Nickelodeon is bringing classic British family gameshow The Crystal Maze to the U.S. The Viacom-owned network has ordered a local version from The Real World and Keeping Up With The Kardashians producer Bunim/Murray Productions and RDF Television, which makes the UK version for Channel 4.
The show, which was created by French producer Jacques Antoine, first aired in the UK in 1990 and ran for six seasons. It was brought back in 2017 with a celebrity version and a regular version with more episodes set to air later this year. The UK version is hosted by The IT Crowd star Richard Ayoade.
The show is a competitive challenge featuring a team who must utilize physical and mental skills to successfully navigate an elaborate labyrinth of four giant and immersive themed zones.
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In the Nickelodeon version, the teams will consist of family members. They must tackle range of challenges in zones collectively known as The Crystal Maze. Each successful game is rewarded with a ‘time crystal’ that equals five seconds in the centerpiece Crystal Dome. The adventure culminates in a finale, as the team enters the Dome to grab a cash prize as it flies around them during a countdown.
It is currently casting with ten, hour-long episodes set to be produced in Bristol, UK, where the British version films. Nickelodeon hasn’t revealed the show’s host or premiere date.
Bunim/Murray Productions and RDF Television are both owned by French production group Banijay and the show will be executive produced by Bunim/Murray CEO Gil Goldschein and Maria Pepin, who runs its kids and family division, Neale Simpson, creative director at RDF label Fizz and Stephen David from Stephen David Entertainment, which is also owned by Banijay. Production of The Crystal Maze for Nickelodeon is overseen by Rob Bagshaw, Executive Vice President, Unscripted Content.
“As Nickelodeon embraces co-viewing opportunities for every member of the family, The Crystal Maze brings a new type of action game and storytelling to audiences with its escape room-style gameplay and emphasis on collaboration and teamwork to win,” said Bagshaw, Executive Vice President, Nickelodeon Unscripted Content.
“The Crystal Maze has long served as a staple of the UK entertainment landscape and we could not be happier to be reinventing the show for a younger demo alongside our sister companies, RDF and Stephen David Entertainment. Acting as the first series for BMP’s Kids and Family Division, the show will build on our reputation in the competitive game space and we’ve no doubt by partnering with Nickelodeon, we can build a new audience for this brand in the U.S.,” added Goldschein.
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