ITV’s Who Wants To Be A Millionaire is axed

Chris Tarrant
Chris Tarrant

Chris Tarrant leaves the quiz show Who Wants To Be a Millionaire for pastures new.

Well all good things have to come to an end we suppose, but it strangely feels like ITV’s Who Wants To Be A Millionaire is the kind of TV programme that could have run on forever. Of course the decision was a tough one for ITV bosses but would it really be the same without the hosting skills of Chris Tarrant? probably not. We’ve seen it been done before as replacements for the likes of Catchphrases  Roy Walker and Countdown’s Richard Whitely have seen ratings for the programme take a nose dive so perhaps it was the right thing to do when Tarrant decided to move on to let the show come to its natural end while the going was still good.

Who Wants To Be A Millionaire first hit our screens 15 years ago. At the time it was truly ground breaking, being the first quiz show to offer contestants the chance to win a whopping one million pounds.  It was the show that made Tarrant world famous and a multi millionaire himself, however the 67 year old has said ‘I need a break.’ It is not surprising as recent reports about Tarrants health, particularly about the development of asthma which was possibly caused by effects on the show have shown that perhaps it is time for Chris to start taking it easy.

Bar the few remaining specials of the series the programme will be no more with ITV bosses saying they have no plans to make any further episodes or revive the show with a new presenter.

Tarrant remained positive about his decision but expressed his gratitude, clearly aware of the what the show did for his career. He said:

“It’s been a huge part of my life for fifteen years and I’ve loved every minute of it, but it is time for me to move on from Who Wants to Be a Millionaire. “

‘It’s been the most remarkable journey and I consider myself very fortunate to have been associated with Millionaire from its inception.

‘ITV have been fantastic in their support from day one and to see its huge success has been thrilling.”

Who Wants to Be A Millionaire has certainly had its ups and downs over the years. Judith Keppel was the very first person to make it all the way, answering all 15 questions correctly and meaning that she took away the jackpot of one million pounds. Six more went on to claim the prize however scandal broke out when Charles Ingram was found guilty of cheating and stripped of his million pound prize in 2001.

The show has also being adopted worldwide and is shown in countries across the globe. It was also the inspiration for the multi million pound blockbuster ‘Slumdog Millionaire’ where a kid from the slums manages to win the prize against all odds because of the incredible life that he has led.

Well we will certainly be sad to see it go as Who Wants To Be A Millionaire has been a British TV institution for over a decade. We’ll just have to keep watching the re runs until we can answer all the questions!

Image courtesy of Wikipedia.org