Photo: George Burns/Harpo Studios
In 25 years, The Oprah Show has pulled off feats never tried before on television. Still, Oprah says there are some shows she has been hesitant about. "I am not always thrilled about some of the crazy ideas that these guys come up with. Like the time they had me play a famous game show," Oprah says of her producers. "See, I really don't like games other than Scrabble. But I did it because they wanted me to."
In 2007, Deal or No Deal was the hottest show on television. Host Howie Mandel brought the entire game to Oprah's stage, and Oprah was playing on behalf of an audience member who would receive the money Oprah won.
Right off the bat, Oprah eliminated the case with the highest dollar amount. At the end of the game, she was left with two cases containing $5,000 and $75,000—and in the end, walked away with the $5,000 case. "It felt like a stomach-churning roller coaster ride, and I was hanging on by a thread," Oprah says.
Watch Oprah play Deal or No Deal
Senior producer Julie Simpson was the brains behind that operation. As the game came down to the final two briefcases, Julie says the control room was pacing. "We've done some really serious, tense, intense shows—but nothing like that," she says. "None of us could sit down. I mean, we were pacing. Nobody was where they were supposed to be. We were sweating through our clothes."