reality TV reviews and news

Jamie Foxx is hosting Beat Shazam, Mark Burnett’s Fox competition

Jamie Foxx, the host of Fox's Beat Shazam. (Photo by Fox)

Jamie Foxx, Shazam, and Mark Burnett: three famous names I never expected to see in the same sentence together. But here they are: Oscar-, Grammy-, and Emmy-winner Jamie Foxx is hosting Beat Shazam, a new competition based on the app that’s produced by Survivor creator Mark Burnett.

Why Jamie Foxx? Burnett says, in his press release “Jamie is a quadruple-threat and creative genius. He is an incredible actor, comedian, singer and dancer. Also, his musical knowledge is so great that he could probably… Beat Shazam.”


At TCA just now, Fox Television chair Gary Newman told critics that Foxx has “been at the top of our wish list for this project since the beginning. We want beat Shazam to be a big summer event, and Jamie is the perfect guy to make that happen.”

I think that explains it: The current obsession at networks is attaching celebrities to reality projects, assuming that will make people show up. Guess what? It doesn’t work. This show may or may not succeed, and Jamie Foxx may or may not be a terrific host.

But it will not draw viewers just because Jamie Foxx is attached to it.

How Beat Shazam is played

Beat Shazam joins CBS’ Candy Crush reality competition as a brand/app that’s being turned into a big network reality show.

Today’s announcement also included more details about how Beat Shazam works:

“During each episode of Beat Shazam, four teams of two players will go ear-to-ear for a chance to win a cash prize. In each round, Foxx will present a choice of two music categories, ranging from ‘’80s Favorites’ to ‘Beyoncé Hits.’ Teams will hear a song and try to identify its correct title before all the other teams. As the rounds progress, quicker pairs will continue building their banks, while players with the lowest score will be eliminated until only one team remains. That team will play man-versus-machine and attempt to Beat Shazam!”