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Jeux Sans Frontières
Each week this European version of the program visited the contributing countries of the competition with each countries regional winners travelling in to take part and represent their country. Countries that took part included Germany, France, Spain, Belgium, Portugal, Italy and Switzerland. The host countries commentator presented the show. The foreign language versions were over-dubbed by the British presenters.
This international version boasted bigger games and was run on a more grander
scale. Each show had a theme, with games based that subject.
Excluding the Christmas specials, Great Britain won the main title four times !
The JSF version of the Marathon game was named the Fil Rouge (meaning the Red Line). On a teams Joker Game the extra "Joker" points were only awarded if the team came in the top three placings for the game.
Two people that followed the international version from country to country were Swiss and Italian referees Guido Pancaldi and Gennaro Olivieri who featured in the show from 1965 to 1982.
At its height of popularity the program drew 110 million viewers across Europe. However in 1982 the BBC withdrew from JSF and the international version was not produced again until 1988 (and then without the British teams). In 1999 the series disappeared once more, in both instances rising production costs were cited as the reason.
Here Come The Belgium's !
Unfortunately (for Belgium) the most remembered phrase from Stuart Hall's commentary of JSF was the statement of “Here Come The Belgium’s”. Used as the title for a BBC "Best Of" video of the show, this phrase was usually said as their countries team limped across the finish line in last place (however it is worth noting that they did win the championship 2 times).
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