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C4 boosts online for 'Million Pound Drop'

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Davina McCall hosts The Million Pound Drop

© Channel 4

Channel 4 has confirmed plans to boost levels of online engagement around its new gameshow The Million Pound Drop.

Hosted by Davina McCall, the live show will air at 10pm on Channel 4 for six consecutive nights from May 24.

Players will be given £1m and must answer eight questions by betting a portion of the money on trap doors bearing the answer that they believe to be correct.

During the programme, viewers will be able to interact in real-time via an online version of the game at the Channel 4 website, reports New Media Age.

Created by Monterosa, the game will mirror the main show by users receiving a virtual £1m which they can bet on answers when a question is posed to the real contestant.

Responses given online will then be fed back to the studio and McCall will discuss how viewers are playing at home.

"We've never done anything on this scale for a gameshow before," said Channel 4's cross-platform commissioner of entertainment, drama and comedy Jody Smith.

"The experience will be split between the two screens. Players can then boast about how well they're scoring on Twitter and Facebook."

Monterosa creative director Tom McDonnell added: "The Million Pound Drop is a great format, but playing along live makes it even better.

"Integrating real-time participation with a format is challenging but we've worked closely with Endemol and Channel 4 to integrate the two creatively. The pay-off is a greater sense of event, and being able to engage fans of the show more deeply."

In another use of digital media, programme-maker Endemol used social media sites Facebook and Twitter to locate contestants and arrange auditions for the show.

David Flynn, managing director of Endemol's Remarkable Television, which produced the show, said: "The plan was to create buzz and an air of mystery around the show by trickling information about auditions via Twitter and Facebook, giving fans a level of exclusivity."

Also today, it was confirmed that the first television commercial featuring advice on abortion services will be screened at 10.10pm during the opening Million Pound Drop on May 24.

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