There are people who, whenever they see a story on the news about someone running from the law, a part of their lizard brain lights up with ideas about how they could’ve done it better. They know which evidence they’d make sure to clean up, which false trails they’d plant, and who they’d be willing to take out if they got in the way. On the other side of that coin, the Investigation Discovery channel has made tons of people into amateur detectives who’d know exactly which clues to look for if they had to hunt somebody down for some reason.
Now, a new reality show created by Ben Affleck and Matt Damon (as well as their partners on Project Greenlight) will give people a chance to live out both of those fantasies. According to Deadline, the project is called The Runner and it’ll premiere on Go90, the new mobile-focused entertainment platform thing from Verizon. The basic idea is that one lucky-ish contestant (The Runner) has to “make it across the U.S. unnoticed over the course of 30 days” while stopping at specific, mandatory checkpoints. Meanwhile, eight two-person teams (Chasers) will try to follow the Runner and catch them before they can reach their checkpoints. Regular people are even encouraged to pull an America’s Most Wanted and send in tips to the Chasers for cash rewards.
The Runner has actually been in development for 16 years, with ABC picking it up initially but canceling the project due to post-9/11 security concerns. Those security concerns are just everyday life now, though, so that shouldn’t stop people from making reality shows about chasing people across the country.