A note from Jeopardy! EP Michael Davies: new hosts and new initiatives | J!Buzz
I write today with the exciting news that we have finalized and signed deals with Mayim Bialik and Ken Jennings to host Jeopardy! to advance.
The thing is, we have so much Jeopardy! to do, and so many plans for the future, that we always knew we would need multiple hosts for the franchise and we are so grateful that Mayim and Ken stepped in and pulled together to put the show in a position to succeed . And he succeeded. With hosting by Mayim and Ken, the show has grown its viewership significantly year over year, with over 27 million viewers tuning in each week this season. Considering that almost every other television and syndication show is in decline, this has been a pretty remarkable season: we’re the most-watched entertainment show on all of television. Yes, all television.
In Mayim and Ken, we have two exceptional hosts at the start of their Jeopardy! host careers that connect with their own unique fan bases, new fans, and traditional Jeopardy! viewer. Ken will kick off the season in September, hosting the inaugural Second Chance competition and the highly anticipated Tournament of Champions featuring Amy Schneider, Matt Amodio, Mattea Roach, Ryan Long and many more. His first accommodation run will take us through December. In the meantime, Mayim will host Celebrity Jeopardy! on ABC in prime time. When she takes over from Ken in January, the current plan is to have her host a few new tournaments as well as the Jeopardy! College National Championship and as many weeks as she can handle with her other prime-time commitment to “Call Me Kat.” We know you value consistency, so we won’t be constantly bumping hosts and will keep you updated on the hosting schedule.
Mayim and Ken are both extraordinarily talented and simply adorable humans. They support staff and each other. They love and respect this institution of a television program. In return, the staff and I are honored to work alongside them.
So, I mentioned our plans for the future…
Well, the future will begin this Monday as we launch three new initiatives in one day:
1. Rehearsal season is upon us. But instead of repeating our tournaments like we’ve done in the past, this year my fellow producers and I picked out six weeks of some of our favorite episodes of the season, featuring our closest games, the Super -champions and some of the people who will be announced as part of our inaugural Second Chance competition.
2. Danger! Strong points. Starting Monday, we’ll be posting a daily three-minute Jeopardy recap of the day! episode on our website, on all our social networks and with our affiliate partners. Now, for the first time, you can catch up on key moments from every game.
3. “Inside Danger!” Podcast. Because all of the above gives us so much to say, and because there’s always so much to say about Jeopardy! (it’s a sport, remember?) we’ll be launching a weekly topical podcast wherever you listen to your podcasts. Organized by the Jeopardy! producers, including me, “Inside Jeopardy!” will give you a look at everything behind the scenes of America’s favorite Quiz Show: everything from gameplay analysis and behind-the-scenes stories, to official announcements and special interviews. Please subscribe now to “Inside Jeopardy!” on Spotify, Apple or wherever you listen to podcasts.
On Monday’s podcast, we’ll be announcing all of the returning contestants for a second chance to become a Jeopardy! champion. And I will share my vision for the future of Jeopardy!, including new developments in pop culture and sports, plans for a Jeopardy! Honors Awards Show and my biggest and most passionate idea: a Jeopardy! Master League in prime time or on a streaming platform.
In conclusion, I want to congratulate Mayim and Ken. They were both a joy to work with. They have my commitment, my oath as a producer, that I will only focus on improving the show around them so they can do their best and approach each day in the studio with enthusiasm and energy. And speaking of which, we’re back on the Alex Trebek Stage on Monday. I just can’t wait.
Executive Producer, Jeopardy!