Lisa Paton’s fearless bid to win $1,000,000 is over after the single mother was eliminated last night in a heart-stopping episode of Seven’s Million Dollar Minute.
Playing for the ultimate jackpot of one million dollars for a third time, Lisa was caught in a three-way tie with two new contestants and just one question remaining in the elimination round.
The deciding question asked by host Simon Reeve was: “In the 1963 film Cleopatra, who plays Mark Antony?”
Both Lisa, and new contestant Mark Vadas knew the answer – “Richard Burton” – but Mark beat Lisa to the buzzer by just 0.25 of a second.
As a result Mark won through to the first jackpot level of $20,000, and Lisa was eliminated. She leaves with the ‘safety net’ jackpot of $75,000 plus $2000 in safe money which she had banked along the way.
A 38-year-old single mum from Mt Waverley, Lisa took several seconds to comprehend the loss while the new champion apologized for ending her million dollar dream.
During a record-breaking run of 13 episodes, Lisa had passed on the chance to pocket $500,000 and became the first contestant to ever play for one million dollars.
“Of course I’m disappointed and I knew the risk I was taking…one million dollars is an amazing amount of money but $77,000 is also pretty good – that’s still going to make a difference to my life,” Lisa said.
“It would have taken me 10 years to save this much money… it will clear some debts, my car is dying so now I can get a new car and take my daughter on a holiday to Malaysia,”
Winning contestant Mark Vadas went on to win his first Million $ Minute round jackpot of $20,000. He chose to take the money and leave the show with a total win of $23,000 including safe money.
Host of Million Dollar Minute, Simon Reeve, said “Lisa has this calm, considered way of dealing with things that speaks volumes about the type of person she is. Her daughter Caitlin will look up to her mum as the inspiration she is. In life you have to have a go, sometimes it will work, sometimes it won't, but the main thing is to give it your best. That's exactly what Lisa Paton did."