This Monday marks the debut of fan-favorite “Jeopardy!” guest host LeVar Burton. The “Reading Rainbow” host and “Star Trek” actor takes the stage from July 26 to July 30.
The game show introduced Burton to the fans in an exclusive interview. He started off by talking about why he wanted to step into the guest host role after the tragic death of longtime host Alex Trebek. Since Trebek died of pancreatic cancer in November 2020, Burton has made no secret of the fact that’s he’s interested in the full-time permanent position.
“I’ve been a fan of ‘Jeopardy!’ for all of my life, and when this opportunity came by, I could not pass it up,” Burton said in the interview.
Burton also shared the highlight of guest hosting “Jeopardy!”, and it’s definitely something Trebek would approve of.
“I think the highlight for me has been meeting the contestants and seeing how good they are at this game,” Burton said. “Jeopardy!” appreciated his response so much that they posted it on their official Twitter page along with a picture of Burton at the lectern.
During the interview, the new “Jeopardy!” guest host couldn’t commend the game show crew and previous host enough.
“Look I have been in this business for 45 years, and the team here at ‘Jeopardy!’… one of the best I have ever encountered in my life,” Burton said. “Alex did this for 37 years — the man was like butter. And for me, I think all in all I’m gonna walk away happy tonight.”
Burton Reveals the Charity He’s Raising Money For as a ‘Jeopardy!’ Guest Host
All of the guest hosts on “Jeopardy!” have been able to choose one charity to sponsor during their tenure. Depending on how much money the contestants win on the show, the game show will match that amount in donations to the chosen charity. Burton discussed his choice, Reading Is Fundamental, during his exclusive interview.
“Reading Is Fundamental is an organization that I’ve been working with for a couple of years. They provide thousands of books to children every year, and in most instances, these kids are getting their own books for the very first time,” Burton said.
He continued by saying, “The amount of money that we raised here on the show is going to make a huge difference in the life of many, many kids, and I can’t wait to give them that check.”
Already, “Jeopardy!” has raised more than $2 million, as Dr. Sanjay Gupta announced after his first week as guest host. Since then, he, George Stephanopoulos, and Robin Roberts have raised nearly $550,000 for their three organizations. We’ll see how much Burton raises for Reading Is Fundamental in the coming week.
See his full “Jeopardy!” interview below: