NFL Stars J.J., T.J. & Derek Watt To Front ‘Ultimate Tag’ Competition Format, Based On Playground Game, For Fox

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NFL players J.J., T.J. and Derek Watt are to front a physical competition format based on a classic playground game for Fox.

The broadcaster has ordered Ultimate Tag from Znak & Co, the production company run by Masterchef exec producer Natalka Znak.

The high-octane series, based on the playground game where players must chase each other in order to tag the other one, will launch on the network in 2020. It is the latest on-screen portrayal of the game following the theatrical success of New Line Cinema’s Tag, which starred Ed Helms, John Hamm and Jeremy Renner and was based on a Wall Street Journal article about a group of guys that have played a game of tag since they were young.

It is hosted by the Watt brothers; J.J. plays for the Houston Texans and has been AP NFL Defensive Player of the Year a number of times in his first five seasons, Derek plays for the Los Angeles Chargers and T.J. plays for the Pittsburgh Steelers

The series is produced by Znak & Co., which produced extreme sports competition reality series Revolution for Fox and Sky and Meghan Markle: American Princess for Fox. Znak boarded the most recent season of cooking competition MasterChef as exec producer.

Fox Alternative Entertainment will co-produce, continuing its plan to co-produce series through its own production unit. Znak will exec produce with Conrad Green, who used to showrun Dancing with the Stars and exec produced Fox’s My Kitchen Rules, Dancing On Ice exec producer Glenn Coomber and J.J. Watt.

Rob Wade, President, Alternative Entertainment and Specials, Fox Entertainment said that Ultimate Tag was a “very strong and fun format”, and a “very broad show” with a lot of co-viewing potential.

Speaking on the Fox upfronts press call, he told Deadline that it fits in with Fox’s acquisition of the WWE. “I was looking at the acquisition of WWE and some of the sports programming we have and I believe that it sits closely to that audience and is an opportunity for families to sit around and watch that.”

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