Following a months-long coronavirus-imposed production hiatus, the venerable syndicated game show will be back on the air with original episodes beginning Monday, Sept. 14. Among the COVID-related changes: The show’s signature Wheel has been redesigned to allow for six feet of space between host Pat Sajak and each contestant. Additionally, each player is given their own spinning cap — which Sajak has apparently dubbed, “The White Thing.” The cap fits over each spoke so contestants can spin the Wheel without actually touching it.
Two of America’s longest-running game shows, Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy are heading back to the studio. Both shows were hit by the COVID-19 production shutdown, but both syndicated shows, which come from Sony Pictures Television and CBS Television Distribution, are set to start filming this week and next. There will, however, be a few adjustments.
Today, Friedman is closing out a 25-year run at Sony Pictures Television, the studio behind both game shows, as he opts to move on after the end of his contract. The well-respected television veteran holds a Guinness World Record for having produced 12,540 game show episodes, more than any other individual, and is the only producer to have won two Emmys in the same category in a tie with himself. For the week of April 6, Jeopardy averaged 11.6 million viewers each weeknight, while Wheel averaged 11.3 million, outperforming nearly all the nightly news shows across networks and all primetime programs on both network and cable.
The popular gameshows are the latest television project to shift plans due to the new coronavirus. Last week, CBS announced that it was suspending production on The Amazing Race in response to the outbreak.
“I remember thinking, not in a morbid way, ‘I think this must be death. This must be what death is like,'” Sajak recalled during an interview with Good Morning America of the health scare that forced him to miss a taping of the game show.
Wheel of Fortune host Pat Sajak is recovering following emergency surgery, the show said via its Twitter account. “Our taping on Thursday was canceled because host Pat Sajak underwent successful emergency surgery to correct a blocked intestine,” the tweet read. Per the tweet, taping for the show resumed on Friday as scheduled with Vanna White hosting.
Sony Pictures TV, which produces both syndicated game shows, has named Mike Richards as the new executive producer for the two series. He’ll assume the role when the 72-year-old Harry Friedman steps aside after the 2019-20 season, his 25th at Sony.
Harry Friedman, executive producer of both Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy, will retire when his contract expires on May 1, 2020, Sony Pictures Television, which produces both of the veteran syndicated games, said today.
HILLSDALE, Mich. (AP) — Pat Sajak will take a “C” for Chairman. Hillsdale College in Michigan says the “Wheel of Fortune” host will lead the governing board at the small liberal arts school. Sajak has served on the board for more than a dozen years. Sajak tells campus newspaper The Collegian that he’s been preparing for months to […]
Less than a week after its on-air talent renewed their contracts, syndicated game show juggernauts Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy have been renewed through the 2022-23 season. Host Pat Sajak and letter-turner Vanna White will keep Wheel spinning, while Alex Trebek contiues to have all the Jeopardy answers. The three-year renewals will take Wheel through its 40th season and Jeopardy through its 39th.
Two of America’s most popular gameshows, Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy, will be inducted into the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) Broadcasting Hall of Fame at the new 2018 NAB Show Achievement in Broadcasting Dinner on Monday, April 9 in Las Vegas. The two syndicated hits have produced a combined 13,000-plus episodes. They are both produced by […]
In 1982, Pat Sajak was a quick-witted former local weatherman with a season as a daytime game-show host under his belt, and Vanna White was a beauty pageant winner making her formal TV debut as his letter-turning co-host. Their surprisingly serendipitous pairing would swiftly turn “Wheel of Fortune,” already a 7-year-old daytime network series, into a worldwide syndicated phenomenon that remains a ratings powerhouse today. Now, “Wheel’s” syndicated game show format is celebrating its 35th anniversary season.
The longtime hosts of syndication juggernauts Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy are sticking around. Pat Sajak, Vanna White and Alex Trebek have all renewed their contracts through the 2019-20 season.
Harry Friedman (right) is the executive producer of two of the most enduring and successful syndicated programs of all time: Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy. He is one of television’s most prolific producers, and his success is marked by his ability to maintain the traditions of both long-running shows while tweaking each just enough to keep them current and on the cutting edge. He will be honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences on April 28 at the Daytime Creative Arts Emmy Awards.
The long-running game show is the biggest beneficiary of this year’s record campaign spending spree. This cycle’s campaign spending on airtime during Wheel will easily exceed the $57 million it earned in 2012, more than any other TV show that election. So far, it’s brought in seven times more than at this point in 2012, according to estimates by Kantar Media’s Campaign Media Analysis Group.
The syndicated game shows, in cooperation with the veterans’ support campaign Got Your 6, are using this week’s episodes to spotlight those who have served.
The syndicated Wheel of Fortune will kick off its 33rd season with a new director. Robert Ennis has been promoted to director of the top-rated syndicated game show, it was announced today by executive producer Harry Friedman. Ennis certainly knows his way around Wheel of Fortune, having been technical director for the show since 1992. […]
The next run of the syndicated game kingpins from CBS Television Distribution has been set for 80% of the U.S. on groups including the ABC Owned Television Stations, Sinclair, Media General and Gray Television.
Alex Trebek, the man with one of the sweetest deals in TV, is not throwing in the towel just yet. Despite hints in recent years that he was ready to retire, the 74-year-old Jeopardy host just signed on to stay through at least the 2017-18 season — as have Wheel of Fortune‘s Pat Sajak and Vanna White.
Ratings for the Steve Harvey hosted game show continue to surge, setting new record highs in three of the past four weeks. Feud has already surpassed Wheel Of Fortune and Jeopardy in several key demos.
The switch from KMGH to Fox’s KDVR takes effect on Sept. 8.
The E.W. Scripps ABC affiliate will replace the two syndicated hits as of Sept. 8 with a 6 p.m. newscast and a half-hour newsmagazine, The List, a national program with local inserts.
The Steve Harvey-hosted show was the top game show among 18-49 year olds during the week ending March 9, but Wheel and Jeopardy had the most total viewers.
Looking back on 30 seasons of Wheel of Fortune, co-host Vanna White manages to stay popular with viewers in an age of reality show television.
The group owner’s execs say they are pleased with the ratings of the two home-grown shows it developed to replace syndication powerhouses Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy. Plus it gets to keep all the inventory in the new Let’s Ask America and The List.
Syndication’s top two game shows renewed for two years beyond current run, taking them through 2015-16.
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Charlie O’Donnell, the announcer whose voice has opened “Wheel of Fortune” for decades, has died. He was 78. Agent Fred Wostbrock said Monday that O’Donnell – the voice of the game show even before hosts Pat Sajak and Vanna White appeared – died late Sunday at his Los Angeles home. The […]