|David Sidoni &|
Cyber Lucy (performed by Tanika Ray)
|GSN: 9/13/1997 – 2/7/1998 (repeats aired until 9/26/1998)|
|Scott Sternberg Productions|
Columbia Tristar Television
Wheel 2000 (a.k.a. Wheel of Fortune 2000) was a short lived children's version of Wheel of Fortune. Like its adult counterpart, Wheel 2000 was taped in Stage 11 at Sony Pictures Studios in Culver City, CA.
Three child contestants competed in a game based on America's game. They played for points & prizes instead of dollars in this version.
At the start of each round, the player to start the round was shown three categories (one new category replaced the selected one at the beginning of each new round), then selected one to play for that round, after which the puzzle under the selected category was revealed. When the round began, the player in control spun the wheel loaded with point values, surprises and penalty spaces. When the controlling player landed on a point value, he/she then called a consonant, and if it appeared in the puzzle, that player received the points times the number of appearances of that letter, and would spin again. Along the way the controlling player could buy a vowel for 250 points of his/her score regardless of how many of that vowel appeared in the puzzle. But if at anytime the player called a wrong letter, called a letter that had already been called, or called a vowel after spinning; his/her turn was over, and control passed to the next player in line. That player also lost control if he/she landed on one of the penalty spaces or solved the puzzle incorrectly.
The first player to solve the puzzle got to keep all the points he/she earned in that round and won a prize; if the player who solved the puzzle scored 200 or under, however, his/her score got bumped up to 500 points. At the end of each round, hostess Lucy or a celebrity talked about the solved puzzle or something associated to it.
ADDITIONAL NOTE: Its original adult counterpart (along with its primetime celebrity counterpart on ABC in 2021) has carried over the three category selection process since its 35th season debut in 2017 where after the final spin/speed up round, the winning contestant gets to choose a category for his or her bonus round puzzle to solve before throwing to a final commercial break. However, unlike Wheel 2000, the categories strips are in Blue, Green or Purple (in the primetime network celebrity version, the category strips were in Gold) while the other two unused categories that were not chosen by the contestant (or celebrity contestant) start to "slide" into the category that was chosen by him or her. In addition, it also mirrors the bonus round from Wheel's short-lived 1980s copycat show The $1,000,000 Chance of a Lifetime.
The categories for Wheel 2000 were designed for educational/informational purposes, and some of them were similar to the adult categories:
- Globetrotter (Place(s)/On the Map) – Famous Places
- VIPs (Very Important People) (Person/People/Proper Name(s)) – Famous People
- Just Stuff (Thing(s)) – General Items
- Book Soup – Literature
- Made in the USA – Things that are in United States
- Space Case – Things in outer space
- Above & Below – Earth & Space items
- It Adds Up – Mathematics
- Every Body – The Human Body
- Word Rap (Lucy's Favorite) – Grammar & Punctuation
- Lab Test – Science
- Bright Ideas – Famous Inventions
- Paint by Numbers – Art
- Measure It – Self-explanatory
- Monumental (Landmark) – Famous Monuments
The wheel itself had brighter colors, and had special surprises and different names for the penalty spaces:
- Top Point Value Space – 1,000 points was the top value for Round 1, 2,000 for Round 2, and 5,000 for Round 3.
- The Creature – This acted the same as "Bankrupt". When landed on, a monster from underneath the wheel came up to eat up all the player's points when landed on. In the pilot only, if the player hit that space with no points, the player got 'eaten' instead until their next turn.
- Loser – Same as "Lose A Turn"; self-explanatory. In the pilot, if landed on, the player had to wear a dunce cap; this feature would later be seen on shows such as Street Smarts and Win Ben Stein's Money. When explaining the rules, Sidoni & Lucy simply gave the player "The Big 'L'" with their arms or hands & skipped their turn.
- 250/Physical Game – Three double-wide 250-point spaces contained the name of that day's physical game. The physical game was where the player that landed on it got to play the game for 60 seconds (75 seconds on one stunt, other times, less times, and on those stunts, the player had to answer true/false questions for 15 seconds each) to earn up to three letters selected from a randomizer. When the stunt was over, the player went back to the wheel and then decided to either use those letters and see if they were in the puzzle for 250 points each, or spin the wheel and choose a letter of his/her own. If none of the letters appeared in the puzzle, or if he/she didn't earn any letters at all, that player automatically lost his/her turn. Here is a list of the physical games featured on Wheel 2000:
- Call Waiting – The contestant would have to pick up telephones and figure out who was calling them.
- Feed the Raptor – The contestant had to dig meat out of a pit with a giant spoon and put it into the raptor's mouth.
- Monster Heads – The contestant was given an apron, gloves, and goggles to put on. He/She had to grab pieces of famous heads and stick them on the monster out of a slimey basket.
- Letter Launch – The contestant had to put alien ships on a catapult and launch them into a spinning pod.
- Smell-O-Letter – The contestant was given a mask with a smelling tube. He/She had to identify what the smell was inside the four tubes by sticking the tube in the hole. This physical game was similar to another physical game called What's That? on the Canadian kids game show, Uh Oh!
- Chutes and Letters – The contestant had to stick a ball down a tube towards a spinning wheel, and predict what color the ball would land in. This physical game's name is a play on words of the children's board game, Chutes and Ladders.
- Remote Rally – The contestant had to control a remote-controlled car through an obstacle course, and cross each line until they got to the end. One line allowed the player to win a Wheel 2000 cap.
- Cube Roll – The contestant had to toss pairs of cubes into the air, and match a pair of symbols to earn a letter.
- Match It – The contestant played a matching game in order to earn letters.
- Wash and Wear Words – The contestant had to put on clothes. Each of the 4 types of clothing (cap, shirt, shorts, shoe) contained a letter. The contestant had to spell the correct 3 to 4-letter words. When he/she hit the button, he/she had to say what word they were wearing to earn a letter.
- Alien Toss – The contestant had to toss foam aliens at numbered windows with shapes behind them, and match a pair of shapes to earn a letter.
- 100/Prize Box – Where the player could earn 100 points a letter plus a special small prize, win or lose.
- 500/Double Up – Where host Sidoni asked the player a multiple choice question under the category in play. If the contestant was correct, then the value of the consonant was worth 1,000 points, but if he/she got it wrong, the value was worth 500 points.
- 750/WWW.WHEEL2000.COM - The website space where not only the contestant would play for 750 points a letter, but would also try to win a Wheel 2000 t-shirt & hat for an at-home studio player who already registered on the site.
With the exception of the top point space and physical game wedges (when landed on), the wheel was completely isolated, for none of the other spaces changed; the adult version adapted this structure starting in Season 14 in Fall 1996.
Speed-Up Round/Final Spin
When time ran out in the middle of a round, a factory whistle would sound two/three/four times and the game shifted into a Speed-Up round, which was played the same way as the grown-up show. To start, host David gave the wheel the final spin, then the player in control gave a letter. A correct letter won the number of points landed on (nothing for vowels), and five seconds to solve the puzzle.
If the Final Spin landed on any of these specific spaces, here's what happened:
- The Creature & Loser – Spin again
- Prize Box/100 – First person to get a correct letter won the prize in the box, then it became a regular 100 per letter.
- Double Up/500 – Regular 500 point space
- WWW.WHEEL2000.COM/750 – Regular 750 point space
The player with the most points won the game; if the game ended in a tie, a (second) speed-up round puzzle was played to determine the winner. The winner of the game won a chance to play the bonus round for a grand prize.
To start, the winning contestant chose one of two envelopes (A or B), each containing a grand prize. Then the bonus puzzle with the adult categories (always Person, Place or Thing) was revealed. Just like in the grown-up show, The player was given six letters to start (R, S, T, L, N, E). Instances of those letters appeared, then the contestant had to choose three more consonants & one more vowel. Instances of those letters then appeared, then the winning player had 10 seconds to solve the puzzle, and if he/she solved it, the winning contestant won the selected grand prize. The prize was only revealed when it was won, unlike the regular show where the prize was revealed regardless.
Pics from WWW.WHEEL2000.COM
The German kids version of Wheel of Fortune before Wheel 2000 was called Kinder-Glucksrad running on Sat.1 for a brief period from 1992-1993 hosted by Petra Hausberg. Since this was the only international kids version of WOF that didn't need a letter-turner/toucher, the "Ferranti-Packard" styled small mounted puzzleboard automatically played by itself.
There was also a a time when Wheel of Fortune in Vietnam (Chiếc nón kỳ diệu) adopted the Wheel 2000 format, but for adults in Vietnam.
There was also a version of Wheel 2000 in Turkey called Cark 2000.
The puzzleboard was a giant monitor which in neutral mode displayed the show's logo & Cyber Lucy. In game mode, it was blank and had square computer tiles.
In the regular game and speed up round, each time the letters appeared during the game, a Macintosh Fred voice would announce the letters shown. But in the bonus round, when the letters appeared, there were beeps.
The hostess (Cyber Lucy) announced if there were any letters in the puzzle instead of the host (Sidoni), unlike the adult counterpart.
Unlike the adult version, the studio audience was never shown on camera.
At the beginning of the show, the host (Sidoni) introduced the co-host (Cyber Lucy), which played similar to when Pat Sajak introduced Vanna, used from 1983-89.
Shopper's Bazaar – The original unaired 1973 pilot.
Wheel of Fortune – The show's original and long-running adult counterpart.
Wheel of Fortune Comes to Norfolk - A locally produced, behind-the-scenes special about the show's trip to Norfolk, VA.
Wheel of Fortune on Tour - an hour-long special about the show's return to Pheonix, AZ.
E! True Hollywood Story: Wheel of Fortune - an documentary episode on E!.
Cover Story: Wheel of Fortune – Greatest Moments - an episode on GSN.
Celebrity Wheel of Fortune - The All-Star primetime celebrity spinoff.
Series Premiere Show
German Wheel 2000