A recent petition has garnered thousands of signatures in an attempt to land a YouTube star a Jeopardy! guest-hosting gig as the game show searches for a new full-time host.
Following Mike Richards‘ unceremonious exit as Jeopardy!‘s newest host, the game show is back to square one. Sony Pictures announced that the show would utilize a roster of guest hosts once again as they search for another permanent replacement. While no interim hosts have been revealed yet, one YouTuber’s fanbase is making a big push for his inclusion.
YouTube personality Matthew Patrick, known online as MatPat, has received tons of support for his Jeopardy! dreams. Tens of thousands of fans have already signed the growing Change.org petition created on Tuesday. As of Thursday afternoon, the “Make MatPat The Next Jeopardy Host!” petition has a whopping 77,140 signatures.
MatPat has quite the following with more than 30 million subscribers across multiple YouTube platforms. They include the web series Game Theory, Film Theory, Food Theory, and a gaming talk show GTLive. In his petition, he claimed “it’s time to let new media help bring in a new age for this iconic show.” In addition, the petition highlights Patrick’s educational merit and the massive amount of money he raised for charity.
Patrick has “brought entertainment and education to viewers as the creator/host of Game Theory” the petition reads. He also noted that “with the Theorist community, he’s helped raise over 5 million dollars for charity and is committed to making the world a kinder, smarter place.”
There’s no word yet on whether or not Jeopardy! showrunners have taken notice of the YouTuber’s petition. But if the signatures continue to increase, it may just get their attention at a minimum.
Mike Richards Steps Down as EP for ‘Jeopardy!’ and ‘Wheel of Fortune’
Former executive producer turned host Mike Richards’ abrupt rise and fall played out very publicly in recent weeks. The Jeopardy! and Wheel of Fortune producer shot to the front of the pack in the search for the game show’s next permanent host. However, within weeks of Sony hiring him as Alex Trebek’s replacement, he’s now out of a job entirely.
Sony executives addressed the game show’s staff on Tuesday revealing that Richards stepped down from his role. Sony EVP Suzanne Prete said in a statement that the negativity surrounding his resurfaced podcast comments made it impossible for Richards to continue as Jeopardy! and Wheel of Fortune‘s executive producer.
“We had hoped that when Mike stepped down from the host position at Jeopardy! it would have minimized the disruption and internal difficulties we have all experienced these last few weeks,” Prete said, according to Deadline. “That clearly has not happened.”
Numerous reports speculated about Richards’ future after he stepped down as host and returned back to his producer gig. Multiple outlets alleged that Sony wanted to push Richards out completely though. That’s why Richards reportedly hired a lawyer to protect himself from any further discipline. So it isn’t clear what changed his mind or what led to his decision to voluntarily step down. British producer Michael Davies will take over as Jeopardy!‘s executive producer as the show continues its search for Trebek’s permanent replacement.