- “The Price is Right” has been delighting American audiences since 1972.
- The popular game show on CBS gives contestants a chance to “come on down” and win prizes like vacations and cars.
- It took host Drew Carey a couple years to consider the show his own after he took over for Bob Barker, who encouraged Carey to be himself.
- Anyone can buy tickets to be in the audience, but few are chosen as contestants – producer Stan Blits interviews about 53,000 candidates per season.
- Watch the video above for a behind-the-scenes look at how the show is made today.
Since September 4, 1972, “The Price Is Right” has been delighting American audiences on CBS. The popular game show, previously hosted by Bob Barker, is now led by host Drew Carey. With popular games like Plinko and prizes like vacations and cars, the show is thriving in 2018.
When the show began in 1972, the wheel didn’t exist, only three contestants played, and each episode was only 30 minutes. By 1975, the wheel was introduced and episodes were twice as long – this version is still used today.
The original host of “The Price is Right,” Bob Barker, made it the iconic show it is today. When Drew Carey took over as host in 2007, it took him a couple years to consider the show his own, he told Insider. But Barker encouraged him to be himself. “Bob said, the best advice is to try not to copy him,” said Carey. “Now I feel like it’s my show totally. I always know there’s going to be a room full of excited people jumping around and it’s exciting for me.”
While anyone can be on the show, not everyone is chosen to compete. Audience members wait in line while producer, Stan Blits, interviews candidates to choose who gets to be a lucky contestant called to “come on down” to the stage.
He interviews about 53,000 people per season, looking for anyone who can maintain their energy through the entire show. “Everybody starts off great because they love the show and they’re excited initially,” said Blits, “but if you can match my energy, and exceed it, and maintain it, you have a really good chance of being on the show.” But being chosen by Stan is only half the battle – players have to make it past “Contestant’s Row” to play a game on stage with Carey.
About 20 people in the prize department research all the latest trends to determine what products appear on the show, from cars and travel destinations to furniture and handbags. “The days of the grandfather clocks are gone, so we’re now looking for what people want today and what’s exciting, and going to really get viewers at home to want these prizes,” said co-executive producer, Evelyn Warfel. The show stores all its prizes in a huge warehouse where it constantly receives new items.
“I grew up without any money so I really empathise with people when they win, and how happy they are to win anything, and just to be on the show,” said Carey.
Watch the video above for a behind-the-scenes look at how the show is made today.