Sunday, July 2, 2023

Pat Sajak's record for longest career as host of the same game show

Regular readers of TV Banter know that my favourite game show is Jeopardy!  Alex Trebek hosted the popular quiz show for 37 seasons, from its revival in 1984 until his death from pancreatic cancer in 2020.

Alex Trebek

Bob Barker hosted The Price is Right from 1972 until his retirement in 2007, a total of 35 years.  (By the way, Bob Barker was born on December 12, 1923.  He will turn 100 this year).  

Bob Barker

Pat Sajak recently announced that he will be retire as host of Wheel of Fortune, the show inspired by the game of  hangman.  The original host of Wheel of Fortune was Chuck Woolery, from 1975 to 1981.  Pat hosted the daytime edition from 1981 to 1989.  He has hosted the syndicated version of the show since 1983.(Merv Griffin created Wheel of Fortune, as well as Jeopardy! As a child, Merv played hangman with his brother during to pass the time on car trips).

Since March 22, 2019, Pat Sajak has held the Guinness World Record for having the "longest career as game show host for the same show."  In December 28, 2021. Pat tweeted "W/hen I started hosting Wheel (with Susan Stafford) on this date 40 years ago, the top 10 TV shows included Dallas, Three's Company, The Jeffersons and The Dukes of Hazard.  Ronald Reagan was in his first year as president.  Number 1 song: Olivia Newton-John;s "Physical."

Pat Sajak is 76 years old.  He will turn 77 on October 26, 2023.  In June, Pat stated that he would retire as host of Wheel of Fortune in 2024, at the end of the show's 41st season.  Soon after, media personality Ryan Seacrest was announced as his successor.

Vanna White joined Wheel of Fortune in 1982 as co-host.  She is responsible for uncovering the letters on the shows large puzzle board.  Vanna, 66, began her career as a model and student of fashion.  After Susan Stafford left Wheel of Fortune in October of 1981, she was eventually replaced by Vanna. The first show featuring Pat Sajak as host aired on December 28, 1981.  On December 13, 1982, less than a a year later, Vanna became the show's regular co-host.  

After Pat and Vanna celebrated Wheel of Fortune's 7,000 episode, Vanna joked with USA Today.  When asked how she felt when she was originally cast on the serries, she replied, "I thought, 'Well, this is gonna be fun, but I can't imagine lasting that long.'"

Vanna and Pat
There are reports that Vanna White is asking for a sizeable pay increase and that she has drawn a line in the sand.  According to TMZ, Vanna is demanding half of what Pat makes, which is thought to be $15 million a year,  Stay tuned. Stay updated with breaking celebrity news, old and current television shows or old television shows news by reading TV Banter Blogs.

- Joanne

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