Family Fortunes

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Family Fortunes
GenreGame show
Presented byBob Monkhouse (1980–1983)
Max Bygraves (1983–1985)
Les Dennis (1987–2002)
Andy Collins (2002)
Country of originUnited Kingdom
Original language(s)English
No. of series22
No. of episodes545
Production
Running time30mins (inc. adverts)
Production company(s)ATV (1980–2)
Central (1982–99)
Carlton (1999–2002)
DistributorITV Studios
Release
Original networkITV
Picture format4:3 (1980–2002)
16:9 (2002)
Original release6 January 1980 (1980-01-06) –
6 December 2002 (2002-12-06)
Chronology
Related showsFamily Feud
All Star Family Fortunes

Family Fortunes is a British television game show. It is based on the American game show Family Feud. It has aired in various forms since 1980. The current version running since 2020 is presented by Gino D’Acampo. This version airs on Sunday nights on ITV.

Gameplay[change | change source]

Two teams of five family members compete to guess the answers to survey questions asked to 100 people. The answers are seen on a huge survey board, named Mr. Babbage after Charles Babbage, who came up with the idea of a computer that could be programmed. Each answer is worth £1 per point. If a given answer does not make the survey, the family gets a strike. This is indicated by an "Eh-uh" sound effect, which has become a popular element of the show. If a family gets three strikes, the other family can steal the points by giving an answer that makes the survey. After three rounds, Double Money is played. Here, answers are worth £2 a point, and there are usually fewer answers. The first team to reach 300 points goes on to play Big Money. During gameplay, a special sound effect is heard with some answers which means a contestant has won a small prize such as home appliances or short breaks. Some questions result in hilarious responses from contestants of which there were many over the show’s run. One such example from a Les Dennis episode was Name A Bird With A Long Neck? in which one contestant replied with Naomi Campbell, a well-known supermodel at the time when it aired.

Big Money[change | change source]

Two members of the winning family are asked five survey questions, one at a time. One family member is on-stage, while the other is off-stage. After the five questions are answered or the time limit (either 15 or 20 seconds) is up, the answers and their point values are revealed. After that, the other family member is asked the same five questions. They must give different answers. Afterwards, the answers and their point values are revealed. If the family gets 200 points or more, they win the top prize. If the family gives the number one answers for all five questions, they also win a bonus prize, from 1994 to 2002, a family car was offered as the star prize and from 1998, either that or an exotic holiday. If they do not reach 200 points, they win £2 per point (£10 per point in the current version). In a 1983 episode when Max Bygraves was hosting, one contestant gave the answer of Turkey to three of the questions asked in the round, causing much amusement.

Show history[change | change source]

Family Fortunes originally aired from 1980 to 2002 on ITV. It was hosted by Bob Monkhouse from 1980 to 1983. In 1983, Max Bygraves replaced him and hosted until 1985. When the show came back in 1987, it was hosted by Les Dennis who became the best known host until 2002. In 2002, he was replaced by Andy Collins when it became a daytime show which wasn’t very popular who hosted until the show's end that same year. The All Star version, which started in 2006 and featured celebrity families was hosted by Vernon Kay and ran until 2015. In 2020, the show returned with normal families playing again, this time hosted by Italian chef Gino D’Acampo.

Other websites[change | change source]