It started as a dream in 2009, when T’Jaye Forsythe, CEO of RUSTYBOAR.COM decided to pitch the idea of a Hawaii hunting reality show that would showcase some of the greatest local hunters on the Big Island. On November 10, 2013, this dream becomes reality as Relativity Media, in association with TIJAT and RUSTYBOAR.COM, will premier “American Jungle” on the History Channel. This action-packed hunting reality show will feature local hunters from the Big Island of Hawaii. Eight episodes were filmed on the Big Island, and Forsythe credits the show’s executives, crew, and cast members. Said Forsythe, “This has been a collaborative effort of so many people that I have been blessed to have met and worked with. Without each of these men and their families, this show would have never happened.”
When asked how this reality show concept came to be, Forsythe explained that the concept began with his website, RUSTYBOAR.COM. “I created RUSTYBOAR.COM to give hunters an online venue to show their hunting pictures and tell the stories of their hunts. It was created to be an online trophy case for hunters.”
Forsythe explained that as the website gained popularity, hunters began to upload their videos and pictures. Seeing the demand for hunting videos, Forsythe began filming local hunters on their hunting expeditions. It was at this point that Forsythe decided to find a way to showcase these hunters to the world. “There are so many unbelievably talented hunters here who hunt as means of survival to provide for their families. I have the upmost respect for these men and women as they pass on these traditions to their keiki. I wanted the world to see this.”
Although Forsythe was approached by reality show executives, it took two long hard years to get any network to look at the concept. Said Forsythe candidly, “It was an emotional roller coaster because you put all of your passion and ideas into a project, and you face rejection.”
Determined to showcase Hawaii’s hunters, Forsythe and show executives re-evaluated the concepts and “American Jungle” was created. Forsythe explained the difficult and heart-wrenching decisions made to select the final cast. “Everyone deserved to have a shot at this because there is so much talent in this state.” Ultimately, cast decisions were made by show executives. However, Forsythe states that he is always on the lookout for talent because if the show takes off, he has even bigger dreams for hunters across the entire state. As Forsythe states, “These are their dreams and stories too. If we all support each other and dream big, there will be even greater things to come.”
Check out the season premiere of “American Jungle” on the History Channel, Sunday, November 10, 2013. For more information about the show go to http://www.history.com/shows/american-jungle .