‘Who Wants to Be a Millionaire’ to End After 17 Years in Syndication (EXCLUSIVE)
By Joe Otterson
LOS ANGELES (Variety.com) – “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire” is coming to an end.
Variety has learned exclusively that the syndicated game show has been canceled. To date, it has aired nearly 3,000 episodes, including over 300 when the show aired on ABC.
“After a successful 17-year run, ‘Who Wants To Be A Millionaire’ will not return in national syndication for the 2019-20 season,” a show spokesperson told Variety.
The show first began airing on ABC primetime in 1999 before shifting to syndication in 2002. The show features contestants answering multiple choice questions of increasing difficulty, with each correct answer earning them more and more prize money, building to the $1 million question. Contestants also have the options of using three lifelines during the game to help them answer a question that has them stumped.
The original incarnation of the show was hosted by Regis Philbin and quickly became a cultural phenomenon, popularizing the use of the phrase, “Is that your final answer?” After the show went into syndication, Meredith Vieira took over as host until 2013. Since then, it has been hosted by Cedric the Entertainer, Terry Crews, and Chris Harrison, the last of whom currently hosts the series.
The series is produced by Valleycrest Productions Ltd. and is distributed by Disney ABC Home Entertainment and Television Distribution. James Rowley serves as executive producer of the show, which is taped at Caesars Entertainment Studios in Las Vegas, Nevada.