EXCLUSIVE: MTV2, MTV’s sibling network, is moving ahead with Numbnuts, a new reality program from Fear Factor executive producer David A. Hurwitz. Described as a “high-octane, hilarious, adrenaline-fueled stunt competition game-show series,” Numbnuts will premiere this Friday at 10 PM, immediately following the seventh-season seven premiere of the Bellator Fighting Championships. Hosted by Jeff Dye (Last Comic Standing), Numbnuts pits Internet contestants’ stunt mishaps against three web-celebrity Stunt Masters — Crazy Mike, The Horse and Victor Lopez — as the teams battle it out to see who can better perform steroid-injected versions of the stunts.
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The Bachelorette (2.2/6) had its tell-all episode last night with the guys who didn’t make Emily Maynard’s cut. The show was down 12% from last week and tied a season low (with the exception of specials). Still, last night’s episode – the last before July 22’s finale — was Monday’s most-watched show with more than 7 million viewers. Meanwhile, the fifth week of The Glass House (1.0/3) was flat with last week and tied a season low. ABC won the night in viewers and Fox won in adults 18-49. Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: After six years at NBC Universal and six at Endemol, reality producer Matt Kunitz is teaming with FremantleMedia North America. Kunitz, creator/executive producer of Wipeout and executive producer of Fear Factor, has signed a multi-year overall deal with the company behind Fox’s American Idol and The X Factor and NBC’s America’s Got Talent to develop and produce new unscripted shows. The pact starts in May. FMNA CEO Cecile Frot-Coutaz noted Kunitz’s track record “of producing shows that families can watch together.” “We are anxious to create big, broad entertainment shows with Matt and give them the kind of support and global infrastructure that we are confident FremantleMedia can provide,” she said.
Although he has formally been at Endemol for the past six years with three back-to-back overall deals, Kunitz’s relationship with the company dates back to 2000. That’s when at NBC he began working on the Endemol-produced NBC reality series Fear Factor, on which he has served as an executive producer from the start. Kunitz also executive produces the current Fear Factor reboot, which delivered solid ratings but also sparked controversy. NBC is yet to make a decision on the future of the series, with a few more original episodes in the can for a likely summer run. “As I close a chapter on 12 great years with Endemol, I’m very excited … Read More »
NBC’s once high-flying reboot of Fear Factor will make a humble exit as a regular series tonight with a rerun replacing an episode pulled by the network amidst controversy. The episode, Hee Haw! Hee Haw!, would’ve probably made it to air had it not been for NBC hosting a GOP presidential debate. The Fear Factor episode, originally slated for January 23, was pre-empted for the debate and moved to January 30. Then last Thursday, January 26, TMZ posted a story about a stunt in the episode described in the NBC synopsis as one where “the teams put themselves to the test eating the unimaginable.” According to TMZ, the unimaginable was donkey semen and urine. Controversy ensued, and late Friday night, NBC sent out a scheduling advisory listing another episode, which originally aired January 2, as replacing Hee Haw! NBC entertainment chairman Bob Greenblatt today addressed the controversy with a statement: “I reviewed the episode late last week and decided it was a segment we should not air.” Read More »
Viewers still love ‘em worms and cockroaches. After a five-year break, NBC’s Fear Factor returned to the schedule last night with ratings the likes of which NBC has not seen in a long while. The gross-out reality series premiered with back-to-back episodes averaging a 3.1 rating/8 share in adults 18-49 (8.7 million total viewers) at 8 PM and a 3.5/8 (8.5 million) at 9 PM. Both hours posted season highs in their time slots, outperforming NBC’s 18-49 season averages by 88% and 106%, respectively. Fear Factor, back with its original producing team and host Joe Rogan, helped struggling newsmagazine Rock Center With Brian Williams (1.1/3, 4 million), which was up 22% from last week to match its series high in 18-49. NBC (2.6/7, 7 million for the night), always dead last on Mondays this fall, finished a competitive second behind CBS (3.6/9, 12 million). Read More »
Once again NBC will be launching a reality series as a strip during the holiday season in December. Following in the footsteps of Deal Or No Deal, Clash Of The Choirs and The Sing-Off, new trivia competition show Who’s Still Standing? will premiere on Monday, December 19 as a weeklong strip, airing through Thursday, December 22 (each night at 8-9 PM ET). On December 26, the series will move to its regular Monday 8-9 PM slot, where it will air through January 30. NBC had previously announced that the revamped Fear Factor, which launches on December 12, will bridge The Sing-Off and The Voice with two-hour editions on Monday from 8-9 PM. The reality competition will now go down to an hour starting December 19. “This family-friendly series is perfect programming for the holiday season,” NBC’s alternative chief Paul Telegdy said of Who’s Still Standing? “The compelling and fresh format features the best elements of a classic trivia match combined with physical comedy, providing an intense competition that can be enjoyed by all ages.” Hosted by Ben Bailey (Cash Cab), the new series is based on the hit Israeli format Still Standing, which offers contestants the opportunity to win up to $1 million while competing in head-to-head trivia battles. The series had its global premiere on Israel’s Channel 10 in December 2010.
NBC has scheduled the reboot of Fear Factor, which will serve as a bridge between The Sing-Off and The Voice in the Monday 8-10 PM slot. The revamped gross-out competition will premiere on December 12. “We have taken the groundbreaking Fear Factor franchise that many fans remember fondly and have ramped it up to make it even more challenging and competitive than ever before,” said Paul Telegdy, NBC’s president of alternative and late night. “Once again, the contestants will have to face their ultimate fears to prevail — and the tension and drama of that process will make for some riveting television.” New stunts on the show include “Towering Inferno” and the “Helicopter TNT Crash.” Remaining the same are host Joe Rogan and producers Endemol USA, Matt Kunitz and David Hurwitz.