Let's Make a Deal

Let's Make a Deal (also known as LMAD) a television game show that originated in the United States in 1963 and has since been produced in many countries throughout the world. The program was created and produced by Stefan Hatos and Monty Hall, the latter serving as its host for nearly 30 years.

Let's Make a Deal
Also known asThe All New Let's Make a Deal (1984–86)
GenreGame show
Created byStefan Hatos
Monty Hall
Directed byJoe Behar (1963–77, 1984–85)
Geoff Theobald (1980–81)
Hank Behar (1985–86)
Barry Glazer (1990–91)
James Marcione (1990–91)
Morris Abraham (2003)
Lenn Goodside (2009–present)
Presented by
Carol Merrill
Maggie Brown
Julie Hall
Karen LaPierre
Melanie Vincz
Diane Klimaszewski
Elaine Klimaszewski
Georgia Satelle
Alison Fiori
Tiffany Coyne
Danielle Demski
Narrated byWendell Niles
Jay Stewart
Chuck Chandler
Brian Cummings
Dean Goss
Dean Miuccio
Vance DeGeneres
Jonathan Mangum
Music bySheldon Allman (1963–77, 1984–86)
Marilyn Hall (1963–77, 1984–86)
Michel Camilo for Score Productions, Inc. (1984–86)
Composer(s)Ivan Ditmars (1963–76)
Stan Worth (1976–77, 1980–81)
Sheldon Allman (1976–77, 1984–85)
Todd Thicke (1985–86)
Jerry Ray (1990–91)
Country of originUnited States
No. of episodesNBC/ABC (1963–76): ~3,200
Syndicated (1971–77): 281
Syndicated (1981): 195
Syndicated (1984–86): 390
NBC (1990–91): 128
NBC (2003): 3
CBS (2009–present): 1,500+ (as of February 2018)
Executive producer(s)Stefan Hatos (1980–81, 1984–86)
Dick Clark (1990–91)
Ron Greenberg (1990–91)
Monty Hall (2003)
Sharon Hall (2003)
David Garfinkle (2003)
Jay Renfroe (2003)
Jeff Mirkin (2003)
Mike Richards (2009–present)
Producer(s)Stefan Hatos (1963–77)
Monty Hall (1980–81)
Ian MacClennan (1980–81)
Bob Synes (1984–86)
Alan Gilbert (1984–86)
Bruce Starin (1990–91)
Paul Pieratt (1990–91)
Ross Kaiman (2003)
Gloria Fujita-O'Brien (2003)
Production location(s)NBC Studios, Burbank, California (1963–68, 1984–85, 2003)
ABC Television Center, Hollywood, California (1968–76)
Las Vegas Hilton, Las Vegas, Nevada (1976–77)
Panorama Studios, Vancouver, British Columbia (1980–81)
Hollywood Center Studios, Hollywood (1985–86)
Disney's Hollywood Studios, Orlando, Florida (1990–91)
Tropicana Resort & Casino, Las Vegas (2009–10)
Sunset Bronson Studios, Hollywood (2010–2014)
Raleigh Studios Hollywood (2015–present)
Running time22–26 minutes (1963–77, 1980–81, 1984–86, 1990–91)
44–52 minutes (2003, 2009–present)
Production company(s)Stefan Hatos-Monty Hall Productions (1963–77, 1980–81, 1984–86, 2009–present)
Catalena Productions (1980–81)
Dick Clark Productions (1990–91)
Ron Greenberg Productions (1990–91)
Monty Hall Enterprises, Inc. (2003)
Fremantle North America (2009–present)
DistributorABC Films/Worldvision Enterprises (1971–77)
Rhodes Productions (1980–81)
Telepictures Corporation (1984–86)
Fremantle (2009–present)
Original networkNBC (1963–68, 1990–91, 2003)
ABC (1968–76)
Syndicated (1971–77, 1980–81, 1984–86)
CBS (2009–present)
Picture formatSDTV (480i) (1963–2014)
HDTV (1080i) (2014–)
Original releaseDecember 30, 1963 (1963-12-30) 
External links

The format of Let's Make a Deal involves selected members of the studio audience, referred to as "traders," making deals with the host. In most cases, a trader will be offered something of value and given a choice of whether to keep it or exchange it for a different item. The program's defining game mechanism is that the other item is hidden from the trader until that choice is made. The trader thus does not know if he or she is getting something of greater value or a prize that is referred to as a "zonk," an item purposely chosen to be of little or no value to the trader.

Let's Make a Deal is also known for audience members who dress up in outrageous or crazy costumes in order to increase their chances of being selected as a trader.[1][2]

The most recent edition of Let's Make a Deal has been airing on CBS since October 5, 2009, when it took over the spot on the network's daytime schedule vacated by the long running soap opera Guiding Light. Wayne Brady is the host of the current series, with Jonathan Mangum as his announcer/assistant. Tiffany Coyne is the current model, joining in 2010, with musician Cat Gray in 2011.

Broadcast history

Let's Make a Deal first aired on NBC in 1963 as part of its daytime schedule. The show moved to ABC in 1968, where it remained until 1976; and on two separate occasions the show was given a weekly nighttime spot on those networks.[3] The first syndicated edition of Let's Make a Deal premiered in 1971. Distributed by ABC Films, and then by its successor Worldvision Enterprises once the fin-syn rules were enacted, the series ran until 1977 and aired weekly.

A revival of the series based in Hall's native Canada was launched in 1980 and aired in syndication on American and Canadian stations for one season. This series was produced by Catalena Productions and distributed in America by Rhodes Productions, Catalena's partner company. In the fall of 1984, the series returned for a third run in syndication as The All-New Let's Make a Deal. Running for two seasons until 1986, this series was distributed by Telepictures.

NBC revived Let's Make a Deal twice in a thirteen-year span. The first was a daytime series in 1990 that was the first to not be produced or hosted by Monty Hall. Instead, the show was a production of Ron Greenberg and Dick Clark, and featured Bob Hilton (best known for announcing other game shows) as host (although Hall would eventually return as host for special episodes).

A primetime edition was launched in 2003 but drew poor ratings and was cancelled after three of its intended five episodes had aired. This version had reporter Billy Bush as host, and had a significantly larger budget.

A partial remake called Big Deal, hosted by Mark DeCarlo, was broadcast on Fox in 1996. In 1998 and 1999, Buena Vista Television (now Disney–ABC Domestic Television) was in talks with Stone-Stanley (the producers of Big Deal) to create a revival hosted by Gordon Elliott, but it was never picked up.[4] The show was one of several used as part of the summer series Gameshow Marathon on CBS in 2006, hosted by Ricki Lake.

As noted above, CBS revived Let's Make a Deal in 2009. The revival premiered on October 5, 2009, and CBS airs the show daily at 10:00 am and 3:00 pm Eastern time (9:00 am and 2:00 pm in other time zones). Like the program that it replaced, the long-running soap opera Guiding Light, affiliates can choose to air it in either time slot; most affiliates, however, prefer the early slot in order to pair the two CBS daytime game shows together.

From September 20 to October 15, 2010, Let's Make a Deal and The Price Is Right aired two episodes a day on alternating weeks. CBS did this to fill a gap between the final episode of As the World Turns, which ended a fifty-four-year run on September 17, 2010, and the debut of The Talk. The double-run games aired at 2:00 pm Eastern.

Although the current version of the show debuted in September 2009, long after The Price Is Right (which made the switch in 2008, first with primetime episodes in February, then daytime in September) and the two Sony Pictures Television daytime dramas had made the switch to high definition, Let's Make a Deal was, along with Big Brother, one of only two programs across the five major networks that was still being actively produced in standard definition. For the start of production for its 2014–15 season in June 2014, Let's Make a Deal began being produced in high definition, with Big Brother 16 making the switch later in June. Let's Make a Deal was the last remaining CBS program to make the switch by air date, with the first HD episode airing on September 22, 2014.[5]

Past personnel

Monty Hall hosted the original daytime network series for its entire run (with the exception of a short time in early 1972 when Hall fell ill and early television pioneer Dennis James substituted in his stead); Hall also hosted its accompanying primetime and syndicated series as well as the two 1980s syndicated efforts, and he served as consultant for the current version until his death in 2017.

Game show announcer Bob Hilton became the new host for the NBC 1990 series; however, due to low ratings, Hilton was fired from the show and in October 1990, Hall returned to the show (but was announced as "guest host") and remained as host until the series was canceled in January 1991. Access Hollywood host Billy Bush emceed the 2003 series, with Hall making a cameo appearance in one episode.

Each Let's Make a Deal announcer also served as a de facto assistant host, as many times the announcer would be called upon to carry props across the trading floor. The original announcer for the series was Wendell Niles, who was replaced by Jay Stewart in 1964. Stewart remained with Let's Make a Deal until the end of the syndicated series in 1977. The 1980 Canadian-produced syndicated series was announced by Chuck Chandler. The 1984 syndicated series employed voice actor Brian Cummings in the announcer/assistant role for its first season, with disc jockey Dean Goss taking the position for the following season. The 1990 NBC revival series was announced by Dean Miuccio, with the 2003 edition featuring Vance DeGeneres in that role.

The longest tenured prize model on Let's Make a Deal was Carol Merrill, who stayed with the series from its debut until 1977. The models on the 1980s series were Maggie Brown, Julie Hall (1980), Karen LaPierre, and Melanie Vincz (1984). For the 1990 series, the show featured Georgia Satelle and identical twins Elaine and Diane Klimaszewski, who later gained fame as the Coors Light Twins.

Hall (2010 and 2013) and Merrill (2013) both appeared on the current Brady version, each making one-week appearances each. The 2013 celebration of the franchise's 50th anniversary was Hall's last official appearance on the show prior to his death, but Hall also appeared in 2017 CBS publicity shots with Brady as part of a CBS Daytime publicity photo celebrating the network's daytime ratings.[6]

When the current version debuted in 2009 at Las Vegas, Alison Fiori was the show's original model, lasting for much of the first season in Las Vegas before the show moved to Los Angeles. During the 2013-14 season, Danielle Demski was the show's model for most of the season while Tiffany Coyne was on maternity leave.

Production locations

The original daytime series was recorded at NBC Studios in Burbank, California and then at ABC Television Center in Los Angeles once the program switched networks in 1968. The weekly syndicated series also taped at ABC Television Center, doing so for its first five seasons. After ABC cancelled the daytime series in 1976, production of the syndicated series ceased there as well and the sixth and final season was recorded in the ballroom of the Las Vegas Hilton hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada.

The 1980 Canadian series taped at Panorama Studios in Vancouver, BC, which production company Catalena Productions used as its base of operations. The All-New Let's Make a Deal taped its first season of episodes in Burbank at NBC Studios, then moved to Hollywood Center Studios in Hollywood, California for the second and final season. The 1990 NBC daytime series was recorded at Disney-MGM Studios on the grounds of Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida. The 2003 revival returned production to Burbank.

The current edition of the series first originated from the Tropicana in Las Vegas. The show returned to Hollywood in 2010, first at Sunset Bronson Studios and later at Raleigh Studios. The show currently films at Saticoy Studios in Van Nuys, California.


The theme music for the 1963-77 versions was composed by Sheldon Allman. The theme, along with all incidental music, was performed by an in-studio combo led by Ivan Ditmars, consisting of an electric organ, guitar, drums, and on the nighttime version, a harp. In some seasons of the nighttime show, the combo was further augmented by a horn section. The final season of the nighttime show taped in Las Vegas eliminated the in-studio band in favor of pre-recorded tracks, due to Ivan Ditmars' retirement.[7]

The 1984-86 version featured a brand new theme provided by Score Productions, although original composer Sheldon Allman returned as music director for the first season. Todd Thicke replaced Allman in that role for the second season. Both music directors utilized music from previous Hatos-Hall shows, such as Split Second, as incidental cues during the show.

The 2009 revival features another new theme composed by Brian Teed. Since 2011, keyboardist Cat Grey has provided in-studio musical accompaniment. [8]


Game play

Each episode of Let's Make a Deal consists of several "deals" between the host and a member (or members, generally a married couple) of the audience, referred to as "traders." Audience members are picked at the host's whim as the show moves along, and couples are often selected to play together as traders. The deals are mini-games within the show that take several formats.

In the simplest format, a trader is given a prize of medium value (such as a television set or a few hundred dollars in cash), and the host offers them the opportunity to trade for another prize. However, the offered prize is unknown. It might be concealed on the stage behind one of three curtains, or behind "boxes" onstage (large panels painted to look like boxes), within smaller boxes brought out to the audience, or occasionally in other formats. The initial prize given to the trader may also be concealed, such as in a box, wallet or purse, or the trader might be initially given a box, envelope or curtain. The format varies widely.

Technically, traders are supposed to bring something to trade in, but this rule has seldom been enforced. On several occasions, a trader is actually asked to trade in an item such as their shoes or purse, only to receive the item back at the end of the deal as a "prize". On at least one occasion, the purse was taken backstage and a high-valued prize was placed inside of it.

Prizes generally are either a legitimate prize, such as a trip, electronics, furniture, appliances, or a car. Certain contestants also win cash, or a junked booby prize called a "zonk" (e.g., live animals, large amounts of food, fake money, fake trips, junked cars, etc. or something outlandish such as a giant article of clothing, a room full of junked furniture, etc.). Sometimes zonks are legitimate prizes but of a low value (e.g., Matchbox cars, wheelbarrows, T-shirts, groceries, etc.). On rare occasions, a trader appears to get zonked, but the zonk is a cover-up for a legitimate prize. Also on rare occasions, a contestant who is zonked is given an opportunity to play for the Big Deal of the Day; usually, this happens only if there are very few or no big winners during the show.

Though usually considered joke prizes, traders legally win the zonks.[9] However, after the taping of the show, any trader who had been zonked is offered a consolation prize (currently $100) instead of having to take home the actual zonk. This is partly because some of the zonks are impractical or physically impossible to receive or deliver to the traders (such as live animals or the guy in an animal costume), or the props are owned by the studio. A disclaimer at the end of the credits of later 1970s episodes read "Some traders accept reasonable duplicates of zonk prizes." Starting in the 2012–13 season, CBS invited viewers to provide zonk ideas to producers. At the end of the season, the zonk declared the most creative was worth $2,500 to the winner, and other viewers' zonk ideas were also used. For every viewer-developed zonk, the host announced the viewer who provided the zonk. The contest has been continued throughout the past several seasons after its 2012 introduction.

Quickie Deals

As the end credits of the show roll, it is typical for the host to ask random members of the studio audience to participate in fast deals. In the current Wayne Brady version, these are often referred to as "quickie deals", and are conducted by the host, announcer, and model each. CBS will post information on the show's Twitter address (@LetsMakeADeal) days before taping to encourage audience members to carry certain items in their pockets in order to win an additional $500 cash, when one of the hosts approaches them at the end of the show and asks to see such items.[10] The deals are usually in the form of the following:

  • Offering cash to a person for possessing a certain item.
  • Paying a small cash amount for each instance of a certain item (coins, paperclips, etc.) that a person can produce.
  • Offering cash for each instance of a particular digit in the serial number on a dollar bill, driver's license, etc.
  • Offering to pay the last check in the person's checkbook, if they had one, up to a certain limit (usually $500 or $1,000).
  • Offering cash to one person if they can correctly guess how much the Big Deal of the Day was worth exactly, or the name of the contestant who played for it.
  • Offering cash to one person if they can correctly choose which one of two photos appeared on the show's Instagram account.
  • Offering cash to one person if they can correctly answer a question relating to their costume.
  • Offering cash to one person if they can correctly guess how much money ($100, $200, or $300) was in the announcer's hand.

Other deal formats

Deals are often more complicated than the basic format described above. Additionally, some deals take the form of games of chance, and others in the form of pricing games.

Trading deals

  • Choosing an envelope, purse, wallet, etc., which conceal dollar bills. One of them conceals a pre-announced value (usually $1 or $5), which awards a car or trip. The other envelopes contain a larger amount of money as a consolation prize. The trader must decide whether to keep their choice or trade. In some playings it is possible for more than one trader to win the grand prize.
  • Making decisions for another person, such as a spouse or a series of unrelated traders. Sometimes after several offers, the teams are broken up to make an individual decision.
  • Being presented with a large grocery item (e.g., a box of candy bars)—almost always containing a hidden cash amount—or a "claim check" at the start of the show. Throughout the show, the trader is given several chances to trade the item and/or give it to another trader in exchange for a different box or curtain. The final trader in possession of the item prior to the Big Deal is usually offered first choice of the three doors in exchange for giving up the item. The contents of the item are only revealed after the Big Deal is awarded (or prior to the Big Deal if the last trader with the item elected to choose one of the three doors). A variation included a cash box with at various points the host inserting packets of money inside, with the trader allowed to give it to another trader in exchange for a curtain or box. As with the above deal, the host revealed the contents only after the last trader with the box goes for the Big Deal (again, he/she is given first choice of the doors) or after the Big Deal segment and before the closing credits.

Games of chance

A wide variety of chance-based games have been used on the show. Examples:

  • Collecting a certain amount of money hidden inside wallets, envelopes, etc., or by pressing unlabeled buttons on a cash register, in order to reach a pre-stated "selling price" for a larger prize, such as a car, trip or larger amount of cash. Typically, there may also be one or more zonk items hidden which end the game immediately if found. In the cash register game, if the zonk button—the one that rings up "No Sale" – is found, the trader was offered a chance to find the second "No Sale" sign to win the grand prize, otherwise the trader won whatever amount was rang up, often double the amount. In the current CBS version, a board with thirteen cash amounts and two zonks is used.
  • Choosing one from among several items (e.g., one of three keys that unlocks a safe, one of three diamond rings that is genuine, one of three eggs that is raw, etc.) in order to win money or a prize. Sometimes, two or perhaps all three of the items would pay off with the stated prize, especially if multiple traders played.
  • Games involving a deck of cards in which a trader must find matching cards, draw cards that reach a cumulative total within a certain number of draws, draw a certain number of cards from a certain suit to win a designated prize (with one suit always designated as going toward a "zonk," which ends the game with nothing won), etc. to win a prize or additional money.
  • Receiving clues about an unknown prize (such as a partial spelling of the prize or clues in the form or rap, rhyme, etc.) and deciding whether to take the unknown prize or a cash prize.
  • Receiving money in the form of a long strip of bills dispensed one at a time from a machine. The trader can end the game at any time and keep the accumulated money, but he/she forfeits it if a blank sheet appears. Updated versions of the game involve an ATM. Depositing a card withdraws cash, but if the ATM displays "overdrawn" on the screen the trader loses everything.
  • Being given a choice between a cash prize or one spin of a wheel that can award larger/smaller amounts, a zonk, or a car.
  • Rolling dice to receive cash based upon the roll or achieving a cumulative score within a certain number of rolls to win a larger prize.

Depending on the game, the trader is given the opportunity to stop the game at various points and take a "sure thing" deal or cash/prizes already accumulated or continue on and risk possibly losing.

Pricing games

Other deals related to pricing merchandise are featured in order to win a larger prize or cash amounts. Sometimes traders are required to price individual items (either grocery products or smaller prizes generally valued less than $100) within a certain range to win successively larger prizes or a car. Other times traders must choose an item that a pre-announced price, order grocery items or small prizes from least to most expensive, or two items with prices that total a certain amount to win a larger prize. These games are not used on the CBS version because of their similarities to The Price is Right.

Quiz games

On the CBS version, due to the similarities of the pricing game concept with The Price is Right, quiz games are used instead. These deals involve products in the form of when they were introduced to the market, general knowledge quizzes, currency exchange rates (at the time of taping), or knowledge of geography of trips to certain locales used as prizes.

Big Deal

The Big Deal serves as the final segment of the show and offers a chance at a significantly larger prize for a lucky trader. Before the round, the value of the day's Big Deal is announced to the audience.

The process for choosing traders was the same for every series through the 2003 NBC primetime series. Monty Hall (or his successors) would begin asking the day's traders, starting with the highest winner, if they wanted to give back what they had managed to win earlier in the show for a chance to choose one of three numbered doors on the stage. The process continued until two traders agreed to play, and the biggest winner of the two got first choice of Door #1, Door #2, or Door #3. The other trader then chose from the remaining two doors. Since the 2009 series, the Big Deal has been played with just one trader.

Each of the doors conceals either a prize package of some sort, or a cash award hidden inside a prop such as "Monty's Piggy Bank" or the "Let's Make a Deal Vault." On occasion, a door containing an all-cash prize is opened before the traders make their choices, but the amount of the prize is not revealed. Most often, the value of the "Low" Door (the lowest-valued door) is less than the value of the player's original winnings, while the "Medium" Door's value is at least $1,000 more than the player's traded winnings.

When the Big Deal is not behind the selected door, one of the non-Big Deal doors is opened first, then the chosen door, with the Big Deal revealed last. If the Big Deal door IS selected, the other two doors are usually revealed first, although on rare occasions, the Big Deal door has been revealed second, after one of the other two doors (usually the "Medium" door) is revealed.

The Big Deal prize is usually the most extravagant on each episode, and is often a car or a vacation with first-class accommodations. On occasion, the Big Deal consists of one of the all-cash prizes mentioned above; at other times, a cash bonus is added to the prizes in the Big Deal to bring the total up to the announced value. On other occasions, the Big Deal is revealed to include "Everything in the Big Deal", meaning the prizes behind all 3 doors are won if the player chose the Big Deal.

The Big Deal is the one time in the show where a trader is guaranteed to not walk away with a Zonk.

Super Deal

During the 1975–76 syndicated season, winners of the Big Deal were offered a chance to win the "Super Deal". At this point, Big Deals were limited to a range of $8,000 to $10,000. The trader could risk their Big Deal winnings on a shot at adding a $20,000 cash prize, which was hidden behind only one of three mini-doors onstage. The other two doors contained cash amounts of $1,000 or $2,000; however, the $1,000 value was later replaced with a "mystery" amount between $1,000 and $9,000. A trader who decided to play risked their Big Deal winnings and selected one of the mini-doors. If the $20,000 prize was behind the door, the trader kept the Big Deal and added the $20,000 prize, for a potential maximum total of $30,000. However, if a trader selected one of the other two doors, he or she forfeited the Big Deal prizes but kept the cash amount behind the door. The Super Deal was discontinued when the show permanently moved to Las Vegas for the final season (1976–77), and Big Deal values returned to the previous range of $10,000 to $15,000.

From 2012 to 2016 of the Brady version, the Super Deal was offered as a limited event (usually for a week of shows promoted as "Super Deal Week") and was not played regularly. The show designated one or two weeks of episodes, typically airing during a special event (e.g., the 500th episode, 50th anniversary of franchise, etc.). In this version, the top cash prize was $50,000 while the other two cash prizes were $1,000 and $2,000. In addition, instead of using mini-doors, the cash amounts were hidden in three large colored envelopes of red, green, and purple, respectively referred by Brady as ruby, emerald, and sapphire.


In the 2019 premiere week, a variant called “Trip-Tastic” was played. At three random points in the game, Tiffany will show the dealer a golden ticket. This ticket allows them to play Trip-Tastic. This round is played like this: the three envelopes, ruby, emerald, and sapphire, are now attached to a map of the Earth. The first ticket holder makes a choice. Then, the second chooses between the remaining 2, leaving one envelope for the last ticket holder. After that, Wayne will reveal the envelope holding $500. Then he opens another envelope. The one that has the ticket, wins not one, not two but three trips. The others leave with $500 and $1,000, respectively.

Mega-Deal week

For season premiere weeks in 2015 and 2016 of the Brady version, Big Deal of the Day winners had an opportunity to win every non-zonk, non-cash prize from that day's episode as a "Mega-Deal". Prior to the start of the Big Deal, the contestant picked both a Big Deal curtain and one of seven Mega Deal cards (reduced by one for each day that the Mega Deal was not won that week). Unlike the Super Deal, the contestant does not risk their winnings in the Mega Deal. Only if the contestant won the Big Deal would the contestant's card be revealed. If the card was the Mega Deal, they won every non-zonk, non-cash prize on the show that day. Regardless, at the end of the Big Deal, whichever door was chosen was the contestant's to keep.

Mash-Up Week

The week of May 9, 2016 was designated Mash-Up Week. During each of the five broadcast days, Deal and The Price Is Right each featured one game from the other's lineup. The games were slightly modified to reflect the nature of the shows on which they were played; those on TPIR required contestants to price items, while those on Deal used random draws and the offer of cash/prize deals to stop a game early.


Upon the original Let's Make a Deal's debut, journalist Charles Witbeck was skeptical of the show's chances of success, noting that the previous four NBC programs to compete with CBS's Password had failed.[11] Some critics described the show as "mindless" and "demeaning to traders and audiences alike".[1]

By 1974, however, the show had spent more than a decade at or near the top of daytime ratings, and became the highest-rated syndicated primetime program.[1] It was so popular that, when Hall moved the Let's Make a Deal to ABC because of a contract dispute, doing so greatly damaged NBC's daytime ratings and greatly improved ABC's.[12] The show held the world's record for the longest waiting list for tickets in show-business history; there were 350 seats available for each show, and a wait time of two to three years after requesting a ticket.[1][12]

In 2001, Let's Make a Deal was ranked as #18 on TV Guide's list of "The 50 Greatest Game Shows of All Time".[13] In 2006, GSN aired a series of specials counting down its own list of the "50 Greatest Game Shows of All Time", on which Let's Make a Deal was #7.[14]

In 2014, the American series won a Daytime Creative Arts Emmy Award for Outstanding Original Song for "30,000 Reasons to Love Me", composed by Cat Gray and sung by Wayne Brady.[15]

Episode status

  • ABC Daytime: A clip from the ABC daytime premiere was used on Monty Hall's "Biography", which aired during Game Show Week on A&E. Another episode from 1969 was found, which features a gaffe that Hall himself rated as his most embarrassing moment on Let's Make a Deal – at the end of the show, he attempted to make a deal with a woman carrying a baby's bottle. Noting that it had a removable rubber nipple, he offered the woman $100 if she could show him another nipple (she didn't).[16] Episodes substitute-hosted by Dennis James exist in his personal library; a portion of one such episode is widely circulated as part of a pitch film for James's version of The Price Is Right.[17]
  • ABC Nighttime/1971–77 Syndicated: Episodes have been seen on GSN in the past. The CBN Cable Network reran the syndicated series in the 1980s and its successor, The Family Channel, from June 7, 1993[18] to March 29, 1996.[19]
  • The 1980-81 version continued to air in reruns on Canada's Global Television Network through the late 1980s.
  • The 1984–86 syndicated version has been seen on GSN in the past. Reruns previously aired on the USA Network from December 29, 1986[20] to December 30, 1988[21] and The Family Channel from August 30, 1993[22] to March 29, 1996.[23] Buzzr began airing episodes from 1985 on June 1, 2016; this version of LMAD was returned on September 30th, 2019. GameTV in Canada aired 40 episodes of this version starting in July 2018 as part of their Gameshow RETRO block until it was dropped in October 2018.
  • The 1990s NBC version has not been seen since its cancellation.
  • The 2003 NBC prime time version only aired three of the five episodes produced, with no rebroadcasts since.

International versions

RTL Group holds international (and as of February 2009, American) rights to the show, and has licensed the show to 22 countries.

Region or country Local name Host Network Dates
Australia Let's Make A Deal Mike Dyer
John Laws
Jimmy Hannan
Garry Meadows
Nine Network 1968–69
Vince Sorrenti Network Ten 1990–91
Brazil[24] Topa um Acordo? Rodrigo Faro Rede Record April 26, 2014 – December 2014
Canada Let's Make A Deal Monty Hall Syndication 1980–81*
Egypt[25] لعبة الحياة – ليتس ميك آي ديل
Lebet el hayat
Moutaz Al-Demirdash Al Hayat 1 2013–present
France[26] Le Bigdil Vincent Lagaf' and Bill TF1 1998–2004
Germany[27] Geh aufs Ganze! Jörg Draeger
Elmar Hörig
Sat.1 (1992–97)
tm3 (1997–98)
kabel eins (1999–2003)
Greece[28] Τo Μεyάλo Παζάρi
To Megalo Pazari
Andreas Mikroutsikos Mega Channel 1992–93
Παρτα Ολα
Parta Ola
Τα σουτιέν και ο Αντρέας – Το πιο Μεγάλο Παζάρι
Ta soutien kai o Antreas – To pio Megalo Pazari
Alpha TV 2006–07
Κανε Παζαρι
Kane Pazari[29]
Doretta Papadimitriou Skai 2017–present
Hungary[30] Zsákbamacska Rozsa Gyorgy MTV 1 1994–98
India[31] Khullja Sim Sim Aman Verma
Hussain Kuwajerwala
Star Plus
BIG Magic
Indonesia[32] Super Deal 2 Milyar Nico Siahaan
Aditya Herpavi Rachman
Indra Bekti and Indy Barends
antv 2006–07
April 29, 2010 – December 31, 2010
July 25, 2011 – November 21, 2011
Super Deal Uya Kuya 2014–2015
Raffi Ahmad and Ruben Onsu 2016
Super Deal Indonesia Ananda Omesh, Andhika Pratama and Edric Tjandra GTV 2018
Israel עשינו עסק
Asinu eseq
Avri Gilad
Zvika Hadar
Channel 2 1994–95
Italy[33] Facciamo un affare Iva Zanicchi Canale 5 1985–86
Lebanon قصة كبيرة
Ossa kbireh
Michel Kazi Future TV 2002
Mexico Trato Hecho 1999
Poland[34] Idź na całość Zygmunt Chajzer (1997–2000)
Krzysztof Tyniec (2000–2001)
Polsat 1997–2001
Portugal[35] Negócio Fechado Henrique Mendes SIC 1999–2000
Romania Batem palma! Dan Negru Antena 1 2002–03
Spain[36] Fem Un Pacte Joan Monleón Canal Nou 1996
Trato Hecho Bertín Osborne Antena 3 1998–2000
¿Hay Trato? Carlos Sobera 2004
Thailand Done Deal ทำข้อตกลงซี้อ
Turkey Seç Bakalım Erhan Yazıcıoğlu Kanal 6
United Kingdom Trick or Treat Mike Smith and Julian Clary ITV 1989
U.S. Let's Make a Deal Monty Hall NBC 1963–67
ABC Daytime 1968–76
Primetime 1969–71
Syndication 1971–77
Syndication 1980–81*
The All-New Let's Make a Deal Syndication 1984–86
Let's Make a Deal Bob Hilton NBC 1990–91
Big Deal Mark DeCarlo FOX 1996
Let's Make a Deal Billy Bush NBC 2003
Wayne Brady CBS 2009–present
U.S. (in Spanish) Trato Hecho Guillermo Huesca Univision January 10, 2005 – December 9, 2005
Vietnam Ô cửa bí mật Trần Ngọc VTV3 January 6, 2008 – February 19, 2012

* The 1980–81 version aired in both the U.S. and Canada.


In 1964, Milton Bradley released a home version of Let's Make a Deal featuring gameplay somewhat different from the television show. In 1974, Ideal Toys released an updated version of the game featuring Hall on the box cover, which was also given to all traders on the syndicated version in the 1974–75 season. An electronic tabletop version by Tiger Electronics was released in 1998. In the late summer of 2006, an interactive DVD version of Let's Make a Deal was released by Imagination Games, which also features classic clips from the Monty Hall years of the show. In 2010, Pressman Toy Corporation released an updated version of the box game, with gameplay more similar to the 1974 version, featuring Brady on the box cover.[37]

Various U.S. lotteries have included instant lottery tickets based on Let's Make a Deal.[38]

In 1999, the website BuyBidWin.com[39] licensed the rights to Let's Make a Deal as it launched a website featuring Monty Hall.

In 1999, Shuffle Master teamed up with Bally's to do a video slot machine game based on the show with the voice and likeness of Monty Hall.

In 2004, IGT (International Gaming Technology) did a new video slot game based on the show still featuring Monty Hall.

In 2004, the now defunct website GameShow24.com was going to release a beta game based on Let's Make a Deal.

In 2012, a Facebook game based on the Wayne Brady[40] version was released by RealNetwork's GameHouse.

In 2013, Aristocrat Technology did an all-new video slot machine game based on the Wayne Brady version.

The Monty Hall Problem

The Monty Hall Problem, also called the Monty Hall paradox, is a veridical paradox because the result appears impossible but is demonstrably true. The Monty Hall problem, in its usual interpretation, is mathematically equivalent to the earlier Three Prisoners problem, and both bear some similarity to the much older Bertrand's box paradox. The problem examines the counterintuitive effect of switching one's choice of doors, one of which hides a "prize".

The problem has been analyzed many times, in books, articles and online.[41][42] In an interview with The New York Times reporter John Tierney in 1991, Hall gave an explanation of the solution to that problem, stating that he played on the psychology of the trader, and why the solution did not apply to the case of the actual show.[43]


  1. "Monty Hall's "Let's Make a Deal" Most Successful Television Program". Boca Raton News. 1974-04-28. p. 9B. Retrieved 2009-09-28.
  2. "Show Info". LetsMakeADeal.com. Retrieved 2009-12-20. Wearing costumes was the audience’s idea. To attract Monty’s attention, the traders got creative to out-do each other.
  3. "New Let's Make a Deal gets Zonked". CNN. 2003-03-19. Retrieved 2009-09-01.
  4. Petrozzello, Donna (4 April 1999). "The secret words are: game show". The Baltimore Sun. Retrieved 19 December 2013.
  5. Adalian, Josef (5 June 2014). "Big Brother 16 Twist Revealed: The Show Will (Finally) Be Seen in HD". Vulture. Retrieved 5 June 2014.
  6. "LMAD 50th Anniversary". CBS News. March 1, 2013. Retrieved 21 June 2017.
  7. http://www.letsmakeadeal.com/music.htm
  8. https://www.mixonline.com/sfp/let-s-make-deal-424238
  9. "Interview with Monty Hall". Archive of American Television. Retrieved 2008-06-24.
  10. "Let's Make a Deal". On Camera Audiences. Retrieved 3 March 2015.
  11. Witbeck, Charles (1964-01-26). "Two New Daytime Shows Aired". The Blade. p. 10H. Archived from the original on 2012-07-11. Retrieved 2009-09-28.
  12. Buck, Jerry (1974-04-30). "Monty Hall Deals in Entertainment". St. Petersburg Times. p. 10D. Retrieved 2009-09-28.
  13. Fretts, Bruce (June 12, 2013). "The 60 Greatest Game Shows of All Time". TV Guide. Retrieved 21 May 2019.
  14. "GSN's list of the 50 Greatest Game Shows of All Time slideshow". YouTube. Retrieved 12 September 2010.
  15. "'Sesame Street,' 'Ellen DeGeneres' Lead Daytime Emmy Creative Arts Winners". Variety. June 21, 2014. Retrieved June 30, 2014.
  16. "'Let's Make A Deal' Host Monty Hall Shares His Most Embarrassing Moment (VIDEO)". The Huffington Post. April 4, 2013. Retrieved March 9, 2017.
  17. "Dennis James" (PDF). Radical Software. 2 (2): 9–11. Spring 1973. Retrieved 10 June 2016.
  18. The Intelligencer—June 7, 1993
  19. TV Guide—March 23–29, 1996
  20. The Intelligencer—December 29, 1986
  21. The Intelligencer—December 30, 1988
  22. The Intelligencer—August 30, 1993
  23. The Intelligencer—March 29, 1996
  24. "Plateia fantasiada ganha muitos prêmios no Topa Um Acordo?". R7.com (in Portuguese). 4 May 2014.
  25. لعبة الحياة: تقديم معتز الدمرداش .. الحلقة الثانية. Youtube (in Arabic).
  26. "Tous les programmes que vous verrez bientôt à la télévision". www.strategies.fr (in French). Archived from the original on 2014-02-01.
  27. "TV total Hilft - Geh aufs Ganze". TV total.
  29. Το ιστορικό τηλεπαιχνίδι, που έχει κατακτήσει όλο τον κόσμο επιστρέφει ανανεωμένο στη συχνότητα του ΣΚΑΪ.. www.skai.gr (in Greek). Archived from the original on 2017-01-23.
  30. "Zsakbamacska Part 1". YouTube (in Hungarian).
  31. "Now Hussain to say 'Khulja Sim Sim' on Star Plus". Indian Television Dot Com. 7 September 2004.
  32. https://www.antvklik.com/hiburan/superdeal_2miliar.php
  33. Oggi: settimanale di politica, attualità e cultura (in Italian). 1985.
  34. "Polsat reaktywuje "Idź na całość". Emisja w TV4 [akt.]". tvpolsat.info (in Polish).
  35. "SIC - Negócio fechado". SIC (in Portuguese).
  36. Extremadura, El Periódico. "Carlos Sobera presentará en Antena 3 ´¿Hay trato?´". El Periódico Extremadura (in Spanish).
  37. "Let's Make a Deal merchandise". Retrieved 4 August 2009.
  38. Lovel, Jim (2002-04-26). "Agency to Put TV Classics onto State Lottery Tickets". Atlanta Business Chronicle. Retrieved 2009-09-01.
  39. BuyBidWin.com Let's Make a Deal website
  40. "LET'S MAKE A DEAL" Goes Social With FremantleMedia Entertprises and GameHouse
  41. Gruber, Gary R. (2010). The World's 200 Hardest Brain Teasers. Google Books. ISBN 978-1-4022-3857-4. Retrieved May 1, 2011.
  42. Adams, Cecil. "On "Let's Make a Deal," you pick Door #1. Monty opens Door #2—no prize. Do you stay with Door #1 or switch to #3?". The Straight Dope. Retrieved 25 July 2005.
  43. Tierney, John (July 21, 1991). "Behind Monty Hall's Doors: Puzzle, Debate and Answer?". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-05-26.
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