|Fate||Rebranded as Merrill Heatter Productions|
Heatter-Quigley Productions was an American television production company that was launched in 1960 by two former television writers, Merrill Heatter and Bob Quigley. After Quigley's retirement, the company became Merrill Heatter Productions.
On many of Heatter-Quigley's most popular game shows, beginning with Video Village, a key element of the game was enlarged, and in some instances the entire game itself was magnified to larger than life.
In 1965, Heatter and Quigley created and aired a pilot episode of Hollywood Squares hosted by Bert Parks. The show was rejected by CBS, but when NBC acquired broadcasting rights Heatter and Quigley sold the show to Filmways television. (Peter Marshall became the host of The Hollywood Squares.) In 1981, Quigley retired and ended his partnership with Merrill Heatter just before Filmways was bought by Orion Pictures. Quigley died on November 27, 1989. Heatter continued solo and produced new game shows, such as Battlestars, All-Star Blitz, Bargain Hunters, and the 1980s version of High Rollers. On September 28, 1998, Heatter leased the worldwide rights to his solo-developed game shows to King World for a limited time. That option has now expired. CBS Media Ventures and Fremantle owns the rights to Hollywood Squares today, via CBS's acquisition of King World Productions in 2000.
MGM Television acquired the rights from Orion Television to Heatter-Quigley shows with the exception of Hollywood Squares (which is currently owned by CBS Media Ventures and Fremantle) and Wacky Races (which currently owned by Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution (via Hanna-Barbera and Warner Bros. Animation)). Orion had sold those rights to King World Productions after Orion closed its television division on November 25, 1991. Today, the rest of the Heatter-Quigley library are owned by MGM Television's subsidiary, Orion Television.
In 2008, Heatter returned to game show production with the GSN game show Catch 21, based on Gambit. Heatter is co-executive producer with another veteran producer, Scott Sternberg. Heatter died of cancer on October 8, 2017.
Kenny Williams was the announcer on all of Heatter-Quigley's game shows except two: Temptation (announced by Carl King) and The Magnificent Marble Machine (announced by Johnny Gilbert); both shows were hosted by Art James.
Many hosts would become famous for the shows they did for HQ. Peter Marshall became most famous for The Hollywood Squares, Wink Martindale would have his first big hit with Gambit, and Alex Trebek would see his first hit in America (after a long run with Reach for the Top in his native Canada) with High Rollers.