A recent report has revealed that Jeopardy! is moving forward with its plans to air Mike Richards‘ handful of taped episodes he filmed after being named the permanent host.
News broke on Friday morning that Richards would step down from the full-time hosting position. Sony had just hired the game show’s executive producer early last week. However, a wave of criticism stemming from past inappropriate comments on his old podcast marred the hire.
Richards himself sent out a memo to Jeopardy! staff members this morning announcing his departure from the role. But he will stay on as the executive producer, the same role he’s been in for the last two years.
A source close to the game show shared details with The Wrap about Richards’ already filmed episodes. The show began filming episodes for the new season on Thursday. Jeopardy! shoots five episodes per day and Richards quit the hosting job this morning. Therefore only five more shows will air with Richards at the podium.
The popular game show will now resume its search for Alex Trebek’s permanent replacement. The longtime Jeopardy! host passed away in November 2020 after hosting the show for almost four decades. Ever since Trebek’s death, the game show has utilized a rotating cast of celebrity guest hosts. The report states that the trivia-based show will now return to its guest-host model until they choose another full-time host.
‘Jeopardy!’ Host Mike Richards Shares Statement With Game Show Staff
Following the announcement of Mike Richards as the next host, the hire was met with mixed reviews. Media outlets and fans on social media deemed it a safe hire, but one that was somewhat unexpected. Most fans seemed to want actor LeVar Burton or former Jeopardy! champion Ken Jennings to take over the role.
Yet only one week after Richards got the job, a scathing report from The Ringer questioned his hiring. By Friday morning, the newest host of the famous game show had announced his departure. He stepped down from the coveted job in an internal memo he sent to Jeopardy! staff members.
Lesley Goldberg of the Hollywood Reporter posted Richards’ memo on her Twitter account. In the statement, Richards told the show’s employees that he was “honored” and “thrilled” to be named host. However, he also said his “past incidents and comments have cast such a shadow on Jeopardy!.”
Sony Pictures had just started filming the newest Jeopardy! season with Richards at the helm. Yet production came to a screeching halt earlier this morning.
“Over the last several days it has become clear that moving forward as host would be too much of a distraction for our fans and not the right move for the show,” his statement continued.
“I will be stepping down as host effective immediately,” he added. “As a result, we will be canceling production today [Friday].”