ABC orders Mark Burnett game show “500 Questions”

Due to air in 2015, ABC's 500 Questions will see Burnett (pictured) reuniting with his Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader? coproducer Mike Darnell.
September 18, 2014

U.S. network ABC has ordered the primetime game show 500 Questions (working title) from producer Mark Burnett (pictured).

Produced by Burnett’s One Three Media (Survivor, The Voice) and Warner Horizon Television (The Voice, The Bachelor), the show is scheduled to air in 2015 and will test “the smarts — and nerve — of contestants in a pressure-packed, incredibly intense environment,” according to the network.

Burnett already produces the ABC series Shark Tank, which enters its sixth season this fall. The project reunites Burnett with Warner Bros. president of unscripted and alternative programming Mike Darnell, who worked with him on Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader?, when Darnell headed up reality programming for Fox.

In a statement Burnett called 500 Questions “the first network game show to combine what audiences love about serialized unscripted hits with a huge game show event. It has ongoing characters and huge stakes.”

“I couldn’t be more excited to be back in business with my close friend and colleague Mark Burnett,” added Darnell. “We have done many shows together over the years, but one of our best experiences – both professionally and personally – was Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader?,¬†and ever since we have been trying to come up with another game show that would break new ground. I think we have finally cracked it with 500 Questions.”

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Managing editor with realscreen publication, an international print and online magazine that covers the non-fiction film and television industries. Darah is an award-winning journalist who has spent over two decades covering a wide range of issues from real estate and urban development to immigration, politics and human rights, primarily with The Vancouver Sun. Prior to joining realscreen, she was editor of Stream Daily, realscreen's sister publication covering the dynamic global digital video industry. She also served a stint as a war reporter in Afghanistan for television and print, and was a national business blogger with Yahoo Canada.