FremantleMedia North America and Debmar-Mercury are once again collaborating on a syndicated game show, launching a test run this summer of iWitness, created by Judge Judy Sheindlin and her Queen Bee Productions.
The game show will launch July 10 for a six-week run on select Fox stations in top markets, including New York. It will be hosted by comedian John Henson, who’s also hosted Wipeout and TalkSoup.
“Fremantle and Debmar bring us Family Feud, and Judy Sheindlin is all over our stations with her smash program. Let's go!” said Frank Cicha, senior VP of programming at Fox Television Stations, in a statement.
The fast-paced game show was created by Sheindlin—star of daytime’s highest-rated show, CBS Television Distribution’s Judge Judy and creator of CTD’s Hot Bench, which she also co-produces with her producing partner at Queen Bee, Casey Barber.
iWitness will feature three contestants on each half-hour episode facing off to test their powers of observation. Contestants' ability to recall what they've just witnessed will be tested through video clips and images spanning the media landscape. The winner will have a chance to advance to the final round where he or she will compete for a $20,000 grand prize.
Scott St. John, who has executive produced Match Game, Celebrity Name Game and Deal or No Deal, will serve as showrunner of iWitness. Should the game do well during this summer’s test, the show would launch into national syndication in fall 2018. Debmar-Mercury will handle domestic distribution, while FremantleMedia International will take the show to international markets.
“Judy’s phenomenal track record of success in television and on the bench has absolutely nothing to do with luck. She is brilliant and has struck once again with her latest ingenious concept – a highly addictive and entertaining game show format that we believe has strong potential to live on for many years to come,” said Mort Marcus and Ira Bernstein, co-presidents of Lionsgate-owned Debmar-Mercury, also in a statement.
FMNA and Debmar-Mercury also have collaborated on another huge syndication hit, Family Feud, starring Steve Harvey, as well as Celebrity Name Game, starring Craig Ferguson.
Broadcasting & Cable Newsletter
The smarter way to stay on top of broadcasting and cable industry. Sign up below
Contributing editor Paige Albiniak has been covering the business of television for nearly 25 years. She is a longtime contributor to Next TV, Broadcasting + Cable and Multichannel News. She concurrently serves as editorial director for entertainment marketing association Promax. She has written for such publications as TVNewsCheck, The New York Post, Variety, CBS Watch and more. Albiniak was B+C’s Los Angeles bureau chief from September 2002 to 2004, and an associate editor covering Congress and lobbying for the magazine in Washington, D.C., from January 1997-September 2002.