Trebek has been the game show host of Jeopardy for 36 years and counting.
When you have been the host or the anchor of a television program for over three decades, it's safe to say that you may just have all the say in choosing a successor. Alex Trebek is one such person who has reigned supreme on his game show Jeopardy for 36 long years. However, when the veteran host revealed that he had been diagnosed with stage four pancreatic cancer last March, there were certain doubts calling as to who might be a good candidate to succeed him as the host were he to retire.
Alex turned 80 years old today and that's quite a milestone in itself. It's usually that time in a person's life when they really decide to call it a day on their careers. Luckily, he gave an update on his medical condition saying that he’s in “near remission,” according to doctors. “It’s kind of mind-boggling,” the 78-year-old says, according to PEOPLE. Although cancer has a 9 percent survival rate, Trebek has been responding very well to chemotherapy. “The doctors said they hadn’t seen this kind of positive result in their memory…some of the tumors have already shrunk by more than 50 percent.”
Alex Trebek shares update on cancer treatment: "I've been continuing my treatment and it's been paying off, though it does fatigue me a great deal." https://t.co/IoiyaPvZOu— NBC News (@NBCNews) July 16, 2020
Regardless, the old showrunner decided that it was past time that he and the rest of the production crew, and the fans had a chat about which celebrity he'd love to choose as his successor. During a recent interview with Good Morning America, he spoke about just that and went on to say that Betty White would be perfect for the job. "I have no say whatsoever in who will replace me when my days as the host of Jeopardy end," he said. "But I joked with the audience and said Betty White because they want somebody younger and somebody funnier." Alex concluded, "She checks all those boxes. Betty and I have been friends for a long, long time."
I'll take "Terrible Succession Plans" for $500 please Alex— DennisStephan22 (@DennisStephan22) July 21, 2020
Love Betty White She can probably give us some great jeopardy questions— Mark Nieman (@Mnieman1968) July 22, 2020
That being said, the 80-year-old did state that he would only leave the show if his ability to host started to diminish. If he was still healthy and energetic enough to go about it, he said that he would never walk away from the show and they'd have to take him "crawling away.".“I joke all the time with the audience and I say, ‘Betty White,’ because they want somebody younger, somebody funnier,” quipped Trebek to Good Morning America interviewer T.J. Holmes. “Betty and I have been friends for a long, long time.” He also went on to remark on the lack of concern that many young people are showing in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic during the interview.
Mayim Bialek.— Chris Hamilton (@caxdj) July 22, 2020
“We’ve lost over 130,000 people, and the young people just, ‘Hey, if you don’t wanna catch it, don’t go out, you know,‘” explained Trebek. “What kind of attitude is that? There isn’t enough caring out there, as far as I’m concerned.” He also spoke about the changes that are coming to the competition quiz series when it resumes productions - adhering to social distancing guidelines. “We’ve redesigned our set to separate the contestants and myself a little bit more from them,” he shared. “So we are taking all kinds of precautions. Our testing procedure now is done online.” "We'll do three and take a short break, and then do the last two. And we’ll see how that goes, and if it’s too much for me, we can always cut back a little bit, maybe do four a day," he said. The 80-year-old described Jeopardy as "The best kind of reality television". “And people watch it, and if they come up with one or two correct responses in that half-hour, they feel pretty good about themselves,” he said. “And that’s great.”