LeVar Burton Joins “Jeopardy!” as a guest host after a successful fan petition

Fans of Levar Burton can rejoice: the star “Roots” and “Star Trek: The Next Generation” joins the roster of interim hosts for “Jeopardy!”. The show announced the announcement on Wednesday, following a long campaign to put the former ‘Reading Rainbow’ host in the shoes of Alex Trebek, who passed away last year and whose iconic host role has since been taken on by a changing group of celebrities and stars. TV personalities. .

Burton, a lifelong advocate of children’s literacy who hosted the PBS show “Reading Rainbow,” expressed his delight at the news on Twitter. He joins his list of temporary hosts: “Good Morning America” ​​anchor Robin Roberts, “This Week with George Stephanopoulos,” anchor George Stephanopoulos, author and former “Jeopardy! Celebrity” champion David Faber and award-winning sports reporter Joe Buck.

“Our goal was to present a wide variety of guest hosts with different skills and backgrounds on our way to finding a permanent host. Our passionate fans tell us what they like, and we listen,” said Executive Producer Mike Richards – who also served as a guest host – said in a press release shared by the game show.

In November 2020, a petition was started on Change.org to hire Burton as a replacement for Trebek. It was endorsed by Burton himself early April and now has nearly 250,000 signatures. Burton thanked the person who started the petition on Twitter after the game show’s announcement.

According to the release, Burton and this new wave of hosts will be using the lectern for a week starting in June. Burton hosts from July 26th to July 30th.

So far this season, the show has been hosted by Ken Jennings – who was the first guest host of the new season – Richards, Katie Couric, Dr. Oz and Aaron Rodgers. Anderson Cooper is currently hosting, and will be followed by Bill Whitaker, “Jeopardy!” All-Star Buzzy Cohen, Actress Mayim Bialik, Savannah Guthrie and Dr. Sanjay Gupta.