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Syndie Insider

Searching for Players in Sacramento

Game shows Wheel of Fortune, Pyramid
and Jeopardy—all produced by Sony Pictures Television—have teamed up with Gannett-owned ABC affiliate KXTV-TV Sacramento, Calif., to present the first-ever News 10 Contestant Fest. In a search for contestants, the three shows are partnering with KXTV-TV and radio station KDND(FM) Sacramento. Harry Friedman, who came up with the concept, executive-produces Wheel of Fortune
and Jeopardy
and consults on Pyramid. For three consecutive Saturdays in October, the shows are combing Sacramento for players. Wheel of Fortune
opened the search, with its Wheelmobile in the California state capital on Oct. 11. Pyramid
was in town last Saturday, with Donny Osmond running players through the game all day before one participant is chosen to play the game on television. And, on Oct. 25, Jeopardy
brings its Brain Bus and host Alex Trebek to town. In Sacramento, Pyramid
airs weekdays at 4:00 p.m.; Jeopardy
and Wheel of Fortune
air at 7:00 and 7:30 p.m., respectively.

Watch-and-Win With Fifth Wheel

In an effort to tap into the growing audience that likes to mix interactive technology with their television viewing, Universal's The Fifth Wheel
and m-Qube have teamed on a "watch-and-win" promotion that started last Thursday. M-Qube's text-messaging platform allows 80 million subscribers to send messages to other subscribers of Verizon Wireless, AT&T Wireless, Nextel Communications, T-Mobile and U.S. Cellular. Viewers of The Fifth Wheel, who tend to be younger adults, can enter a contest to win prizes and play for a Porsche Boxster by sending the phrase "the 5th wheel" to the text-messaging code "wheel" (or the numbers 94335). Promotional spots during the show will prompt viewers to enter the contest. Once they do, they will receive text reminders about the show and the ongoing contest, which runs every day for the next four weeks. "Wireless users are the ideal demographic for us, and we're glad that it's so easy for our viewers to interact with the show," says Dan Weiss, executive vice president of worldwide marketing. As part of the contest, Universal also is going to run radio spots about the contest in 15 selected U.S. markets, starting Nov. 3.