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Manchester Evening News
Manchester Evening News
Katie Fitzpatrick

'Gladiators, ready!': Contenders are needed for reboot of iconic 90s show Gladiators

It was a Saturday night staple back in the 90s and the iconic gameshow Gladiators is looking for a new batch of contenders after being officially confirmed for a return to our screens. Grab your pugil sticks because the action-packed entertainment show is making a comeback to a new home on the BBC.

A new 11 episode series is being produced by Hungry Bear Media, and they are on the search for elite athletes across the UK at the peak of their physical fitness to be part of the new generation of Gladiators. They are on the lookout for people, aged 18 and above, with the speed and skill to take on the mighty new Gladiators.

The gameshow originally aired from 1992 to 2000 on ITV and was hosted by Ulrika Jonsson and John Fashanu. During this era the likes of Trojan, Jet, Nightshade and Hunter became household names.


The format, which originated in the US, was replicated in Australia, South Africa, Russia, Finland, Germany, Nigeria, Denmark and Sweden. When it returned to Sky, airing between 2008-2009, Kirsty Gallacher and Ian Wright took over hosting duties from the original presenters with original referee John Anderson returning. The BBC has not yet announced who will host the revived show.

Kate Phillips, the BBC’s director of unscripted, said previously: “Gladiators is back and a whole new generation of viewers can now look forward to watching a Saturday night spectacle like no other.

Ulrika Jonsson with Shadow and Saracen (ITV/REX/Shutterstock)

“Will the contenders have the will and the skill to succeed against our mighty new Gladiators? You’ll have to tune in to find out.”

Dan Baldwin, managing director of Hungry Bear, said: “It’s the perfect time for Gladiators to return. What other show combines electric excitement, superheroes, giant sponge fingers, elite athletes, and a pinch of pantomime? Watch out for the new breed of superhuman, supersized, superstars bursting on to your screens on BBC One and iPlayer.” The team is coming to Manchester in April to hold contender try-outs. Click here for more information.


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