Russia produces local version of Mastermind

  • Bang Showbiz
  • 18 September 2017
John Humphrys

John Humphrys

The BBC has sold the format rights of 'Mastermind' to Russia

The BBC has agreed to let Russia produce a local version of 'Mastermind'.

The broadcaster has sold the format rights of the long-running quiz show to the production company BIZ Media and the 16-part series, which airs on the Rossiya- Kultura channel, began airing yesterday (17.09.17) under the name 'Geniy', which translate to 'Genius', and sees presenter Alexey Begak as the quiz master.

Elena Zimenko, Producer BIZ Media, said: "It's amazing how 'Mastermind' or 'Geniy' continues to be a popular choice with television viewers, after such a long history on television. The host of the show Alexei Begak's cool detachment and professionalism makes him a formidable quizmaster. We're absolutely sure that Rossiya - Kulture would be a very good and natural home for the 'Mastermind' format and Russian viewers will be able to watch the show for many years."

'Mastermind', which is currently hosted by John Humphrys, first hit television screens in the UK over 40 years ago and quickly became a fan favourite as viewers watched competitors go head-to-head to answer challenging questions while sitting in the iconic black chair.

Salim Mukaddam, Vice President and General Manager for CEE, BBC Worldwide said: "We have seen a renewed interest in our quiz show formats in recent months as local broadcasters across the region are looking for high-volume, high quality shows to drive audiences.

"'Mastermind' is a perfect example of this - even after 40 years the series continues to bring in large audiences in the UK owing to its unique blend of intelligence and entertainment. I'm delighted that Russian audiences will soon find their next genius through our agreement with BIZ Media and VGTRK."

The BBC have previously sold the format rights to Ireland, India, Russia, Israel, Turkey, Nigeria and Ghana.

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