ITV Recommissions “Red or Black” for a Second Series Thumbnail

ITV Recommissions “Red or Black” for a Second Series

The most expensive game show ever made is coming back for a second series.  ITV has recommissioned Simon Cowell’s luck-based game show Red or Black for a second run of episodes.  The episodes have not been given a debut date yet.  Hosts Ant and Dec will return.  Instead of a week-long strip, the second series will air weekly.  Contestants will use judgement and skill to predict the outcome of several challenges and stunts.  By the end of the show one person will remain and will spin the show’s giant roulette wheel.  One final decision, red or black, will stand between them and life changing cash.

This series of Red or Black will not feature a nightly £1,000,000 prize.  Instead, the jackpot spin will start for £500,000.  If it is not won the jackpot will roll over week after week.  If no one wins, the jackpot could reach £3,500,000.  Four contestants won the £1,000,000 top prize last series.  The first series debuted to 8.1 million viewers but quickly sank to an average of 5.3 million.  Four of the seven episodes of the first series saw less than five million viewers, and two of those saw less than four million.  The show was recommissioned on the basis that the budget would be lowered.

Simon Cowell said: “One of the things I love most about this show is that it’s exciting, unpredictable, scary, and a bit nuts all in one. I’m delighted it’s back and am excited about the possibility of rollover winnings and some even bigger games.”

ITV’s Director of Television, Peter Fincham said: “We have developed Red or Black? and built on what we did with the first series. The scale of the challenges will still be huge but this time around, contestants will have more control over their own destinies as they are able to use their skill and judgement in an attempt to win big money prizes.”

Excited to see it back? It had some major problems so I’m interested to see what they can do.  Let’s give them one credit, though.  The first night’s spin was incredibly tense and dramatic.  It diminished night after night, but that first spin was great.

Alex Davis

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has written 3437 articles on BuzzerBlog.

Alex Davis is an award winning writer and producer based out of Pittsburgh, PA, who works out of New York, Los Angeles, and London. Alex is the head writer and editor for BuzzerBlog and is the president and head of development of 5Hole Productions, specializing in unscripted formats for television and internet play.

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8 responses to "ITV Recommissions “Red or Black” for a Second Series"

  • Scott says:

    It’s funny you posted this news segment Alex, because 3 days ago, I was actually searching the Internet to find out whether or not Red or Black? would be returning for a second season. Seeing the most expensive game show ever produced return to primetime gives me high hopes that ABC will follow in ITV’s footsteps, and bring Red or Black? over here to North America.

    Can’t wait to watch it, but I have a funny feeling we’ll have to wait until September to see it…

    I’m also looking forward to the return of Secret Fortune…

  • Adam says:

    The headline should’ve read “ITV, desparate to get Out of the ‘Black’, and Into the ‘Red’, Makes a Huge Mistake”.

    Series One nearly ended ITV. What Was ITV thinking?

  • James E. Parten says:

    It’s interestingthat ITV is giving this show the green light, in spite of the recent investigation by the Gambling Commission over there, which is trying to determine if this, and other game shows are “encouraging gambling”.

    Considering that the closest thing to a “sponsored” program on the BBC is one of a rotating group of game shows that serve the purposes of the National Lottery, and considering the fact that the shows being investigated are on ITV, one can only wonder if there’s some kind of agenda working here.

    Now that we haven’t seen such investigations here. Back in the 1940′s (before I was even born!) our Federal Communications Commission investigated whether certain radio game shows–most notably “Pot O’ Gold” and “Stop The Music”–were, in fact, lotteries, and thus illegal. The cases finally came to decision in the 1950′s–just in time for he Quiz Show Scandals!

    But getting back to “Red Or Black–judging by what I have seen on the Web, I’d say that there was considerable room for tweaking, even if there weren’t Governmental bloodhounds sniffing about. Some of the stunts presented were clever and inventive. More of this spirit can only help.

  • Poochy.EXE says:

    I’m gonna guess Red. That is, for whether the show’s finances will be in the Red or Black.

    The issue I see with this is that the show will still average £500K per episode, albeit with a much smaller variance. That means the “much smaller budget” is being cut from other parts of the show, most likely the challenges. I’d rather see a jackpot that starts £100K and grows by £50K per episode if that would mean better challenges.

    But on the other hand, the “skill and judgment” element is exactly what the doctor ordered. That has my interest, and I’ll probably check out at least the first episode.

  • David Howell says:

    Because whatever’s left of the budget doesn’t get won if episode 7′s spin is a loss, the expected total prize fund for the series is a slither over £3m.

    Interestingly it’s better than 50-50 (by pure chance) that there will be at least one win of more than £1,000,000. That has never happened on UK television before, and I largely suspect that’s what they’re aiming for here.

    • Scott says:

      I just like the fact that it’s the most expensive game show in television history.

      I never knew Simon took a liking towards game shows. ^_^

      • Chris says:

        Well, he was a contestant on the UK version of $ale of the Century back in 1990.

      • Poochy.EXE says:

        If you ask me, the fact that it’s the most expensive game show in history is a double-edged sword. On one hand, it’s nice to see that a company is willing to take that big a risk on a game show. On the other hand, for that sort of budget, it really should’ve been much better. It felt more like they just threw money at it willy-nilly in hopes that more money would magically make the show better somehow. A couple of the stunts put the money to great use, like hiring motorcycle stuntmen to do a ramp jump competition. But others felt like they just wanted to make it ostentatious – like if someone gave Deal or No Deal a budget increase and they used it on all solid gold furniture for the studio, including the audience seats and the toilets. It wasn’t more epic, just gaudy.

        I think if they had that much time to fill and that much budget, they should’ve invested in high-speed cameras everywhere for special effects a la The Cube. Imagine what we could’ve gotten to watch had they used those camera techniques on the motorcycle jumps.

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