jeff Probst has raked in just as much dough as all of the prize money ever given away on the show over the years. Check out his decades-long journey on Survivor (as well as other career highlights) and find out just how much Jeff Probst’s net worth is.
Jeff Probst Has Hosted ‘Survivor’ Since 2000
Probst has spoken for the Tribe since Survivor’s 2000 debut in Borneo—that’s 40 seasons and counting.
According to an interview with the Television Academy, Probst, 59, had always wanted a career in the entertainment industry. Born in Kansas and raised in Washington, his very first job was as a production assistant at Boeing. He quickly rose up the ranks, writing scripts, producing, and hosting corporate training videos.
Probst eventually landed a correspondent gig with Access Hollywood, which is how he caught the attention of Survivor producer Mark Burnett. The rest is history.
“Mark was clear from the beginning that he was hiring a host-producer,” said Probst. “He said, ‘I’m going to tell you the story that I want to tell, and then you’re going to go out and tell it.’ That’s what we did.”
He continued, “I couldn’t believe I was on a show that was so cool, that was truly a sociological experiment where you’re watching human behavior.”
Sure, Survivor’s appeal is due to the drama and tension created by its contestants. But Probst also plays a major role in the series’ success. In an atmosphere of infighting and backstabbing, he’s a reliable, trustworthy storyteller that audiences have come to depend on.
“Jeff sees all and he’s saying it, whether you see it or not,” Cirie Fields, a four-time player and fan favorite, told the New York Times. “And he does it so authentically that you attach yourself to him. He’s like your brother, your cousin, your friend, your fiancé.”
Probst’s long-term commitment to the show has earned him four Emmy awards as well as a promotion to executive producer. Over 40 seasons later, his loyalty to Survivor remains unwavering.
“I think I’ve got to host Survivor until it’s over,” he said. “How can I leave Mark and Les Moonves when they gave me this job? I think I’m at their beck and call. But on the other hand, why would I leave? I still enjoy it.”
Probst’s Career Goes Beyond ‘Survivor’
Probst is best known for hosting Survivor, but that doesn’t mean he hasn’t pursued other projects. From 1998 to 2001, he hosted Rock & Roll Jeopardy! On VH1. (He appears to have a soft spot for the Jeopardy! franchise—not only does he occasionally provide clues about Survivor for the game show, but he’s also appeared twice on Celebrity Jeopardy!)
Probst has also written and directed two feature-length films: Finder’s Fee (2001), starring Erik Palladino, James Earl Jones, and Ryan Reynolds, and Kiss Me (2014), starring John Corbett and Sarah Bolger.
In 2012, he earned his own self-titled syndicated daytime talk show on CBS. Unfortunately, the program was positioned to compete with a glut of other talk shows including Katie, The Doctors, Wendy Williams, Steve Wilkos, and Dr. Oz.
CBS canceled The Jeff Probst Show in less than a year due to low ratings. unlike some Survivor contestants, Probst took the loss like a good sport.
“I’m super bummed but extremely proud,” he said (via the Hollywood Reporter). “The truth is all shows come to an end—ours just ended a decade sooner than we had hoped.”
Probst has even entertained younger audiences off-screen. He’s the co-author of the New York Times best-selling series Stranded. The books, aimed at middle school readers, follow a family as they try to survive wild adventures in the South Pacific (sound familiar?).
What Is Jeff Probst’s Net Worth?
According to sites like Celebrity Net Worth, Jeff Probst has an estimated net worth of $50 million.
The source reports that Probst has an annual salary of $8 million. (In 2016, Variety listed his salary as $4 million per season, but we suspect he’s had a pay bump given his additional duties as a showrunner.)
When Probst isn’t on set in exotic locales, he enjoys a comfortable life in Los Angeles. In 2011, he paid $5 million for a 5-bedroom, 7-bath home in Studio City.
According to the New York Times, the garage in his fancy digs has whiteboards filled with ideas for future seasons of Survivor. It seems that Probst is truly dedicated to seeing the show continue for years to come.
“He does all these things that you’d think, after 40 seasons, he would subcontract out and phone in,” said actor, producer, and Season 37 runner-up Mike White.
“That’s partly why the show still is relevant: It still has life because Jeff is still so enamored with what it could be.”