February 13, 2006 08:06 PM by Joe Blackmon
NBC has upped the ante by raising the top prize money — along with contestants’ blood pressure — by a one-half million dollars each night when the exhilarating hit game show "Deal or No Deal" returns on Monday, February 27 for its week-long mid-season premiere (8-9 p.m. ET).
Contestants will be surprised when the new stakes are revealed. Beginning on Tuesday, February 28, the top prize will be $1.5 million — and as the week progresses, the top prize will escalate each night by an additional one-half million dollars, concluding on Friday, March 3 with a $3-million-dollar prize.
The contestants will need nerves of steel to decide whether to put their trust in themselves or their support group as they are confronted with life-altering financial decisions in a highly pressured environment.
Also returning to the show will be the "Lucky Case Game," a live interactive element where viewers in each of the three time zones (Eastern/Central, Mountain and Pacific) have a chance to win $10,000 by texting on their cell phones or by logging onto the "Deal or No Deal" website at www.nbc.com/DOND.
At various points in the show, viewers will be alerted on how to play and all of the viewers who correctly selected the lucky case will be pooled together with the winner chosen at random. The lucky case will be revealed and the winner will be announced live at the end of the each show.
"Deal or No Deal" will air Monday-Friday (February 27-March 3, 8-9 p.m. ET) and will return on a weekly basis beginning Monday, March 6 (8-9 p.m. ET).
Hosted by Howie Mandel ("Hidden Howie"), "Deal or No Deal" is an international hit game show from Endemol USA, the producers of NBC’s "Fear Factor" and "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition." Contestants on the show play for a top prize of $1 million in a high-energy match of nerves, instincts and raw intuition. Each night, the game of odds and chance unfolds when a contestant faces 26 sealed briefcases containing anything from a measly penny to $1 million. Without knowing the amount in each briefcase, the contestant picks one — his to keep, if he chooses, until its unsealing at game’s end. The game kicks into high gear when the amount of cash in each case is revealed to the contestant round-by-round – and is tempted after each round by a mysterious entity known only as "The Bank" to accept an offer of cash in exchange for what might be contained in the contestant’s chosen briefcase – prompting Mandel to ask the all-important question — "Deal or No Deal"?
Based on the successful format from Endemol that has aired in over 35 countries, "Deal or No Deal" is produced by Endemol USA, a division of Endemol Holding. David Goldberg is the president of Endemol USA. The series is executive-produced by Scott St. John.