Over ten thousand people turned out for The Contender Re-match, staged in Staples Center, Los Angeles, on October 15th, 2005. Luminaries such as Sly Stallone, Vinny Paz, the CEO of Everlast and stars from Entourage were in attendance.
Mark Burnett spoke passionately about the show at weigh-in, stating that “These guys you see seated here were the first astronauts. None of us knew exactly what was going to happen. We allowed you, the viewers, to see their families, to get to know them.”
Burnett is incredibly enthusiastic about his creation, The Contender, which gleaned a viewing audience last season of over ten million. And it is more than the numbers making him beam like a proud father. It is the boys, their lives, which were broadcast into living rooms around the world, and the synergy created from a concoction which is anything but formulaic.