A petition to get LeVar Burton to become the new “Jeopardy!” host is gaining traction and has almost reached its goal of 75,000 signatures Friday. Fans hope he’s among a list of candidates to replace Alex Trebek, who died of pancreatic cancer Sunday after hosting the show since 1984.
“LeVar Burton has inspired and shaped the minds of several generations of trivia-loving nerds,” the petition on Change.org reads after listing his accomplishments, which include playing the “brainiac engineer Geordi La Forge on ‘Star Trek’.”
It continues: “This petition is to show Sony Pictures Entertainment Inc. and producer Mike Richards just how much love the public has for Burton, and how much we’d all love to see him as the next host of Jeopardy!”
The petition caught the attention of Burton, wholobbied for the job in a tweet last September and expressed his gratitude forfans’ support in a quest to become the quiz show’s host.
“Even if nothing comes from it, I can’t tell how much how I appreciate all y’alls love and support!,” he tweeted. “Of course while I’m very flattered by the petition, my thoughts are definitely with Alex Trebeck’s (sic) family and his millions of fans and the devastating loss of this irreplaceable legend.”
Game show legend Trebek, the beloved “Jeopardy!” host who showed dignity and perseverance in dealing with his cancer diagnosis in March 2019, was 80.
He was synonymous with “Jeopardy!,” a top-rated syndicated series and the brainiest of TV quiz shows, which he hosted since its revival premiered in 1984 (Art Fleming hosted an earlier NBC version from 1964 to 1975.). Will Ferrell’s “Saturday Night Live” impersonation both underlined and burnished Trebek’s exalted cultural status.
But Trebek, who won seven Emmys, will forever be remembered as the erudite, sharply dressed presence who offered an air of dignified formality to a scholarly show that turned answers into questions and transformed Ken Jennings and James Holzhauer from brainiacs to rock stars.
Sony has a short list of possible hosts it hasn’t disclosed. One obvious choice is the show’s GOAT Jennings since he currently works for the show as a consulting producer.