Tuesday, June 19, 2012

CBS outbids other networks for 'Draw Something' television pilot: sources

Since its acquisition of OMGPop and "Draw Something," its iOS (App Store link) and Android (Google Play link) apps, Zynga has had to defend the purchase, particularly with the huge drop in traffic since the deal closed. It may not have to justify the purchase for much longer, if a proposed TV pilot comes to fruition.

CBS has reportedly outbid a number of other networks for a pilot episode of a "Draw Something" game show. Notably, a pilot does not mean the show will ever air, but it is a step in that direction.

Variety said that inside sources told it the show could be described as follows:

"Teams of celebrities and everyday users will test their skills in front of a studio audience to earn money and big laughs. Viewers can also play along at home for a chance to win prizes and compete with the celebrities. [...]

The 'Draw' game involves competing players drawing a picture to convey a word for a fellow player to guess. Similar games have been adapted into TV series in the past, including syndicated fare during the 1980s and '90s like 'Pictionary' and 'Win, Lose or Draw.'

"But 'Draw' will have the 21st century spin of incorporating second-screen devices like phones and tablets that are increasingly common in the laps of U.S. viewers. No specifics are available on how that will be executed."

It's nice to see a "real" game show, in contrast to a reality TV show, being positioned for a prime-time airing. All we've seen lately have been dross shows like "The Choice," which aren't really game shows but mere fluff.

While OMGPOP's "Draw Something" apps leapt out of the gates in February, with more than 50 million downloads and more than 14 million daily users by April, its daily average user base had dropped by nearly half by late May.

Although Variety said there is no commitment to a series, it added that CBS would fast track the pilot. If the pilot is approved, the show could begin airing early in 2013.

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