Mayim Bialik cedes ‘Celebrity Jeopardy!’ hosting duties to Ken Jennings as dual strike continues

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Ken Jennings will take over for Mayim Bialik as host of ABC’s primetime “Celebrity Jeopardy!” this fall.

Bialik, who previously opted out of hosting the syndicated version due to the Writers Guild strike late in Season 39, will continue to stay sidelined now that SAG-AFTRA is on strike as well.

Bialik is a member of SAG-AFTRA and could likely appear on “Jeopardy!” as it is a game show that falls under the Network TV Code, a separate agreement from the AMPTP agreement that triggered the current strike. However, she has publicly announced her support of both unions.

Jennings is not a SAG-AFTRA member. He deflected criticism on his decision to continue hosting, noting that former host Alex Trebek hosted during a previous WGA strike (that strike did not, however, see SAG-AFTRA hit the picket lines).

Like many shows, the syndicated version of “Jeopardy!” has modified its plans when it returns with new episodes in the fall of 2023 for Season 40.

Instead of new contestants, it is planning to bring back ones who lost their original games. For clues, which would normally be all new material written by union staff, it will use a mix of material written before the strike began mixed in with clues culled from past seasons.

WGA has a different contract structure from SAG-AFTRA’s Network TV Code that means its writers cannot work on syndicated game shows.

“Jeopardy!” has also pushed back its Tournament of Champions until after the strikes end. Several high profile contestants scheduled to appear during it have voiced support for the unions and said they would not appear on it if it ran while the strikes continued.