Saturday, July 2, 2011

EXTRA! EXTRA! Read All About It: Game Show News Updates (Part 5)

In this week's article, I'm going to once again spotlight some of the headlines that has peaked my interest this month concerning game show news. From a controversial game show returning to television to news about the newest network game shows, I'm sure you are going to enjoy reading about what has happened or what's in store for the future in the world game shows. Enjoy!

Millionaire 10th Season Auditions
Courtesy Disney/ABC Domestic Television
The syndicated series Who Wants To Be a Millionaire have begun their auditions for the show’s tenth season. The open auditions in New York might be over for now, but Millionaire will be hitting the road this month to find America’s next millionaire. The road auditions will be held in Harrisburg, PA (July 11), Charlotte, NC (July 13), Chicago, IL (July 15), Washington D.C. (July 25), Tampa, FL (July 27), and Las Vegas, NV (July 29). There will be two sessions held in each city, a morning audition testing and an evening audition testing. I am looking forward to what the producers have in store for the tenth season of Millionaire. Click here for more information concerning the road audition locations. Could this mean a special guest appearance by Regis Philbin? Keep your fingers crossed!

Fear Factor Returns To NBC
The former 2001 hit NBC game show Fear Factor returns to NBC for eight episodes. According to TV Guide, Joe Rogan has officially returned as the host of the NBC revival of the show. The show’s executive producer Matt Kunitz had always planned to bring back Rogan as he said, "We wouldn't want to do this show without Joe. This makes me 100 percent relieved. Part of the nostalgia of the show coming back is Joe Rogan. Joe is a guy's guy, but women like him as well." During the show’s six-year run, Fear Factor averaged over 11 million viewers per episode among adults 18 to 49. I haven’t heard any news concerning the premiere of the revival of Fear Factor, but TV Guide has reported that the show’s production will begin at the end of July.

Elaine Stewart Dies at 81
Game show hostess Elaine Stewart passed away Monday, June 27. She was born in Montclair, New Jersey as Elsy Steinberg on May 31, 1930. Stewart’s career began by her winning a Miss See contest for See Magazine in 1952. She appeared in multiple magazines such as Playboy and Life magazine.  She as a model later became an actress and game show hostess on Gambit with Wink Martindale and High Rollers with Alex Trebek. She also married television producer Merrill Heatter in 1964, and had a son and a daughter, Stewart and Gabrielle.

New Game Show Scuttlebutt
The new NBC game show It’s Worth What? is set to debut Tuesday, July 19 at 8:00pm EST. This game show hosted by Cedric the Entertainer tests the contestants’ knowledge of how much money certain antique and unusual items are worth. Contestants who do particularly well could win up to $1,000,000. My only hope is that this show won’t end up like Bargain Hunters (Peter Tomarken version).

Courtesy NBC
Cash Cab’s own Ben Bailey will be the host of NBC’s second new game show Who’s Still Standing. This show pits one contestant against ten others in a series of rapid-fire quizzes where the winner stays and play, while the other contestants drops through the drop zone they are standing under. Defeating all ten contestants won the main contestant $1,000,000. On a quick side note, this show is like a combination of Russian Roulette, 1 vs. 100, and Grand Slam. You can click here for more details on how the game is played and/or here for information concerning the accident that occurred on the set during a taping of a show.

ABC is also producing another game show called You Deserve It! The show filmed its pilot episode on Wednesday, March 24 at Culver Studios in Culver City, CA. Former Mall Masters host Chris Harrison is host of this show which features contestants playing for a maximum of $250,000 for a friend or family member whom they feel deserves the money. Click here for the show’s game play rules. On a quick end note, after reading the show’s rules, this show is like a mix between Deal or No Deal, Millionaire (classic money ladder format), and a hint of Super Password (clues/puzzle aspect). No word on when the show is set to debut, but I will keep you informed with any updates concerning the show.   

The board game that spawned the TV series.
Identity Crisis is a brand new CBS game show that is based on a board game from Endless Games of the same name. The show is produced by Courtney Cox and David Arquette and has already been ordered for a pilot. This celebrity based trivia game show will be hosted by late night talk show host Craig Ferguson. I’m actually looking forward to watching this show, especially with Craig Ferguson as the host. I will keep you informed on the updates on this show as well.

You still have time to audition for It’s Worth What, Who’s Still Standing, You Deserve It! by clicking on the links.

New Wipeout announcer
Courtesy Glenn Francis of
Vanessa Minnillo has been chosen as the new co-host of ABC’s Wipeout as Jill Wagner has decided to leave the show on her own terms to further pursue her acting career. Wipeout’s creator and executive producer Matt Kunitz tells US Weekly, "We will miss Jill, but are thrilled to welcome Vanessa to the team and excited to bring her enthusiasm to the show. She is a great host with a fun and natural energy that our viewers will love.”  Minnillo will begin her co-hosting duties alongside John Anderson and John Henson during the fifth season of Wipeout.  Minnillo is no stranger to the television as she was the host of MTV’s TRL and a correspondent for Entertainment Tonight.

Wheel of Fortune's New Permanent Announcer
Courtesy Sony Pictures International
After Wheel of Fortune’s long-time veteran announcer Charlie O’Donnell passed away on November 1, 2010. Executive Producer Harry Friedman began his extensive search for the show’s next announcer. Similar to what The Price Is Right did after Rod Roddy passed away, Wheel of Fortune hired multiple interim announcers for the show including Lora Cain (the show’s first-ever female announcer), Joe Cipriano, and John Cramer. Almost eight months later, Wheel of Fortune selected Jim Thornton as their new permanent announcer. "This has been a lifelong dream, and to be able to follow in the footsteps of a legend like Charlie O'Donnell is truly humbling," said Thornton. "Being selected as announcer for Wheel of Fortune is a huge honor. Now I just have to make sure I don't call out the answers to the puzzles when my mic is open!" (1) Thornton is no stranger to broadcasting as he has won several awards including the Edward R. Murrow award, Golden Mike awards and an Emmy over the course of his career. Jim Thornton will begin his job as a full-time announcer for Wheel of Fortune at the beginning of show’s 29th season on September 19.

The Moment of Truth Back For Round Two
The Moment of Truth title card
It seems the FOX game show The Moment of Truth reared in its ugly head as it will be returning for a new season. This was the same controversial game show that was responsible for the demise of Lauren Cleri’s marriage after she openly admitted to having an affair while being married. You can check out her “15 minutes of infamy” by clicking here. According to BuzzerBlog, The Moment of Truth will be entering syndication from CBS Television Distribution. I am not the least bit interested in the show’s return. This show shamelessly exploits their contestants and airs out their dirty laundry on live television. Even though the people choose to appear on the program, this does not justify the show’s decision in the horrid premise and their choices in what questions to ask. My hatred of the show reached a new high after BuzzerBlog posted this video in one of their articles. Pittman Casting is currently searching for new contestants for the show's upcoming season. 

Game Show Schedule Updates

SUN: FOX: 30 Seconds to Fame 12:00am

TUE: ABC: Wipeout 8:00pm
                  101 Ways to Leave a Game Show 9:00pm
         DISC: Cash Cab 6:00 and 6:30pm (NEW! @ 6:30)

WED: NBC: Minute It to Win 8:00pm NEW!
          DISC: Cash Cab 6:00 and 6:30pm (NEW @ 6:30)

THU: ABC: Wipeout 8:00pm NEW
         DISC: Cash Cab 6:00 and 6:30pm (NEW! @ 6:30)

FRI: DISC: Cash Cab 6:00 and 6:30pm (NEW @ 6:30)

SAT: NBC: Minute It to Win 8:00pm
        ABC:101 Ways to Leave a Game Show 8:00pm

Currently in Syndication: Who Wants to be a Millionaire, Family Feud, Wheel of
Fortune, Jeopardy!, Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader, Don’t Forget the Lyrics
Currently on CBS: The Price Is Right, Let's Make a Deal

More Game Show News Links
Tuesday & Thursday TV Ratings


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