Hot Seat returning, new format changes announced.

Hot Seat has confirmed its new format changes for its return later this month, as it extends to a one hour format in a battle with Seven.

Strategically, the series returns on Monday January 23rd while The Chase is off air due to the Australian Open.


It begins with contestants going head-to-head in a Fastest Finger First round.

“All six contestants will face the same 15 questions, with the fastest and most accurate winning a cash prize at the half-way mark of the program,” says a press statement.

“Then the excitement will continue in the familiar Millionaire Hot Seat format that has been a favourite in Australian living rooms for eight years – before going into overdrive with one further twist.”

When the winner of Fastest Finger First makes it to the Hot Seat, he or she will have the option of keeping their cash prize or swapping it for one of three Lifelines:
· 50/50 – Two incorrect answers will be removed.
· Switch – The question will be substituted for a new one.
· Ask-a-Friend – The contestant can ask a friend in the audience for help.

Hot Seat found early success as a rapid-fire version of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? but is facing renewed competition by a local version of The Chase.

Hot Seat has given away a total of $39,014,000, including a $1m prize last year. Nine says “it remains the only program on Australian television in which it is possible to win $1 million” but Seven’s upcoming Million Dollar Cold Case has also touted a $1m reward.

Monday, January 23, at 5.00pm on Nine.


  1. Is that a couple more nails being hit in the coffin that I hear? Not even the hyperbole of the Nine promo department can make these changes sound interesting.

    • How ironic. When someone makes a comment that is offensive to people, we don’t forget, ever. But when politicians change our country for the worse, we get them re-elected anyway every 3 or so years as if nothing happened.

  2. Seems a little confusing from what is said in the press statement.

    It seems they play a faster finger first and the fastest gets to be in the Hot Seat to play for the money. Yet all six contestants are still faced with the same main “15 questions”.

    What happens when the Hot Seat contestant is eliminated, does the money drop by half like it currently does and they play another round of fastest finger for the next contestant?

    I’m interested to see how it works when the contestant has the “option of keeping their cash prize or swapping it for one of three Lifelines”. If you use the lifeline, you lose your money. If you don’t use the lifeline and get it wrong, you still lose money.

    If it plays like the current “round-robin” Hot Seat, would be cheeky for a contestant to “pass” a question, and then get it right when they are back with the rest of the waiting…

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