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April 28, 2010

ABC orders Russian game show

ABC has given a series order to a classic Russian game show in which teams work together to solve puzzles.

In “The Six” (originally titled “What? Where? When?”), six players must collaborate to solve nontrivia logic games within 60 seconds. ABC has ordered six episodes from Merv Griffin Entertainment.

“When was the last time you saw a group dynamic that wasn’t about backstabbing?” Merv Griffin Entertainment TV president Roy Bank said. “Here, there’s no voting, no eliminations. You make money only as a team.”

The top-rated Russian version of “Six” has been on the air since 1975, the same year Griffin’s “Wheel of Fortune” debuted in daytime. The ABC version has tapped U.K. personality Vernon Kay to host. The show seeks to distinguish itself from other quiz shows by its logic-based questions.

“No one member may know the answer,” Bank said. “But given enough time or smarts, they can figure out the answer. You look at ‘Who Wants to Be a Millionaire,’ you either know the answer or you don’t. Here, there’s a logical progression.”

The series joins other ABC reality projects in the pipeline, including an extreme weight-loss reality show and the deceptive game show “Trust Me, I’m a Game Show Host.”

Production on “Six” will begin in the summer. Bank, Ron Ward, Brian Veskosky, Alex Reznik and Jonathan Barry are executive producers. WME and APA packaged the show.


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