Sony Pictures Television continues to bungle the quest to find a new host of “Jeopardy!” after the iconic Alex Trebek passed away.
Initially, it was announced that “Jeopardy” executive producer Mike Richards would be the new host. This upset fans who had been following rounds of guest host auditions and rooting for Ken Jennings or LeVar Burton to take the reins.
Then a damning report in The Ringer highlighted past sexist and racist statements Richards made on multiple podcast episodes. After that, Richards was out as host, but as of now, still gets to keep his job as executive producer on the famous game show.
Industry insiders are wondering how Sony missed all of Richards’ red flags in the first place and why he gets to keep his job. There seems to have been a complete lack of vetting for one of the biggest jobs in television, and Richards’ former podcast was not hard to find online.
The even more baffling aspect of the whole debacle is that Sony TV had years to prepare for this transition, as former host Trebek had talked about retirement for some time, and then announced he had pancreatic cancer.
The New York Times spoke to “Jeopardy!” fans and aspiring contestants, and found that some are no longer interested in trying out for the show because they believe Richards has already tarnished the show’s legacy.