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January 13, 2020
It’s Game On! in the U.S.
By Alison Skilton
The British game-show format A League of Their Own is poised to make its debut on CBS in the U.S., where it will be titled Game On! The high-energy panel show blends sports, comedy and entertainment, and it’s on its 14th season in the U.K. The format, sold by Red Arrow Studios International, follows a fairly traditional quiz-show structure: two teams of three (each captained by a famous athlete) compete for points that are awarded for correct answers; after three rounds—the last of which includes physical challenges like sumo wrestling—the team with the most points wins.
"Taking its cue from sports fans' obsession with lists and statistics, every week celebrity guests join team regulars as they battle it out across numerous riotous rounds of sporting challenges, building up to a large-scale physical end game," Nina Etspüler, group creative director at Red Arrow Studios, tells TV Formats Weekly.
Although the series was originally developed for the U.K. market, it was always ripe for traveling, given its cross-cultural themes. "Sports and entertainment are universal concepts, and the series blends both in an original, comedic way, which attracts a really broad demographic," says Etspüler. Though sports-centered shows can often cater to the male audience, A League of Their Own was developed to appeal to both male and female viewers. “The comedic nature of the show means you don’t have to be a full-on sports fan to enjoy watching it; it’s perfect prime-time family entertainment,” Etspüler adds.
The format itself is flexible, scalable and available in both 30- and 60-minute versions, the latter of which has bigger challenges, both in studio and on location. There’s a huge catalog of challenges that Red Arrow Studios International has for the series, and they satisfy a wide range of budgets and studio sizes in order to accommodate the format's globe-trotting. Denmark's Kanal 5 was one of the first to adapt the format; Red Arrow Studios-owned Snowman Productions produced five seasons of the Danish version under the local name 5 Halvleg. RedSeven Entertainment, also a Red Arrow Studios company, produces a local iteration in Germany, where so far three seasons have been made for Sky 1 (local title: Eine Liga für sich—Buschis Sechserkette).
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