This year marks the 20th anniversary of “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?”, which first hit North American television in January 2000. In celebration of this milestone, ABC is planning a star-studded revival.
In an announcement at the Television Critics Association press tour in Pasadena, ABC Entertainment president Carey Burke revealed that Jimmy Kimmel would be hosting a special primetime resurrection of “Millionaire”, featuring celebrity contestants playing for charity.
Fans of the hit game show can expect to see some changes in this new version, with the celebrity contestants now able to “invite a guest in the hot seat to help them answer questions. It could be a relative, a beloved teacher or a famed trivia expert — anyone they want — to help them win as much money as they can for the charity of their choice.”
Viewers can also play along thanks a new “revolutionary, live, play-along app,” allowing them the chance to win the same amount of money that celebrities are playing for on the show. The celebrity contestants have yet to be announced.
“Regis came to me in a dream, asked me to do this and promised my own line of neckties if I did,” joked Kimmel in a statement. “I had little choice but to say yes.”
In addition to Kimmel, the show’s original executive producer, Michael Davies, has also signed on. “My professional career has been inextricably linked with Jimmy’s since the days of ‘Win Ben Stein’s Money,’ and he was one of the first-ever celebrity contestants on ‘Millionaire’ in its original run,” added Davies .”I can’t wait to work with him on this dynamic new version of the show that changed my life and the fortunes of so many who benefitted from and simply loved the game.”
“Who Wants to Be a Millionaire” will premiere on Wednesday, April 8.