One of RuPaul's TV Shows Was Just Canceled

RuPaul Charles will no longer host a special U.K. version of Lingo featuring celebrities. ITV reportedly canceled Celebrity Lingo in the short-term but has left the door open for bringing it back in the future. RuPaul also hosts the American version, Lingo, which airs on CBS and was renewed for a second season.

Celebrity Lingo was ordered last year as a primetime version of the daytime Lingo, with celebrities competing in the wordplay game for charity. The series struggled to find an audience since it was interrupted multiple times due to Queen Elizabeth II's death, reports TVOne U.K. Some of the celebrities who competed on Celebrity Lingo include Joel and Hannah Dommett; Alan Halsall; Andy Whyment; Andi Peters; Laura Tobin; Lee Juggurnauth; Stacey Dooley and Kevin Clifton; Ugo Monye; and Sam Quek.

While Celebrity Lingo is not moving forward at this time, ITV is continuing to run the daytime version of Lingo, hosted by Aldil Ray. The show is a big hit, averaging nearly 2 million viewers at 3 p.m. weekdays on ITV1. Ray has been hosting the revived Lingo since Janaury 2021. The original U.K. Lingo series, which itself was based on the original U.S. syndicated version, aired for a single season in 1988.

The Lingo franchise as a whole dates back to the first U.S. version in 1987. Game Show Network brought it back in 2002 and again in 2011. In June 2022, CBS announced plans to bring back the word game to U.S. audiences, seemingly inspired by the success of Wordle. This new version with RuPaul as host changed the rules to focus on word-guessing. RuPaul also films the U.S. version in the U.K.

CBS renewed its version of Lingo for a second season in February. Twelve episodes were filmed for the first season, but the last four will be held back for its second season. This was likely due to fears of a Writers Guild of America strike, which could result in fewer episodes of scripted shows for the 2023-2024 season. CBS is also bringing back the reality shows Survivor, The Amazing Race, and Tough as Nails for next season.

RuPaul is best known for hosting the long-running RuPaul's Drag Race, which launched in 2009 and has had several spinoffs over the years. He has won 12 Emmys for his work on Drag Race, including Outstanding Host for a Reality or Competition Program every year since 2015. Drag Race won Outstanding Reality Competition Program every year from 2018 to 2021, until Lizzo's Watch Out for the Big Grrrls won last year.