March 10, 2006 12:01 AM by Joe Blackmon
NBC offers viewers an even better "Deal" as the network has added an additional eight episodes to its initial season order for the hit game show "Deal or No Deal" hosted by Howie Mandel ("Hidden Howie"), and will now officially showcase the series on two nights — Mondays and Fridays (8-9 p.m. ET both nights). The announcement was made by Kevin Reilly, President, NBC Entertainment.
"This show has caught on so fast with audiences and has consistently lifted us at 8 p.m.," said Reilly. "The fast pace and the potential for a true reversal of fortune has attracted a lot of people for us in that crucial time slot, and we look forward to seeing more of the same with these new episodes."
The extra episodes will boost this season’s order to 30 episodes. "Deal or No Deal" originally premiered on December 19-23 over five consecutive nights and returned on February 27 in the same Monday-Friday format. It then settled into Monday nights on a weekly basis on March 6 with some Friday-night broadcasts scheduled throughout March. Through the Monday, March 6 edition, 73 million viewers have tuned-in to the hit game show.
"Deal or No Deal’s" Monday-Friday premiere last week (Feb. 27-March 3) lifted the network an average 38 percent above its non-Olympic first-quarter average for the time periods in adults 18-49 (with a 3.6 rating vs. a 2.6) and by 3.7 million viewers overall (11.0 million vs. 7.3 million). On Friday, March 3, "Deal or No Deal" (4.0 rating, 12 share in adults 18-49, 12.0 million viewers overall) matched the highest non-sports 18-49 rating for any network in the time period in more than three years (since CBS’ Dec. 13, 2002 telecast of "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer"). On Monday, March 6, "Deal or No Deal" (4.9/12 in 18-49, 14.7 million viewers overall) tied its highest 18-49 rating to date and achieved it biggest overall audience thus far.
Hosted by Howie Mandel ("Hidden Howie"), "Deal or No Deal" is an exhilarating, 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 one million dollars in a high-energy match of nerves, instincts and raw intuition.
As each contestant tries his luck in a game of chance and odds to become a millionaire, he is confronted with 26 sealed briefcases full of varying amounts of cash — ranging from a measly penny to $1 million dollars. 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 Banker" 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?
Adding a live interactive element to the game show each night, viewers at home also have a chance to win $10,000 by playing the "Lucky Case Game" 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 are alerted how to play and all of the viewers who correctly selected the lucky case were pooled together, with the winner chosen at random. The lucky case and the winner are revealed and announced live at the end of the each show — one winner in each of the three times zones across the continental United States (one in Eastern/Central, one in the Mountain time zone, and one in the Pacific time zone).
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.