Game shows have hit a bit of a resurgence in the past few years, with more and more classic titles being retooled or reimagined for primetime. According to a new report, Wheel of Fortune will be the latest to get this sort of treatment -- but with a twist. On Monday, It was announced (via Variety) that ABC has given a series order to Celebrity Wheel of Fortune, a spinoff of the iconic syndicated series. As the name suggests, it will feature celebrity contestants spinning the show's wheel and solve the show’s word puzzles, competing for a chance to win up to $1 million for the charity of their choice. Wheel of Fortune hosts Pat Sajak and Vanna White are expected to also host the celebrity edition.
It is unclear at this point exactly when Celebrity Wheel of Fortune will begin airing, or what celebrities will be part of the proceedings. But the news comes at an interesting time for the series, especially as it has had to adapt to new filming regulations amid the COVID-19 pandemic. In the series' 38th season, which is currently airing, there is now more space between contestants at the iconic wheel, no studio audiences are present, and crew members are given adequate masks and safety equipment.
“Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy! are returning to the studio to tape episodes for the shows’ upcoming seasons," a studio spokesperson said in a statement back in July. "The productions have protocols in place in accordance with current government guidelines to protect contestants, staff, crew and talent from the spread of COVID-19. While some things may have changed behind the scenes and on the set to keep everyone safe, fans can expect to see the same Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy! they have come to love when the season starts."
Wheel of Fortune - which is currently renewed through the 2022-2023 season - also faced a health scare earlier this year, when Sajak required emergency surgery due to complications with a blocked intestine. Sajak returned to production soon afterwards, and also had a very self-aware perspective to the idea of having to step down as a host.
"Once I'm gone, I don't care who takes the reins," Sajak said.
Celebrity Wheel of Fortune will join a roster of other daytime game shows that have been reimagined as primetime content for ABC, including The $100,000 Pyramid, Card Sharks, Celebrity Family Feud, Match Game, and Press Your Luck.
Will you be checking out Celebrity Wheel of Fortune? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below!