Why “Jeopardy!” fired executive producer Mike Richards just after 3 weeks
Sony has fired its executive producer of “Jeopardy” and “Wheel of fortune”, Mike Richards, after three weeks serving as host, see the reason.
Variety reports that Michael Davis, the executive producer of “Who wants to be a Millionaire”, will fit in the position until the replacement is found.
What did Mike Richards do?
Exactly three weeks ago, on 11 August 2021, Sony announced that Richards would become Jeopardy’s regular host. This was after serving a two-week stint as one of the show’s rotating guest hosts.
While this announcement meant good news for Mike, it didn’t quite sit well with fans of the show, and it was met with heavy criticism.
The criticism came as a result of the offensive and sexist comments he had made years ago. So, it could be safe to say that Mike Richards case is clearly that of “the internet never forgets.”
Additionally, discrimination allegations against him from when he served as co-executive producer and executive producer of “The Price is Right”—a job he held from 2008 to 2019 before moving to “Jeopardy!” in 2020—resurfaced on the internet, forcing Mike to resign as host.
Announcing his exit as host in an internal staff memo on Friday, he stated that it had become clear that moving forward as host would be too much of a distraction for fans and not the right move for the show.
Public pressure force Sony’s hand
Sony decided to keep him as the show’s executive producer, but the public was having none of it. The executive vice president, business and strategy of “Wheel of Fortune” and “Jeopardy”, Suzanne Prete, announced the news that Mike Richards had been fired in a memo to staff members.
She wrote: “We had hoped that when Mike stepped down from the host position at Jeopardy! it would have minimized the disruption and internal difficulties we have all experienced these last few weeks. That clearly has not happened.”
His departure was met with mini-celebrations online with some Twitter users saying:
Some judged Mike Richards solely on his podcast comments and formed a negative opinion, but I judged him by the way he treated people backstage at Jeopardy and formed a much stronger negative opinion https://t.co/mebtz0Tgc3
— James Holzhauer (@James_Holzhauer) September 1, 2021
Make no mistake, the best decision for Jeopardy. https://t.co/Q3UK8jLnuA
— Franklin Leonard (@franklinleonard) August 31, 2021
— Imani Gandy (@AngryBlackLady) August 31, 2021
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