Mars bar to sponsor Blind Date substitute

Mars bar is to sponsor ITV1’s new prime-time Saturday night dating show, which replaces Cilla Black’s Blind Date.

The Masterfoods brand is understood to have paid about £700,000 to sponsor the programme, called Love on a Saturday Night.

Granada Enterprises and Alliance, part of Zenith Optimedia, are believed to have negotiated the package, which includes online and interactive elements of the show as well as broadcast sponsorship.

The new series will be broadcast next year and feature a variety of games and other items mixing studio with outside broadcasts. Viewers will be able to play along and even place bets on the outcome of the various activities.

The new dating show will be presented by Davina McCall from the studio and Jonathan Wilkes, the new presenter of You’ve Been Framed, who will tour the country trying to pair up the nation’s singles.

Cilla Black quit Blind Date live on air earlier this year after a bust-up with ITV bosses about the future of the show.

Masterfoods is launching a Mars bar variant next year that has a softer centre and lighter texture. Called Mars Delight, it will be aimed at women.

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