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Fifteen to One is a British general knowledge quiz show broadcast on Channel 4. It originally ran from 11 January 1988 to 19 December 2003 and had a reputation for being one of the toughest quizzes on TV. Throughout the show’s run, it was presented and produced by William G. Stewart. Thousands of contestants appeared on the programme, which had very little of the chatting between host and contestants that is often a feature of other television quiz shows.
The basis of the show was devised by John M. Lewis, a former sales manager for British Telecom. He submitted the idea to Regent Productions, who developed the programme into a 30-minute format. Originally, there were 20 starting contestants, but this was reduced to 15 to fit the available running time. The number varied in other countries.
The Fifteen to One format is sold internationally by DRG-Zeal TV from London.
At the start of the grand finale of the 35th and final original series, William G. Stewart provided some statistics about the show, stating that nearly 350,000 questions had been asked to 33,975 contestants in a total of 2,265 programmes.
On 20 September 2013, a special one-off episode, hosted by Adam Hills, aired on Channel 4 and was titled Celebrity Fifteen to One. Two previous celebrity specials had been aired before then, in 1990 and 1992. Amongst the changes, the studio set and presentation were overhauled, the length of the programme increased from 30 to 60 minutes, the host’s catch phrase, “Lights out” was introduced, spoken when a contestant is eliminated from the game before the final round.
On 9 December 2013, it was announced that Fifteen to One would return for a new 20-part daytime series in 2014, hosted by Sandi Toksvig, and primetime celebrity specials, which would be hosted by Adam Hills. The show now broadcasts between 30-40 episodes per series, depending on contestant application numbers and airing schedule.

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