Local version of iconic game show ‘Wheel of Fortune’ set to air in April

Graham Norton hosts an international version of “Wheel of Fortune”. Picture: Instagram

Graham Norton hosts an international version of “Wheel of Fortune”. Picture: Instagram

Published Mar 27, 2024


The iconic US game show, “Wheel of Fortune”, will be given a local twist.

Mzansi’s contestants will get the chance to spin for their share of winnings when the local version lands on S3 from April 8 at 7.30pm.

The multiple Emmy-award-winning game show, created by US media mogul Merv Griffin, sees three players spin the wheel, solve puzzles and avoid going bankrupt along the way in an attempt to win loads of cash and magnificent prizes.

Primedia Studios president Jan du Plessis said: “We are extremely excited and honoured to finally add the African continent to ‘Wheel of Fortune’s’ phenomenal legacy.

“‘Wheel of Fortune’ is arguably the most successful game-show format of all time in terms of its universal appeal and longevity. But, best of all, South Africans will now have the opportunity to spin their lives around by playing this spectacular yet simple game on a state-of-the-art set.

“Add mind-blowing amounts of cash and unimaginable prizes – even cars – up for grabs, and ‘Wheel of Fortune South Africa’ is in a league unseen on local television before,” said Du Plessis.

How the game works:

Following the international format, each episode will features three contestants, starting with a “Toss-up” round in which the trio try to unravel a word phrase by themselves to earn money and determine which one will spin the iconic wheel first.

There are different wedges on the wheel – anything between R100 and R800, as well as some dreaded ones like “Lose a turn” or “Bankrupt”, which might ruin their game.

In addition to the cash amounts, the wheel includes fabulous give-aways, which the contestant will pocket if they figure out the word phrase.

In solving the puzzle, the amount of money indicated on the wheel multiplies with the number of letters they choose to put on the game’s giant puzzle board, but only if the letters are part of the phrase.

If they don’t use a consonant, they can also buy a vowel, but once they opt to put a wrong letter on the board, it’s the next contestant’s turn to spin the wheel.

Ultimately, the contestant who calls out the correct phrase bags the money they have accumulated in their own wallet. Thereafter, the contestant with the biggest winnings moves on to play the bonus round, where even more impressive prizes await.

Lala Tuku, the acting group head of Video Entertainment, said: “It will be game night every night on the channel, and it’s a win-win for contestants and viewers alike. Everybody at home will be playing along.”

The host has not yet been revealed and calls for entries are opened via www.wheeloffortunesa.tv.

∎ “Wheel of Fortune South Africa” will be broadcast on S3 on Mondays to Fridays at 7.30pm from April 8. There will be daily rebroadcasts on SABC 2 at 9.30pm.