15 August, 2020 –– The highly-anticipated return of the adventure challenge, World’s Toughest Race: Eco-Challenge Fiji, on Amazon Prime Video represents the highest-ever spend by a media production in Fiji, with $30.6 million injected into local Fijian economies. The 10-episode series, which premiered on Friday 14th August [Saturday Fiji GMT+12] on Amazon Prime Video, will showcase Fiji’s budding adventure tourism industry to an estimated 150,000,000 Prime Video subscribers in over 200 countries.
Hosted by celebrity adventurer Bear Grylls, Eco-Challenge Fiji saw 66 teams from 30 countries compete 24/7 across nearly 700 kilometres of Fijian mountains, jungles, rivers and ocean. The historic 30-million-dollar spend behind the production went for the benefit of some of Fiji’s most isolated rural and maritime communities –– including through cash and in-kind donations, such as investments in village improvements and a contestant-led book drive for Fijian schoolchildren.
When asked for his thoughts on the Fijian race course, Executive Producer and Host Bear Grylls said, “The Fiji course is truly epic. It’s incredibly demanding and will force our competitors far out of their comfort zone as they race against themselves, their competitors and the fiercest elements of mother-nature, only the teams that work together can ever hope of making it to the finish line.”
The race incorporated single-elimination challenges such as outrigger paddling, mountain biking, rappelling, climbing, whitewater rafting, paddle boarding and canyoneering. In navigating the massive course, teams were only allowed a map and a compass to chart their way to the finish line.
“While we all know no one was working harder than our Eco-Challenge contestants, I want to acknowledge the tireless months of behind-the-scenes preparation from MGM Television, Amazon Prime Video and the Fijian Government that helped bring the ‘World’s Toughest Race’ back to Fiji,” said the Chair of the Film Fiji Board, Mrs Shaenaz Voss. “I also especially want to thank the Provincial Offices of Tailevu, Naitasiri, Namosi, Ba, Serua and Lomaiviti, along with the members of the 170 Fijian villages and communities who helped make this incredibly intricate and intensive production a success, both for Fiji and for Eco-Challenge fans around the world”
“The production of the World’s Toughest Race: Eco-Challenge Fiji is a positive sign that Fiji is capable of hosting major international productions. While Fiji is no stranger to reality TV series filming here, the World’s Toughest Race: Eco-Challenge Fiji had camera crews following 66 teams from 30 countries 24/7 across 671km of some of Fiji’s roughest terrain,” said the Fijian Minister for Commerce, Trade, Tourism and Transport, Hon. Faiyaz Koya. “Worldwide, audiences will see a side of Fiji that extends much further than our 5-star resorts and white, sandy beaches. It will show that we are multi-faceted with staggering waterfalls, lush jungle, white water rapids and breathtaking vistas.”
Film Fiji would also like to extend our gratitude to the Fiji Police Force, the Republic of Fiji Military Forces, the Office of the Prime Minister, the Divisional Commissioners, and the Ministry of Commerce, Trade, Tourism and Transport for their support through the production process.