ABC as picked up the game show The Hustler, a “mind-bending” concept, in the network’s words, hosted by Craig Ferguson. One contestant already knows the answers on the show, but won’t necessarily win. Production starts in the fall and the initial air date has not yet been announced.
Each episode follows five contestants as they answer a series of trivia questions, the prize pot building with each correct answer. One of the five contestants, the Hustler, already knows the answers but must keep their identity a secret in order to have a shot at winning the grand prize. Two contestants are anonymously eliminated by the Hustler, leaving the Hustler and two others, who must collectively decide who they think the Hustler is. If they are right, they share the prize pot. If the two contestants are wrong, the Hustler gets the cash.
Ferguson hosted Celebrity Name Game and was host on CBS program The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson.
“It’s rare and exciting to have a mystery-based game show that employs viewers and contestants to tap into their sleuth skills,” said Rob Mills, senior vice president, alternative series, specials and late night, ABC Entertainment. “This fun, new format is the perfect addition to our dynamic game show lineup, and Craig’s unmatched wit and humor make him the ideal host. We couldn’t be more excited to welcome him back to ABC.”
The Hustler, which is produced by All3Media-backed production company Studio Lambert, is created by British TV and radio host Richard Bacon, who executive produces along with Studio Lambert founder Stephen Lambert, executive vice president of Studio Lambert USA Jack Burgess, creative director Tim Harcourt and Susan House.
“Studio Lambert and format creator Richard Bacon are incredibly excited to partner with ABC on The Hustler,” said Studio Lambert CEO Stephen Lambert. “With Craig in the driver’s seat, the comedic beats of this game are very much to the fore. We think ABC viewers will laugh a lot but also be shocked and surprised by the twists of this game, which invites contestants and viewers to play detective, solving a whodunit or, in this case, a whoisit.”