It’s been quite a while since Jeopardy! fans have seen Mayim Bialik behind the host’s podium. While she has officially shared hosting duties with Ken Jennings, who can be seen on the currently airing Champions Wildcard tournament, since 2022, her future on the show has been uncertain after she stepped away from filming in May amid the Writers Guild of America (WGA) strike. In the months since, many viewers have speculated that she would not be coming back.
For her part, Bialik had not said much about her break from Jeopardy!, though sources close to her said she was waiting for the ends of the WGA strike and the concurrent strike of the Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA), of which she is a member.
In August, a source told The Messenger, “She wasn’t fired. She’s choosing to stand with her union, and because of that, she was told it is unlikely she will return for the rest of the year, even if the strike is resolved before then.”
In a September interview with Vanity Fair, Bialik commented tangentially on her break from Jeopardy!, saying, “There’s a lot of complexity to this, but my general statement is always that I come from a union family. My grandparents were immigrants who worked in sweatshops, and my parents were public school teachers. While it’s not for me to personally judge anyone else’s decision, for me, I am a union supporter—pretty much all unions and what they fight for. I believe in that system even if it’s not perfect. I believe in getting educated about why people strike and what they’re striking for.”
Both the WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes have now ended, and it was expected that we’d see Bialik behind the podium again in 2024. But while the source told The Messenger that she had not been fired and “hopes to return to Jeopardy! as soon as the strike has been resolved,” the situation has since changed: The actor announced in a Dec. 15 post on X that she was let go.
“As the holiday break begins in Hollywood, I have some Jeopardy! news,” her post reads. “Sony informed me that I will no longer be hosting the syndicated version of Jeopardy! I am incredibly honored to have been nominated for a primetime Emmy for hosting this year and I am deeply grateful for the opportunity to have been a part of the Jeopardy! family. For all of you who have supported me through this incredible journey and to the fans, contestants, writers, staff and crew of America’s Favorite Quiz Show, thank you.”
Bialik’s post is careful to note that she has been fired from the “syndicated version” of the series, as opposed to any of its primetime spinoffs. She was the original host of Celebrity Jeopardy!, but she declined to host Season 2 because of the then-ongoing strikes. Jennings is now hosting that series as well, leaving Bialik’s potential return uncertain.
In a statement to Best Life, a spokesperson for Jeopardy! said, “Mayim Bialik has announced she will no longer be hosting the syndicated version of Jeopardy! We made the decision to have one host for the syndicated show next season to maintain continuity for our viewers, and Ken Jennings will be the sole host for syndicated Jeopardy! We are truly grateful for all of Mayim’s contributions to Jeopardy!, and we hope to continue to work with her on primetime specials.”