One of Jimmy Fallon’s most popular Tonight Show segments is about to get its own spin-off show. Spike TV has just picked up Lip Sync Battle, a series inspired by the host’s regular late-night routine in which he faces off against his celebrity guests to see who’s better at pantomiming their chosen songs.
Fallon began the lip sync battle bit while still on Late Night, first facing off against actor John Krasinski. Krasinski was the one who reportedly originated the game with wife, Emily Blunt, and Stephen Merchant. Their battle quickly went viral and the competition has only continued to gain popularity since, with Fallon also facing off against Merchant and actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt while on Late Night. As fans of the host know, he kept up the routine after his transition to the Tonight Show, competing against the likes of Paul Rudd, Emma Stone, and The Voice judges Gwen Stefani and Blake Shelton. Each of the lip sync battles have made a big splash online, racking up millions of views on YouTube and countless shares on social media.
Now, Spike TV is clearly hoping it can translate the Internet-friendly segment into successful television. According to The Hollywood Reporter (THR), Emmy-winning Beth McCarthy-Miller (Saturday Night Live, 30 Rock, The Sound of Music Live) will direct the show. Fallon will be serving as a co-executive producer on the series via his banner Eight Million Plus Productions, alongside Krasinski and Merchant. All three will also appear and perform on the forthcoming competition series.
The show will begin filming in front of an audience in New York in January. Additional information regarding an official host for the series and the rest of the participating talent is expected to be revealed at a later date.
“Lip sync battling is one of the coolest things happening in pop culture right now and already has a huge fan base thanks to the amazing talent involved. We’re thrilled to be in business with producers as talented as Jimmy, John and Stephen as Spike broadens its programming in new and exciting ways,” Viacom Entertainment Group exec Casey Patterson said in a statement to THR.
The lip sync battles aren’t the only of Fallon’s recurring Tonight Show bits to find an online audience. The latest installments of another of the host’s games, Box of Lies, have also gone viral, thanks to participation from Jennifer Lawrence and Channing Tatum. Though Fallon’s segment may be work magic online, the question is whether the same people who watch the five-minute YouTube video will also be willing to tune into a longer format of the competition on TV. Much of the success of the developing series will likely depend on the kind of talent producers can get to make appearances on the show, although bagging notable A-list celebrities as guests shouldn’t be too difficult with Fallon, Krasinski, and Merchant on board. We’ll have to stay tuned to see if the show becomes as big of a hit as the original segment it’s based on or if viewers will tire of the concept early on. Lip Sync Battle is set to premiere on Spike TV on April 2.
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