Jeremy Clarkson will be grilling contestants as the new host of ITV quiz show Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?
It’s returning for a week this spring to celebrate its 20th anniversary.
The ex-Top Gear presenter is replacing previous host Chris Tarrant, who said in 2014 his days as a game show host were over and that he thought the programme had “run its course”.
On Friday, Clarkson said: “I have always loved the show and am thrilled to be involved with its rebirth.”
The Grand Tour presenter described himself as a “big fan” of quiz shows, saying: “I’m looking forward to hosting this iconic TV show and hopefully making a few millionaires.”
The show, which sees contestants asked a series of increasingly difficult questions as they try to win the £1m prize, will run for seven nightly hour-long episodes.
The elusive jackpot can only be won if all 15 questions are answered successfully. A series of lifelines are offered, including asking the audience, asking a friend or taking a 50:50 option.
ITV has promised “a number of new twists and turns” for the show’s return. It managed ratings as high as 19 million viewers in 1999.
Millionaire went on to become a hugely popular global TV format, with versions in countries including the US, India, Australia, Japan and Russia, and it inspired Danny Boyle’s Oscar-winning film Slumdog Millionaire.
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ITV’s head of entertainment Siobhan Greene said: “I hope Millionaire will be introduced to a whole new generation. And with TV legend Jeremy Clarkson asking the questions, frankly anything could happen. I can’t wait.”
In the UK, just five contestants managed to walk away with the £1m prize. Tarrant, who hosted for 15 years, was expert at ratcheting up tension in the studio with long pauses between questions and answers.
The show was hit by a scandal back in 2003 when an army major, his wife and a college lecturer were found guilty of conspiring to cheat the show.