Comedian, actor, writer and self-professed “all-round funny sort”, Chris Parker has taken out the ultimate treasure hunt, walking away from the golden shores of New Zealand’s own Whale Bay, with the $100,000 prize for his chosen charity, Rainbow Youth.
After weeks of physical, emotional, and mental endurance, armed with a repertoire of pirate phrases, the multi-talented 31-year-old outplayed 20 other Kiwi celebrities to take home the title.
In an edge-of-your-seat end to the game, Chris went head-to-head with Lance Savali and Edna Swart, in a treasure hunt unlike any other. The three were pushed to their limits, all eager for their spade to be the first to hit the buried chest holding the $100,000.
“It was an honour to go up against Edna and Lance,” says Chris. “Any one of us could have won the entire thing. They are two very inspiring individuals, and I will never forget that last day we got to spend together on Celebrity Treasure Island.”
From Team Katipo to Repo and back to Katipo, through the trials and tribulations of the Awesome Foursome, giving way to the Dirtbag Alliance, Chris strategised and laughed his way to the final three, before ultimately taking out the final prize, all in the name of Rainbow Youth.
“There were many years in my life where I began to sacrifice my happiness and authenticity to blend in, so to be able to win this competition in a way that felt authentic to me and for a charity whose work is to create spaces and resources and advocate for our LGBTQIA+ community so that everyone can live their lives proudly and authentically in our country is incredibly overwhelming.”
In addition to the $100,000 prize, Chris also won $7,500 for Rainbow Youth from charity challenges through the series, taking his donation to a total of $107,500.
“I signed up for this show to achieve three goals,” says Chris. “First was to challenge myself, and second was to create some funny television, which I think was achieved as soon as I got to order Sir Buck Shelford around in a blindfold.
“Finally, and most importantly, to raise some money for Rainbow Youth. To be able to hand over $107,500 to them, knowing how it will support them to keep making Aotearoa a safe and empowering place for our queer youth to grow up in, makes me so emotional.”
On top of the winning donation to Rainbow Youth, a further $107,500 was won by Celebrity Treasure Island competitors this season for other deserving charities in Aotearoa.
The 2021 season of Celebrity Treasure Island has been a hit with viewers, performing strongly with an average episode audience of 290,000 viewers (up 10% from the previous season). Year to date, Celebrity Treasure Island is the #1 show on TVNZ 2*
Going into its final week, Celebrity Treasure Island has won its slot every night amongst TVNZ 2’s target demo of 18-49.**
Since its release, the 2021 season has been a popular choice on TVNZ OnDemand with more than 175,000 streams each week. To date, more than 1.4 million streams have been generated by 125,000 viewers, making Celebrity Treasure Island 2021 a top reaching title on TVNZ OnDemand, second only to Vigil.***
*Source: Nielsen TAM, 6/9/21-31/10/21, consolidated to 24/10/21, AP5+, TVNZ 2*, AUD
**Source: Nielsen TAM, 6/9/21-31/10/21, consolidated to 24/10/21, 19:30-20:29 MTW, AP18-49, TVNZ 2, All channels, AUD%
***Source: Google Analytics, 6/9/21-31/10/21 (weekly: 5/9/21-30/10/21), AP13+