This is everything you need to know about the ‘young, sexy and modern’ dating show – 13 years after Cilla quit live on air
FORGET First Dates, Love Island and Take Me Out – before Paddy McGuiness was a household name, Saturday night dating was presented by the legendary Cilla Black.
And now Blind Date is BACK after a 13-year hiatus. Here’s everything you need to know about the revamped version of the classic dating show.
When is Blind Date back on TV and what channel is it on?
Blind Date is expected to return to our TV screens by the end of the year.
Unlike the original show, which was broadcast on ITV, the new show will appear on Channel 5.
Blind Date will be created by production company So Television, who make The Graham Norton Show, and Stellify Media, a firm part-owned by Sony Pictures Television.
The show is expected to air on a Friday night, rather than its traditional Saturday slot, and the pilot series is expected to run for between six and eight episodes.
Who is presenter Paul O’Grady?
Paul was a natural choice for Channel 5, being late Cilla’s best friend. He was so close to the late Scouser he delivered the eulogy at her funeral.
The legendary British presenter Cilla passed away in August 2015, having suffered a stroke following a fall in her Spanish villa.
He said: “Blind Date is an incredibly special family show which brought laughter, tears and joy to TV viewers.
“I am honoured to present the brand new series and after speaking to Channel 5, I know the series is in safe hands.
“I can’t wait to see if we can find love.”
Cilla quit in 2003 after ratings of the show, which ran for 373 episodes, fell to less than 3 million viewers.
61 year old Paul is widely renowned for his TV work including stints on Blankety Blank, The Paul O’Grady show and most recently For the Love of Dogs.
How does Blind Date work?
Blind Date involves one singleton asking three members of the opposite sex questions about them.
Their potential blind dates are hidden behind a screen, and the contestant must pick one lucky lad or lady based purely on their answers.
The two rejected hopefuls then parade past the contestant before the screen is pulled back to reveal their, often disappointing, chosen date.
The new couples then pick a destination for their all-expenses-paid holiday date from an envelope, with locations ranging from Bognor Regis to the Maldives.
It often did not work out well, with poor Cilla being forced to break up arguments when the couples returned to next week to discuss their date.
However, three couples did go on to get married – while the likes of Amanda Holden and Nikki Grahame launched their careers on the dating show.
The format is completely different to modern day dating apps such as Tinder, which only offer potential daters photos and brief information such as the person’s name.
How can you apply to be on Blind Date?
If you’re aged 18 or over and live in the UK, you can follow this link to apply to be on the show.
The form requires basic personal information plus details on your fave celeb crush.
How will the new show be different?
Speaking exclusively to The Sun about the new show, Blind Date sources said: “It’s a classic format that will be rebooted to make it young, sexy and modern. Expect sparks to fly.
“In an age of Tinder, you have got to earn the right to love on this show.”
The show will appeal to “a new generation of viewers” and while some of the “traditions of the past” will be kept the same, sources say it will also be updated for modern times and will feature same sex couples.
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