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"Survivor' may take a star turn with celebrity version

Published Sep. 10, 2005

The next time viewers see Ray Romano away from the set of CBS's Everybody Loves Raymond, he may be slurping down a squirming grub.

Romano is just one of the names being bruited about by CBS executives who are considering launching a celebrity version of Survivor.

CBS Television president Leslie Moonves told radio host Howard Stern that agents for actor Frank Stallone had contacted him to pitch Stallone's name for a pool of possible contenders.

Likewise, King of Queens star Kevin James has talked with CBS executives about signing on for the show, as have some NBA players, such as Los Angeles Lakers star Kobe Bryant.

But CBS says that any talk about planting celebrities on a remote island or in the middle of the Australian Outback to battle for bucks are premature.

"It's still very much in the discussion stage," said CBS executive Chris Ender. "It's something we're interested in pursuing, but clearly, Survivor 3 and 4 are our priorities right now."

Moonves told Stern that celebrity players would probably only compete for 10 days and would donate their winnings to charity.

Also, a star-studded cast would likely vote off one of their own every day, rather than once every three days, as players have on past Survivor series.

Moonves tried to cajole Stern into taking part in the adventure show, but the morning jock said he'd need to earn a fatter paycheck than $1-million before he'd camp out and eat little more than rice.

_ Times wires