Jeopardy! has been operating in a new status quo for the past several months, following the passing of the show's legendary host, Alex Trebek. Since January, the quiz show has had a rotating array of guest hosts, all while fans have begun to speculate and campaign for who will permanently land the gig. Arguably the most popular suggestion has been Star Trek: The Next Generation and Reading Rainbow alum LeVar Burton, with fans previously launching a viral petition for him to become the show's permanent host. On Wednesday, Sony Pictures Television officially confirmed that Burton will be stepping behind the Jeopardy! lectern, as one of the series' upcoming guest hosts.
Burton is set to have a two-week stint hosting Jeopardy!, which will air sometime later this summer. Among the other newly announced interim hosts — the final crop for Season 37 — are Good Morning America's George Stephanopoulos and Robin Roberts, as well as CNBC's David Faber.
“Our goal has been to present a wide variety of guest hosts with different skill sets and backgrounds on our path to finding a permanent host,” executive producer Mike Richards said in a statement. “Our passionate fans are telling us what they like, and we are listening. All of the guest hosts have brought individualism, energy, and an authentic love of our show to each of their episodes. We look forward to sharing the rest of the season with our viewers.”
Burton has acknowledged the fan campaigns for him to join Jeopardy! since last November, previously thanking fans for the campaign "even if nothing comes from it." In the months that have followed, the push for Burton to host has only grown, and has gotten the endorsements of the likes of Stephen Colbert and Dick Van Dyke along the way.
"I've thought and thought and thought — I've asked friends and family to help me identify someone out there who's more qualified for the job than I am," Burton explained in an interview with Entertainment Weekly earlier this month. "I don't believe there is anyone out there who is better suited for this job than me. And I will go to my grave believing that… I think my whole career is an advertisement for being the host of Jeopardy."
"I've got to believe that [the Jeopardy! producers are] paying attention," Burton added. "And I hope they weigh this campaign as a factor in my favor."
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