Mayim Bialik roped in as interim 'Jeopardy!' host after Mike Richards' exit

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Mayim Bialik (Image source: Instagram)
Mayim Bialik (Image source: Instagram)

Washington [US], August 24 (ANI): Actor Mayim Bialik has been roped in as an interim 'Jeopardy!' host after the show's executive producer Mike Richards stepped down as a permanent host of the beloved show, following a cascade of scandals.

'The Big Bang Theory' alum who was previously tapped to host the 'Jeopardy!' primetime and spinoff series, will take the podium this week in Richards' absence: a spokesperson for Sony Pictures Television confirmed to People Magazine.

The 45-year-old actor will shoot for 15 episodes (three weeks episodes total)-- when filming resumes this week.

As per People magazine, additional guest hosts will be announced soon after the production resumes for the upcoming 38th season of the beloved quiz show, premiering on September 13.

Earlier this month, Sony Pictures TV announced that executive producer Richards had been selected to succeed the legendary host Alex Trebek as the face of the quiz show.

However, Richards on Friday announced that he is stepping down from his role as a host from the show after controversial clips featuring him making disparaging comments about women on a previous podcast hosted by him, surfaced on social media.

According to Variety, he made the comments on 'The Randumb Show' while also serving as executive producer of 'The Price Is Right'. In the podcast, Richards had asked his female assistant and his female co-host whether they had ever taken nude photos. In another episode, he called his co-host a "booth ho."

Reportedly, the 46-year-old TV producer will remain the show's executive producer. The episodes he shot on Thursday as his first and only day as 'Jeopardy!' permanent host will run on September 13.

As per Variety, while confirming his exit as a host from the show, Sony Pictures TV in a statement said that Richards' image was too battered for him to take the helm of one of television's most prestigious and popular brands.

"We support Mike's decision to step down as host. We were surprised this week to learn of Mike's 2013/2014 podcast and the offensive language he used in the past. We have spoken with him about our concerns and our expectations moving forward," Sony Pictures TV said.

However, the studio also voiced support for him revealing that he will remain as the executive producer of the show.

"Mike has been with us for the last two years and has led the 'Jeopardy!' team through the most challenging time the show has ever experienced. It is our hope that as EP he will continue to do so with professionalism and respect," Sony Pictures TV said in a statement.

Richards shot his first and now the last day of the show as a permanent host on August 19.

As per Variety, a new round of guest hosts will be approached to shoot episodes to launch the show's 38th year in syndication next month.

Apart from Mayim Bialik, the search for a permanent host to follow in the footsteps of the legendary Alex Trebek, who died last November at age 80, includes a long list of notable personalities such as Anderson Cooper, Katie Couric, Bill Whitaker, Dr Mehmet Oz, George Stephanopoulos, Robin Roberts, LeVar Burton, Savannah Guthrie, Dr Sanjay Gupta, Aaron Rodgers and former contestants Ken Jennings and Buzzy Cohen. (ANI)

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