Exit Interview: Francesca Hogi Talks SURVIVOR REDEMPTION ISLAND

While many will argue that the introduction of “Redemption Island” is SURVIVOR’s biggest twist this season, some… okay we like to think that the far bigger surprise has a little something to do with the fact that for the first time in the history of the series, ousted contestants will have to face off against… us! Yes, you’re reading that correctly, theTVaddict.com is honored to have been asked to take part in the traditional one-on-ones with each week’s eliminated contestant, the first of which, is Franchesca Francesca Hogi.

Before we begin, we wanted to make sure we got the pronunciation of your name right! How did we do?
Francesca Hogi: [Laughs] Your pronunciation was perfect.

According to your brief bio, your pet-peeve is “self-delusion.” Is Phillip simply being portrayed crazy or is he really off his rocker?
Well first off all, I wrote that bio long before I ever met Phillip so that’s funny. As for my experience with Phillip, it’s is exactly what you see on the show. He definitely had some delusions of grandeur, he definitely feels that everyone around him owes him great respect that he doesn’t feel the needs to reciprocate at all, and I don’t know if he really is a federal agent (but I doubt it!) Whatever experience he’s had in life he tends to decide that he is an expert on everything, that he is a man of complete integrity — even though he says that as he lies — honestly, I don’t even know where to begin with Phillip!

Having mentioned in other interviews that you have yet to watch the first two episode, what has been your friends and family reaction to your performance on the show?
I think it went as well as it possibly could have given what happened. All my friends and family loved me on the show and they thought it was me — albeit, definitely a little bit more stressed out version of myself — but definitely that I was myself. My friends and family were proud of me and my showing and that was definitely a relief which is really the most important thing to me.

How big of a bummer was it to be the first person voted off?
It sucks. Probably the first month after I was out of the game I would just alternate between going, “It’s fine, whatever is meant to be will be, this wasn’t my time…” to “I can’t believe it, I’m the biggest loser, this sucks, I left my whole life to go do this and it turned out to be this big fiasco!” So it definitely was rough. Going into SURVIVOR I thought well, at the very least I won’t be the first one off, certainly I ddon’t have to worry about that! But obviously it didn’t turn out that way. So yeah it sucks, but I’ve had a lot of time, we shot that in August, it was many months ago and I’ve had a long time to come to terms with it, I’m okay now.

If they asked you to return, would you be up for it?
If you asked me that within the first month that I was out of the game, I would have said absolutely. Now the further away I get from it, I actually don’t know if I could put myself back in the mindset. I don’t know. I’m just assuming I’m never going to be asked back, so I won’t even have to consider that possibility because I would not know what I would do.

What is the hardest thing about playing the game that doesn’t quite come across on screen?
When I watched the show I was worried most about the hunger and the visible discomfort, but actually it’s not that bad. The worst part for me was really just how out of control I felt with what was happening around me socially. Generally speaking, I don’t have any trouble making friends, my social interactions with people tend to be really positive. So the fact that I was in a situation where I was horribly clashing with someone was a challenge. I got along with everyone else in my tribe really well, I liked everyone and I think they liked me, but I still was not part of the dominant alliance. So just kind of feeling like an outsider in that way was not something that I was used to. That was really hard, I was like, “Wow, I can’t believe that these people are choosing to all follow Boston Rob and be best friend with him and I’m kind of left stuck in the minority here.” That actually was the hardest part. From what I’ve read and heard, the impression seems to be that I didn’t try hard enough to get a long with the rest of the tribe, it may have looked that way but I actually did get along with everyone. I did talk to Boston Rob about being in alliance with him, but it kind of doesn’t matter. Those things are just out of your control the way alliances are formed out there, it all happens very organically and i just couldn’t navigate it and I didn’t expect that to be so hard for me.

Just how quickly do alliances form once contestants are given the go ahead to talk to one another?
It happens like instantly. We didn’t say anything to each other, we’re not allowed to speak to each other, but pretty much as soon as everyone is introduced to each other it kind of starts. We were all pretty united and one big happy family for about an hour and then you can see kind of the factions starting to form, it was really quick, really quick.

And finally, whose your pick for the winner of REDEMPTION ISLAND?
Who do I think is going to win, I don’t know. I’m rooting big time for Matt, I’m a huge fan of Matt. I’m really hoping that he can get back in the game and get his revenge. That said, I think Boston Rob is in a really good position and I’m not really sure at this point who is there to kind of step up and dethrone him. But who knows, Ralph is looking good over there on Zapatera, Mike and Dave haven’t gotten so much air time but they seem to be pretty united on that tribe. Really, it’s anyone’s game and I’m as curious to see as everyone else.

SURVIVOR airs Wednesday at 8PM on CBS (Global TV in Canada)

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