Entertainment

Jeopardy! crew pulling for ‘gracious, warm and smart’ Mayim Bialik to be named Trebek’s replacement


A perfect fit: The production team behind Jeopardy! are loving the pairing of Mayim Bialik as host and Michael Davies as interim executive producer and want Sony to make things permanent, DailyMail.com can exclusively reveal

The production team behind Jeopardy! are loving the pairing of Mayim Bialik as host and Michael Davies as interim executive producer and want Sony to make things permanent, DailyMail.com can exclusively reveal.

Mayim, who is described as ‘gracious, warm and smart’, is a natural fit for the quiz show both on and off camera and is creating a calm environment befitting the legacy of Alex Trebek, according to multiple production insiders.

Following the ‘traumatic’ catastrophe of Mike Richards’ short-lived stint as Alex’s replacement, the crew is pulling for Sony to stop ‘dragging its feet’ and officially lock in the 45-year-old actress for the coveted gig.

Bialik, who has a doctorate in neuroscience from UCLA, not only has the intellectual chops to host the long running series, but she’s endeared herself to the production staff as well, even bringing in cupcakes this week as a thank you.

‘Mayim is gracious, warm and smart and Michael is a diligent leader who is focused on producing a show for the viewers,’ a source says.

Just yesterday a crew member told DailyMail.com that ‘Mayim surprised all of us with vanilla and Oreo cupcakes from a local bakery.’

Last month it was announced that Bialik and Jeopardy! GOAT Ken Jennings would be sharing hosting duties for the remainder of season 38 after Mike Richards’ spectacular flame out amid scandal.

Behind the scenes, Embassy Row’s Michael Davies agreed to step in on an interim basis as executive producer.

'Mayim is gracious, warm and smart and Michael [Davies] is a diligent leader who is focused on producing a show for the viewers,' a source says. Just yesterday a crew member told DailyMail.com that 'Mayim surprised all of us with vanilla and Oreo cupcakes from a local bakery.'

‘Mayim is gracious, warm and smart and Michael [Davies] is a diligent leader who is focused on producing a show for the viewers,’ a source says. Just yesterday a crew member told DailyMail.com that ‘Mayim surprised all of us with vanilla and Oreo cupcakes from a local bakery.’

‘Michael is just a natural leader, he makes it about the show and what the viewers want, it’s not about him,’ says a source. ‘It would be wonderful if he could balance both Embassy Row, his production company, and Jeopardy!, we’d all be here for that.’

Mike Richards, who was pulling double-duty as executive producer and host on Jeopardy! and executive producer of Wheel of Fortune, was ousted from all three gigs in September after distasteful remarks he made in 2014 mocking women, Jews, and Haiti came to light – as well as resurfaced sexual harassment lawsuits.

He first lost the hosting gig – which Sony had previously announced would be shared with Bialik – due to the backlash. In a memo to staff, Sony’s Executive Vice President of business and strategy, Suzanne Prete, said a week later they’d hoped that would have been enough to quiet the controversy. Viewers, however, were not satisfied and executives fired him as executive producer – a move that was welcomed by the crew.

A source tells DailyMail.com: ‘It is such a refreshing change to what life was like on set with Mike Richards who made it all about Mike Richards.’

A source tells DailyMail.com: 'It is such a refreshing change to what life was like on set with Mike Richards who made it all about Mike Richards.' (Richards pictured earlier this year prior to being ousted as host and executive producer of the quiz show amid controversy)

A source tells DailyMail.com: ‘It is such a refreshing change to what life was like on set with Mike Richards who made it all about Mike Richards.’ (Richards pictured earlier this year prior to being ousted as host and executive producer of the quiz show amid controversy)

Even prior to the resurfaced harassment lawsuits and offensive comments, fans were disappointed over the choice to name Richards as host as many felt he had an unfair advantage since he was already executive producer of the show.

Additionally, things on set had already been challening between the passing of Alex Trebek from pancreatic cancer in November 2020 and the ongoing pandemic.

‘After decades of calm, we’ve had so much upheaval and change over the past year since Alex passed,’ reveals an insider. ‘It’s been traumatic. It would be so wonderful if Sony celebrates Alex’s life on November 8, the anniversary of his tragic passing, by formalizing the future of the show that Alex cared so much about.’

Following Alex’s passing, Jeopardy! began airing months of shows with rotating guest hosts – Mayim and Mike Richards among them.

‘There is no doubt that Mayim is totally cut out for the job. She has the goods to back it up and is very pleasant and professional to all of us,’ says a member of the production team. ‘So many of us wanted her from her first tape day several months ago. She is perfect for it.’

'After decades of calm, we've had so much upheaval and change over the past year since Alex passed,' reveals an insider. 'It's been traumatic. It would be so wonderful if Sony celebrates Alex's life on November 8, the anniversary of his tragic passing, by formalizing the future of the show that Alex cared so much about.'

‘After decades of calm, we’ve had so much upheaval and change over the past year since Alex passed,’ reveals an insider. ‘It’s been traumatic. It would be so wonderful if Sony celebrates Alex’s life on November 8, the anniversary of his tragic passing, by formalizing the future of the show that Alex cared so much about.’

After the Richards kerfuffle, Sony went back to the drawing board in their search for a host but the Jeopardy! team is hoping the powers that be will hurry up and name Mayim permanent host.

‘We just wish Sony would put us out of this endless period of flux and appoint Mayim as host and Michael as the permanent executive producer,’ says a source.

‘The combination of the two of them is magic. We think Alex would be proud, and that matters so much to all of us who work for Jeopardy! and our loyal viewers at home.’

Insiders added that the crew desires some stability now and wants executives at Sony to ‘stop dragging your feet and let the viewers know that this is how Jeopardy! will be produced going forward.’

‘It’s such a nice change,’ says one source of Mayim and Michael. ‘We all loved Alex so much that we thought it would be impossible to get that sense of family again, but with Michael and Mayim here, we’re really beginning to feel like this is the future of Jeopardy!.’

'It's such a nice change,' says one source of Mayim and Michael. 'We all loved Alex so much that we thought it would be impossible to get that sense of family again, but with Michael and Mayim here, we're really beginning to feel like this is the future of Jeopardy!.'

‘It’s such a nice change,’ says one source of Mayim and Michael. ‘We all loved Alex so much that we thought it would be impossible to get that sense of family again, but with Michael and Mayim here, we’re really beginning to feel like this is the future of Jeopardy!.’



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