The search for the new permanent host of Jeopardy! is officially over — the show’s executive producer Mike Richards has been named for the syndicated game show, succeeding the late Alex Trebek.
On top of that, Sony Pictures Television announced that The Big Bang Theory star Mayim Bialik will host Jeopardy!’s primetime and spinoff series, which includes the upcoming Jeopardy! National College Championship set to air on ABC next year.
The Greatest of All Time winner Ken Jennings will return as consulting producer for the show. All three served as guest hosts following Trebek’s death. Though Richards is taking on the role of host, he will remain an executive producer on Jeopardy! and Wheel Of Fortune, Deadline reports.
“We are thrilled to begin the next chapter of America’s Favorite Quiz Show with Mike hosting our daily show and Mayim hosting new versions of Jeopardy!,” said Ravi Ahuja, Chairman of Global Television Studios and Corporate Development for Sony Pictures. “We took this decision incredibly seriously. A tremendous amount of work and deliberation has gone into it, perhaps more than has ever gone into the selection of hosts for a show – deservedly so because it’s Jeopardy! and we are following the incomparable Alex Trebek. A senior group of Sony Pictures Television executives pored over footage from every episode, reviewed research from multiple panels and focus groups, and got valuable input from our key partners and Jeopardy! viewers.”
As we reported earlier this year, some fans of the show on Twitter were already calling for him to be the permanent host back in February.
Richards was well received by fans, but guest host LeVar Burton became a popular potential host as well, receiving a grassroots campaign by fans and a petition that garnered 250K signatures.
“I have said many times over these past weeks that no matter the outcome, I’ve won. The outpouring of love and support from family, friends, and fans alike has been incredible! If love is the ultimate blessing and I believe that it is, I am truly blessed beyond measure.”
I have said many times over these past weeks that no matter the outcome, I’ve won. The outpouring of love and support from family, friends, and fans alike has been incredible! If love is the ultimate blessing and I believe that it is, I am truly blessed beyond measure. 🙏🏾— LeVar Burton (@levarburton) August 5, 2021
Bialik wrote on Twitter, “IT’S TRUE!!! Been waiting a long time to tell you all. Really really honored and astounded and excited for this – it’s beyond anything I ever imagined could happen.”