Mike Richards Steps Down As Next ‘Jeopardy!’ Host As Scandals Come to Light
Richard was chosen to succeed Alex Trebek as the next host of Jeopardy!. Sony Pictures Television, which owns Jeopardy!, made an official announcement on Aug. 11. Richards was the executive producer for the show before being promoted to host.
Richards drew controversy after a report in The Ringer was published, exposing offensive comments he made on The Randumb Show, which he hosted in 2013 and 2014, criticizing women’s bodies and employing demeaning terminology.
Sony Pictures Television released a memo to their staff discussing this move.
“Moving forward as host would be too much of a distraction for our fans and not the right move for the show,” wrote Richards in the memo, speaking of the public reaction to his previous actions. “As such, I will be stepping down as host effective immediately.”
Sony Pictures also offered comments on the matter. “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.”
Richards will continue to work as the executive producer of Jeopardy!, according to Sony. “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.”
“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,” Richards concluded in the memo. “I know I have a lot of work to do to regain your trust and confidence.”
Jeopardy! is set to continue in September of this year, recording its 38th season on television.