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BBC America and NPR to Air WAIT WAIT...DON'T TELL 12/23

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BBC AMERICA and NPR announced today that the Peabody Award-winning radio quiz show, Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me!, will make its television debut on BBC AMERICA with a "2011 Year in Review" special on Friday, December 23, 8:00pm ET/PT. The year-end special will also broadcast on NPR stations on that weekend, December 24 and 25.

The Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me! (1 x 60) special will be produced by BBC AMERICA, NPR, and Chauncey Street Productions, with Albie Hecht and Doug Berman serving as executive producers. Host Peter Sagal, along with official judge and scorekeeper Carl Kasell, will lead a panel of both US and UK talent, including comedians Paula Poundstone and Alonzo Bodden, through 2011's biggest events. The special will look back at the year's top stories from an American and British perspective and will also include listener contests and celebrity guests from both sides of the pond. The show will tape in front of a live audience at the Chase Auditorium in Chicago on December 2.

Perry Simon, General Manager, Channels, BBC Worldwide America says: "The comedy panel show has been a staple of British television and Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me! is the gold standard of the format on radio in the US. This year-end special offers the perfect opportunity to join forces with our friends at NPR and is a great addition to our new original programming development stable. As a long-time listener of Wait Wait Don't... Tell Me!, I think its television debut is long overdue and I can't wait to see what Peter, Carl and the team look like."

Doug Berman, creator and benevolent overlord of NPR's Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me! and Car Talk, says: "It's going to be pretty much what we do every week, except NPR has to add a budget line for pants."

Host Peter Sagal says: "This is terrific, because I always assumed that the only way I could get on the BBC would be to have David Attenborough narrate my mating rituals. Glad this happened instead."

Now in its 14th season, Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me! has an audience of more than 3.2 million listeners weekly on 595 NPR member public radio stations. Its audience has grown in every ratings period since its premiere in January 1998. The radio show is produced by NPR and WBEZ. To find local stations and broadcast times, play games and laugh along with the show's blog, visit www.npr.org/waitwait.


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