The path for Mike Richards to become the full-time host of Jeopardy is not as clear as it was when it first emerged that he was a frontrunner for the coveted job.
The Executive Producer has opened up about a lawsuit from a decade ago from when he worked on The Price Is Right.
“I want to address the complicated employment issues raised in the press during my time at The Price is Right ten years ago,” Richards wrote in a memo to the Jeopardy! staff on Monday.
“These were allegations made in employment disputes against the show. I want you all to know that the way in which my comments and actions have been characterized in these complaints does not reflect the reality of who I am or how we worked together on The Price is Right,” he continued.
“I know firsthand how special it is to be a parent. It is the most important thing in the world to me. I would not say anything to disrespect anyone’s pregnancy and have always supported my colleagues on their parenting journeys.”
According to Deadline, Richards was implicated in discrimination lawsuits by former models during his time on The Price Is Right.
One of those complaints was by Brandi Cochran, and she was awarded $8.5 million in damages, with the case being deemed settled after an appeal.
Richards was featured in both complaints, according to the outlet, but he was only named as a defendant in the second. He was later removed.
Richards also addressed that he had been approached to take on the full-time hosting duties on Jeopardy!, which has had a rotating panel of guest stars since the passing of Alex Trebek.
“It is true that I was asked if I would consider hosting the show. I was humbled and deeply honored. No final decisions have been made and discussions with me and other potential hosts are still ongoing,” Richards said.
“I know I have mentioned this to you all before, but the choice on this is not my decision and never has been. Throughout this search, Sony’s top priority has always been to continue the incredible legacy you and Alex built.”
“As you know, Alex always believed the game itself and the contestants are the most important aspects of the show, and that will continue to be the guiding principle as the decision is finalized,” he continued.
The search for a new host kicked off last year after Trebek passed away on November 8.
There were enough episodes to take the series through the remainder of that year.
There has been a rotation of guest hosts this year, and it seems like there will be some more before the official host is announced.
What are your thoughts on all of this?
Hit the comments.
Paul Dailly is the Associate Editor for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.