Jeopardy! is shaking up its pattern due to the writers strike.
Sony Pictures Television, which produces the daytime game show, is pushing back the upcoming Tournament of Champions after a number of former winners declared that they would boycott the show if it used “recycled material” for questions.
A spokesperson said, “Jeopardy! never had any intention of producing a Tournament of Champions for Season 39 until the strike is resolved.”
“Our current plan is to go into a holding pattern of sorts, pushing back the Season 39 postseason to first produce original episodes featuring the best of our WGA written material. Next month, we will share more news about exciting plans and enhancements to the contestant experience for this upcoming season and beyond,” it added.
Contestants including Ray Lalonde, Chris Pannullo, Ben Chan, Luigi de Guzman and Amy Schneider had said that they would not be competing under the current circumstances.
Jeopardy! producers said that no contestants from season 39 had been contacted regarding their availability for any postseason tournaments including the Tournament of Champions, noting that it “represents the pinnacle of our competition, and it should feature our strongest players playing our toughest original material”.
“Jeopardy! has a long history with and tremendous respect for the WGA and our writers. We have always been careful to honor our WGA agreements and we would never air game material not created by WGA writers. However, just as we did, led by Alex Trebek, during the 2007-2008 strike, we will deliver first-run episodes again this fall to more than 200 affiliate stations nationwide,” the spokesperson added. “Everyone at Jeopardy! hopes that the guilds and the AMPTP can reach a fair resolution quickly.”
Elsewhere in Jeopardy! land, Celebrity Jeopardy! will return on ABC this fall with original material written by WGA writers before the strike.
Both Jeopardy! and Celebrity Jeopardy! are covered under the SAG-AFTRA Network Code, which allows the shows to continue filming.