August 18th, 2010
02:28 PM ET
The syndicated version of "Who Wants To Be A Millionaire" begins its ninth season next month, and fans of the long-running quiz show should expect some big changes.
"Millionaire" will unveil a new set, getting rid of the "Hot Seat" chairs that have been a staple of the show since it premiered on ABC more than a decade ago. Host Meredith Vieira and contestants will now stand throughout the show, with questions and winnings presented on an 18-foot wide projection screen.
The format of the show has also been modified. Gone are two of the show's lifelines - Double Dip (contestants can choose two of four possible answers on a question) and Ask the Expert (contestants get help via Skype from a celebrity, former contestant or "know-it-all"). In addition, the iconic 15-question game has been cut to 14 questions, while the controversial time clock has been scrapped.
The show has also been split into two rounds, with the first round featuring 10 questions valued from between $100 and $25,000. Before game play begins, the question order and the dollar values attached to the questions are randomized. Contestants may now be forced to deal with a simple $25,000 question, as well as a quite difficult $100 question.
If the contestant manages to get past the first round, the game switches to what's being called "Classic Millionaire." At this level, only four questions remain - valued at $100,000, $250,000, $500,000 and $1 million.
Contestants will also receive two "Jump the Question" lifelines. If a contestant opts to jump a question, he or she will not have to answer it, but will forfeit the dollar amount attached to said question. The Ask the Audience lifeline, which allows contestants to seek the advice of the studio audience, remains part of the game.
What do you think of the changes coming to "Millionaire"?
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