While it’s not often that we see a retired reality star making their return on TV after supposedly leaving for good, perhaps that’s why former “Gold Rush” star Todd Hoffman’s return with a new series in early 2022 was surprising to say the least.
To know Hoffman is back in the game is good news for everyone who missed him all these years he kept his life under the radar, but it’s undeniable that “Hoffman Family Gold” poses more questions than it answers.
So what’s the real reason Todd Hoffman is back as a miner after saying not so long ago that he was definitely retiring? Who else will appear in the show? And will Todd return to “Gold Rush” after his show ends? Keep with us to know what the answers are!!
Why Did He Create Another Show?
As any avid viewer of “Gold Rush” knows, Todd Hoffman is more than just your average miner. His involvement with the show goes deep, as he was the one who pitched the “Gold Rush”s original concept to the production company Raw TV in 2010.
Knowing that a big deal about the show came from Todd’s mind, it’s not surprising that many fans assumed his new show “Hoffman Family Gold” – premiered in 2022 – was created by him as well. Though it’s unconfirmed what exact role Todd played in putting together this new show with Pilgrim Media, it’s safe to assume the initial idea came from him.
As he affirmed in an interview with Monsters & Critics, his reason to resume mining after supposedly having retired in 2018, was to help his friend Jason Otteson, whose Alaskan mine was in trouble due to the bad weather: ‘My buddy’s like, ‘Hey, I’m in trouble up here. I need some help.’ And so what you’re going to see is us attack that problem’. Although Todd admits that he wasn’t going to agree to the plea at first, he realized that working together would be beneficial for both sides.
Even though rumors pointed out Todd’s TV comeback was due to his allegedly downhill financial situation, so far we only know for sure that Todd did it for business and friendship.
Who Else Is In The Show?
To ensure that his mission of successfully making a profit through his friend’s mine in Alaska, Todd Hoffman’s team is formed by some known faces, such as Jim Thurber and Randy Hubler. However, “Hoffman Family Gold” is a family-centered series through and through, putting special focus on Todd’s father Jack and Hunter, the youngest of the clan.
If you have been following Todd’s story from the beginning, you surely already know who we’re talking about. On his part, the family’s patriarch, Jack Hoffman is the most experienced miner of the trio, having first mined in Alaska decades ago.
While the adventure almost turned into financial disgrace for Jack back then, his wish of striking gold awakened again in 2010 thanks to “Gold Rush”. After taking a break from mining and TV altogether for a couple of years, Jack seems more than pleased to be back in the game again.
Meanwhile, many remember a younger version of Hunter from the times he helped out his father in “Gold Rush”. Now as an adult we’re seeing that he’s visibly taking a more active role over the operation in “Hoffman Family Gold”, just as he told Monsters & Critics in 2022: ‘I’m trying to grow and just step up and get more and more responsibility’.
All in all, it’s good news to see the family together on TV again.
Why Did Todd Leave the Show?
For such a polarizing cast member as Todd Hoffman, many people assumed that his sudden exit from “Gold Rush” in 2018 was most-likely motivated by some behind the scenes drama.
Fortunately, Todd’s reasons to leave didn’t involve any feud with his castmates or with the production, but that doesn’t mean his exit wasn’t motivated by something important.
Admitting his wish to follow other dreams away from the mining operation, Todd used the alleged $10 million he earned in almost a decade of mining and put it into the entertainment world, by establishing his production company ZUM Media.
While such a career path was surprising for many, Todd affirmed that “Gold Rush” had taught him enough about television that he wanted to try it himself. As well, he formed the rock band Sandy Mule, which rapidly gained fame in Sweden, much to his surprise.
Nevertheless, Todd’s main reason to step away from TV was to spend more time with his family, and especially to arrest his failing relationship with his children: ‘There was some strain between Hunter, myself, and the TV show, the production crew. We were tired and a little bit jaded’, he told Monsters & Critics. Fortunately, Todd also affirmed his family’s relationship became better thanks to his decision.
What Did He Do After Leaving “Gold Rush”?
As expected, Todd tried out a lot of things after leaving “Gold Rush”.
As seen on his YouTube channel, his popularity as a rock singer grew rapidly thanks to the many song cover videos he shared on the platform. It’s especially thrilling to see his “Sounds of Silence” cover accumulating 14 million views, on top of being about to hit the 150,000 subscribers landmark.
Regarding his business, it seems his dream of owning a producing company was short-lived. As seen on ZUM Media’s website, his name isn’t now listed with the other owners, hinting that perhaps he could have sold his share in the company. While it’s unknown what happened between him and his former co-associates, the last time we knew Todd was involved with the company was in 2019, when he often promoted his social media posts with ZUM’s hashtag.
Nevertheless, Hoffman has been busy with his podcast “The Hoffman Report”, and creating an original TV show entitled “Redemption Gold”, which hasn’t actually seen the light.
Besides his professional life, Todd has recently become involved with seeking help for people with addiction problems. As Todd announced in a 2022 interview with Monster & Critics, he was soon to establish his own recovery center, though further details about his project are unknown.
Why Did Todd Create “Gold Rush”?
Desperate times call for desperate measures, something Todd Hoffman knows well. Before being on TV or in mining ever crossed his mind, Todd leased airstrip space for hangars in Oregon before his business went downhill in 2008, when the recession hit the markets to their lowest point since the 1940s. As he told Business Insider in 2012, the situation was enduring and terrifying to say the least: ‘It turned out to be desperation. Seeing everything fold around you, companies that never go away start going away’.
With his financial stability on the verge of disaster, Todd soon realized that he still had some options left. The price of gold went up as the government flooded markets with cash, ringing some bells in Todd’s mind: ‘I’m no rocket scientist, but when you start printing money, start doing the things we’re currently doing, you can’t debase gold, it’s common sense’.
That’s how his interest was caught by the mining business, visiting Alaska mine sites to witness how people in the field were doing. He came up with the idea of creating a show about miners, emailing the concept to Raw TV’s executives in England, initiating what we now know as “Gold Rush”.
Does He Have A Feud With Parker?
As a reality show, “Gold Rush”s main goal is to entertain its audience, so inserting some small drama plots into its episodes are what its producers do best. However, seeing how hard it is to make a living out of digging (or dredging) for gold, it’s not surprising that rivalries and feuds arise all the time in the mining field, even when cameras are off.
If you’ve been watching “Gold Rush” long enough, you surely know that Todd Hoffman and Parker Schnabel weren’t on friendly terms almost from the start. However, is there a real feud between them?
Apparently, their relationship doesn’t go as far as to say that they hate each other, but they aren’t friends either. According to Parker, he could clearly feel Todd didn’t like him, even though the reason is unknown to him: ‘I’m not sure if that means I’ve done something right or done something wrong. He has a very personal dislike for me’.
For his part, Todd apparently doesn’t share the same sentiment, just as he told Maxim in 2016: ‘There is a genuine dislike there. But there is a mutual respect, at least on my end’.
While their relationship had its lows and highs, the fact that they’re now in different shows should be enough to tone down any rivalry issues they used to have.
What Other Shows Was He In?
Besides “Gold Rush” and “Hoffman Family Gold”, Todd Hoffman has appeared in many other TV shows, some of which aren’t related to mining.
The first “Gold Rush” spin-off he appeared in was “The Jungle Special” in 2012, which showed him getting hints of a big unexplored mining site in Guyana. However, to arrive there he faced many challenges, including nature and budget shortages all the way there. Later, Todd set his mind to go and explore mines in Peru, Chile and Guyana again, for the six-episode spin-off “Gold Rush: South America”, premiered in 2013. Though he thought he had everything under control before arriving there, it turned out that nature, the language barrier and the difficulties to deal with local miners made his mission to strike gold quite hard.
Other spin-off series Todd appeared in include “White Water”, “Pay Dirt” and “The Dirt”, a behind the scenes and interview-focused show which features the most important events at the end of every season.
It’s also worth noting that Todd has been interviewed by a variety of talk shows, produced several episodes of “Gold Rush”, and even created the documentary special “NASA & SpaceX: Journey to the Future”, premiered in 2020.
How Much Gold Did He Strike?
Throughout the many years he appeared in “Gold Rush”, Todd became known for learning his way in the mine, actually by committing several mistakes. However, while losing money isn’t a matter to be taken lightly, Todd was able to gain a small fortune while in the show.
The first two seasons saw Hoffman dig up a little more than $150,000, though the other crews didn’t do much better. The third season was a considerable improvement for the Hoffman crew though, as the team with Dave Turin ended up with joint earnings of $1.28 million.
Hoffman’s lowest point came with the fourth season, in his mission to Guyana, when he returned home empty handed after only finding two ounces of gold.
The following season was visibly better for him, as he collected $1.6 million, while the sixth season saw him at his best, by accumulating $3 million worth of gold.
Todd’s final season with “Gold Rush” was unfortunately not as successful as the previous ones, but was still a good one, earning them $2 million. This put an end to his long run with the show, but it’s not far-fetched to think that he could be given another chance with “Gold Rush” sometime in the future.
Comeback To TV
After a couple of years away from appearing on TV, Todd Hoffman’s comeback to the small screen happened in the late 2021 documentary “The Hoffman Story”, part of the “Gold Rush” franchise. In this show, Hoffman commented on everything about his family’s quest for gold, including the many highs and lows it has taken him through.
Although it’s clear Todd doesn’t regret getting into mining, in “The Hoffman Story” he was sincere enough to admit some things he would have done differently, such as not getting his family involved with it. These personal matters add to the difficulties proper of the business, making it all the more enduring: ‘You’re losing money. Your friends are getting into fights. I mean, it’s almost like a really, really bad drunken family reunion. Except that it lasted all summer’, he said.
While returning to Alaska after so long is challenging in itself, it’s evident that Todd wants to make the best out of this new opportunity, as he told Monsters & Critics: ‘I think this time I have a better perspective. I believe this new attitude of having what we’ve gone through this time around is different’.
Given that he was only given a few weeks to dig up as much gold as he could from this new mine in Alaska, things clearly won’t be easy for Todd. However, it’s great to see that he has the attitude and willingness to again give his best this time around.