A slew of celebrities have been guest-hosting “Jeopardy!” this summer as production searched for a permanent host, but it seems like Mike Richards’ future on the show is finally determined.
In early August, Richards was in “advanced talks” to take over the quiz show, according to Variety. Richards began to guest host in February in addition to figures like Robin Roberts and Aaron Rodgers. Despite his hefty resume as a producer on game shows like “The Price is Right” and “Let’s Make A Deal,” fans did not seem impressed. One wrote, “I have watched ‘Jeopardy!’ every day for decades. The Mike Richards news is a bummer.”
The controversy reached a fever pitch when reports surfaced detailing his behavior on “The Price is Right,” per The Daily Beast. According to the report, models accused him of “discrimination and harassment.” A lawsuit alleged that “Richards decided that the models’ skirts should be shorter and said that he liked the models to look as if they were going out on a date. At his suggestion, models wore bikinis on the show more frequently.” Sony Pictures Television did not comment on the allegations, but the rumors certainly cast Richards in a negative light.
As criticism continued to mount against Richards, the show made a major announcement. Keep reading for more details.
Mike Richards will no longer appear on "Jeopardy!"
Mike Richards stepped down as host of “Jeopardy!” and released a statement via Sony on August 20.
“Dear team, it pains me that these past incidents and comments have cast such a shadow on Jeopardy! as we look to start a new chapter,” the statement read (via Twitter). “As I mentioned last week, I was deeply honored to be asked to host the syndicated show and I was thrilled by the opportunity to expand my role. However, 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 our show. As such, I will be stepping down as host effective immediately. As a result, we will be canceling production today.”
Richards went on to say that Sony will continue to search for a permanent host and guest hosts will return for the meantime. “I want to apologize to each of you for the unwanted negative attention that has come to Jeopardy! over the last few weeks and for the confusion and delays this is now causing,” he concluded. “I know I have a lot of work to do to regain your trust and confidence.”
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