Final Slate Of Jeopardy Hosts Includes Fan Favorite LeVar Burton
Category: News & PoliticsVia: sister-mary-agnes-ample-bottom • 2 weeks ago • 4 comments
By: Nasha Smith (Forbes)
LeVar Burton among the final slate of guest hosts set to appear on Jeopardy. (Photo by Theo ... [+] Wargo/WireImage)
Jeopardy! has announced its final line-up of guest hosts as Season 37 winds down. The popular game show has been using various guests to fill the slot left vacant after the death of beloved, longtime host Alex Trebek last November.
The new roster includes CNBC journalist and former Celebrity Jeopardy! champion David Faber, sports broadcaster Joe Buck as well as Good Morning America anchors Robin Roberts and George Stephanopoulos.
Fan favorite LeVar Burton has also been included in this final round-up after a campaign to have the award-winning actor, director, and educator installed as the permanent host. The Change.org petition calling for Burton to host the show has garnered almost 250,000 signatures to date. He is a longtime fan of the show and even won Celebrity Jeopardy! in 1995.
More importantly, Burton comes into the week-long stint with over 20 years of experience as the former host and executive producer of PBS's children's literacy television show Reading Rainbow. His podcast, LeVar Burton Reads, explores his favorite short fiction. He is well known for his role as Kunta Kinte in Roots, a miniseries based on Alex Haley's 1976 novel. Burton also gained a following as Lt. Commander Geordi LaForge in Star Trek: The Next Generation. He has earned 13 Emmy Awards, a George Foster Peabody Award, and a Grammy Award over the course of his storied career.
Burton has made no secret of his desire to take the reins at Jeopardy! telling Black News Tonight, "I've had my eye on that job for a long time."
He echoed that sentiment in an interview with Entertainment Weekly.
"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. 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!," he added.
No decisions have been made on a successor to Trebek as yet.
"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," Mike Richards, Executive Producer of Jeopardy! — and a former guest host — 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."
The guest host cycle kicked off with Jeopardy! Greatest of All Time winner and longtime champ Ken Jennings. Since then other notable guests to take up the mantle include Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, former Today host and CBS Evening News anchor Katie Couric, CNN anchor Anderson Cooper, and actress Mayim Bialik.
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