The BBC has planted a new flag in the eagerly contested Saturday night grid by commissioning a new game show Can’t Touch This from newbie Northern Irish production company Stellify Media. The premise of the show is contestants get to keep any prize they get their hands on. The catch: they have to navigate a larger than life assault course while also battling it out with rival contestants.
Can’t Touch This, which is still only a working title, is an original Stellify format and was ordered by Controller BBC One, Charlotte Moore, Controller of BBC Entertainment Commissioning, Mark Linsey, and BBC entertainment commissioner Alan Tyler. The 10-part series is set to air in 2016. It will be executive produced by Stellify joint managing directors Kieran Doherty and Matthew Worthy.
The commission is a major vote of confidence for Stellify, which only launched in the spring of 2014 with backing from Sony Pictures Television. Belfast-based Stellify produces and develops original programming for UK and international broadcasters. Doherty and Worthy have previously created Secret Fortune for BBC One and Take The Money and Run for ABC. Stellify is also currently in production with Blind Date, a working title, for national Irish broadcaster TV3, set to air later this year.
Stellify is Sony’s first move into production in Northern Ireland which has been the focus of increased attention following HBO’s Game of Thrones setting up shop there. Sony has invested heavily in UK production companies, including Victory Television, Gogglebox Entertainment, Silver River Productions, Left Bank Pictures and the recently announced joint venture with Karl Warner, Electric Ray.
The announcement of the major new commission comes on the same day that ITV has closed a deal to acquire 100% of John De Mol’s Talpa Media for $530 million. Talpa created The Voice, which has been one of the BBC’s big Saturday night entertainment formats.