Unscripted

Exclusive clip: Travel Channel’s “Xtreme Screams”

High Noon’s latest project is all about pushing people to their limits. Xtreme Screams, which premieres this Sunday on Travel Channel, follows individuals as they cross the threshold between perceived safety and ...
October 6, 2017

High Noon’s latest project is all about pushing people to their limits.

Xtreme Screams, which premieres this Sunday on Travel Channel, follows individuals as they cross the threshold between perceived safety and danger. “The result is almost always a terrifying scream,” explains Scott Feeley, SVP of development and current programming for High Noon Entertainment and an executive producer on the series.

According to Courtney White, SVP, programming with Travel Channel, Food Network and Cooking Channel, Xtreme Screams is an example of how Travel Channel is “doubling down” on efforts to tap into the viewer’s desire for adventure and excitement.

Xtreme Screams gives our viewers exactly what they want — an escapist experience that is raw and unfiltered,” she explains. “With extensive camera rigging and audio recording you are locked into the rider’s seat to feel every agonizing climb, heart-pounding wait, every split-second thrill, and the fight or flight adrenaline rush that unleashes a primordial scream. It feels so good to let it all go.”

White says that Travel Channel’s October programming is all about expeditions and adventure, and Xtreme Screams fits into the larger slate of programming by delivering entertaining and spooky programming for this time of the year.

The launch of Xtreme Screams follows the premiere of the network’s four-part special event Expedition Unknown: Hunt for Extraterrestrials, and the one-hour special Vampires: Mysteries at the Museum.

Xtreme Screams will air this Sunday Oct. 8 on the Travel Channel.

realscreen chatted with Scott Feeley, SVP of development and current programming for High Noon Entertainment an executive producer for Xtreme Screams, about the project.

Can you provide a brief synopsis of the project?
“Xtreme Screams” explores what happens when every day people push their inner fears to the limit.  Whether on a roller coaster, zip-line, bungee jump or human catapult – just about everyone will have to cross the tense threshold between perceived safety and perceived danger.  The result is almost always a terrifying scream.  We travel the world, seeking out the most extreme, adrenaline busting, fear inducing attractions and invite willing, regular people to set aside their basic survival instincts, throw caution to the wind and embrace the euphoric rush that ensues.
 
What was the genesis for this series?
Years ago, we did a “Screams” Halloween special for Travel Channel that focused on the best haunted houses across the nation. Centering the creative around that moment of screaming worked well, so we thought it would be a great way to expand our Xtreme Waterparks franchise with Travel — basically build an entire series around activities, rides, and other experiences that make us scream.
 
What challenges did you face with production? 
There are so many challenges in shooting a show like this.  Much of them center around getting all the important shots of our cast as they experience these terrifying situations.  So, you’ve got to make sure you’ve got cameras on people’s faces as they jump off a gondola 440 feet above a lake in the Swiss Alps, or get underwater shots outside of a shark cage during a Great White shoot in South Africa, or insure your cameras are securely fastened to a roller coaster traveling over 100 mph.  And, of course, there are always the weather challenges. Like the time we had a crew stranded for five days in Mexico after a tropical storm.
 
Can you name two or three elements that you think will make this series appeal to audiences?
Genuine anticipation and anxiety makes for good TV. When it’s fake, it’s easily dismissed by viewers. The great thing about this show is that it’s never fake. When you put people into situations where they are forced to face their fear, the result is almost always fun to watch.
 

What’s your favorite moment from the series?

There are so many. But the segment we did at the Big Rush Stadium Swing in Durban South Africa where a grown man got so emotional he cried after jumping off the 300 foot platform over the stadium. That moment pretty much sums up what you get from this series in every single episode.
About The Author
Daniele Alcinii is a news reporter at realscreen, the leading international publisher of non-fiction film and television industry news and content. He joins the rs team with journalism experience following a stint out west with Sun Media in Edmonton's Capital Region, and communications work in Melbourne, Australia and Toronto. You can follow him on Twitter at @danielealcinii.

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