After Variety reported “Jeopardy!” executive producer Mike Richards had begun advanced negotiations to become the full-time host of the trivia show, fans weren’t too happy, to say the least. Many people were lobbying for “Star Trek” star and recent guest host LeVar Burton to take the job and there was an outpouring of regret online about the news Wednesday evening.
Twitter was full of hot takes on apparent decision to have Richards replace the late host Alex Trebek, a legend in his own right who hosted the show from its 1984 premiere until his death in November 2020.
It was reported Aug. 1 that Richards, a the lead executive on “Jeopardy!”, was “clearly the front-runner” in a mix of “several potential candidates” to host the show. Sony Pictures told Variety that it “not comment specifically on Richards’ status” and an anonymous insider told the magazine “there’s no certainty that the sides will close a deal.” Still, the headlines have been enough to get fans heads’ rolling and it seems the main reaction is anger that Burton isn’t reported to still be in the running.
Author Luvvie Ajayi Jones joked on Twitter, “YALL COULD HAVE A WHOLE ICONIC LEVAR BURTON BUT YOU PICKING CHAD MCWHITERSON FOR… WHAT???”
Richards has hosted some reality shows before, including “Beauty and the Geek” for The CW. Richards became co-executive producer of “The Price is Right” in 2008 and also executive produced CBS’ “Let’s Make a Deal” reboot. According to the “Jeopardy!” website, when Richards took the position of executive producer in 2020 he had already produced over 4,000 hours of game shows.
The final episodes hosted by Trebek concluded in January and the show has been rotating through guest hosts since. Prior guest hosts included Anderson Cooper, Katie Couric, former “Jeopardy!” champ Ken Jennings, Aaron Rodgers and, of course, Burton.
Check out more reactions to Richard’s potential permanent hosting gig below.