California surfer/model/on-camera talent Jax Austin wants to host his own travel TV show, and he just might get it. The charming Justin Theroux look-alike has been on a social media crusade to win the hearts (and minds) of the producers of The Travel Channel and National Geographic Channel. Last week he threw a Twitter bomb @NatGeoChannel that produced 1300 tweets in 24 hours. But Austin doesn’t merely push his own agenda. He recently asked his 24,000 Twitter followers to help punch up the ratings of his TV chef idol Andrew Zimmern, who hoped to “launch a ratings juggernaut” for his Bizarre Foods America (Travel Channel, Mondays 9/8c) when the show visited Louisville recently.
A multi-talented USC grad (and former member of the school surf team), Austin’s TV host reel features him on the road eating exotic food (pizzel, a bull’s penis), interviewing chefs (Cha Cha Chicken), surfing, skating, motorbiking in Mongolia, and shooting skeet with his winning smile. Austin has built a loyal audience–now all he needs is the big platform. Austin has at least two qualities every charismatic host needs: he delights in doing what you only dream of (he rips on some serious waves, etc.)–and he’ll gleefully try all the things you wouldn’t (did we mention the bull’s penis?) Besides, that’s some name–Jax Austin. Like a verb waiting for its object.