Hollywood's Search For The Next Hit Game Show Idea

Presented by The (, llc) and Sponsored in part by Final Draft screenwriting software.

GOT GAME? If you’ve got a mind for game shows and love cooking up clever concepts, then enter the NEXT HIT GAME SHOW Format Competition set to discover and develop an original game show format for television.

Congratulations to our 2017 Winner & Finalists:
Winner: Josh Armstrong (Ontario, Canada.)
Finalists: Michael Donohue (Melbourne, Australia.), Colin Deakin (Liverpool, United Kingdon), Veronica Finnegan (Oceanside, NY), Ryan Connolly (London, United Kingdom)

Global Creative Director for NBCUniversal International, Rafi Nizam, joins panel to judge finalists for "Next Hit Game Show" format competition.

Senior Vice President, International Sales & Distribution GRB Entertainment, Michael Lolato, joins panel to judge finalists, with first look to select winner.

Additional Executive Producers on panel to judge and select Winner are being finalized.

Producer, Scott Manville (former Head of Development for legendary Game Show Production Company, Merv Griffin Entertainment) is bringing key industry studios and producers together for this inaugural competition scouting all corners of the country for the most original and entertaining game show concepts from new creators and producers. Each pitch submitted will be reviewed for originality, viability, and entertainment value.

Entrants may submit a written description of their game show format/concept, and may also include any video reel or additional media to support the pitch.


I have a fondness for the game genre, as it was a main staple in my own development as a creative executive. What I learned was that we're not just creating games, and we're not just tweaking trivia challenges... We're creating DRAMAS! Pivotal moments of hard decision-making by contestants who face unique ultimatums. This is the TV of today, and it thrills me to reach beyond the rolodex and crowd source creatives from all corners of the country. This is a business of creative collaboration, and success is found when a passionate person takes a shot at sharing their talent, and we want you to share yours.

I was in the studio during run-throughs when Ryan Seacrest was discovered for his first TV job hosting our game show series Click at MGE, and spent seven more years punching up pitches and formulating formats for MGE and learning from the best. Most interesting was that it came at a time when the traditional 3 podium formats for game shows were breaking out and morphing with reality-based elements to deliver some of the most entertaining game shows to date. But the core of what makes a game show entertaining has never changed. Here are a few of those elements to keep in mind when crafting your TV game show pitch to enter in our contest:


Some things are fun to play, and some things are fun to watch. For television you need both.

Look at your game format not just as a structure, but as a story.

Identify key moments of decision that escalates both the opportunity and risk for the players.

Today in television, game shows need to key on human emotion, personal scenarios and experiences.

Don't think it has to be an in-studio show. Settings and challenges that cross-over into "reality" are fine, but keep the action in a self-contained locale for easy coverage in production.

Each episode must have a unique structure of play that resolves itself in that one episode.

Be as detailed and unique as possible with the various elements of your game so that your format is original.


Who Wants To Be A Millionaire: A trivia challenge with escalating prize structure, and the unique "life line" options that add dimension to the format.

Weakest Link: Teamwork turns testy when working together to solve a chain of trivia questions to win cash, one of the contestants is voted out by their teammates as "The Weakest Link".

Deal or No Deal: A game of chance, but the format plays on a person’s greed, similar to gambling, and with a "banker" there to fuel the tension.

Are You Smarter Than A Fifth Grader: Humiliation is humorous in this clever and fun format that surprises adults with how little they know.

A Network is only going to launch an original Game Show format to audiences if they know they have a truly original show with content viewers haven't seen before. It doesn't mean that there aren't elements that we're already familiar with, but it means that they're looking for the overall experience and hook to be original. What I've always kept as my touchstone when developing any format is that anything and everything within that format serves the concept or hook that is the signature of the show. You're creating a puzzle that requires all parts to fit and fuel one another, and when working together in unison it delivers your vision of the game we're watching unfold. Challenge yourself to "see" the critical scenarios in the game, and then to know that it would be entertaining to watch.

If you want to be a break-through creator of any television format it is important to make a conscious effort at letting go of pre-programmed instincts that have been ingrained in us by having seen dozens and dozens of shows over so many years that tell us "this is what a game show is". Stamp your own passport and say to yourself "no, THIS is what a game show is." Let go of traditional ideas and invent new ways of bringing entertaining games to an audience.

NOTE: WHEN SUBMITTING YOUR GAME SHOW PITCH, YOU DO NOT HAVE TO COMPLETE SECTIONS 4 ("Specifications") AND 5 ("Screenings & Distribution") OF THE "NEW PROJECT" SUBMISSION FORM. ENTER YOUR GAME SHOW FORMAT IN THE SYNOPSIS AREA. PLEASE EMAIL WITH ANY QUESTIONS. We also recommend all creatives establish proof of creation with archival for copyright protection of their formats at

Top 5 get FREE Final Draft Screenwriting Software ($249 Value)

Winner gets FREE annual membership & pitch listing at ($249)

Finalists receive industry exposure.


Submissions are accepted via electronic submission only.

There is no limit to the number of game show concepts you may submit.

Game show formats (concepts) may include elements of reality, or have a hybrid format.
Material must be submitted by the creator.

If a writing team is chosen as a winner, prizes will be given to the person who submits the project. Each team is responsible for dividing or sharing the prize(s).

Substitutions of either corrected pages or new drafts of the entered material are not allowed.

This competition is for game show formats only and must be no longer than 10 pages total, including any graphics or illustrations which are not required.

All ownership and rights to the material submitted to this contest remains with the original rights holders unless and until the rights holder settles negotiations of any proposed deal for partnership or transfer of rights.


All entrants must be at least 18 years of age.

All material submitted to other competitions or contests are eligible.

The material submitted must not be encumbered by any obligation to, or option held by, a third party prior to entering the competition.

Any submitted work that becomes optioned, published, produced or purchased between the time of submission and the end of the judging period will no longer be eligible.

Material should be submitted in standard PDF format

Material must include TITLE, LOGLINE (one to three sentence description of the concept), and FORMAT OUTLINE (1 to 5 page description of the game show detailing rules of play, specific decisive moments, ultimatums, or other unique elements)

All material must be submitted electronically or it will not be eligible.

The preliminary finalists and winner will be chosen based on the following criteria: (i) originality of format; (ii) perceived viability in the marketplace; (iii) perceived entertainment value; The selected Finalists winner will be notified by e-mail on or about July 15, 2017. Winner will be notified July 20, 2017. Finalists may be required to sign and return within seven (7) business days of receipt a notarized Affidavit of Eligibility and a Release and Indemnification and any other documents that, llc or any other partner may require before receiving prize. We reserve the right to amend these rules at any time.


By entering the contest you acknowledge that you have read and agree to these conditions. You agree to release and hold harmless, llc, its subsidiaries, parent and affiliated companies, prize contributors, judges, readers, sponsors, and any other organizations responsible for administrating, advertising or promoting the contest, and every one of their respective members, directors, employees, agents and representatives (collectively, the “Released Parties”) past and present from and against any and all claims, expenses, and liability, including but not limited to damages and negligence to property and persons, including but not limited to violation of right of publicity, copyright, infringement of trademark or other intellectual property rights relating to a participant’s entry, participation in the contest and/or acceptance or use or misuse of prize; provided however, that such release will not apply to any commercial exploitation of the story by a Released Party in violation of your rights under applicable copyright law; and (c) indemnify, defend and hold harmless llc, and its sponsors, partners, agents and employees from and against any and all claims, expenses, and liabilities (including reasonable attorneys fees) relating to an entrant’s participation in the contest and/or entrant’s use or misuse of prize. Employees of, llc and their immediate family members are ineligible to participate in the contest. Any such submission will be immediately disqualified. Entry to this contest is void where prohibited or restricted by any Federal, State or Local law. Voided entries will be refunded. Recipients’ eligibility will be verified before the prize(s) is awarded and the winner may be required to sign an affidavit of eligibility.

I understand that, llc is not responsible for preserving or returning all or any portion of the material to me. If the material submitted herein is not new or novel, was not originated by me, has not been developed to concrete form, is similar to any material submitted by, or created by any other subscriber before this time and hereafter in perpetuity to, llc and its contest industry partners, or does not qualify for protection as an intellectual property, then I agree, llc and its contest industry partners shall not be liable to me for use of such material under the laws of Intellectual Property Rights. I understand and agree that due to the position and process of the, llc and its contest industry partners, they retain the right to develop and produce projects of similar theme, subject, format, or nature. I hereby warrant and represent: 1. that said material was created and/or is solely owned by me and no other person, firm or corporation has any right, title or interest therein or thereto; 2. that I have full right to submit same to you upon all of the terms and conditions stated herein; and 3. that the description of said material as set forth herein contains all of the elements thereof. I will indemnify, llc and its contest industry partners from any and all claims, loss or liability (including reasonable attorney's fees) that may be asserted against you or incurred by you at any time in connection with said material or any use thereof, arising from any breach or alleged breach of these warranties.


All entries are non-refundable.


Except where prohibited by law, participation in the contest constitutes each entrant’s consent to, llc and its agents’ and contest sponsor’s use of entrants’ names, likenesses, photographs, and/or personal information for promotional purposes in any media, worldwide, without further payment or consideration. All uses of a entrants’ information are in accordance with our Privacy Policy. Winning entrant agrees to provide written and video testimonial supporting the contest presented by the TV Writers Vault upon request and to be used in any and all forms of media.

COPYRIGHT AND OWNERSHIP, llc or any other partner, employee or agent associated with this contest claims no ownership to any original short story submitted to this contest. All ownership and rights to the material submitted to this contest remains with the original rights holders until and unless other agreements are made, such as negotiations of the deal proposal as prize.