Who Wants to be a Millionaire?
Who Wants to be a Millionaire? is a British based game show licensed locally by Viva TV and IBC 13. The show requires the contestants to answer 15 questions correctly in order to reach the jackpot price of 2 million pesos. The game show is hosted by veteran actor Christopher de Leon.
The game show started on 2001 when VIVA TV and IBC 13 acquired license of the international version of the game show. It found primetime success during the times where telenovelas were the hit on the primestime slot. It stayed for a couple of years, then production stopped when its original studio caught fire.
The local version follows the same set of rules of the original version of the game show in the UK. A preliminary round called fastest finger first, the contestant who answers the question first will move on to the jackpot round wherein the contestant will be put in the "hot seat", right in the middle of the set together with the host and the host will ask a series of multiple choice questions in order to reach the jackpot price of 2 million pesos. You can only move climb further to the jackpot if you answer the questions correctly, a mistake will cost you the game. The questions are in easy, average and difficult level, the more difficult the question, the closer the contestant is to the jackpot.
If the contestant is having a hard time answering the questions, they have the option of using their Lifelines; Phone a friend, 50/50 and ask-the-audience. If they choose to use the phone a friend lifeline, the contestant will have a chance to talk to someone (friend or relative that is not in the audience) via phone patch for only 30 seconds. The 50/50 lifeline eliminates 2 out of the 4 choices in the question. And ask-the-audience lifeline is when the audience are asked to pick what they believe is the right answer then the statistics of the response will be displayed on the contestant's monitor, the higher the number of audience who keyed in a certain answer may mean that it is the correct answer.
In the event that the contestant run out of lifelines and still can't make up for an answer, the contestant is offered a check to avoid a greater lose when he fails to answer the question correctly.
During those days, local dramas were the most popular shows at primetime (8-10pm), but when Who Wants to be a Millionaire sparked a game show craze during that time. Its popularity is undeniable, rating in a 25 percent of total audience shares in that timeslot dominated by local soap operas on its first season. It even had an all time high, 38 percent audience shares.
The success of "Millionaire" followed in strings of other game shows, another UK based game show was licensed by Viva TV and IBC 13, The Weakest Link, a combination of Survivor and Who Wants to be a Millionaire, and is hosted by Edu Manzano. Other TV giants also got in on the game show craze, ABS-CBN produced a purely local show called GAME KNB? (Game Ka Na Ba?) with Ms. Kris Aquino as their host, GMA 7 with their Korek Ka Diyan and K! The One Million Peso Videoke Challenge and ABC 5 with their local versions of The Feud entitled The Family Feud and The Price is Right.
- The first million peso winner is professor Amy Lopez-Forbes in July 2001.
- The first celebrity million peso winner is Sharon Cuneta and afterwards won a million pesos on another gameshow. Her winnings were all donated to charity.
- The show is licensed or formatted on over 106 countries.
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- "Game Show Fever Part 2: Identity Crisis" http://www.filgifts.com/ffp/gameshow02.asp (accessed may 27, 2008).
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- "Philippine television today: A hedgehog of Chinovelas and Game Shows" http://www.workspresso.com/20070601%20edition/archives/2005/may1-15-05/current/features_current/feature2.html
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