January 10th, 2008
Jason Luna appeared on the season two premiere of 1 vs. 100, in a special "Battle of the Sexes" episode. Following a female contestant who played against a mob of 100 men, Jason faced a mob of 100 women. Even though he struggled on one of the early questions, he fought his way back and ended up winning the top prize of one million dollars, a first for the show.
Less than a week after the televised episode of Jason's big win, I had the chance to speak with him and find out what it's like to to be a grand prize winner.
Question: Hi Jason! Congratulations! This must be one crazy week for you!
Jason Luna: Thank you! It's been really nuts. Really nuts. My family and my friends keep telling me how smart I am.
Q: So no one knew before the show aired that you were a millionaire?
Jason: No, I couldn't tell anyone because I signed a confidentiality agreement. I didn't even tell my parents, so I was walking around trying to act non-excited about everything.
Q: Who did you watch the show with?
Jason: I watched it with a bunch of my classmates. They were all convinced that I got the last question wrong, so they were consoling me and everything. Then the answer came up and they were all shouting and jumping up and down.
Q: Tell us about the application process. Did you attend a casting call?
Jason: Casting was a bit unusual for me because I had been on the show last season as a mob member. So I was called to a group audition, where we all did a multiple choice test. I did a practice game and an interview as well. There was lots of waiting involved in the whole process. When you don't hear anything for a while, you assume that you didn't make it on. Then they call you and you go on and win a million dollars!
Q: That's certainly a nice way to wrap up the story! Did you know that the episode you were playing in was going to be a "Battle of the Sexes?"
Jason: No. They actually told me while I was waiting to go on. I was thinking, "Oh no." I don't consider myself to be a chauvinist, you know, I don't feel I'm a great representative of the male species.
Q: Bob Saget asked you about never having a girlfriend, and then brought it up several times during the episode. Did that bug you at all?
Jason: A little bit. It came up in the pre-show interviews so it didn't really surprise me, but yeah, it bugged me a little bit.
Q: You did really well on the questions, obviously. Are you a trivia buff in general?
Jason: Oh yes, I'm the President of my College Bowl Club at UCI. It's more academic fare than what was on the show, of course.