Pig is not really an exotic food, is it? Well, it depends... Bored with bugs, we wanted to see what we could do with something as commonplace and ordinary as pork. Looking for inspiration, we headed to downtown Los Angeles to peruse the exciting butcher shops of Chinatown. We made friends with a restaurant owner and attempted to explain the concept of a Fear Factor stunt. Unsure if the language barrier had allowed us to truly communicate what we needed, we left with an invitation to return the following day where she would serve an array of untraditional pig parts.
The next day, our stunt producer sat down to sample swine. He left with the ears, snout, liver, tongue, kidney and heart. On set, he convinced our staff caterer to boil everything up on the catering truck. So while lunch was going, our caterer boiled up a little pig's parts stew for our staff to test. A sample was sent to the executive producer. Since it was early for office hours, the pig snout sat at the guard desk. Several hours later, the executive producer received a call from a confused guard asking if he would claim the pig snout left in the lobby?
Even with all the parts on hand, we weren't out of the woods. While sampling one of the ears, we discovered that the hard, white cartilage was too tough to bite through. If our stunt producer couldn't bite through it, could a contestant do so in the allotted amount of time? Our skilled chefs artfully extracted the hard sections of cartilage while maintaining the structure of the ear.
To add to the fun, we bought custom-made fortune cookies. Each fortune was a pig part. The contestant had to pick a cookie designating what pig part they were to consume. Just another day on the set of Fear Factor.