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HOME > The Will

ABC's 'The Will' gets resurrected at CBS, casting begins

By Reality TV World staff, 02/16/2004 

After watching last year's initial broadcast of The Family bomb in the ratings, get pulled from the airwaves, and be burned off as late summer filler programming, it's certainly no surprise that ABC decided to not follow through with its previously announced plans to air The Will, another incredibly similar sounding "an extended family competes for a huge prize" reality show. The only surprise is that for some reason, CBS, which has positioned itself as the "gold standard" of reality programming (The Amazing Race, Big Brother, Survivor), has opted to pick up the Mike Fleiss (The Bachelor) series after ABC (over a year later) decided to pass on it.

CBS announced last week that it has begun an immediate nationwide casting search for a wealthy head of household who has a substantial asset to give to one of his or her potential heirs as well as a large family whose members are ready to compete for the family fortune. Families with any dignity or self-respect need not apply -- however, according to CBS, "in the spirit of good-natured competition, the charismatic clan must have a sense of adventure and a substantial sense of humor."

Calling the show "reality TV meets Dynasty," The Will creator Mike Fleiss told Daily Variety that "The tone [of the show] will be dead serious." "This is a serious, life-changing event. The bottom line is, you're going to see some guy who hates Uncle Charlie take Uncle Charlie out of the competition. And that's going to be a lot sweeter than even a rose ceremony, where everyone's only known each other for a few weeks."

Humm... replace "Uncle Charlie" with "Uncle Michael," and this really will be a repeat of The Family.

During each episode of the seven episode series, members of the family will compete in physical and mental challenges in an effort to win rewards and stave off elimination from the competition. The last member standing will receive the family inheritance. In the spirit of good-natured competition, the charismatic clan must have a sense of adventure and a substantial sense of humor.

Interested families must also apparently be quick -- as according to CBS, applications (which are available on must be received by Friday, February 27, at 5 PM PT.

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