ABC Greenlights Revival of ‘The Gong Show’ From Exec Producer Will Arnett

Elizabeth Wagmeister

ABC is adding yet another classic title to its growing slate of game shows. The network has greenlit a remake of “The Gong Show,” Variety has learned.

Sony Pictures Television, which franchised the original talent competition that ran from 1976 to 1989, is producing the revival. ABC has ordered 10 episodes.

The new version of the variety show hails from executive producer Will Arnett and his Electric Avenue Productions, plus Den of Thieves and Principato Young Entertainment, along with Sony TV. Arnett is not hosting — a revolving panel of judges, featuring some of Hollywood’s biggest names, will praise, critique and, of course, gong contestants.

Every episode of the modernized “Gong Show” will celebrate un-traditionally talented, unique performers plucked from the Internet and put onto primetime television. The series will be shot in front of a live audience.

“ABC has tapped into the nostalgia and excitement of primetime game shows. We are thrilled to add ‘The Gong Show’ to ABC’s schedule spearheaded by the incomparable Will Arnett,” said Rob Mills, senior vice president of alternative series, specials and late-night programming.

“The comedy culture we are living in has finally caught up to ‘The Gong Show,’ so the timing is perfect,” added Holly Jacobs, executive vice president of reality and syndication programming for Sony Pictures Television. “We’ve found just the right partners to bring back this iconic original.”

“The Gong Show” is the latest game show to head back to present-day television, following Steve Harvey’s “Family Feud,” Alec Baldwin’s “Match Game” and Michael Strahan’s “$100,000 Pyramid,” which all air on ABC. The talent show genre has had recent success with NBC’s “Little Big Shots,” and the variety show has been pushing to make a comeback with the network’s “Maya & Marty” and Neil Patrick Harris’ “Best Time Ever.”

Aside from Arnett, other exec producers on “The Gong Show” are Evan Prager, Jesse Ignjatovic and Peter Principato. Jared Morell, Jordan Barrow and Marc Forman are co-exec producers.

Dan Holloway contributed to this report.

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