TMZ Teams With Fox on Test Run of ‘Who the Bleep Is That?’

TMZ is producing first-run game show 'Who the Bleep is That?' with host Jeff Dye.
TMZ is producing first-run game show 'Who the Bleep is That?' with host Jeff Dye. (Image credit: TMZ/'Who the Bleep is That?')

TMZ is teaming with parent company Fox on a four-week trial run of game show Who the Bleep Is That?, hosted by comedian Jeff Dye. The show will premiere on Fox Television Stations in 12 markets — New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Dallas, Washington, D.C., San Francisco, Houston, Phoenix, Minneapolis, Detroit, Orlando and Milwaukee — on Monday, March 6.

The TMZ-produced series tests contestants as they work to identify famous people from such fields as TV, film, music, politics and sports from obscured images. The first contestant to buzz in and guess correctly wins the point and after three rounds, the contestant with the most points plays for a $5,000 grand prize. 

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The Fox Television Stations have been focusing on first-run game shows in recent years, which are less expensive to produce because a year’s worth of episodes can be shot over just a few weeks. Fox also airs such homegrown game shows as 25 Words or Less, starring and executive produced by Meredith Viera, You Bet Your Life, with host Jay Leno, and the CBS-produced Pictionary, starring Jerry O’Connell. All three of those shows have been renewed for next season. First-run game shows with a comedic edge have largely taken over for more expensive off-network sitcoms on Fox-owned stations.

Fox acquired TMZ in September 2021. The TMZ TV show was launched by Telepictures, Warner Bros.’s first-run division, in 2005. The Fox stations air TMZ and TMZ Live in most markets, and Fox is increasingly adding TMZ-produced programming to its primetime lineup.

Who The Bleep Is That? is produced by TMZ Studios and executive produced by Harvey Levin, Tom Ruff, Ryan Regan, Charles Latibeaudiere and Jess Fusco, with co-executive producer Susan Favre. ■

Paige Albiniak

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.